I guess Tumblr isn’t really the place to talk about real things, but this week has me in a pretty real mood, and I need an outlet into which to put some of that realness.
It’s been a really terrible week, and it’s only Thursday. Terrorism, poison, catastrophic accidents, and our shitty congress being mind-blowingly shitty. It’s hard not to feel helpless, but a thing I’ve started to do is to take the opportunity to contribute to causes that I think will make our world a better place. I don’t have much to give, but giving even a tiny amount is better than giving nothing, and it is a far more productive use of my money than my Netflix subscription was.
On Monday morning, before the bombs went off in Boston, I contributed to a political action committee founded by my senator (and one of my favorite elected officials), Kirsten Gillibrand. The PAC’s mission is to get more women elected to official posts in order to erase the persistent lack of proportional representation in our governing bodies. I then contributed to the campaign of one such woman, who is running for office in my home state. While I tend to blissfully ignore the politics of the place I willfully and permanently left, I felt drawn to throw my support behind someone who can lend a voice encouraging what I believe are changes that that place desperately needs.
Then the bombs went off on Monday. And yesterday, our congress failed to pass common sense regulations on background checks on gun purchasers. I watched President Obama, visibly enraged, reiterate to everyone that it’s going to take more than public opinion to fight the all-too-powerful gun lobby in this country. So today I threw what I could at Gabby Giffords’ PAC doing just that.
I have never considered myself a particularly political person, but the older I get the more I realize that it is up to me to do what I can to create the world I want to live in. It won’t happen on its own. Money feeds organizations that fight for change. I’m a former academic who now works in the cable TV business. I’m hardly a world-changer. But I have a salary now, and it’s up to me how to use it.