"All words are symbols that represent unspeakable realities. Which is also why words are magical." (Donald Miller tweet)

Monday, March 17, 2014

a decision

A few months ago, I started posting about Ukraine (land I love), the protests there. No one seemed to know about it over here. I found credible sources, checked them with knowledgeable friends who live there, and tried to follow with intelligence.

And I told you about it.

And then the whole thing became highly visible, around the world. And suddenly everyone knew, which was a good thing, but then it became a strange thing because now everyone was an expert, reports became conflicting, and conspiracy theories began to spread widely, as they do.

It's worth noting, at this moment,
that just because something is on the internet,
doesn't mean it's true.

So I stopped talking, somewhat. I hate online fights. I really dislike being one more voice shouting in a crowd of shouting people. But I continued to follow it. And some of you asked me about it - and I told you what I knew.

It's worth noting, at this moment,
that the idea that the US hired neo-Nazis to cause unrest in Ukraine is beyond ridiculous,
not to mention sickeningly offensive to the Ukrainian people
who stood for weeks and months in a wintery city square,
some enduring torture,
and some giving their lives.

And this week, I became terrified. Not at what was happening in Crimea, but at what was happening here, in North America. People - some people - not all people - are believing the propaganda. They're believing the misinformation.

It's worth noting, at this moment,
that Russian people in Ukraine are not oppressed.
No. They're not.

And I am terrified, truthfully, by the speed at which this is happening. I am afraid that, at best, Canadians will become overwhelmed with complex issues they don't easily understand, and give up caring. Our desire for "peace and good government" is dead wrong if we equate peace with tolerating invasion and annexation.

It's worth noting, at this moment,
that a regional "referendum" 
that is called in 10 days,
under the shadow of unidentified military intimidation,
with no conversations with the current national government,
and voter lists that include citizens of the invading country,
cannot possibly be legal, logical, or acceptable.

Did you know?
...there was no option on the ballot in Crimea
to continue as part of Ukraine.
The choice was to join Russia or become an independent nation.
Rather a massive decision.
In 10 days.

The Ukrainian military has, for the most part, stood their ground without firing shots, because they know the world will turn against them easily if they are seen as "firing the first shot". Never mind that a foreign nation's military has invaded their space and refuses to back down.

And so ... deeply troubled by all this ... I made a decision yesterday.

I'm going to keep telling you about it.

I'm not an expert.
But I do follow sources that are credible and legitimate.

I don't know it all.
But I know more than some.

No doubt I'll make mistakes.
When I do - I'll own them.

Because this is not politics.
It's people.

I know this is not a fairy tale where one side is entirely evil, and the other side is entirely perfect.
But both sides are not equally wrong.

I know there are other issues.
This one is mine.

I retweet information frequently on Twitter. Follow if you want. @PattiTheMiller

And I post on Facebook, if you are one of my friends. And I'll post here too.

It won't always be about Ukraine. But it may often be.

If you choose to trust me, and follow along - thanks - from my heart.


Frank Patrick said...

Well said, Pastor Patti...having been to Ukraine a few times I think that your perspective is right on...Padraig

Anonymous said...

Thank you. Truly - thank you.
~Steph Howells

Anonymous said...

I support your decision, Patti. Not because I have come to my own informed position and it coincides with yours...but because I can see what you write is indeed coming from your heart, but at the same time it is written with intelligence and thought. I guess my support doesn't count for much, and what you're really seeking is support, or at least acceptance, from the people who are directly involved in your daily life. But anyway, for what it's worth, I encourage you to continue.

Lee Smiley Jackson said...

Outstanding! Thank you!

Lee Smiley Jackson said...

This is great Patti - thank you!

Patti said...

Oh! Comments were awaiting moderation, and weren't emailed to me - sorry for delay in publishing. And many thanks to you all - what an encouragement!

Patti said...

PS to oldblack - Totally appreciate your comment. Really. It's meaningful. And your support does count. :) One person at a time, and for me, I'm just looking to help counter some of the misinformation, or at least cause people to question it and do a little digging themselves. How can we make good decisions as nations, if as people we have the wrong information? :)

Patti said...

And to Frank - mentoring pastor, Steph - Mac prof, and Lee - Blissed friend - you all made me smile. :)