No matter what you think about the results of the 2016 election, know this: the people groups that the president-elect has most deeply offended (and threatened) are the people groups who populate our neighborhood. Immigrants, Muslims, LGBTQ people, black people, and women all but sum up who we are, and there was a shockwave of panic when they announced the results from the election.
This wasn't intentional (well, at least not on our part), but we had one of our monthly Community Table services the Sunday after the election. As part of the service, we broke into table discussion groups that addressed various conversation topics we care about.
Here's what the community said*:
What are potential needs that might arise in our community? What are solutions?
- Threat to people on government healthcare (prescription skipping, subsidies, mental health)
- Loss of healthcare coupled with potential homelessness
- Provide outlets for "comfortable" people to reach out of comfort zone 1x daily
- Educate about sexual assault--microaggressions
- Self defense for victims (solution)
- Social media/digital etiquette and safe space (physical and digital)
- Create safe space for people (activities, stories, etc.)
- Sensitivity and media around new or uncomfortable expressions
- How can we make every space a safe space. How do we bring safety-peace-defense with us?
- Practical tools: education around statements of victims--what do we do?
- How to be involved with law/politics
- Safe houses
- Legal funds (or just funds) for allies who lose or are punished for their choices
- Teach communities how to "stop gap" between aggressors
- Way to track "hot areas" or problem spots
- Access to antibiotics and birth control (if lose health insurance)
- Access to mental health resources with rising needs (outside of medical assistance system)
- Need for artistic expression
- self defense for victims
- How to pivot between identities of being a victim and being an ally
- Equalize everyone in USA = we are all immigrants
- App--be safe
How to compassionately talk with conservatives (or anyone you don't agree with)
- Get beyond "keeping the peace"
- Be OK with US feeling uncomfortable
- Be OK with OTHERS feeling uncomfortable
- Start from self ("I feel...")
- Values NOT policy details
- "I don't hear the truth in that"
- Living in segregated society
- How to share physical space?
- How to share head space?
- How to share heart space?
- Understand that people aren't always ready to talk politics
- Respect this in yourself and others
- Understand when to use Facebook for political reasons (and when to disengage)
- Remain open to others' thoughts
- Stop and think before responding
- Keep DIALOGUE going, don't shut others down
- Find the commonality that you share with others
- We share this country (how can we build it together?)
- Why do we both (all) care so much about this?
- Don't dehumanize
- See the God in others
- Actively listen without validating hate
*please note that New City does not necessarily "officially" endorse these views. 100% of them, though, are straight from the mouths of at least one of the members of our community!