For far too long, many Americans have been consciously, or subconsciously seeking a shared value or commonality of any kind to nudge us all back together even if only by an inch. The division in this country is like a cancer, and it’s spreading at an alarming rate. It has crept into our psyche and regardless of whether or not you’re at stage 1, or 4, it needs to be remedied.

On Friday, September 18th, we lost an irreplaceable human, a force of justice and equity. Ruth Bader Ginsburg was at long last able to rest, but the weight of this loss was immeasurable. I mourned and felt the urge to call every womxn I know to check in, and see if they were okay. But for a moment, something remarkable happened, I took to social media to find that friends on the other side of the aisle were feeling this loss, too. It makes sense, because RBG fought for both womxn and men. She met discrimination with determination and the only thing handed to her, was her strong will, which came from her mother. 

My point is this, she was a leader of integrity, and respect, because she fought for the good at every turn.  Was she perfect? Of course not, but damn close. Ruth was undeniably the reason so many of us have the rights we have today. Rights we  have taken for granted, and are now clinging to for dear life. Standing at only 5’ 1”, she charged through all of the ceilings and left them wide open for us. And in her death, I felt a sliver of hope, when I saw the reaction from both sides. She was the leader we all needed, because she understood the value of listening, and learning from our neighbors, which has indeed become a dying art form that we must quickly resurrect. 

Your neighbors, 

Sam & Shaleen DeStefano