It has been one week since we posted the Nurses Declaration of Solidarity and Resistance, and today we registered 833 signatories, and still counting! But what matters is that nurses are not only signing this Declaration, but we are acting in our communities all over the world to put the values of this Declaration into action. We have heard from many nurses directly who have said “I have never taken this kind of action before, but now I am doing it.”
Of course not all nurses share the commitment that we have put forward, and we respect any challenge or difference of opinion. The fact remains that there are hundreds of nurses who, like growing numbers of our colleagues and neighbors, continue to be alarmed by the actions of the new administration. The book “Don’t Think of an Elephant” by George Lakoff has helped me to understand the perspectives that different people have concerning what is happening in our nation and the world. Recently a friend heard Professor Lakoff speak of central guidelines for resistance – ways to avoid inadvertently helping the new administration, ways to resist, and ways to promote the values that stand on the side of health and justice. These guidelines can be applied not only to public action, but to our own language and thinking about the situation we are in:
1. Don’t use the name of the new President, and do not repeat his tweets.
2. Remember this is a regime and he’s not acting alone;
3. Do not argue with those who support him–it doesn’t work;
4. Focus on his policies, not his orange-ness and mental state;
5. Keep your message positive; they want the country to be angry and fearful because this is the soil from which their darkest policies will grow.
6. No more helpless/hopeless talk
7. Support artists and the arts
8. Be careful not to spread fake news. Check it.
9. Take care of yourselves; and
If you have not found your way yet to a place and time to take specific political action.in your community, go to the Indivisible Guide website – and start by searching for groups in or near your zip code. Read the guide, talk with your friends, explore existing groups or form one of your own.
When you get involved in a group, let everyone know that you are a nurse, and that you are speaking up based on the values that nurses hold dear! Together we can make a difference! And let us know here! Add your comment to our blog any time to share what you are doing, because your action inspires all of us to act in our own ways and times!
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