I got a lot of fun and thoughtful gifts for Christmas this year. But I realized the best gift I got this year was from Dr. Christine Blasey Ford.
|Reuters / Jim Bourg|
Her testimony had a serious impact on my entire mind, not just my conscious thought. I know this because of the horrible nightmare I had last night. I don't want to go into details, but in the nightmare I ended up having to tell my story to the police, the court and on TV.
In the nightmare I was preparing to go on TV to tell the public my story.
I was thinking about the strength and courage Dr. Christine Blasey Ford showed when she testified in the Kavanaugh hearing.
|Pool Photo by Tom Williams|
As I walked into a TV studio I remember being depressed and disgusted by the fact that as a man my story would be taken more serious than a similar story from a woman.
As I sat before the cameras I though about how sad it was that for some white men the only way they could get the seriousness of an assault was for it to happen to one of their own.
|Pool Photo by Tom Williams|
These men had shown an inability to empathize with a woman's experience. But if the only way to reach them was for me to give a painful public testimony, then it was my duty to go through with it.
Remember, this was just a nightmare/dream. I didn't actually have to go thought any ordeal, but I was ready; to do anything less was to dishonor the courage of Dr. Ford. My subconscious mind would not allow it.
This year I got to know some smart, funny and brave women in the gun violence prevention world. They actually have had to go through these kinds of ordeals.
They are courageous and persistent. They are also often ignored.
Some are told to sit down and shut up.
When they don't, and speak up, they are threatened both online and in person by men with guns.
Yet they persist.
|Pool/Getty Images Andrew Harnik|
These women gave me a gift of showing the power of continual, thoughtful action.
The process of changing an entire mindset is hard. It takes actions both big and public, as well as small and local.
The women might not think they are making progress, but they are. Kavanaugh was placed on the Supreme Court. Does that mean Dr. Ford's testimony was worthless? No, it does not.
You can never know how your actions, attitudes and words will have an impact on people. Your words and actions may be the ones that reconfigure people's minds. Long-held attitudes and perceptions may have been changed by something you did that appeared to be a failure.
In the Christmas Carol story Scrooge said this about the ghosts that led him to his change.
This was Scrooge's way of dismissing what his subconsciousness mind was telling him. When I woke up this morning I blamed the peanut sauce, raspberry sorbet or wild blueberry pancakes for my nightmare.“You may be an undigested bit of beef, a blot of mustard, a crumb of cheese, a fragment of underdone potato. There's more of gravy than of grave about you, whatever you are!”
|Vegan Wild Blueberry Pancakes. Acacia Patisserie in Frederiksberg, Denmark. Photo by Spocko|
"I had a dream about you last night..."
When a guy tells a woman he had a dream about them there is often an awkward pause where he rushes to assure her it wasn't one of "those" kind of dreams. In this case none of the women I mentioned were actually IN my nightmare/dream. What WAS in my mind during the nightmare was a memory of those women's strength.
My gift from Dr. Ford was a model of strength of character. I now have a vision of what it looks like and what it might feel like. I can draw upon this if I am ever in a similar situation.
|Pool photo by Michael Reynolds|
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Buckle up everybody. It's going to be a very bumpy New Year!
cheers --- digby
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