Red Lodge holds us

To the Editor,
Whether for four generations, like my family, or for the summer season (a.k.a. 4th of July), Red Lodge is our collective home. Nestled in this valley, embraced by the East and West Benches, that hug is there for all of us.
Home is a place where we know hard working values will be honored no matter who we are and we know we can access housing for our families. It is a place where we participate in all the public services available and likewise give back to them.
Home has to be safe where these basic understandings isn’t afforded just to some of us, but is a shared value permeating our community, binding us together.
After Charlottesville, community members organized a “No Hate in Our State” rally with over 200 participants and most of the faith community. Almost 10% of our population participated. With Western Montana housing one of the largest neo-Nazi groups nationally, our statement of “No Hate in Our State” isn’t without context. The threat is real.
This month, Red Lodge City Council has an opportunity to pass a non-discrimination resolution and make a public statement of support for all our community members. We have an opportunity to stand together and turn “No Hate in Our State” into action; if this is home for you, whether for a weekend, a summer, or for generations, that here, we have a commitment to your inclusion in the fabric of community.
When we say “No Hate in Our State”, it means we are committed to love; not as an emotion, but as an action. We actively commit to the messy and challenging task of loving unconditionally; not just those who are like us, but those who aren’t; not just those who already experience safety and feel courageous to be themselves, but those who are silent, perhaps in the shadows and don’t. Because to stand against hate, is to stand for love. And love requires work. And I have never met a Montanan afraid of work.
This issue has now become quite public. If City Council decides to not pass the resolution, the inaction has strong consequences. We will have actively engaged in the debate and voted in favor of discrimination. We will have told every participant in the Charlottesville rally, “Come here. We won’t stand up for our neighbor. We won’t stand up for our next generation of youth. We won’t stand up for each other. Come here. You are welcome to discriminate and target members of our community.” Because “silence encourages the tormentor, never the tormented.”
But Red Lodge holds us. The East Bench and the West Bench doesn’t discriminate who receives that loving embrace. Can we, as a community, be as great?
Please actively and boldly support the non-discrimination resolution and engage in the first step of courageously loving, without conditions.

Jael Kampfe
Believer in Kindness


Upcoming Events

  • Thursday, June 20, 2019 - 7:00pm
    Meets every Thursday, 7 p.m. – 8 p.m. at the Red Lodge Area Community Foundation, 122 S. Hauser. It is open to all. 425- 1755.
  • Thursday, June 20, 2019 - 7:00pm
    Clarks Fork Group meets at St. Joseph’s Catholic Hall, north end of Montana Avenue, Thursday at 7 p.m.
  • Friday, June 21, 2019 - 7:00pm
    Rock Creek Group meets Tuesdays and Saturdays at 8 a.m. and Wednesdays and Fridays at 7 p.m. at Calvary Church, 9 N Villard, Red Lodge.
  • Monday, June 24, 2019 - 7:00pm
    Joliet Group meets at the Community Center Monday at 7 p.m.
  • Tuesday, June 25, 2019 - 7:00pm
    Now Group meets at the Bridger United Methodist Church, 222 W. Broadway (west entrance of church) Tuesday at 7 p.m.
  • Thursday, June 27, 2019 - 7:00pm
    Meets every Thursday, 7 p.m. – 8 p.m. at the Red Lodge Area Community Foundation, 122 S. Hauser. It is open to all. 425- 1755.

The Carbon County News

Street Address:

11 N. Broadway, Red Lodge, MT 59068

Mailing Address:

P.O. Box 970, Red Lodge, MT 59068

Phone: 406-446-2222

Fax: 406-446-2225

Toll-Free: 800-735-8843

Open: Monday-Friday, from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m.