"Every sin is a form of violence."- 'Problem of Non-Violence,' Navajivan, 6 June 1926 (from The Essential Writings of Mahatma Gandhi edited by Raghavan Iyer)
I'm a foster parent.
My state, like many states, is having sever budget issues. Yesterday, I went to my State Capitol to rally and lobby to restore the funds cut from the proposed State Budget for the agency that oversees abused and neglected children. I won't bore you with the details, even if I fully understood them, but suffice it to say, that the proposed cuts would devastate a protection system that is already last in the country in helping children.
I was brushed off by my local state representative, one of the few liberals left in my state's government, and I found out that this representative was actually responsible for writing this section of the proposed budget. She defends the budget by saying how much worse it could be.
I sat down in the halls of government and watched, and prayed, and thought.
Everything in the Capitol Building is over-sized, gilded, hand carved and covered in leather. Twenty foot high ceilings and doors. Marble walls, columns, statuary. Enormous wooden door frames and stair railings. Huge paintings of the important battles for independence. Portraits of every Governor, many of whom have gone on to be President. And gold and bronze gilded everything. The place was designed for fifteen foot high humans who stride like gods through the halls.
I went out onto the grounds of the Capitol and found what the plaque said was a collection of six statues of school children created with funds donated by school children in 1993. "A Tribute to Texas School Children" the plaque was titled. Only four of the statues were there. The base for a fifth was still there, the sixth base was missing.
I wanted to cry.
The giants of the Texas Legislature and the school children of Texas.
"Every sin is a form of violence."