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My first post of 2021 was going to be a cheeky missive about resolutions for living better. I was feeling emotionally buoyed by holiday-time readings of A Promised Land by Barack Obama and ari weinzweig’s impassioned screed about choice and place, and I was ready to share my optimism and encouragement.

That positive momentum, though, was halted by last Wednesday’s insurrection. It was a deadly violation of our nation’s ideals and institutions, and though it hasn’t impacted my hour-to-hour living standards, it eroded my confidence in the durability of our democracy—and that is unsettling.

Certainly, US history reflects persistent struggles to dismantle foundational structures of oppression, and recent events can be seen as part of the ongoing drama of creating a more perfect union. 

Despite our national familiarity with conflict, I find that today, my challenge—our challenge—is to feel and not forget, to avoid the collective shrug, the numbness. Holding those feelings in a balance takes vigilance, an effort complicated by a global pandemic and a threatening cultural sector depression.

We can share responsibility and share burden in this attentiveness. That is why generations of leaders have urged communities to strategize, organize, and mobilize. Where there is no quick answer, in our society we have repeatedly understood that coming together in itself has created opportunities for advancement.

So, while you personalize your coping strategies—for instance, I’m listening to more podcasts, reducing Twitter doomscrolling, and having more dialogues with our staff team—please accept my single resolution wish for you this year: increase your participation in CultureSource.

We are and will continue to be better together.