When I first chose to run for office to represent Bennington in the Legislature, I saw that move as an opportunity to use a greater platform to lift the voices, concerns, dreams and ideas of the people in this region. I am forever grateful for the experience of serving and for the many hands who helped to get me there, year after year. I have said it before, and the words still ring true: this community, region and state is full of kind, generous individuals who are passionate, thoughtful and resilient. It has been an honor to serve with you and for you.
As many of you are well aware, the last several years have been both triumphant and trying for me and my family. Throughout these days, so many of you have reached out and expressed a deep love, affection and caring during some of our most difficult times. You have donated money, time, resources and energy towards helping us heal as individuals and helping our community understand, listen and move towards a brighter future for us all. You have mowed our lawn, made home-cooked meals, written letters and cards of support, signed petitions, and more.
You have spoken with great courage against inequities and asked difficult, but crucial, questions about who we are and what our values are. You have shared heartaches and reached out and up to try and learn more about what we can each do better to ensure equality, safety and inclusion in every aspect of our lives.
Please know, I see you, my family sees you, the thousands of you — from throughout the region, the state and the nation — and we thank you. Your voices ring loud and true, far above the bigotry, hatred and division of those few who harbor hateful ideologies. Thank you for digging in deep. Thank you for believing people of color and marginalized peoples when we speak our truths — no matter how painful it is to hear. Thank you for your love for our community which goes far beyond our physical borders. Thank you for your commitment to show up again and again. Thank you.
Kiah Morris is former state representative from Bennington.