Dale Hansen Unplugged

I just heard this sportscaster’s three minute talk about the anthem protests. (Hansen Unplugged: Anthem protests not about disrespecting the flag) I am impressed. The best words to capture my response are “Wow” and “Thank You”.

Social Commentary by JR, Street Artist

Each week CREDO Mobile sends its customers Action Headlines for the week. This morning there was a link to  CREDO’s Facebook Page where they had posted a photo of artwork by a street artist known as JR. This art is being installed on the Mexican side of the US Border wall. I think the photo speaks for itself and there is no need for me to say more.

You can learn more about JR’s artwork here.

March for Science: Seattle

On this cold and rainy day, I was among the thousands of Seattleites who participated in the March for Science. I appreciated being able to support science and scientists and to share my own concern for what is happening in our country. I also loved the feeling of community that goes along with this type of experience.

One of my favorite parts of the march was seeing all of the signs. Since we were in Cal Anderson Park for almost two hours before we started walking, I had plenty of time to take pictures of them! (Click on the galleries to enlarge the photos.)

I enjoyed watching this child try to pick up a sign. The wind and the fact that the sign was bigger than she was made it an impossible task, but that didn’t stop her from trying. She was such a role model for being persistent, patient, and committed to her goal. She never expressed any frustration, she just kept going for what she wanted.

Some of the other sights:

I am so glad that I participated and hope that my photos might have given you a sense of being there yourself.

Women’s March on Seattle


I returned from India on January 15. Since then, I have not been able to sleep more than 3 1/2 hours at a time. Needless to say, I have been, and still am, exhausted.

When I heard about the January 21st Women’s March, I was interested, but it seemed like too much for me to do, unless my jet lag was over. After listening to President Trump’s inauguration speech, however, I started thinking about participating in the march again.

I remembered how eager I had been to go to the Seahawks parade that followed their Super Bowl win in 2014. That had involved long walks, difficult transportation, and standing for hours in 20 degree weather. I probably was still jet lagged then.

While, I loved attending the Seahawks parade, I knew the Women’s March was much more important. I also believed it would give me the sense I was doing SOMETHING in what sometimes feels like a hopeless situation.

The march started in South Seattle, not far from where I live, but I decided to join it in the International District (ID), a mile and a half north. While we were still in the ID, a Native American group started drumming and singing.

When they finished, the crowd parted like Moses and the Red Sea, allowing them to walk towards the front of the parade.

There were so many interesting and varied signs. Those signs were as diverse as the members of the crowd that carried them.

(Click on the gallery above to enlarge the photos.)

People lined the streets the whole way. Many of those people also carried signs, so I imagined that a good portion of them would join the march at some point.

There were a few individuals and groups protesting the march. I saw one man carrying a one of Trump’s “Make America Great” signs. There was also a group of evangelical Christians wanting us to “come to Jesus.”

We passed two groups of drummers. Here is a short video that I took as I walked by them.

We waved at window cleaners who were working at least 20 stories up on one of the skyscrapers. They waved back. Employees of the Cinerama Theater stood on the sidewalk, greeting us as we walked by. Some Seattle Center staff came out to meet us when we arrived, saying they had been looking forward to seeing us all day.

The march was meant to be in silence, and I think it was at first, but as people started joining the original marchers, that silence ended, and the atmosphere became celebratory.

At one point, I heard a sound that reminded me of the Blue Angels jets that fly over Seattle during Seafair celebrations every August. I looked up and didn’t see anything. Soon, I realized the sound was coming from the back of the march and moved forward like a wave as people joined it. Seahawks fans are known for making a LOT of noise during the games so I suspected this was the same sound that happens there. From time to time, that wave of sound went through the crowd for the rest of the march. I loved it.

The whole march was 3.9 miles long. I must have walked 2.4 miles of it. It was a very slow 2.4 miles. By the time I arrived at Seattle Center, I was exhausted and my feet were hurting. I laid down on wet grass for awhile and then walked to the Center House where there were food booths and restrooms. The Center House was packed. I wondered if there had ever been a crowd that big in the building before.

The thought of trying to get on the monorail and the light rail when all of those people were ready to go home was overwhelming. I also believed it would take another hour or two for everyone who was still marching to arrive at Seattle Center.

