I humbly received a few emails from readers in support of the I Heart column, “Protesting Solo,” after it was published in the Santa Barbara Sentinel. The following is one such letter, reminding us all that we are not alone! But if we are alone, standing on a sidewalk holding a sign for what we believe, there are others out there who are morally standing alongside.
*Author’s note: I publish my column under the pen name, Elizabeth Rose.
I almost didn’t read your article, but glad I did. Let me explain.
I had picked up a bunch of free publications from a cool produce store in Santa Barbara to take home with me to Thousand Oaks. I was perusing these pubs on this lazy Saturday and came across the Santa Barbara Sentinel, which I hadn’t seen before. I love reading the Independent and was looking for more of that.
But after I read a gassy name dropping columnist trying to enlighten everyone about the “woke” culture, I decided the best best place for this newspaper was in my garage, on the floor, where my puppy could make better use of it. The columnist was quite a windbag who did little to make his case other than to those in his own choir. I quickly paged through this rag looking for a reader’s comment section but didn’t find any. I was already quickstepping my way to the garage when I found your article: Protesting Solo. I read it and loved it.
It was really quite amazing that you took your self out of your comfort zone to endure possible criticism and anger for what you personally believe.
Breaking that inertia to bring beliefs into action is hard but an important part of personal character, and you certainly have my admiration.
I think that exercising moral courage is like regular exercise. You can’t be better at it if you don’t push yourself a little and stretch a little. By your example, you reminded at least half the people that saw you on that blvd that they could be doing the same.
Thanks for the great story,
(Name excluded for privacy)
PS. Just for the record, I would be honking my horn in support if I had passed you that day. Also, I kept your article, and the rest I left for my puppy to offer its critique.
Let’s continue the conversation: post your thoughts in the comments below. Let this be a safe space where we can talk. No matter what you believe, we can learn from one another. All are welcome!
I Heart is a relationship column in the Santa Barbara Sentinel. Catch up on more I Heart columns here: