In light of the recent budget proposed by the Trump Administration that will cut off an estimated 10 million low income people from the SNAP program (food stamps) and Medicaid (health care) while lining the pockets of the wealthy; when the president can sign an $11 billion arms deal with Saudi Arabia but not propose a budget that provides health care for all; when people are swept off the streets for no other reason than they are undocumented; when racism and disdain for the poor have become national policy; when telling the truth is a matter of convenience and not principle at the highest levels of government; when those charged to lead are beholden to lobbyists and special interest groups rather than the people they are elected to represent; when Black lives don’t matter, nor the lives of children or disabled or women or immigrants; when religious leaders all too often preach a message of private personal salvation rather than calling people forth to speak their mind and live out their faith in the public square.

When all of these things are going on and more, I find these words from Maya Angelou to be powerfully relevant: 


The gold of her promise

    has never been mined

Her borders of justice

    not clearly defined

Her crops of abundance

    the fruit and the grain

Have not fed the hungry

         nor eased that deep pain

Her proud declarations

       are leaves on the wind

Her southern exposure

        black death did befriend

Discover this country

   dead centuries cry

Erect noble tablets

       where one can decry

“She kills her bright future

   and rapes for a sou

Then entraps her children

   I beg you

Discover this country.