Last week we learned that a person on Whidbey Island was threatening to disrupt the first Pride Parade in Anacortes. He made other veiled threats. He was arrested before the event, thankfully. I know many of the people who were organizing the event. I could tell that their legitimate concern for the the safety of all involved was weighing on them. It was all over their faces.
The event went really well. I spoke to one community leader who told me that for him and many others, Anacortes had always been a good place to live. But now it felt like home. People came out of their homes. Stood on the street. Waved and cheered. A sign of welcome.
It was in their faces. You could see it.
Much of the work we have to do to rebuild social trust and a more equitable world is complicated. But this was not complicated. It only meant going to town, finding a parking spot, finding a place on the side of the street, greeting friends, and waving. Being present with our fellow human beings in public.
There is nothing better for me than seeing the joy and relief when people recognize that they have friends, that they are welcome, that I and others recognize our common humanity.
I could see it in their faces.