I've been thinking about change a lot lately. Mostly for intensely personal reasons, but yeah, this little politial fracas that's been consuming us lately factors in.
So first, the "duh": change is never easy. I think normal human beings--lefties and righties, blues and reds, tall peeps and short (ha!)--resist change with every fiber of their beings.
This guy, Mark Hasty, whose blog I just stumbled upon this morning, makes an interesting point about why Bush won this election: basically, that the Republicans speak to the People and Dems don't. He goes on to suggest that a few of us park our liberal asses in a church and see whaddup with the rest of the world. That there is no substitute for the community provided by faith.
Well, yes. And well...no.
Did Kerry lose because he doesn't speak the language of the majority of the people in this country? Absolutely. It's not like the man is lacking in the moral values area himself.
But why is The Answer to adopt the language and/or lifestyle of that largest voter bloc? I'm an artist (well, I try, anyway). I know lots of other artists. You wanna talk community? You wanna throw down about faith? About true "Christian" (i.e., loving, inclusive, radical) values? Come spend some time in our church. We call it a theater, but whatever. It's a more loving, inclusive community than any of the Catholic parishes that we belonged to in my youth.
At rehearsal last night for the glorious, celebratory, non-partisan, non-religious holiday show we're putting up this holiday season, there were many sad artists. Because even artists don't like to lose. But a lot of us are already fired up about what we see as the possibility for large-scale change, because that's something artists embrace. We like change. We're scared of it too, sometimes, but it excites us. What's working, what's not? What do we keep, what can we toss?
Do we need to find a way to communicate? To reach out? To reassure that no one wants to take anything from anyone else, but rather to add to, to enhance, to include? Yes, yes--a resounding "YES!!!".
You really want to include every one? Heal the rift? Make this beautiful country the great, glorious place it can be?
Get cracking on a lingua franca: that common language that fosters communication between all people, all parties, speakers of all languages.
We're working on it at the 99-cent show. It's a little nutty, but it just might work.