My Unique Utopia

I see a place where hate cannot reside. Society is accepting. People don’t struggle to fit in because they each have a place to call home. They have a safe door to shut, and their fridges are full. They don’t know hunger. They don’t walk out in fear during the morning hours. Their windows can be left open and there isn’t a thought given whether their earthly possessions will still remain when they arrive back. They trust knowing everything they left in their abode safely remains.

I see a place where I’m not afraid. I’m not afraid of the man following me to my car as I leave the gym. I’m not afraid of the stranger beside the 10th street exit to my work, especially after the sun has set and darkness shrouds unknown intentions. I’m not afraid of the bathroom area in the old Keith Albee theater building. The winding staircase leads to opulent sitting rooms and old phone booths surrounded by sitting areas where women gathered during the opening and intermission of Gone With The Wind. They perhaps smoked cigarettes and adjusted their outfits. I’ve only seen hiding areas for predators in the grandeur located in those old sitting rooms.

I see a place where a degree matters. There are jobs to be had; real jobs, good jobs. The kind of jobs a person can support their family on. The kind where after you pay the daycare provider you aren’t cutting nickels in half trying to afford utilities, a car payment and food. $900 is not enough money to last through the month. Not today, anyways. I don’t want your handout or charity. I want to work and not feel reliant on a man’s money, whether that man is Uncle Sam or the man I married. I want to be independent because I am capable. Even though I am a woman I deserve the same wage you’d pay a man. My ovaries shouldn’t determine whether I’m qualified to be hired in at a lower pay scale. My people pleasing nature shouldn’t have given me more job duties while the man thinks I only deserve 36 cents as a pay raise in almost a decade of never saying no. Saying no got me three jobs and 36 cents on the hour. Those pennies aren’t even enough money to buy a stamp to mail my electric bill while I hold my breath in hopes it arrives on time and doesn’t bounce.

I see a place where drugs aren’t passed out as cures for rape, molestation, abuse, and other cultural norms we’ve come to pacify everyday life with. Sorry that happened to you. Here’s a pill, it will make you forget and not care you were deemed worthless from birth. Don’t get addicted. If you are addicted, well… not our problem. We never wanted to find a cure or your healing destination because pharmaceuticals companies don’t thrive on cures. But I’m not supposed to tell you this. $1000 profit every month in maintenance is far better than a $1000 one time cure. Addiction is a business. It feeds seedy underworlds and high rise executive suites.

I see a place where all children are given all the same opportunities. Each child is given the same education. No matter their geographical location, the color of their skin, their family history, their attire; these children deserve a fair shot at life. They deserve the same shot as the family with old money and the family with no money. They deserve the acceptance into the elite preschools and private charter schools. Money shouldn’t determine the access to expand their education, their chance at learning. If they want to squander their chance, then that is their choice. But, it shouldn’t be pre-determined before they are even born.

I’m see my utopia. I see a world, and I know it can’t exist.

I’ve determined others also see their own utopias. They see the way they’d like their world and those people have political connections. They have money and can buy their private islands and private jets. They are probably already creating their utopia, while I sit here writing and dreaming of mine.

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Charli Mills
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Powerful, Rachel! A good writer friend and I recently named ourselves the Fighter Writers, you know, the ones who know first-hand the struggle. Not the Baby Boomer MFA student who only has to focus on her memoir and her husband’s oodles of money. She met with me to hear what I had to say about building a local community for writers and then sneered at my cute-little-idea and dismissed it as too-much-work. I never asked her to dirty her hands, but enjoy what my grubby and blistered ones wrought for us all. You know those types– they smile with perfect… Read more »
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