Hey friends! I wanted to share a little bit of news that has me a little blushy. This Sunday, I received Mayor Todd Gloria's "Woman of Distinction" Award along with 15 other womn in the community. There was a virtual ceremony, a certificate, and everything! I even put a nice shirt on for the first time in a year. (Kept my sweatpants on, though).
I'm really grateful to my dear friend Susan Lipson for nominating me and to all the folks who have celebrated this news. I am very honored to be seen in this light by folks who know me, particularly by Susan, who has been such a wonderfully supportive friend and fellow artist.
Without wanting to take away from that deep level of gratitude, I naturally have mixed feelings about accepting accolades from the same city that gives my wife wrinkles about job stability, that inflates police budgets while so many areas in the community deeply lack in funding, that arrests my friends at protests, and the list unfortunately goes on.
I am trying to let the award itself be the honor it is and hope to point any visibility it brings toward Lady Brain Presents and We All We Got SD. If you are even a smidge proud of me, I hope you show it with a small (or huge, it's your life) ongoing contribution toward one or more of these groups. I also hope to connect with and learn more about the work some of the other recipients are doing throughout the community and expand my network of community contacts and resources.
So basically, I'm sitting in the "yes, and" of it all and hoping more people - no matter who you are or what your capacities are or where you are on your journey- find ways to get involved with community care that make sense for the amount of privilege you have - whether that's wealth, time, energy, skill, or any other kind of service to your neighbor.
We all - especially white/wealthy/cis/hetero/able folks - need to hold both officials and especially ourselves accountable to continually prioritize the folks who are made most vulnerable by systemic oppression and social injustice. My hope is that we can root this work and this accountability in love, without shame. But that's not to say I don't hold space for folks who are rightfully livid and perpetually let down by the folks who are elected and employed to serve the people. If we're making room for "yes, and" we've also got to make space for "no, and."
Freedom and love for all must be the destination, peeps. There are a lot of lanes available on this road. Just gotta get in where you fit in.
i.d. - Screen shot of virtual award ceremony with Todd Gloria pictured on top of frame (smiling and wearing blue sweatshirt, sitting in front US flag and other decor) and Lindsay White pictured at bottom of frame (smiling, wearing black blouse, sitting on couch in front of window with blue curtains and framed painting of a buffalo) holding award certificate .
PS - The official press release that came out said Lady Brain was a group for women (a common misconception), but our membership is inclusive of any gender marginalized person. For more info, read here.
PPS - I would love to see a gender non conforming/nonbinary awards event from the Mayor if one doesn't exist yet! Break that binary!
PPPS - I would also love to see more trans siblings honored at next year's Women of Distinction event! I'll stay on the lookout for that submission form so I can do my part on the nominating side!