One third of me is an activist

9 05 2010

One of the things that emotional upheavals bring to my life is obsessive introspection. It makes me look at the run-up to the whirlpool that happened. It makes me look at my actions and it makes me try to make sense of who I am. I didn’t think of myself as an activist until I woke up one day and heard that what I was doing was called activism. I had worked with other groups with a passion for a cause but they had not called themselves activists. Was there such a thing as a professional activist?

I had no issues though. The experience was the same. There is a group of people. They espouse a certain cause. With passion. They live by the principles it entails. I was familiar with this scenario. I had been brought up on the exploits of revolutionaries and too many red shirts around the house. I knew what was expected. Heck, I expected it of others. What is it that working on rights entails that other ‘professions’ don’t have to deal with?

To look for this difference I had to think of myself in different professions: policewoman, accountant, software engineer, data analyst, graphic designer. Why does that FEEL different? If you ignore someone’s intention of suicide, can you tell people you work to prevent suicide? Can you fight for child rights and ignore the 14 year old servant in your mother’s house?  Look the other way and you compromise your principles. And ethics. And values. When you work for a cause, you give your life over.

Activists who think of it as a job? Sounds odd.

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One response

11 05 2010
vatura

I think this is a very political thing you are talking about. an
activist is like a freedom fighter…so she will always be going against the
grain. Our policy here is live and let live, which is the exact
opposite of the activist’s mission which is more like continuously
opening up cans of worms while also keeping her own hands clean.

in places like this the activist is more an educator perhaps. also there is resistance because usually whatever an activist is complaining about requires massive change and sacrifice on the part of the general community…so it is a very political matter – advocating reform.

(supercool link btw 🙂

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