Intro #3 to "What Time Is It," after a weekend of action and reaction--
“Women…all they say is ‘fuck it, we need housing, we need homes, we need food,’ and THEY LEAD!....and I follow!” –raised in various foster care facilities, homeless from an early age, Ronald (Newhouse) Casanova describing the transformation of his vision by Leona Smith of the Union of the Homeless and Cheri Honkala of Up & Out of Poverty Now during a 1989 March on HUD. For several years in the early 90s, this would lead to Casanova organizing the Kansas City, Missouri Union of the Homeless. This quote is taken from the 1991 Skylight Pictures film, Takeover.
“Fight like a girl!”
“Left or right, we can all see wrong!”
“Silence equals violence!”
“Fem the Future!”
“You’re so vain; you probably think this march is about you!”
“Black lives matter; women’s rights are human rights; no human is illegal; love is love; science is real!”
“Science > Opinion!”
--a few signs from yesterday’s women’s’ marches that drew estimates of one to three million marchers in every state and every continent in the world.
“’One thing this election did for me is to empower me. The people at work will see a different person tomorrow.’
“Barr watched the women among a smattering of men. There were older women, younger women, children. People who had rarely, if ever, been to Washington or gone to a protest. People shaking hands and introducing themselves to one another. Some had heard that the crowds could be much bigger than what showed up for the inauguration; others talked about the marches that had happened the night before around the world.
“To Barr, who mostly listened, they didn’t look any different from the people she had always known, but somehow this felt different, as if something new and fragile was just beginning.”
--from a Washington Post portrait of Joanne Barr, 54 year old lifelong Republican from rural Pennsylvania, who took part in yesterday’s
“Time does not take place in a vacuum. Time is really about the motion of an object or process in time and space. Clock times is the measured motion of the earth rotating on its axis, or revolving around the sun. And we know that the tick-tock of time is not experience just as ‘one damn thing after another,’ ‘Time files when you’re having fun.’
“Or we kissed—‘and time stood still.’ Now that is an unforgettable moment! Everything changed in that moment. That is time experienced as a new quality.”
--from “What Time Is It?,” a statement about the qualitative change America faces today, written by the League of Revolutionaries for a New America
I was working during Friday’s marches, and I stayed home yesterday to take care of my grandson during the women’s march, but my wife was there, and so many of my friends—movement friends and people who have never marched before—were at marches in my home state of Oklahoma, my 30 year home of Kansas, my border state Missouri, and of course all of my friends in Atlanta and Chicago and New York and Washington and on and on…..I’m very proud of them.
The events of the past few years have been increasingly overwhelming, frustrating and scary. But this weekend’s events—from Kansas City’s heartwarming and passionate rock concerts for women and refugees Friday night (led, btw, by women) to the marches Friday and Saturday—did for my heart was remind me how strong we can be when we rally to fight. To sustain that fight, I have more faith than ever that the great majority labeled “deplorable” and “nasty” can come together and study the times and sustain that fight.
I’m pushing this story. "What Time Is It?" like I push my book because it represents crucial work I deeply believe in to help us get where we need to go.
Fwiw, a fundamental reason I have this conviction? Women have led, and I’ve followed.