Community Spotlight: Has your perspective changed in the nine months since the inauguration?

Community Spotlight: Has your perspective changed in the nine months since the inauguration?

It’s time to check the Community’s zeitgeist again now that we are nine months into the Biden-Harris administration with a signature infrastructure bill to be signed on Monday. A year ago, we were seesawing through election results, hoping nothing (else) dire happened before the inauguration. Then the insurrection gave one last flare of horror before the government was “free” of Trump and we could move on.

Right after the inauguration, I asked if Community members had recovered from our four-year-long resistance. Of the 718 responses, 39% felt like they’d just escaped a hostage situation, 29% were still burning off the accumulated stress biochemicals, and 20% were ready to move forward.

I’ve moved past burnout, cleared out my stress biochemicals, and found reasons to be encouraged—such as reversals of Trump’s environmental rollbacks and the enthusiasm of new, women candidates. Have your views changed in the nine months since the inauguration? Let us know in the poll below.

Based on what I’ve read in Community stories and comments, we’ve dialed down reactive outrage and increased thoughtful examination. While plenty that stirs up anger remains, it’s easier for me to keep the outrage in perspective and appreciate the progress. I’m grateful that the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service will rescind the Trump era decision that eliminated the need to designate critical habitat for endangered species, for example. Other encouraging events include the 29 Emily’s List-sponsored women candidates who won their 2021 elections and Dr. Annie Andrews, the new 2022 Democratic candidate running in South Carolina against a legislators whose town halls I track for Indivisible.

this is one hell of an ad from the Democrat running against Republican Nancy Mace.

— Adam Parkhomenko (@AdamParkhomenko) November 8, 2021

After the inauguration, I asked readers, “The fight sustained us during the last 4 years. What’s next?” Stayingsilent said, “We fight like hell to ever prevent such a horror from rising again.” Ahumbleopinion offered, “Our messaging must be strong and the teamwork flawless to defeat the propaganda machine of white supremacy.”

Looking over the list of rescued stories from the past months, I see Community writers have delivered on those topics. You’ve written about problems and helped readers discover what battles to fight and actions to guide our responses.

Spotlighted stories this week address racism, and a transgender prophet in late 1770 America. Five stories arise from the writers’ personal experiences: canvassing for the Virginia election, a QAnon-like mass hysteria event in Iceland 30 years ago, visiting the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier, vaccinating an 8-year-old son, and coexisting with coyotes.

The Rescued to Recommended story this week—a detailed look into the Republican propaganda about critical race theory—is from a sociologist focusing “on systemic aspects of racism in social structures” who issues a powerful warning to readers and what steps to take.

Check out the blurbs for these stories, answer the poll, and in the comments tell us how your views have changed since the inauguration.

Seven stories rescued from 1 PM Friday, Nov. 5 to 1 PM friday, nov. 12, 2021

Community Spotlight’s mission is to ensure that the best stories from the Daily Kos Community receive the attention they deserve. We encourage members who write excellent stories with original views to keep writing by promoting their work.

Good news: You don’t have to search to find our rescued stories! The nightly News Roundup, an Open Thread published six days a week at 7:30 PM PDT, includes links to each day’s rescued stories.

Reminder: The numbers in parentheses after each author’s name indicate the year they joined Daily Kos, how many stories they’ve published, and how many we’ve rescued.

My baby boy gets his first dose of the Covid vaccine today by Annoyedfrog (2018-10-1) 

A relieved mother describes her partially vaccinated family’s experiences over the past few weeks, including the older kids moving to their father’s home temporarily when they returned to in-person classes. The availability of a vaccine for children 5 to 11 means “we will be able to have family visit for the holidays … He will start second grade in-person next semester. For a lot of people, life went back to normal months ago, but for our family, life will finally go back to something close to normal.”

