This year has been a test in personal endurance. Many of us have seen our personal world views unceremoniously lit on fire, only to be put out with bigoted urine. Our bedraggled nation hasn’t yet recovered enough to limp forward with the hardscrabble vigor for which America was once known. Instead we’re being dragged backward by the hair, our feet scrabbling to find purchase against this forced descent into an apocalyptic nightmare.

Right now our rage feels performative, our gestures meaningless. Our desperation clings to us like a moldering perfume, an ever present reminder of our failings and our inability to view the world as it is, rather than how we would like it to be. The knowledge that our resistance is necessary does nothing to allay the feeling of its likely futility. A year with even greater heartache looms before us. The worst is yet to come.

Harboring any hope for a better 2017 feels like insanity, as if we’re clutching the last grimy remnants of an imaginary eagle-emblazoned security blanket. In the face of our rage and our grief, hope feels insignificant and useless. It’s impact feels pathetic and foolhardy when weighed against hate.

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But it’s all we have. Continue we must.

My hopes for this new year are simple: May we find comfort in doing what is right. May we find strength in our convictions. May we gain the self-awareness we need in order to create real change. May this year prove our fears unfounded.

Happy New Year.

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