My friend brought her nine-year old daughter, Luna, to the Women’s March. She wanted her daughter to be a part of this event so she can learn social engagement and how to stand up for our rights. I spent some time with Luna while we had lunch after the March.
I flipped over my protest sign and pulled out my markers. “Would you like to make your own protest sign,” I asked Luna. She did, but wasn’t sure what she should write.
“Well, what’s important to you? Is there anything that is happening in the world right now that is upsetting to you?”
Luna proceeded to tell me how it makes her sad to see many of her friends and classmates afraid over what might happen to their families. They are worried their families might get split up because they are trying to escape the violence from their homeland. They are scared of the persecution or harassment over who they love or what god they worship.
“It’s as if the president hasn’t gotten to know any real people,” Luna eloquently told me.
She decided to write WE ALL BELONG HERE on her protest sign. Luna also included a chain of people holding hands under a rainbow, and a heart to represent the love we should all have towards one another.Over the years, I’ve watched Luna grow. She continues to inspire me with her compassion and creativity. I’m reminded that hate and xenophobia aren’t natural. We are taught these things, and it’s up to us to resist.
For Luna, for her friends, and for everyone in the generations to come: I will not sit back and allow xenophobia and hate become an American value. I will fight for their future, and hopefully inspire that generation to do the same.