Post-mortem on Virginia general election 2021 – canvasser’s edition by patriotic (2015-3-2)

Patriotic gives us a boots-on-the-ground (up to 18,000 steps a day!) assessment of canvassing in Virginia, even while dealing with radiation and (thankfully) getting a good prognosis. She did literature drops and eventually was up to having face to face conversations again.”I am proud to share that we have turned one of the reddest districts in our entire Commonwealth purple. We have shown the rest of Virginia that the 56th district is not to be overlooked any longer.”

LGBTQ literature: A transgender prophet in revolutionary-era America by Clio2 (2006-198-?)

Part biography, part book review, part social evaluation, Clio2 unwinds the story told in the book The Public Universal Friend: Jemima Wilkinson and Religious Enthusiasm in Revolutionary America. After falling ill and recovering from a deadly fever and coma, the young woman announced that Wilkinson had died and was “reanimated by God” as neither male nor female to be God’s messenger. Dressed in male clothing, the Public Universal Friend “traveled and addressed crowds across five states. His gender nonconformity, together with a more conventional apocalyptic message of repentance, created a stir.”

For progressives to win we must learn enough about racism to stop using Republican talking points by arawls (2018-1-1) Rescued to Recommended

“My message for the Daily Kos community is that unless we address this (systemic racism) issue head on, racism and fascism will win … We need to stop denying the racism in our lives and go on the offensive to explain and defend CRT and the impressive results of CRT researchers,” asserts the author, a “White female scholar who has studied systemic racism” for 50 years. Arawls explains the origins and purpose of critical race theory, and ramifications of the reality that systemic racism “makes racists of us all – no matter how committed to diversity and equity we are – not the other way around … It is the White American bias toward treating systemic racism as if it were individual prejudice that fuels the Republican talking points and makes them persuasive to so many.”

QAnon in Dallas and space aliens in Iceland by Curious therapist (2019-17-1)

The recent QAnon fantasy of JFK Jr. springing back to life on the grassy knoll in Dallas reminds the author of a 1993 mass hysteria event they witnessed in Iceland that “underscores how people can succumb to true belief to the point that they will deny what their own senses are telling them.” An Englishman began to have visions and “came to believe that he was being contacted by benevolent aliens who wanted to come to Earth and bring lasting world peace.” A loud party with 500 dancing, singing people gathered to welcome the aliens, who—you guessed this, right?—failed to show up. The Englishman told a reporter the “aliens must have been deterred by the loud party.”

Celebrating 100 years of the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier by Snowbored (2005-90-?)

Snowbored writes a tribute to this special monument at Arlington National Cemetery, interspersing his own experiences with history of the Tomb. For two days this year, the public was allowed to visit the monument. “No doubt, everyone there had their own reason, their own connection, to this place. But in this day and age, it’s hard to find hundreds of Americans who suddenly go silent, no phones, no conversation, just reverence.”

Top Comments: Coyote edition by gizmo59 (2006-518-?)

Gizmo59 and his husband are adapting to their new coyote neighbors after moving from rural Pennsylvania to a SoCal small town bordering “a vast area of undeveloped land … One early morning, to our great surprise, a coyote was standing on our back deck and looking at us through the glass door, just 10 feet from where we were standing. A couple weeks ago, as we were having lunch on the deck with guests, a coyote strolled through the back yard in broad daylight. Around here, they’re cheeky.”

COMMUNITY SPOTLIGHT is dedicated to finding great writing by community members that isn’t getting the visibility it deserves.

  • Each day’s collection of rescues is reported in the News Roundup published on the front page at 7:30 PM PDT.
  • To add our rescued stories to your Stream, click on the word FOLLOW in the left panel at our main page or click on Reblogs and read them directly on the group page.
  • You can also find a list of our rescued stories by clicking HERE.

An edition of our rescue roundup publishes every Saturday at 6 p.m. ET (3 p.m. PT) to the Recent Community Stories section and to the front page at 10:30 p.m. ET (7:30 p.m. PT).

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