LatinaLista -- Valentine's Day is usually a day reserved for our loved ones. It's that one time of the year where we show how much we love someone with a special present or action.
Yet, the full potential of Valentine's Day is being squandered according to a new campaign that wants to re-imagine Valentine's Day as National Standing on the Side of Love Day -- "a holiday of love and acceptance of all people."
Standing on the Side of Love is a social justice campaign sponsored by the Unitarian Universalist Association. The campaign seeks to halt oppression or violence towards people based on their identity.
To that end, the campaign is championing for equal rights of LGBT people, a return to civility in public discourse and a halt to the "Immigration and Customs Enforcement Agreements of Cooperation in Communities to Enhance Safety and Security" or ICE ACESS program that is separating families of undocumented residents.
"We need to stand on the side of love with all families, especially immigrant families," says Dan Furmansky, campaign manager for Standing on the Side of Love. "Our campaign will continue to shine the spotlight on the inhumanity of our nation's broken immigration system and ask Congress and the administration to harness the moral courage to create a pathway to citizenship for millions of people living in this country."
To stand up against any of these things takes courage and the campaign calls this "courageous love." Developers of the campaign's website have created a map of the nation showcasing the location of various stories of courageous love submitted by participants.
As much as the website is an extension of the campaign, it is also a tool to help people organize on a grass roots level to achieve one important goal -- counter fear and make love real in the world.
Since such an ambitious goal can't be accomplished in just one day, the campaign is ongoing with organizers hoping that the message that love is stronger than fear resonates with everyone struggling to be accepted for who they are.