Who are they?

There is no “they” to blame. We all make up the whole of whatever we’re trying to brand as “they.”

They didn’t let the right candidates through.” “They are causing mass hysteria with this new virus.” “They need to stop this racism, this sexism, this ageism, etc.” Who are these “others” that we’re calling a “they”?

It seems like it’s an easy way to not take responsibility for when things aren’t going the way you’d like them to. But it’s also a dangerous way to give up your personal power.

It reminds me of a neighbor in my condo community who once complained at a homeowner’s association meeting, saying that “they need clean up our parking garage.” (She may have thrown in the word ghetto for emphasis.) I wondered who she thought “they” were. She’s a homeowner. The garage is a part of her building. She needed to decide on a vote to clean up the garage. The “they” she wanted to take responsibility for this issue doesn’t exist without including her.

We all need to own our choices. And part of that means accepting responsibility for them even if they don’t go the way we’d like. Because if we keep giving away our power by saying “they” are the ones making the choices, eventually there could really and truly be someone choosing and deciding for us. And I’ve read just too many history books about 20th century Europe, and have seen too many commercials for The Handmaid’s Tale, to know that fascism is the worst. Let’s own our choices. Let’s all be the accountable, responsible, and conscious members of a society of “us.”

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