Social Commentary

February 23, 2017

Confession and …

I feel edgy and stressed.

I’m out of sorts (where did that phrase come from?). Worried and anxious.

You know why if you’re reading this blog labeled “social commentary.” It’s how so many of us feel. For example: The rescinding of the bathroom directive for transgender youth in schools. Yet another inconceivable – but inevitable I suggest – Trump action.

So I’m reading a James Rollins action novel. And the hero is ex-military with PTSD. One of the hero’s counselors used the term MORAL INJURY to refine the diagnosis of PTSD…. MORAL INJURY occurrs when “someone’s understanding of right and wrong was deeply violated.”

That’s what so many of us are feeling…. A violation of our basic values and beliefs. A violation of our vision of community and the good life and common cause … And our hopes for the United States of America. A violation of what we want this country to continue to aspire to and fight for.

What Papa Georges taught me and raised me to believe and how to act… The USA has always violated – to various degrees – my understanding of right and wrong. But never more so than this moment of my lifetime.

Sometimes I think about leaving. But then I realize the world violates my understanding of right and wrong to various degrees in every country and every community and … So I’ll stay here and fight.

I’m rambling. I’m on the road for 10 days and feeling tired anyway.

I just wanted to share the PTSD description for all of us who are feeling somewhat stressed and shakey and and and …. PTSD is a moral injury… when someone’s understnading of right and wrong is deeply violated.

[P.S. If you like action adventure etc. novels…. I’m liking Jim Rollins.]

 

 

Filed under: Social Commentary

February 15, 2017

Hope?

Thank you to Patti Saunders, Alaska pal.

“I love your rants, Simone. They so often mirror my own thoughts and feelings, but more articulately than I can usually manage.

“I want to offer one bit of hope: it seems to me that one of the things we may be seeing is a whole lot of nominally progressive people who have sat back and taken our progress for granted, as well as the idea that the progress would continue unabated into the future (albeit by fits and starts), have woken up out of their complacent stupor and realized that everything is at stake right now, including our souls if we just go quietly.
“I’m thrilled to see so many people in the streets and on the phone to their legislators (30,000 calls to AK Senator Murkowski about DeVos!!!). I’m thrilled to see so many people donating to good causes ($19 million to the ACLU in THREE DAYS to litigate the immigration/refugee order!). There’s a sea change in the air; I can smell it.
“We just have to keep it going, bank the coals so the flame stays lit for the long haul.”
YES. We just have to keep it going, bank the coals sos the flame stays lit for the long haul. Because it’s going to be a very very long haul. Full of ugliness and fear and anger and sadness and so much hurt to so many people.
Thank you, Patti.

Filed under: Social Commentary

February 9, 2017

Refuse to acknowledge…

Elizabeth Warren was told to be quiet. Women often are.

Boys are told not to ask questions and not to cry. Only women do that.

Sexism… Against women and, yes, against men, too.

Conscious and unconscious bias. Racism. Sexism. Homophobia. Bathroom laws. And on and on. Alive and well. And thriving now.

But we continue to deny. We continue to ignore research. We continue – as a society, as communities, as governments, as president – to acknowledge our own unearned privilege. We continue to deny all our “isms.”

“She was warned. She was given an explanation. Nevertheless, she persisted.” Senator Elizabeth Warren was certainly not the first – nor will she be the last.

An endless list of those fighting for basic human rights. Endless – both so sad (not enough progress) and so great (continuing to fight). Martin Luther King, Jr. Mahatma Gandhi. Black Lives Matter. Gloria Steinem. William Wilberforce. Hillary Clinton. Malala Yousafzai. Betty Friedan. Shirley Chisolm. Jessie de la Cruz. Just a few that I think of.

Feminism is not a female thing. Feminism is an equity thing. Civil rights isn’t a people of color thing. Civil rights is an equity thing. Same with homophobia and and and and and and…

I’m so tired and so sad and so angry and so disappointed. But not surprised, I guess.

Look in the mirror. Grab hold of your conscious mind. Fight to overcome your own unconscious bias. Make it conscious and fight it!

January 8, 2017

Vietnam War and trust

New series begins in the New York Times… Revisiting the war in Vietnam and “its consequences for today.”

“Vietnam: The War That Killed Trust.”

We forget history too much. I suppose “everyone” knows WWI and WWII.

But Nam was seminal. The war in Vietnam “changed the way we looked at politics,” and race and so much.

Worth reading and reflecting upon. How the events of 1967 and early 1968 affected that country and this country – and our world.

Filed under: Social Commentary

December 31, 2016

Hope dies last

10 minutes ago I posted a sad and angry blog: Lived experience isn’t what the law proclaims.

But there must be a partner to the sad and angry blog…

“La esperanza muere última.” Hope dies last. So said Jessie de la Cruz as she fought for the rights of farmworkers.

