1. Shirley Cline

    Laura Haines
    Thankyou for the civility of this letter.
    May i first say that I have had little exposure to the news and do not know of you, Chonda and even many of those that spoke.
    As an individual member of society, I am an observer, very visual and do best working alone or one on one.
    As a college student, I went to May Day because I felt I must do Something more than support the servicemen I knew personally and their buddies in harms way.

    At this point in my life, my responsibilities at home here would not allow me to do this. The May Day experience came back to me watching coverage of your first day march in Washington. The violence, the disrespect for property, the language, the blaming……..the singling out of Trump was the only striking difference.

    Many of my friends were with you in Washington or Boston or locally . Others wished to be. From my 48hrs focused on media coverage and from my own experience camped out in West Potomac Park so many years ago my response to you as an individual who may have the position and aptitude to afford change is this. Continue to take the high road. Do the veery necessary work of debriefing those who acted. Educate. Educate. Educate.

    Trump is an example of a boy raised in my time as a sports hero. His attitudes and language reflect that. The important thing is that he has grown since then to a more complex individual. As an industrial equipment sales distributor in one of my lives, I have had experience with many no different. Yes it is offensive. To me the “f bomb” is offensive. My x- daughter-in-law liberally adds this and other spice to her vocabulary as do many of her coaching friends. She is focuswd on her goals in life and averages a man every two years to step up and over. Her children are just now of the age where they will begin to see this pattern as inconsistant with her mothering style and her religious motions. My prayer for her is that she will mature into someone more aligned with her better self and hurt fewer persons in her path because she realizes that people all deserve to be treated with equal compassion.

    Thank you for this respectful open letter. If I learned one thing, it would be that all people are represented in any group. Actually, this is a reaffirmation that it takes all kinds. I can appreciate that the Trump inauguration was a convenient attachment for awareness but it is always easier to attack a thing or person than to promote an ideal on its own.

    Please take the high road. Drag those immature protesters off the playground and educate them. Do your best to separate that element with their own agendas from your core group. Definitely, like the language thing, get rid of the biologically explicit symbolism. It is so shallow to attack Melania for nude photos hearing a pussy hat. Put in context, Eurpeans have different ideas about nudity. Again, her path is what she knew and is as old as life itself. We all are not perfect but we are lovable.

    My god is Love. With love all things are possible. The high road voice is so important for balance in this messy business. My prayer for you is to continue what you are doing to bring more to your movement and lift up out of hate those that are ina part of your movement. I will stay here and be the best that I know how as I live with the visual symbols and colors around me of the organized women marchers who brought us our vote 100 years ago.

    1. Laura Haines

      Hello, Shirley, and thank you for your reply. <3 My daughter and I had a wonderful experience at the rally. There was no violence, no destruction of property. Everyone was happy, encouraging, and respectful of each other. Many voices and issues were raised up and represented. All of them important. All of them worthy of address. And my hat was lovingly crocheted by a dear friend and shipped to me just in time for the rally. I wore it proudly and will continue to wear it proudly. Yes, it's pink. Yes, it has ears like a pussy-cat. And yes, there is a double meaning in there somewhere as an ANSWER to the sexism and misogyny that still exists in this world, along with the sexual harassment, assault, and abuse of a kind even admitted to and joked about by our current president. And yes, I love the hat. And I will wear it for the sense of empowerment it inspires and the solidarity it expresses to my fellow sisters and a watching world. I hope my post and my reply to your thoughtful comment helps you to see the very positive messages we are seeking to send. (((hugs)))


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