It’s been said by many that there is no small injustice. Each occurrence of injustice is a mark against all of us that may have had to power to prevent it. Even standing by silently leaves a shadow of blame on our hearts, since our inaction can so easily be seen as support for the persecutor, especially in the eyes of the persecuted. This includes the injustices that we don’t notice or don’t understand because we’re focusing on the injustices that touch our own lives.
Our work towards social justice must be inclusive in spite of the discomfort we all feel when our fight to be heard collides with another group’s efforts. When stung by the criticism of other unfairly challenged individuals, special attention has to be paid to how we negotiate the conflicting emotions. Remember that those criticisms come from a place of pain. These people have also been injured by injustice. We must train ourselves to face criticism with mindfulness rather than defensiveness. We will all have greater success if we work to align our struggles so that we support each other while working toward our own goals.
This means that our feminism must include all races and all LGBT categories. Our economic justice must be mindful of those with disabilities and special needs. Our democracy must be anti-racist and anti-classist. If our justice isn’t intersectional, it won’t be honestly just. Of course, we’ll each be drawn more strongly to one front of the fight or another depending on our own life experiences, but offering each other support only serves to build a stronger defense for us all.
Universalism says that, for better or worse, we’re all on the way to the same ultimate fate. Our job, here, is to work together to make life as beautiful as that which we hope awaits us afterward.