It’s no secret that things are hard for many of us in the US right now. Those of us who have been politically engaged throughout our lives are watching as the unthinkable appears to unfold. Those who are newly politicized by the rise of The New Administration (I refuse to speak his name) are confused, frightened, demoralized, wonder what they can do in the face of a seemingly unstoppable enemy. I’ve experienced my own fair share of days that felt hopeless, of long nights of no sleep. I spent most of Inauguration Day in tears of despair.
And then I got up on Saturday and marched — not as part of the huge Women’s March in DC, unfortunately, but as part of a smaller but equally dedicated group of about 3000 in the small city where I work.
Through it all, I’ve struggled to discover what it is that I have to offer this resistance, this movement, this community. My fiery Sagittarian spirit wants to do all the things, but I also know that this is not possible. So what are the things that I can do? What do I have to offer that is uniquely mine to give?
What, as Chani Nicholas says in this fabulous essay on the Aquarius New Moon, is my “point of entry”?
The Aquarius New Moon is concerned with liberation on a global scale. The concern is not with our personal liberation, except for insofar as it is tied up with the liberation of all. The energies of this New Moon are supporting our quest, our movement, our resistance. And in order to use that energy to its fullest, we have to find our point of entry. We all have something to offer — so often when it comes to activism, we assume that if we can’t march or don’t have the ear of powerful people, we can do nothing. But the new grassroots movement in the US, like movements everywhere, shows us that we all have something to give. And it is often our privileges that provide us that point of entry.
For me, the privileges afforded to me by my education are that point of entry. I’ve come to realize that my biggest gift to the movement and to the quest for global liberation is the knowledge I’ve gained. I’ve had access to types of higher education, including two MAs and a PhD, that are not open to everyone. And while formal university education is far from the only way to gain knowledge, I have learned so much about how we work for a just society in those classrooms. But that is worthless unless I share it. My Women’s Studies education, especially, is really only useful if it’s taken out of the hallowed halls of academe and into the street. And so I’m beginning to craft courses in that material on a community level — offered to anyone who wants to take them, rather than only those who have access to a university classroom. (My first course, Feminism Is For Everybody, is an introduction to intersectional feminism and starts February 1.) I will offer my labor to this movement for liberation, and I will offer the fruits of my intellectual labor, because it is the place where I have the most to give.
This Aquarius New Moon, I invite you to ponder — what is your point of entry? What privilege do you have that you can leverage to serve the greater cause? What ways can you give back? If it is daunting to think of “big” ways, what are the seemingly small ways you can support this cause? Remember that your words, your love, your support to other people, are all weapons of resistance.
Together. As we breathe together, we can make a hurricane. We can make a wind of change. Yes, we can.
See you in the street until we’re all free.