I love America, but I am afraid of her and for her. I often feel helpless in the face of the growing disease of divisiveness and the firing squad of distrust. And so, as I often do, I seek solace in language and share with you an important call to action from the Gaslit Nation’s Action Guide as our writing prompt for the week:
Make Art. To say that art cannot make a difference stems from a tone deaf attitude of privilege: Ukraine’s EuroMaidan revolution of 2013-2014 relied on art and artists of all kinds to sustain protesters living in arctic-cold temperatures and under the threat of government-sanctioned violence; North Korean dissident Yeonmi Park said that Orwell’s Animal Farm helped her heal after escaping the cult-like dictatorship; and in our episode “The Blue Wave Continues: Kansas Rising” we share Davis Hammet’s account of how painting a rainbow house created a ripple effect in Kansas, leading to major electoral victories. We need the artists and storytellers of all kinds more than ever.
This does not mean that you need to write about or in response to the news. I know for many writing is meant to be a respite. While you can respond to the headlines and images of the day, you can also look ahead or look back for inspiration and hope. Think about works of art (in the broadest possible definition) that reflect what you hope America will be when the madness is over.
Don’t forget to share your writing using the #JustWrite hashtag and check out a new writing community the Morehead Writing Project formed to support us during these trying times.