Please join me for #ourweekofpeace (and I don’t mean the kids are gone)

imageIn early July, when Kendall F. Person first invited me to be a part of the annual #ourweekofpeace, I of course said “Yes” for many reasons, not the least of which was because it’s an opportunity to collaborate with other artists — writers, musicians, poets, singers and photographers — in a week-long tribute to peace in our world. Little did I know how, within just a few days of our conversation, the world would seem to come crashing down in Minnesota, Baton Rouge, Dallas and, most recently, France.

Once again, we have a reason to mourn senseless tragedy.

The importance of expressing our thoughts and the need for peace is crucial right now. I’m humbled to join artists from around the world Aug. 1-7, when The Public Blogger presents its annual Our Week of Peace collaborative, coincidentally during a time when we need it most. I hope you’ll join me, along the dozens of other artists, as each of us presents our own perspective on peace through our art. Here’s a snippet of what it’s all about…  Continue reading

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Only embracing our common thread can keep America from unraveling

imageI generally reserve this place for humor. That’s because I believe in the power of its shared experience, and how that experience brings people together. Good humor transcends color, religion, geography, financial status or political affiliation. It’s devoid of hate and allows us to embrace a common thread woven through our humanity that we all share through laughter.

All living creatures get angry, scared, excited or worried; it’s humor that makes us human.

But there are mornings like this when being funny doesn’t feel right. The events of the past few days have spilled over from a collective cup that has been filling with a bitter brew being served during a time of unprecedented polarization within our country. We are being divided and conquered by fear — of each other, our differences, and a political landscape that inspires the worst in us instead of what defines us at our best.

And we swallow this bitter brew not because it’s what we want, but because it’s all there is.

This week’s shootings in Louisiana, Minnessota and Dallas — like Orlando — are about the kind of fear that breeds mistrust and hatred. It’s also the kind of fear that is fast becoming the oxygen within the current political atmosphere. The more of it we breathe, the more it permeates us, coursing through our life blood and into our hearts until that fear we breathe is what sustains us.  Continue reading

We can’t let hate win

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I am incredibly saddened by the news this morning about the deadliest mass shooting in our nation’s history, spurred by an act of hatred against a group of people targeted for their choice in living life. Not only because of the lives lost in Orlando, but the atmosphere of hatred that is continuing to grow in our country. A nation that was founded on equality and the right to pursue life, liberty and happiness is falling victim to the notion that hate is a solution. This morning, along with the innocent lives lost in Orlando, I also mourn the loss of tolerance and acceptance. We reserve the right as Americans to disagree with others. We have the right NOT to support the lifestyle or religious choices others make. You can be anti gay, anti Muslim, Republican or Democrat, liberal or conservative, Ford or Chevy. But if we allow hatred to sway us into believing we have the right to not only deny those same rights to others, but to kill them for it, we will have lost everything.

Don’t let hate win. Or we all lose.

#hatewontwin