This poem was written and performed at a recent rally against Issue 2 by CEA member Izetta Nicole.
Is it so bad to have a people committed to the value engraved in every child that ever stood in a classroom with their right hand hugging their heart?
Do our voices cause a stiff ringing in your ears? Democracy is so loud and pure.
Democracy, with it’s social equality and head held high. It is proud and you came to bring it to it’s knees.
Do we look like fools to you? Like people who will buckle and hide at the sign of an intruder?
You mistook Ohioans for cowards; Buckeyes for the silent type.
You, my dear, were wrong.
We will stand and fight and take our house back.
You cannot have our state, our classrooms, our rights!
These are our streets and this is our home.
Your need to sort, scatter and separate with classism was not hidden from us!
We are educators, with the state standards tattoos under our eyelids.
You are lacking progress and empathy.
We are nurses holding the hands of those you’ve slapped in the face with your righteousness.
Nurses who speak for babies with eyes to heaven and wonder in their minds.
We are firefighters and policeman. We are the reason your house is safe.
The strength in the middle of the night when hope brews and faith is tested.
We are a people of service, not slavery.
We will not allow your bill to turn into shackles at our ankles, clinking chains and slithering screams.
We are the Ohio Impact. We are more than you ever believed.
There will come a day. A day for us to sing and shout, united in love and self worth, united in the belief of fairness.
A day of victory, not defeat.
Will your red pen be available then? Will it be ready to strike out the 304 pages of indignation, setting on fire your lies? No? Well, let me be that good citizen and let you borrow mine.
We are that kind of people.
We, the people, forming a more perfect union, establishing justice, insuring domesting tranquility, promoting the general welfare of all and securing the blessing of liberty to each and every back you have tried to break, Do ordain this bill as Unfair, Unsafe, as your way of Hurting Us All and we will never give you our voices.
Not without a fight!