Thursday, October 12, 2017

The Children are Watching

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A child, wide-eyed, peers over a wall. 

He does not know barriers. He know curiosity, questions, possibilities.  

Who has power?  The builders of tall, menacing columns of steel lined up as far as the eye can see?  The fear shouters?   The definers of out and in, us and them, friend and foe?

Or the child whose mind leaps over the barricades of exclusion.  The child who can’t help exploring beyond what he can see.  The child who reminds us that our actions--and, even more, our failures to act--are being watched.  The child who must wonder if this wall of steel will always form the backdrop of his life.

The artist JR brilliantly and imaginatively takes us to the border and, through this beautiful child, takes down the wall.  I could not be more grateful for his creative vision, his kindness and humor, and his courage in shattering the silliest – and scariest – monuments to fear.   And I am grateful to the mom and little boy who, living in the shadow of oppressive (and insulting) barriers, bring grace to the border.