An Open Letter from the Women of the #LoveArmy

We are the Women of the #LoveArmy. And we want to talk about love.

It’s hard to love right now.

It’s hard to love when we’re scared that we or someone we love will be deported to a far away country that is no longer home.

It’s hard to love when our planet is threatened and the knowledge and policies needed to fix it get sidelined by profits and greed.

It’s hard to love when we’ve worked our whole lives for a coal company that is now taking away our pensions when we’re too sick and old to work.

It’s hard to love when we’re afraid we’ll be persecuted for our religion, gender, sexuality, or race.

It’s hard to love when we’re not given control over our bodies, or when we can’t parent our children in health and safety.

It’s hard to love when our tribal lands are being exploited and our people continue to be beaten and dehumanized.

It’s hard to love when the people we care for are likely to lose the healthcare upon which we depend.

It’s hard to love when so many people misunderstand love as something weak; a form of surrender or compromise.

It is hard to love right now.

But even with all of our questions, with all of our concerns -- we choose love anyway.

When it gets harder to love, we love harder.

We choose love because it is powerful.

Love has powered justice struggles of the past and present: movements for abolition, indigenous resistance, sovereignty, civil rights, women’s liberation, farm worker and labor rights, anti-Apartheid, LGBTQ rights, and fights to show that black and brown lives matter.

We choose love because we are fighting for everyone’s humanity, regardless of whether they recognize our own.

We choose love even when it is messy.

We choose love even when others do not love us, our family, or our community. For those of us who have experienced different forms of oppression, the burden of choosing love over hate -- is heavy. And it is our heaviness -- this burden -- that adds to the fierceness of our love. Our love motivates us, in all of our heaviness, to keep fighting.

We choose love even when it hurts -- because it also heals. Anger has its place, but it doesn’t sustain us; and hate eventually consumes us, it rots our insides. Love is how we become fuller. Our love allows us to feel pain and anger and then use it -- channel it -- to be fierce defenders of our own and others’ freedom. Love frees us from the burden of hate.

We choose love because it is necessary.

Love is not just what we need to survive, it's what we need to build a better future.

Love is what allows us to see people as human beings.

Love is what allows us to turn to each other, not on each other.

Love is necessary for honest grief and the strength to go on.

Love inspires action.

That is what the #LoveArmy hopes to unleash. A legion of people acting out of love in our own unique ways, in relationship and solidarity with each other. Free to be ourselves and to disagree but held by a community committed to the same principles. Committed to building a future where we all feel valued, safe, and free.

We write to you as women, not because we all cleanly fit into that category. Not because we all fully identify with that gender and its sticky place in history. We write to you as women because we acknowledge female leadership in all movements and we stand up for more visibility of such leadership in this movement. We have to. It’s what we need to win. And it’s simply what we need to do better. In all of our similarities and differences, we write to you, dedicated -- committed to standing with you, for you, in love, and in conflict.

We invite you to join the Love Army. To let this be your movement, and to bring your full selves. We want to learn from you, to deepen our already-expanding vision of what love can do and mean in this critical moment, together.

In Love + Power,

The Women of the #LoveArmy:

  • Ai-jen Poo Director, National Domestic Workers Alliance 
  • Sarita Gupta Co-Director, Caring Across Generations
  • Carmen Perez Executive Director, The Gathering for Justice
  • Valerie Kaur The Revolutionary Love Project
  • Sarah Fong PhD candidate, University of Southern California 
  • Divya Kumaraiah Community Organizer
  • Sarah Shourd Activist/Storyteller
  • Jennifer Dillon Communications Director, National Domestic Workers Alliance 
  • Micky ScottBey Jones, Director of Healing Justice Initiatives, Faith Matters Network
  • Emily May Co-Founder and Executive Director, Hollaback!
  • Michelle Romero, Dream Corps 
  • Ebony Childs, Dream Corps
  • Ebony Roberts, Dream Corps 
  • Whitney Smith, Dream Corps
  • Cricket Crawshaw, Dream Corps
  • Julie Mai, Dream Corps
  • Krista Stinson, Dream Corps 
  • Tamyra Walker, Dream Corps
  • Danya Sherman, Cultural & Urban Planning Program Director, Writer, and Organizer
  • Ilana Lerman
  • Annie Leonard Executive Director, Greenpeace
  • Rinku Sen Executive Director, Race Forward
  • Illyse Hogue President, NARAL
  • Lili Farhang Co-Director Human Impact Partners 
  • Aspen Baker Executive Director, Exhale
  • Angela Rye, Esq. Impact Strategies and Political Commentator
  • Kate Schatz Author, Rad women worldwide, Rad American women A-Z
  • Janet Kim Communications and Culture Change Director, Caring Across Generations
  • Jennifer Bailey Faith Matters Network
  • Lennon Flowers Co-founder & Executive Director, The Dinner Party
  • Jenna Chambers, Dream Corps
  • Gus Alexander, Dream Corps
  • Vien Truong, Dream Corps
  • Emily Frappier, Dream Corps
  • Kim Noble, Dream Corps
  • Lilia Villa, Dream Corps
  • Nisha Anand, Dream Corps
  • Somer Huntley, Dream Corps
  • Kalia Lydgate, Dream Corps 
  • Rachel Bagby
 
167 signatures
Goal: 200 signatures

Will you sign on to the letter?

