Silence Is Complicity!

A rare occasion that my first look at BBC alerts in the morning made me smile – I saw the news about Biden’s surprise visit to Kyev. Actually, I instantly felt completely awake! It was quite awesome and unexpected.

But even though several of my friends messaged me excitedly, I told all of them that Biden does not decide the aid to Ukraine solely. We still need to make sure that the US Congress will continue to support financial and military aid for Ukraine.

That brings me right to the main topic of this week. I was trying to find any rally supporting Ukraine, and the only one announced was the one on February 24 by Saints Volodimir and Olha Cathedral.

Why is it not enough? First, this rally will be mostly Ukrainian; there will probably be some representatives of Polish, Lithuanian, and maybe Georgian communities. And it will be far from the Loop. And the important thing now is not only to condemn the war and war criminals but also to send a clear message to our legislators.

Here is what struck me. I didn’t build a political activists network in Rogers Park yet. I emailed a few people from NWSOFA with whom I canvassed and rallied in the suburbs before I moved, and there was zero enthusiasm about rallying for Ukraine. One of them suggested contacting Jan Schakowsky’s office. I went to her website, and to my dismay, I saw zero about Ukraine. Zero. Nothing in her list of issues or in her foreign policy stands. I could not believe my eyes. 

My concern is that now that we have a Republican majority in Congress and the conversation about “how long we are going to send money to Ukraine” has resumed, the message from the constituents should be unambiguous. We should support Ukrainians in their fight because they defend the world. It’s not a charity, and it’s not an investment. It is the fight for all of us. Without help from the rest of the world, Ukraine won’t win. And if Ukraine doesn’t win, Putin won’t stop. 

Igor joined the efforts of the organizers of Saturday’s rally on Daley plaza, and I am trying to do my small part by promoting this event. I don’t know how many people will come, but we have five more days, so I hope to spread the word. 

If you are in Chicago, you might have seen these flyers. Please come and join us on Saturday at Daley Plaza. 

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