In the squares of the city - In the shadow of the steeple
Near the relief office - I see my people
And some are grumblin' and some are wonderin'
If this land's still made for you and me.
-- Woodie Guthrie, This Land Is Your Land
Progressives, these are our people. These are the people we fight for. These are the people who ought to haunt our thoughts and consciences and inspire our dreams as we work and advocate and build our future. These folks ought to get taken care of first: the rest can come after.
These are the people who ought to be able to go to the Doctor, not in shame at not having the money to pay, but in hope of finding a treatment for their sickness, and proud of their country for taking care of folks like them.
These are the people who wish that using the term "trailer trash" would be a public scandal -- a career-ender for any politician foolish enough to utter it.
These are people like the woman I know in the ghetto, a woman who lost 2 grandchildren to murder and is bleary-eyed with grief, and yet somehow lifted by hope as she works valiantly in programs that help at-risk youth. She prays, every night, for the ones she helps, and also for the ones she has lost to prison or murder. She deserves every program and counselor (and prayer) we can send to her and the people that she cares for with fiercely protective love.