On Saturday, Sept 19, in Rockland, Maine, in the middle of the Jewish holiday Rosh Hashanah, and the day after the death of one of the great voices for human dignity of our time, Ruth Bader Ginsberg, a small gathering of people came together in Chapman Park to speak on Civil Rights.
I met people I had not seen for many months. I listened deeply to the speakers. I spoke with candidates running for various offices in the upcoming election. I spoke to marchers with signs on the sidewalks, who apparently come there every Saturday morning. I found everyone’s contribution compelling.
I walked away thinking specifically about what Joe Steinberger said, that we have a “Freedom to Unite.” He also pointed to the need to better address issues of local poverty and to provide greater support to youth growing up in poverty.
I was reminded why I love this little town that morning. On that square, with that small group of people was the fullness of human rights being lived.
We listened, we asked questions, and we spoke from our hearts and our ideals. We sought common cause for the well being of human lives, and for finding our way through the challenges together. More of this please. I vote for the Freedom to Unite. In the words of Ruth Bader Ginsberg, “Fight for the things that you care about, but do it in a way that will lead others to join you.”
Skye Hirst lives in Rockland