Thursday, January 27, 2011

Warm hats not hot heads

I don't know about you, but I was disheartened to the point of paralysis by the events in Tucson, and by the steadfast refusal of some folks to step back from hateful rhetoric.  I have spent a lot of time and thought over the last two years and more, trying to figure out how to encourage thoughtful and respectful public discourse when a not-insignificant group of people refuses to see the importance of such mutual conversations.  What has caused me even more distress is the fact that these hatemongers are not abjured by those for whom they claim to speak.  Where are the people who should be saying: No.  You don't stand for me.  I may share some of your goals, but I do not want my goals promoted with hate and fear.

I'll tell you where some of them are.  They're right here among our fellow knitters.  And I'll also tell you how glad I am that Ellen and Alison haven't been paralyzed, but instead have decided to do what knitters do best: to knit, and to use that knitting to remind people of their common humanity.  They have begun a project called Warm Hats Not Hot Heads, with the goal of getting people to knit hats for as many of our Congressional representatives as possible, to remind them that, in the end, we all have the same basic needs even if we go about getting those needs met in different ways, and that respectful discourse is crucial in working together as a nation to meet our common goals.

Looks like I'll be knitting some hats this month.  Who wants to join me?

8 comments:

Laurie said...

Hmmm...I have some lovely grey wool sitting around that would make wonderful hats. Thanks so much for passing this along...and helping me find another wonderful blog to read!

Carrie#K said...

I'm not spending my precious knitting time on hats for someone else but I do applaud the message!

Thankfully Glen Beck, Rush Limbaugh - who is beyond the pale - etc aren't elected officials. Hopefully the sane & rational will win out in the polling booth and that's why EVERYONE should vote. Think of it as cancelling out a crazy, if nothing else.

Lori said...

I've been following the campaign on Alison's blog -- I despair over what has to happen to ratchet down the craziness, if Tucson didn't even put it on pause. Good god. I'd love to think that knitters could have such an impact; I think we'd have to make hats for the American people, as much as for our representatives. Paging Bartholomew Cubbins. :)

AlisonH said...

Lol@Lori! I love it. Bartholomew, come in!

I'm going to knit a hat for Afghans For Afghans' basket at Stitches West, just to keep things feeling balanced between our needs as a people and the needy.

India said...

A wonderful idea! I will be knitting three, one each for my senators and one for my representative. In my notes to them I will ask them to please donate the hats to a homeless shelter or other such organization, in Washington or at home, and ask them to encourage their colleagues to do the same with the hats that they receive.

twinsetjan said...

Thanks for picking up the thread! I'm on my third hat...just haven't told Ellen (keeper of hat assignations) who its for yet.

twinsetellen said...

Thank you, thank you, Joce, for helping spread the word. Even those of your readers who don't knit a hat will get to hear your voice raised in the request for civility!

EGunn said...

More civility is always a good thing. I hope that knitting can accomplish what other initiatives haven't. It's really essential that something changes soon.