Some say the pandemic has revealed inequality, some say we knew this all along. But now the evidence is in from across the nation. More blacks get COVID-19 than whites. And of those who get it, more blacks die. Those with full-time jobs keep drawing salaries as they work from home. “Gig workers” struggle to see how they can get anything for bare subsistence.
How do we feel about this? What do our UU souls live with this? How do our UU minds and hearts resolve to act and communicate? Do you feel we are in a crisis? Do you feel an opportunity to look at things differently? Do you feel an opportunity for others to see things differently?
It seems to me that more people now recognize that the pandemic has made clear that our country must develop some plan for adequate health care for every citizen, 100%, not excepting anyone. More folks believe it is immoral to exclude anyone from health care, and plumb crazy to invite the spread of diseases, because of your income or where you live. Now more see that living without health care can create potentially involuntary Typhoid Marys.
Thomas Piketty, the French economist who wrote the second Wealth of Nations in 2015, tells us that our current economic system is engineered in such a way as to worsen inequality, and that the only thing that can do to redirect is by using our political system.
There are Russian oligarchs, and there are American oligarchs, which we call the 1%. But most of that 1% are common multi-millionaires. The 400 (0.001%) super-rich own almost $3 trillion. The billionaire class added $283 billion to their wealth in just 23 days of the pandemic. Of that $283B, $34B is now in Jeff Bezos pocket. Every time I buy something on Amazon , I cringe. What can I do? What can we do?
Some of us have more spare time now than usual. The UUA is doing its part with UUtheVote, with which at least 7 UUCE members are involved. UUtheVote works to register voters, inform them of the issues, try to reduce voter suppression, and help everyone vote, which means joining together to help keep the Post Office from going under, so that vote-by-mail is possible.
Do you want to join this UUtheVote effort? Do you have other ideas for action to elect people who will redirect resources with more equity for everyone?
What can we at UUCE do to bring health and safety and justice to more in these days pandemic?
Please comment here, or send me a note, post on our public FaceBook page, bring it up with other congregants. Talk with our Social Justice people.
I am here to share my ideas and to support your ideas. Let us seize the time provided by these times, and make UUCE a harbinger of hope and progress.