Work in Progress…Lately I hear a number of people bemoaning the lack of regularity, the upset of the habitual patterns of behavior that many have come to embrace, the comfort attached to a stasis upon which they may rely. I think that if nothing else, events of the last week and the focus of the light on continued police brutality against people of color, black people in particular, show us that the Normal to which many would like to return is an unacceptable plateau for many others. The Normal to which these people have been subjected has resulted in a subjugation that disallows for their pursuit of life, liberty and happiness. That Normal possesses none of the trappings of the America that we customarily emulate. Yet, since many white people are not affected by the same sort of rough treatment that their counterparts of color are subjected to, they fear a change to the system under which they have largely been protected because they have not been subject to the repeated and excessive harassment at the hands of authority that our black folks have faced daily for years. A shift in consciousness to recognize and accept the experiences of others in different circumstances than our own is required to face this enemy of institutionalized racism. The shift requires only that one consider how he or she would like to be treated and then to treat others in such a manner. Once in recognition of this seemingly ordinary piece of wisdom, one would enact it daily through actions of a deliberate nature of reinforcement towards his/her fellow humans without regard to personal gain or punishment. A simple epiphany so rarely celebrated and adhered to, a new normal based upon this simple tenet (Do Unto Others…) would be a Normal I could rally behind. To witness this, I would even venture to accept sacrifices (though I have heard of none requested) simply so that all people might enjoy the same protection under the law and compassionate consideration as human beings engaged in the pursuit of life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. There should be no retreat from this simple stance. Our nation of ostensible freedom and opportunity in actuality founded upon genocide and slavery, one wonders if it is in fact possible for disparate groups of humanity ever to live peaceably together in cooperative effort for the betterment of all. Please God, It has to be. Yes, I want a new Normal.