First Amendment In Amazing Action

As I rounded the corner onto this famous boulevard the usual sight of frenzied tourists congesting the Walk of Fame were replaced by “Resistors,” not of the electrical kind, but of the human kind.  What stood before me was a beautiful cross-section of humanity bearing broad smiles of acceptance and camaraderie, bearing signs of resistance and bearing each other’s burdens, willing to peacefully take a stand for the greater good.

This last June, on Sunday the 11th, I came to the City of Angels as a protester. I came to the #ResistMarch as the disabled daughter of a Vietnam Veteran, as a special education teacher at a predominantly Latino school, and even as a survivor of domestic violence and sexual assault, but mostly I came as an American and a life-long resident of the Greater Los Angeles area. I came to add my voice to the collective voices of the broken, disenfranchised, outcast, downtrodden, misrepresented and growing number of disillusioned.

The air was electric with excitement, courage, inclusivity, but not an ounce of hatred or elitism.  I knew then this wasn’t going to be a mere political march; rather, it would be a paradigm shift in my life because I was transitioning from saying what I believe to putting actions behind my convictions.  I was literally walking my talk with each step I took.  I was and am moving in the direction of tolerance and love and swiftly away from intolerance and baseless hatred.  

Contrary to what some news outlets report about the conduct of #ResistMarch participants across the nation, I was completely enveloped in the most surreal loving experience as Americans from all walks of life came together to stand as one unified voice.

Imagine what a wonderful world it truly would be if we spoke words of love and healing as readily as we speak disparaging words of judgement and hatred.  Divisive lines have been drawn through friendships and families over a vote, and to what end?  Now is not the time to be spectators as the better angels of our country’s nature are so deeply challenged.

“This land is your land, this land is my land….This land was made for you and me.”

– Woody Guthrie

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Alicia Christiansen

Alicia Christiansen

Alicia Christiansen is the first college graduate in her military family and the only special education teacher to ever receive the Key to the District where she has taught special needs students for over 16 years. Since she was once a Special Education student in the district where she teaches, she feels that she can not only relate to the challenges within the population, yet also has added insight into the community where her students reside. Beyond instructing, encouraging and molding her students, she feels part of her job outside the walls of her class is dispelling the many misconceptions about special needs students. Contributing to La Comadre will provide her an additional avenue in assisting fellow educators, parents and families of Special Education students in the varied related topics that may seem overwhelming to comprehend often due to conflicting or misinformation. Alicia believes ultimately a teacher’s job is to forge a bond with the family as she helps their child build a bridge to the future.

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