“Zero-sum game” – a game in which the sum of the winnings and losses of the various players is always zero, the losses being counted negatively. (Dictionary.com)
Lately I hear arguments about a zero-sum game:
IF we pay attention to institutional racism,
we might miss an opportunity to deal with gun violence.
IF we focus on gun violence,
we might drop the ball on disability rights.
IF we focus on the rights of disabled people,
we might forget the violence against women and transwomen of color.
IF we focus on justice for transgender people
what about women’s rights?
IF we focus on women’s rights
what about economic justice for all?
And if we are so focused on economic justice for all
what about… surely by now you get my point:
Justice is not a zero-sum game in which I am the natural enemy of another.
Justice is when we notice that we are natural allies: the queers, the browns, the blacks, the ones on wheels, the blinds, the poors, the last in line, the fats, the funny-looking, the girls, the trans, the bis, the dispossessed of all nations, the Palestinians AND the Jews, all the people who usually get shown the back door…
Until we notice that we are all at the same door
Until we notice that we are all
And on that day, we will be One
And God’s Name will be One. – Jewish Prayer Book
I don’t know exactly how we get there, but I am determined to work for it. I am determined to see the miraculous spark of the Holy One in every single face before my own. I won’t lie down in the road to be run over, but I will do my best to lift up every other person that I can. I will deal with my fears.
Because I am really, really tired of zero-sum games.
Tzedek, Tzedek, Tirdof.
Justice, Justice, you shall pursue.