For years, I have constantly heard everyone – from my coworkers to my family members and my closest friends – tell me that they have never seen me angry. As a young girl, I felt like being angry was never the productive thing to do, so I would internalize every furious thought and feeling I had. However, just like many individuals, I get angry all the time.
I get angry that Colorado drivers never seem to know the purpose of a turn signal. I get infuriated with people who are mean to service workers, teachers, and animals. I get enraged when people drum on their desks in the middle of a test, or when people judge kids who get answers wrong in class.
I get angry that billionaires are taking their private jets across the globe while my mom feels guilty for using her laminator machine because she knows how harmful plastic is to the environment. I get angry when I see people partaking in performative activism, and even angrier when I realize that I participate as well.
I get angry at social media influencers with massive platforms of young girls posting “what I eat in a day” videos and preaching self-love and acceptance while broadcasting harmful diet tips. I cannot stand when individuals maintain the platform of millions of fans after doing unspeakable things, or when people who are supposed to be mentors and leaders in my community invalidate the experiences of hundreds of people who have been traumatized by other leaders. I get angry when religion crosses over with politics. Yet again, men are telling all other women, and me, what we can and cannot do with our bodies.
I get angry when I see history being erased from schools, because as George Santayana said, “Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it.” As a fourth-generation Holocaust survivor, this does not just anger me, but it terrifies me. It angers me that Tennessee’s McMinn County school board voted to remove “Maus” from its curriculum, one of the few books that are read in school that teaches about the Holocaust. I am enraged that 31 states still do not require schools to teach about the Holocaust.
I get angry with myself when I realize how much I care about what other people think, or when I get in my head too much. I have always been frustrated that as a young girl, my anger was invalidated and assumed to be the result of my period. I am angry that no one truly teaches young women how to deal with anger, as opposed to what young men receive.
As I have grown with my anger, I have been reminded that anger is a form of love. Anger can show that you truly care about something and are willing to get upset about it. So yes, I am angry, but now the question is: will I do something about it?