I decided to get into the monorail line then, until I saw it already had around 100 people in it. All of a sudden, it seemed like my feet didn’t hurt quite as much, so I walked the mile to the light rail station located at Westlake Center. Before long, I was home, exhausted but happy that I had participated in a meaningful and peaceful protest.

A few days before the march, the organizers were expecting 20,000 to 30,000 people. By the day of the march, that expectation had risen to 50,000. I think everyone was surprised, and happy, when it was announced that 120,000-130,000 women, men and children had participated. What a day it had been.


My friend, Priya, did a beautiful job of writing her experience. I asked for, and received, her permission to add her words to this post.

The mood was of joy, unity and strength, the weather perfect, the police were friendly and relaxed – it was an amazing march, which for many of us transformed a feeling of despair and confusion to renewed hope and commitment. So grateful and in awe of the power of the people! May we continue to support love, equality, and peace. One nation, under God, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all.

Another friend, Kathie, sent a link to photos from marches in the U.S. and around the world. I started crying as I looked at them. We are most definitely not alone. To see the photos click here. I think they are absolutely amazing.

A Change is Gonna Come


The instant I pressed publish on my contribution (When You Feel Like Darkness Has You Bound) to this week’s Song Lyric Sunday challenge, I had the urge to also find a protest song.

A Change is Gonna Come, was released by Sam Cooke in 1964. It became an anthem for the Civil Rights movement. When I listened to the song and watched the video that went with it, I knew I had found my protest song. The video has photos from the 50’s to the present. By the end of viewing it, I was crying.

The lyrics are on the video but I will also include them here:

It’s been too hard living but I’m afraid to die
Cause I don’t know what’s up there beyond the sky
It’s been a long, a long time coming
But I know a change gonna come, oh yes it will

I go to the movie and I go downtown
Somebody keep telling me don’t hang around
It’s been a long, a long time coming
But I know a change gonna come, oh yes it will

Then I go to my brother
And I say brother help me please
But he winds up knocking me
Back down on my knees


There been times that I thought I couldn’t last for long
But now I think I’m able to carry on
It’s been a long, a long time coming
But I know a change gonna come, oh yes it will


When You Feel Like Darkness Has You Bound


I love watching the path my mind takes when I am determining what song to use for the Song Lyric Sunday challenge. I start by thinking about what songs would address the theme for the week, but I often don’t end up there.

This week the theme was protest songs. The song I used for my second week of doing this challenge was We Shall Overcome so I considered some of the 60’s protest songs. But then my mind went a different direction. I thought about two of the Blues songs my son Sreejit wrote some years back. I listened to them both, but as I was considering them, another song came to mind.

My daughter Chaitanya and my son Sreejit live at Amma’s Amritapuri ashram in Kerala, India. People for all religions come to Amma, and all religions are respected. For the last seven or eight years my son and daughter have been very instrumental in creating the Christmas play that is performed on Christmas Eve each year. Chaitanya writes and directs the plays and Sreejit and his friends compose most of the tunes. The plays are in the style of Broadway musicals.

The particular play that came to my mind was performed in 2012 and was titled God is Able. The setting was a Southern style Gospel church. Sreejit was the preacher! The story line covered the stories of Moses leading the Jews to the promised land, Rachael being healed by touching Jesus’ garment, and a fictional account of the heart of an angry store keeper being healed. I never will forget the moment in the play when the stage doors opened and our sparkling “Gospel Choir” became visible. It seemed like everyone in the auditorium did a collective gasp. Part of the reason I remember the gasp and the thunderous applause and shouts that followed our song so well is that I was part of the choir!!!


The song I have chosen is Dear God. The tune was written by Sreejit and the lyrics by Chaitanya.  It is not a protest song but it is a song that is very relevant to times of darkness which is often what proceeds protest.

The mp3 recording and the lyrics are below.  I hope you enjoy it as much as I still do!

When you feel like darkness has you bound
And you can’t see any way to get out
There’s a power which surrounds us all
Through God anything is possible

Never fear
Never let your doubts draw near
With courage face all that comes
Put your trust into God’s arms
He’ll protect you from all harm
His love will carry you on through

Dear God, hold us tight never let us leave thy sight
Dear God, fill our soul with your love make us whole

Sreejit singing above the choir:

God is able to calm the wild storm
God is able to make the weak strong
God is able to bring change within
God is able to do all things