Wednesday, February 5, 2014
How to make a difference in something you care about
Is there something you really care about? Something you want to change? Somewhere you want to make a difference?
Do you ever get discouraged?
I sure do. It probably comes to no surprise to you that one of the things I care most about is low-income students breaking the cycles of poverty through education.
Sometimes the issues of inequality and the systems that continue them feel so overwhelming. Sometimes I feel like I'm not making any difference at all.
And that's the best weapon the status quo and patterns of oppression have - to make people who want to change things feel completely powerless and hopeless.
Last week I read an amazing book - Privilege, Power, and Difference by Allan G. Johnson - that featured a poem that I wanted to share with you:
(To the One Who Doubts the Worth of Doing Anything If You Can’t Do Everything)
You say the little efforts that I make
will do no good; they will never prevail
to tip the hovering scale
where Justice hangs in balance.
I don’t think
I ever thought they would.
But I am prejudiced beyond debate
In favor of my right to choose which side
shall feel the stubborn ounces of my weight.
by Bonaro W. Overstreet
I hope that you do not lose faith in your power to affect change in whatever it is you really care about.
And as for me, I hope that the stubborn ounces of your weight complete college and achieve your dreams - it is one of the best things you can do for yourself and for all the people who identify with you.