Monday, January 18, 2016

“"Our lives begin to end the day we remain silent...

""Our lives begin to end the day we remain silent about things that matter," Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

Yesterday I tried to teach the lessons of the civil rights movement to my biracial children. I used their favorite superheroes - Cyborg (black) and Superman (white). The whole idea was to teach them that people, like their beloved superheroes, can look different, but have the same values.
Back in 2014, I traveled to Ferguson, MO for the same reason. Mateo, then 5, didn't understand how sometimes the "good guys" could be bad or wrong. While he had started to notice skin color, he didn't understand the concept of the racial divide, that we adults have made part of our lives.
For quite a while I have chosen to remain silent on social media platforms about my politics and personal history. I didn't want my viewpoints to get in the way of assignments, offend clients and hinder my ability to feed my children, but enough is enough.
My grandfather, grandmother, were some of the few survivors of their family, victims of the Nazis. My father was born in a liberated concentration camp. Why? Because FDR and the rest of his administration didn't want to get involved in WWII. They knew about the death camps, but they cowered in their palaces, locked in political battles, preferring to remain silent.
How great was America then? How great was America when we locked up Japanese Americans? When we set dogs on civil rights marchers? And now we sit back on our couches and watch the nightly news relay the horrors of Syria.
America has the POTENTIAL to be great. We have the FREEDOM and OBLIGATION to talk about these issues. To protest. To argue. To debate.
But the minute we give into our fears of the world and listen to the vile diatribes of a vapid Donald Trump and other demagogues - we lose our luster.
Some would call those protesting American policies an ungrateful and unpatriotic lot. I disagree, I am infinitely grateful for the refuge and opportunities this country provided for my family. Being ungrateful would be to remain silent in the face of extremism while we still have the right to voice our minds.
#mlkday #documentary #somethingtosay" By benlowy on Instagram.

Posted on infosnack.

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