I read Aussie the Washington Post article about Tucker Carlson’s internal communication:
“In the message, he described himself watching a video of Donald Trump supporters beating up someone he referred to as ‘an Antifa kid.’ Carlson wrote of his conflicting emotions, hinting at his dismay that he had found himself ‘rooting for the mob against the man, hoping they’d hit him harder, kill him.’
“I know just how he feels,” says Aussie. “It’s how I feel about Henry, the illegal Chihuahua.”
“Henry never fights,” I tell her.
“But he sure does bark a lot. He’s a big coward. When Boris came to our home for so many nights, guess who didn’t run outside to scare him off?”
“Neither did you, Auss, which was smart, given what a big bear Boris is.”
“But do I bark like a meshugena? No. My barks are fierce and well-aimed, and of course I growl. That’s how you and Lori know Boris is back and you run downstairs and start banging a pan. Henry barks because he barks, no reason at all. If a leaf falls, he barks. If a crow crows, he barks. When it rains, he barks.”
“He’s a small dog, Aussie. Small dogs bark.”
“White dogs don’t bark.”
“You’re almost all black, Aussie.”
“Yes, but when I fight, I fight white.”
My thoughts went back to my time in the city of Salvador, in Bahia, Brazil, when we visited Luiza Mahin, an umbrella of organizations working to create a life for the children growing up in that impoverished neighborhood, dense habitations squeezed tightly between alleys where children played in the dirt and dogs panted in the hot dust. There we found a school, a community bank, a community center, and a spiritual interfaith center.
On the walls of the school, we encountered photos of the activists who’d built and were still building this urban oasis, all older black women, faces marked not just by age but by struggle and wisdom, who originally held meetings on the roof because they had nowhere else to meet, make plans, and start something beautiful out of nothing.
The young man who took us around wore a yellow T-shirt that said: Lute come una mulher. Fight like a woman.
They had plenty of things to fight. Homicide rates that went up to the roof and directly affected so many families, lack of room, lack of work, lack of schooling, lack of promise and a future. All the things that cause so many families to start a trek up to El Norte.
This morning I heard from one of the seniors in Green River Zen that he and his daughter are helping a family obtain refugee status from our government. The family consists of two parents, a one-year-old and a five-year-old, all of whom literally walked on foot from Ecuador to our border.
They’re not white. This is how they fight.
And what about the women who covered up their children as a killer was rampaging through their house, shooting his neighbors down because they’d asked him not to shoot guns in his back yard at 11 at night? We have folks in this town who like to do that, I read about those complaints very often on our local Police Log. Their Texas governor reminded everyone they were illegal immigrants. They could have been from Mars for all I care, only the women covered up the small children, preventing their death. They weren’t legal or illegal, they were Buddhas, the mother and child lying in pools of blood, one dead, one alive.
My mother stowed aboard a ship with a 3-year-old orphaned nephew to leave Europe after the Holocaust and arrive in Israel. But when they landed in Haifa, she had no choice but to face the big, beefy, British captain of the ship and tell him what she, at the age of 18, thin and penniless, had done.
“You came aboard my ship?” he bellowed, his face turning a bright red. “You came illegally aboard my ship!”
Fight like a woman.
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