On Peacemakers and Holding Your Ground

I only recently ran across this article at Womanist Musings from back in September of 2012.

It’s called “Annoying are the peacemakers, for they will call for our silence”, and it’s all so immensely quotable that you should just go ahead and read it.  I do like this bit:

Y’see, Peacemakers, every time you speak, what I tend to hear is “sit down and shut up.” Because I, we, aren’t talking just to cause trouble, or because we love a good fight – and no, we don’t. It’s the biggest straw man in the world that marginalised people ENJOY these battles to be treated like full human beings. We’re speaking up – angrily – because we have to. We’re speaking up to protect ourselves. But you’re trying to stop us doing so.Silence supports the status quo. Our peace, our refusing to make waves, ensures that the world will continue as it is – and as it is is oppressive, prejudiced, bigoted and deeply unjust. It is hurting us and we need to speak to stop that. You stop us fighting and you help those attacking us and holding us down.

Right now, in the wake of the Supreme Court ruling about Hobby Lobby and birth control, I’m especially feeling this.  How am I supposed to meet someone halfway when they are are legislating away my right to make my own medical decisions?  How am I supposed to meet someone halfway when they don’t think I deserve the same rights as everyone else, so they’re trying to take mine away?  Where the fuck is the “halfway” on wanting me to have fewer rights than a dead body?

Meeting people halfway on legislation only leads to people wanting to be met halfway again.  You lose another half of your ground.  Why should I want to give up my safety by halves to keep things “civilized” and “peaceful”?  Because it doesn’t feel either civilized or peaceful to me.  It feels like being threatened and attacked, and told to be nice about the entirely justifiable noise I make when someone really, really hurts me.  On fucking purpose.

I’m not interested in giving bigots and regressives a free pass to walk away from the shit they do and say without being challenged.  If I choose not to challenge or engage, that’s my choice.  But I am not going to let someone else tell me I shouldn’t because it’s not nice.

That’s not peace.  That’s silence.  There’s a difference.