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(171,202 posts)
Tue Nov 29, 2016, 10:59 PM Nov 2016



Justin Normand added 2 new photos.
21 hrs ·


I have had the most extraordinary weekend.

Like most everyone I know, I have been in a malaise and at a loss since Election Day. What to do? With myself? With my time? To make things better, or even just to slog through?

I manage a sign shop, and so I had had the urge for a week or so to do this. Friday, I had a couple of spare hours in the afternoon, so I did. I made a sign, and I drove to the nearest mosque and stood out on the public sidewalk to share the peace with my neighbors. My marginalized, fearful, decent, targeted, Muslim neighbors.

Someone took a picture and posted it, and as of today it’s been viewed millions of times, and shared across various platforms many hundreds of thousands of times.

This is extraordinary and humbling; mainly because what I did isn’t (or shouldn’t be) all that extraordinary.
For me, this wasn’t about expressing agreement; I remain Presbyterian, not Muslim. It wasn’t about demonstrating my outrage to right-wing drivers driving down Esters Road in front of the mosque. I can never, and will never, change any of the haters. It’s not about them. Not this time, and not here.
This was about binding up the wounded. About showing compassion and empathy for the hurting and fearful among us. Or, in some Christian traditions, this was about washing my brother’s feet.
This was about my religion, not theirs.

And, it was about what I think I must do as an American when our way of life is threatened. Targeting people for their religion not only threatens our way of life, it is the polar opposite of our way of life.
Find a group marginalized by the haters in this current era we find ourselves in. Then, find a way to express your acceptance to that group in a physically present way, as opposed to a digital one.
I can assure you, from their outpouring of smiles, hugs, tears, hospitality, messages extending God’s love, and a bouquet of flowers, it will mean a lot.

My own religious tradition ascribes these words to my deity:
I was hungry and you gave Me food; I was thirsty and you gave Me drink; I was a stranger and you took Me in; I was naked and you clothed Me; I was sick and you visited Me; I was in prison and you came to Me.
It is also in this vein that the words on the Statue of Liberty embrace, with eagerness and mercy, all who come to join us:
"Give me your tired, your poor,
Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free,
The wretched refuse of your teeming shore.
Send these, the homeless, tempest-tost to me,
I lift my lamp beside the golden door!"

These words bespeak the America we all remember, know, love, and are still called upon to be. Especially now.

Lastly, it worked. I felt better for the impact it had on my neighbors. They genuinely needed this encouragement. They need us.

They need all of us. They need you.

We ARE one America.
35 replies = new reply since forum marked as read
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K&R!!!!!! burrowowl Nov 2016 #1
Amen brother!! Bucky Nov 2016 #2
Jesus: He who is not against us is with us. raging moderate Nov 2016 #6
I JUST posted this to Facebook. Nt Dr Hobbitstein Nov 2016 #3
I hope the haters don't try to harm this guy. The Velveteen Ocelot Nov 2016 #4
Awesome! Akacia Nov 2016 #5
That was beautiful. Cracklin Charlie Nov 2016 #7
Texas still sucks. This guy is the exception, not to rule! Feeling the Bern Nov 2016 #8
Cool story, little fella! Bless your heart. LanternWaste Nov 2016 #18
passive-aggressive way of insulting someone Sunlei Nov 2016 #19
I'll wager that was the intent. nt babylonsister Nov 2016 #27
Well in fairness it was in response to an aggressive-aggressive insult. n/t whopis01 Nov 2016 #30
(deleted because I misunderstood what the poster was responding too). Ken Burch Nov 2016 #31
This is a man who I am proud to call my fellow Texan Gothmog Nov 2016 #9
Me too! Dustlawyer Nov 2016 #12
And me. narnian60 Nov 2016 #16
Add me to that list, too. hamsterjill Nov 2016 #32
Justin Normand for President! renate Nov 2016 #10
Bless you brother! kimbutgar Nov 2016 #11
linkie no workie for me struggle4progress Nov 2016 #13
Try this one. . . DinahMoeHum Nov 2016 #22
Thanks! struggle4progress Nov 2016 #23
Extraordinary man-- what a treasure! ailsagirl Nov 2016 #14
link not working : ( nt List left Nov 2016 #15
Worked for me. nt babylonsister Nov 2016 #26
I'd love to buy him dinner leftynyc Nov 2016 #17
A good and decent person. It's a shame he had to take down his Facebook page. Sunlei Nov 2016 #20
RE: Links, I just used provided link to get babylonsister Nov 2016 #24
More links about this fellow. . . DinahMoeHum Nov 2016 #21
very well said bdamomma Nov 2016 #25
People at DU love crapping all over Texas and Texans. Buzz Clik Nov 2016 #28
Bravo, Mr. Normand! gademocrat7 Nov 2016 #29
They removed the page classykaren Nov 2016 #33
New page link here BumRushDaShow Nov 2016 #35
Well done, sir. Thank you. ReformedGOPer Nov 2016 #34
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