a news story, but no new story
got them all riled up
at least well, some of them
other heads are in the sand

because their will
cannot command
the moral outrage it would take
to hear

the echo chambers gong with their
their impassioned, enlightened

rights! they scream
we demand to have our rights!
and there lies the problem:
our means more than one

and whatever does one do
when rights butt their beautiful heads
who becomes the judge between them
pounding the gavel from on high

certain inalienable rights to all
the right to self-determine
the right to stand
on your own two feet

at least, well,
to most of us

but why even exist
if life is so hard?
it’s hard, i hear.

the story of our land is
injustice trampled like sand
breaking the bondage
of the privileged oppressor

blessed minorities upending the
short-sighted rule of powerful aggressors
free at last,
free at last!

the weak, from the grip of the strong
at least, well, most of us

the voiceless are given a vote
the invisible, a much-too-late podium
but podiums–
they are hard to come by here

every persecuted people
every disadvantaged demographic
every mistreated minority
is given a voice

a hero, a champion
someone rising from the ashes of disrespect
and vulnerability to say
enough is enough!

my life matters, and the blindness
of the masses has to stop here, now.
i would be that poster child
if only i could

but i am an especially
minor minority
small and speechless, weak and writhing
traversing an unseen trail of tears

i reach out to the strong steel hand
coming down to deliver me
but instead, it
crushes my tiny, voiceless throat.