I discovered the following print, designed by Alex Koplin and David Meiklejohn, in some of my random Tumblr travels today.
As someone with a temperament that can be described, charitably, as "sensitive" (and uncharitably, "pissy") I have done my time in therapy, and this poster boils down just about everything I've ever learned there. The fact that I still go testifies to how difficult the process of changing something really is.
Today, the day after Twin Cities Pride, it's also a useful guide for how to approach the miserable process of political change. The question might be reframed as "are you happy with current state of affairs?" A generation ago, it would have been quite bizarre to see major corporations throwing out Pride-branded swag to the crowds along Hennepin Avenue. Today, my kids have all the rainbow Best Buy and Macy's crap they'll ever need.
(I have no idea why my son looks like that. I wish I could say he's emulating the Zapatista Army of National Liberation, who support social justice revolutions of the kind represented at Pride, but in truth, I think he's just pretending to hold up a stagecoach.)
Many years ago, someone (drag queens?) somewhere (the Stonewall Inn?), felt moved to change something (harassment of homosexuals?), and made a change. Today we are all reaping the benefits of their hard work. Why, there's even talk on Slate that the fight for marriage equality might spark in renewed interest in the Equal Rights Amendment!
Change takes courage, perseverance, and energy. It's hard. It stinks. I get a headache just thinking of all that change requires. But the flow chart asks: "do you want to be happy (with the current state of affairs)?" and honesty compels me to reply "YES."
After all, happiness is worth it!