In these anxious and unsettled times, we acknowledge that some are hurting. In the rise of hate speech, we have heard language dismissive and abusive to women. Words reveal. They cause pain. Words stir memories. They reawaken trauma.
Some of us wanted to believe we’d moved beyond the misogyny lurking just below the surface of propriety. Some of us knew all too well what was there.
Many women know what it is like to feel unsafe. Objectified. Judged by body and appearance and age. Many women know what it is like to be groped and assaulted.
We name this reality: being female can be dangerous – physically, emotionally, and spiritually – dangerous.
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May women who feel vulnerable know the solidarity of those who say: “This is unacceptable.” May those who feel diminished know the strength of sisterhood that reaches deep into the past and extends far into the future. May those who have been re-traumatized by the callousness of these times seek support and be reminded they need not walk alone.
May we confront those who diminish and abuse. May we be empowered to speak the worth and dignity of all persons, regardless of gender, and to live boldly into our wholeness.
Rev. Tim Kutzmark, Fresno