And “hope has two daughters, anger and courage. They are both lovely,” proclaimed Saint Augustine.

I will embrace what Father Dan Berrigan said: “There may be times when we are powerless to prevent injustice. But there must never be a time when we fail to protest.”

I will continue my life in philanthropy because I know what Alfre Woodard knows: “Charity is good, but supporting and creating social change are about power. Power can infuse lives with purpose and dignity. That opens up the possibility of joy. The life of the giver, as well as that of the receiver, is transformed…No matter who we are, no matter how much money we have, whatever our color, gender, age, religion, or language, we can bring change to the world around us. We  can open our minds, roll up our sleeves, and reach out our hands.” (Alfre Woodard in the preface to the most marvelous book Robin Hood Was Right.)

I will continue taking risks. I will speak truth to power. Because social justice matters. As Woodard said, “Creating social change is exciting. It’s proof that we are alive and thinking. What could be beter than to work for a future where fairness is the bottom line?”

I end 2016 with deep sadness and anger. And I begin 2017 with deep sadness and anger — and a commitment to fight on and proclaim justice. Because my hope has not yet died.

Filed under: Social Commentary

December 31, 2016

Lived experience isn’t what the law proclaims

One last comment on social injustice for 2016. One more hope for future years.

We have laws about marriage equality. We have laws against racism and sexism. So everything is “fixed,” right?

No… Lived experience is different than law and regulation. Sure. The law is pro marriage equality and anti racist and pro women’s rights. Well, mostly the laws are kind of that way.

But the lived experience? People of color still experience racism. Daily. Women still experience sexism. Daily. If you’re homosexual or trans or… You still don’t feel safe and respected and …

Read this: Becoming Ugly. Sad. Grotesque. Truth. Anger. Can you imagine? Have you experienced? Do you deny? Do you understand yet? Will they understand? Ever?

 

Filed under: Social Commentary

November 26, 2016

Men. Women. Female. Male. Glass ceilings. Better lives.

I found this draft in my blog folder. Somehow lost it. Never posted it. Or did I? Hmmmm….. I think not.

Obviously I drafted this before USA election day. Oh well. The articles are still good.

—-Here’s what I wrote and never posted. Title as is. Original blog text below—-

Read the articles below. Then stop telling me you don’t like Hillary.

Pay attention!

Women’s rights = human rights. Human rights = male rights = women’s rights.

What Women Owe Hillary Clinton

When Women Win, Men Win, Too

A Glass Ceiling Now Broken, Is U.S. Ready for a Madam President?

Filed under: Social Commentary

November 24, 2016

Thanksgiving is a U.S. holiday

Thankful for … friends and family and donors and business colleagues and employees and bosses and board members …

Thankful for the nonprofit sector and those willing to fight and risk speaking out and …

I said I wouldn’t talk about the U.S. election anymore. But I just read the single most marvelous summary of how I feel and how so many feel… the single most marvelous call-to-action for those who can take the risk to speak out … And yes, I can and will continue to do so.

Thank you Charles M. Blow. Brilliant and wonderful and deeply sad and galvanizing and kick-ass and…. “No, Trump, We Can’t Just Get Along.” 

Thank you New York Times. For keeping Charles M. Blow with you always.

Filed under: Social Commentary

November 14, 2016

I will stop now…after this last one…

Very good LinkedIn comment from Kevin Feldman about following U.S. law. And being donor centered. I agree.

But I have additional comments. About silence is consent. About public policy and advocacy. About the ethical and moral role of the nonprofit sector.

First read Kevin’s remarks: Do Not Let Your Politics Ruin Your Fundraising. Then scroll down for my response.

Do read Waldemar Nielsen’s monograph “The Third Sector: Keystone of a Caring Society.” See Chapter 1 in my book Strategic Fund Development: Building Profitable Relationships That Last, 3rd edition, beginning on page 6, “Why does this sector matter?”

And always keep nearby John Gardner’s beautiful monograph, “Building Community,” also discussed in my book Strategic Fund Development.

Check the Independent Sector for the Gardner and Nielsen pieces. I read both of these more than 20 years ago– and they’re still favorites.

Okay. Enough.

 

Filed under: Social Commentary

November 13, 2016

I finally cried yesterday

About the election…About what it says about this country. Oh Papa Georges, je suis si triste. C’est toi qui m’a instruit.

I’ve been listening to Mavis Staples sing We Shall Not Be Moved. And I sing along. And then I listen to Andra Day sing RISE UP and I cry.

I promise that I shall not be moved. And I will continue to rise up.

Equity be with us all.

Filed under: Social Commentary

Simone Joyaux, ACFRE, Adv Dip, is an internationally recognized expert in fund development, board and organizational development, strategic planning, and management.

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