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Monday, February 14, 2005
Calling on Soul Force
Those a just a few samples of recent acts and there are many more domestic acts that occur that often go neglected and ignored. I am not trying to put a bad light on La Frontera, because I love where I am from...but I won't sugar coat it either...life here it seems is a bit more dangerous in some aspects. And with recent events, it is hard not to be afraid, especially when crossing the border is a common activity in your life. It is is also scary to wonder if similar occurances will occur in Reynosa as they have in Juarez, where about 300 women have been murdered most horrendously and mysteriously. Is this something we need to be afraid about?
Yes, but the relevant question should not be if we are afraid, because fear would be the obvious reaction to this. The question should then be..What are we going to do about it?
We as a frontera community need to stand up against acts of violence and say no more! No longer shall allow for such acts of violence to go ignored! No longer should we allow our frontera community (Mexican and US) wallow in fear. No longer should we carry fear in our hearts! No longer should we allow for our home to be a breeding ground for violence, poverty, corruption, ignorance and terrorism! We as a community have the power to make a positive change and we already possess the most effective tool against fear and oppression: SOUL FORCE.
"Let us not seek to satisfy our thirst for freedom by drinking from the cup of bitterness and hatred. We must ever conduct our struggle on the high plane of dignity and discipline. We must not allow our creative protest to degenerate into physical violence. Again and again we must rise to the majestic heights of meeting physical force with soul force." Martin Luther King, Jr.
The other day, I was a bit scared during a trip to Reynosa. I thought over and over why I couldn't shake my fear and why I had to feel it in the first place? What could I do about it? Immediately I though about Dr. Martin Luther King and seeked some peace in his wisdom. I wanted to do something not only to cleanse my fear but to make an ultimate change...to make my home feel safe because it is safe..not because I make myself safer by putting bars on my window or rolling up my car window and locking my door as soon as I drive into Mexico or go into the more runned down parts of town.
But making this happen is something that cannot do alone. Such a social change like this would require the most powerful tool upon which the great civil rights movements of the past century were fueled by, SOUL FORCE. So I am asking you, would you answer this call for Soul Force and take a stand against violence and fear in Tamaulipas and the Rio Grande Valley?
One day we must come to see that peace is not merely a distant goal we seek, but that it is a means by which we arrive at that goal. We must pursue peaceful ends through peaceful means.
--Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.
So how can you take stand? Let’s begin a white ribbon campaign for Soul Force and Peace in our frontera community. By using white ribbons, we can get the message out that we will no longer allow for fear, violence and oppression to breed in our home communities.
Rather than spread a message of fear, retaliation and anger, we should spread a message of love. To our hurting communities in Tamaulipas and the Valley, let us comfort and embrace them rather than live in hesitation with them. Let us show them our support and care.
So I encourage you within the next week to obtain white ribbons and decorate your cars, offices, mailbox, palm tree, pinky finger...what ever you can tie a knot too...but get those white ribbons out to spread a message of love, a stand for peace and call for Soul Force.
"If we do not act, we shall surely be dragged down the long, dark, and shameful corridors of time reserved for those who possess power without compassion, might without morality, and strength without sight. ", -Martin Luther King
So the ultimate question then is, what will you do?
"The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy."
Martin Luther King Jr., Strength to Love, 1963
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