January 6, 2022

Reflecting on the Anniversary of the U.S. Capitol Riot

By Lori Perkins

I remember where I was and what I was doing on the afternoon of January 6th, 2021. It’s one of those days that will stick in your mind, where you can recall everything about the moment very clearly. I was at home because it was still the time of “WFH”. I left my computer and sat on the couch and watched everything unfold on TV. It felt unreal, just … not real.

One television commentator said, “Is this the end of something, or the beginning?” That resonated, and it stuck with me. It made me think about what’s next. Because that’s really what matters. That’s where the legacy of January 6th lies, and that’s where we need to find optimism and hope. As my buddy Sister Mary Sunshine, a.k.a. Jackie Ogden, told us in her recent post – you can’t not be hopeful when you look at the commitment and passion of people who work in mission-driven professions like ours.

A distinctive legacy of January 6th, 2021 is the poem The Hill We Climb, by National Youth Poet Laureate Amanda Gorman, inspired in part by the events of that day. That poem is a soaring message of hope, and it’s relevant to all communities and professions:

“And so we lift our gazes not to what stands between us but what stands before us. We close the divide because we know, to put our future first, we must first put our differences aside.” 

What stands before us is to save the world. No kidding 😊. The only way we’re going to succeed in putting the future first and achieving that ambition is to unite, to create a path that actively welcomes all voices, to lead with our hearts and our passion and our commitment. The ultimate significance of that surreal day one year ago lies in what it leads us to. I leave politics to the politicians, but for us, the people who aim to save the world, count us with Sister Mary Sunshine: being optimistic means we believe that we can do something about the challenges we face. Join us in doing the work that needs to be done!

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