Welcome to the Olympia Tribune

‘We live in challenging times’ is the understatement of the millennium.

Four hundred years of white enslavement, subjugation, suppression, violence, and murder of Black Americans have come home to roost in the form of a long-overdue uprising of voices saying simply, “We Matter” and “Stop Killing Us.” The call for an end to this brutality, and murder, of Black Americans is met by violence from a system that knows no other way to solve its problems.

As I write this, our state burns, people’s homes and livelihoods destroyed by a fire season we’ve never experienced before. Yet we still have to argue with climate deniers who block any meaningful progress despite the science being clear.

The COVID-19 pandemic grips our community and economy. Our experts tell us to stay the course, hunker down, and mask up – that we can and will get through this if we follow a few simple guidelines. At this point, no one hasn’t been affected by the pandemic. Yet we see massive protests and outright refusals to comply that lead to spikes in cases and ultimately make it so that it’ll be even longer before we get through this and can return to life as usual.

This is in the face of certain leaders at the municipal, county, state, and federal levels, who, at their best, don’t seem to care, and at their worst, actively fight against progress. They choose to allow people to die, slip into poverty and homelessness, or get left behind with no support or safety net.

So, these are challenging times. And I’ll add another just for you. BE CHALLENGING. Challenge the status quo when they tell you that to be silent is better than calling them out and that to be civil is better than taking direct action. Challenge your friends to be better allies. Challenge your coworkers to create a more inclusive and diverse workplace with the training to make it an enduring culture. Every action, big or small, causes a ripple that grows and creates a wave.

Today we’re launching The Olympia Tribune, a community media experiment with the mission to be a “… forum intended to shine a light on news and issues in Olympia and greater Thurston County. It is a platform for community voices that are often unheard. It is a bulwark to protect the ideals of justice, fairness, and inclusivity in our community and government.”

At the very least, we hope that you learn something and ultimately are inspired in some way by the content we feature here. If you want to contribute, whether it’s writing a regular column, feature, or a Letter to the Editor, hit us up on FB or the website’s Contact page.

Now let’s go cause some good trouble!

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By Rob Richards

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