Jude Smith Rachele

Commentator

Dr Jude Smith Rachele is CEO of Abundant Sun, a cultural transformation agency, and an Adjunct Professor at Marlboro College. An author with a background in Psychology and Business Management, she provides research, consultancy, and education in the areas of democratic governance, leadership, business ethics and community engagement. For 28 years, she lived and worked in the UK and Europe, and now makes Vermont her home.

For most of my adult life, I lived as an immigrant – as an American transplant in the United Kingdom. Culturally, I’m British, despite having been born in Jersey, New Jersey, and never legally having secured British citizenship.

A recent web headline read, ‘Trump sacking acting Attorney General raises new questions about his respect for the rule of law.’ And while most people might be most interested in the politics behind the headline, my attention went straight to the last three words: Rule of Law - an intrinsically moral notion and legal concept thought to symbolize an enlightened, civilized and stable society.

I recently visited the Civil Rights Museum in Tennessee. Standing on the site where Dr. King was assassinated, I found it strange to think of his legacy as belonging in a 'museum.’ We still face intense injustice and erosion of liberties in this New Year of 2017. And it remains a challenge to avoid letting insecurity and ignorance calcify our spirit. A case in point is the controversy over Mayor Chris Louras’ plan to resettle 100 Syrian refugees in Rutland.

Binary computer language is often used to describe people. One is either man or woman, black or white, gay or straight, Democrat or Republican, American or un-American, us or them. It’s simple. Right?

The world has pivoted. For some, hope has faded, while others are assessing the potential of this current change of political regime. Everything feels disrupted. And yet, I have to admit, I’m a little excited.