  • Sydney Snow
    endorsed 2017-03-13 20:38:05 -0700
  • Nikki Giannini
    endorsed 2017-03-13 16:19:29 -0700
    It’s hard to love someone who voted for Trump when he clearly showed us who he was during the campaign. Everyone knew he played to the base side of human nature – fear and demonization of the “other”, misogyny, lack of empathy -and showed himself to be a nasty bully. How could anyone with character vote for him? And yet – I choose love and try to have empathy for his voters – if not for Trump himself – because it’s the only way to hold on to our hope and humanity.
  • Deema Tamimi
    endorsed 2017-03-13 09:03:04 -0700
  • Julie French
    endorsed 2017-03-11 07:03:13 -0800
  • Nina Utne
    endorsed 2017-03-09 22:08:19 -0800
  • Robin Harpster
    endorsed 2017-03-09 15:44:51 -0800
  • Jodi Callahan
    endorsed 2017-03-09 12:54:31 -0800
  • Donna Roberts
    endorsed 2017-03-09 10:27:56 -0800
  • Yvette Ward
    endorsed 2017-03-09 10:26:27 -0800
  • Becca Wolff
    SCOTUS Theater endorsed 2017-03-09 09:52:57 -0800
  • Dawn Hancy
    Essential Arts endorsed 2017-03-09 08:57:33 -0800
    Love is not so hard when we look at the alternative. And it gets easier with practice. It is time to manifest the Temple of Love in the world once and for all, to evolve beyond oppression and violence. We are that temple, that army! We reclaim the words of military language and turn weapons into instruments of healing and blessings. So let it be.
  • Jaime Fior
    endorsed 2017-03-09 08:06:45 -0800
  • Daphne Wysham
    Sustainable Energy and Economy Network endorsed 2017-03-09 07:07:53 -0800
  • Nayeli Maxson
    Alliance for Community Development endorsed 2017-03-09 06:09:32 -0800
  • Mary Ann Nagel
    endorsed 2017-03-09 05:41:46 -0800
  • Joy Jackson
    Childish LLC endorsed 2017-03-09 05:17:26 -0800
    Revolutionary Love is the only way forward. This is the type of love that engulfs, transcends, and transforms and the only thing that will overcome hate and fear.
  • Ariane Conrad
    endorsed 2017-03-09 03:32:02 -0800
  • Erin McIvor
    endorsed 2017-03-09 01:19:33 -0800
  • Eric Rodman
    endorsed 2017-03-09 00:07:21 -0800
  • Paula Eastwood
    endorsed 2017-03-08 23:33:48 -0800
    There is no joy, peace, contentment or laughter in hate and fear. I’m working TOWARDS love in all aspects of life, knowing I will come up short, but I get up again and try harder each time.
  • Julia Carpenter
    Berkeley Acupuncture Project endorsed 2017-03-08 22:40:42 -0800
    Love, like peace, also takes courage.
  • James Bingham
    endorsed 2017-03-08 22:12:16 -0800
  • Paula Wiest
    endorsed 2017-03-08 21:58:35 -0800
  • Jenifer Norris
    endorsed 2017-03-08 21:09:17 -0800
  • michelle gislason
    endorsed 2017-03-08 20:53:50 -0800
  • Cynthia Ryan
    Trustee endorsed 2017-03-08 20:50:12 -0800
  • Melinda Fox
    endorsed 2017-03-08 20:34:03 -0800
  • Laurie Leyshon Leyshon
    Badass Old Broad endorsed 2017-03-08 20:07:57 -0800
    I choose Love simply because it’s the only thing that can save us. Nothing else has worked in the past, and nothing else will ever work in the future. Love can hard, very hard, when dealing with Narcissists, sociopaths, and psychopaths. Unfortunately, too often, people in positions of power have at least one of those Personality Disorders. The best protection is for the rest of us to stick together, unify, mobilize and Love each other even more.
  • Elizabeth Brigham
    endorsed 2017-03-08 19:58:37 -0800
  • Mara Kassoff
    endorsed 2017-03-08 19:50:43 -0800
    I choose love because my heart is full of light and hope, even when it is heavy. Because even when love is hard, it reminds me of who I am and what’s important.