Many of you have written to tell me that Westboro Baptist Church is planning to picket Mighty Maya’s funeral. Yes, I know. It’s really something, isn’t it? Last night I sat and talked with Craig about my need to make LOVE WIN in my heart when it comes to WBC. Because the energy that is stirred inside of me every time I hear of them is a powerless rage/sadness/confusion energy- and it’s unhelpful. I needed to find a way to convert that unhelpful energy into helpful energy because “powerless” is a lie. I’ve learned that we cannot change the fact that fear will be released into the world again and again- but we DO have the power to convert that fear into love. As it flows into us, we must CHANGE it before we allow it to flow back out to others. We must interrupt the flow. We have that power. And that’s my favorite kind of conversion – Fear to Love. So last night I decided that every time WBC appears on my radar- I will immediately log on and donate to GLAAD. Because our job as peacemakers is to write a better story down here. “Westboro Baptist Church Pickets Funerals of Heroes” is a crappy story. “Studies Find That WBC Activity is Directly Related to Huge Increase in Donations to Groups Who Support Gays and Lesbians” is a better story. Fear transformed to Love is the BEST story. That’s power.
And while we worry about Mighty Maya’s celebration, let us also remember that Dr. Angelou spent her entire life creating beauty and strength NOT because bigotry and ignorance and fear stepped out of her way- but because it SURROUNDED her and served as a foil to her acceptance, wisdom and courage. She was more beautiful BECAUSE OF THE NONSENSE. She was a star and the hate was the night sky. It made her more brilliant in contrast. The giants Maya faced down and the dragons she slew put WBC in their proper context. They are not a giant and they are not a dragon. They are an annoying gnat to be repeatedly swatted away. Maya was certainly never afraid of a few bigots holding cardboard signs- and neither should we be. If they come – let them come. Folks like them have always come and always will. That is not what matters. What matters is that they will not win because they do not have truth on their side. Truth is on the side of love, never fear. And so if they come, the Universe will respond appropriately, and Dr. Angelou’s funeral will be her final assertion that Love casts out Fear. She will leave the same way she lived – towering above small minds and hearts – casting shadows upon them as:
Happy Sunday. INTERRUPT TODAY. Love Wins.
Author of the New York Times Bestselling Memoir CARRY ON, WARRIOR
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