In a recent conversation, a dear friend of mine said that there are only two types of resolutions: things you know you should stop doing, and things you know you should start doing. Most of the most common resolutions fit into these categories: stop smoking, start saving, stop eating junk food, start exercising.
Yet, I can’t help but wonder if these categories extend beyond oneself. What if we made resolutions for our society at large? In a world where even presidential candidates stir up hatred and fear, often in the forms of homophobia and sexism, maybe these categories can extend beyond those expected resolutions. Instead, perhaps we can make resolutions that spark revolutions.
So as we quickly approach 2016, here’s my list of things I think we all should stop and the things I think we should try for, even if we don’t know how to start them.
Things we know we should all stop doing:
Giving Donald Trump our attention
Seriously. We know we should stop paying attention to him. We know that, like any naughty child, even our negative attention feeds into his plan. So let’s just give him the amount of attention his ignorance and hateful spew deserves: none.
Leaving parts of our communities behind
Dropping the T, supporting racism, objectifying women, discounting the disabled. LGBT communities include all of these folks, and if we want a better world, we all need to stop fragmenting and start working together.
Fighting about reproductive justice
Is this fight over yet? Are we still seriously arguing about same-sex couples adopting? About what people do with their own bodies and their own pregnancies? What procedures to make a fetus are allowed and covered by insurance and for which types of families? Consenting adults can create families in all kinds of ways, abortion has been legal in this country since 1973, and gay parents don’t make their kids gay. ‘Nuff said.
Things we know we should all start doing:
Yep. This is the big one. Maybe none of us agree on where to start, or how to start, but we all should start doing this work anyhow. Dismantle it in little ways at home, or in big ones with mass demonstrations. Let’s put this hard work on the top of our 2016 “to do” list.
Ending gun violence
We have a problem with gun violence in America and we need to get to work fixing it, like yesterday. We have a myriad of other nations to draw upon as examples, places whose gun violence rates per year are less than ours per day. We can do this, but we have to start making a concerted effort. 2016 is the year for that.
Getting over gender
Do we really still need restrooms that are separated by gender, or that there are only two genders? Let’s get over this already, and start making gender-neutral bathrooms and locker rooms commonplace. Let’s start talking about the spectrum and diversity of genders, not just men and women. Let’s get over these pink and blue blankets already.