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Monday, January 23, 2012

Taking Responsibilty

I want to start this post with this great quote....

"I must not fear. Fear is the mind-killer.  Fear is the little-death that brings total obliteration.  I will face my fear.  I will permit it to pass over me and through me.  And when it has gone past I will turn the inner eye to see its path.  Where the fear has gone there will be nothing. Only I remain"
                                                                                                                                            Frank Herbert

Its impossible to fully face your fears when you sent to see some one else.  Case in point (without going to in depth).  I have this very trying circumstance where some very anti-gay remarks and overtly homophobic remarks have been made in one of the classes I am in right now.  This has happened three times as of last week.  It always happens with only seven to ten of in class, before class really begins and before the teacher even arrives in the class.

In the beginning I was not going to say anything to anyone, as I have to be in this class for a total of fifteen weeks and this is only the start of week three. But I feel so uncomfortable, afraid, uneasy and intimidated that I don't know what to do.

I was told to go to to our deans office, which I did today and everything would be handled.  Well it was not.  I was referred to someone else, who of course can not be found. I also was not reassured in the deans office that this issue was taken seriously and felt very uncomfortable when asked my name.  So much for trying to stay anonymous.  It took a lot for me to walk into that office in the first place and to leave having felt no better I wonder is it even worth it to pursue it to this next person.

I am reminded of this quote:

"Life is not easy for any of us.  But what of that?  We must have perseverance and above all confidence in ourselves.  We must believe that we are gifted for something, and that thing, at whatever cost, must be attained."
                                                       Marie Curie

However, when the people in "power" that you turn to send you on your way to another department, another person you, or at least I do, lose faith in the system.  The system where it seems no one can step to the plate and take responsibility.  I dare at this point NOT speak out because it could make the next thirteen weeks a living hell; but do I dare just sit there class after class after class and listen to such vile verbal treatment of who I am? 

Do I disservice myself and my community by keeping my mouth shut?  Do I undue our history of brothers and sisters fighting for our equal and fair rights by remaining mute?  Do I spit on the graves of those who died of AIDS in fear and silence because they themselves had no voice and I continue that legacy of hopelessness?

I am reminded of this quote as well:

"Vision without action is a dream.  Action without vision is simply passing the time.  action with vision is making a positive difference.
                                                                 Joel Barker

I post this because I am tired of no one taking responsibility, I am tired of being treated second class, I am tired of no one listening and I am tired of a society that does this over and over again and we simply take it. 

We take it every time we are handled by a recorded systems of prompts when we call somewhere that takes ten minutes to get a live, breathing person on the other end, we do it every time we never speak to our bank teller, our grocery store cashier or the person next to us in the office.  We do it every time we build walls around ourselves and bury ourselves in our own lives that we can not and do not see the person sitting next us.

I believe we do it every time we send an e-mail versus a real paper letter, or send a text message instead of an actual phone conversation, or when driving we are babbling on the phone as we are driving, or not holding a door open for the person behind us as we walk into a building.  We have become a society were we care not for our fellow neighbor.  Oh it happens in times of crisis or concern, and yes it is out of deep concern and support but why does something terrible have to happen for us to care?  Can't we just simply do it?

In closing I am reminded of this incredible quote:

"I've learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel."
                                                             Maya Angelou

My final though is.... How did you make someone feel today?

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