Change Happens When We Work Together: A Lesson From History


Over 100 years in the past, my great-great-great grandfather Fredrick Douglass advocated for Black freedom and girls’s rights. My technology continues to be preventing for a similar causes.

A Black Lives Matter protest in South Yorkshire, England, in June 2020. (Tim Dennell / Flickr)

I used to be born right into a household of activists and changemakers. My great-great-great grandfather Frederick Douglass has impressed my household for generations to talk out and actively do our half to make the change we want to see in our nation. Over 100 years in the past, Fredrick Douglass advocated for African People’ freedom and girls’s rights. He was decided to push America to be a real democracy that encompasses all People no matter race or gender. Sadly, the struggle for equality persists into 2022—and I’m preventing for a similar causes together with many members of my technology.

Frederick Douglass as soon as said, “I prayed for freedom for 20 years, however acquired no reply till I prayed with my legs”—which continues to be as true immediately because it was then, as change happens when individuals actively take motion, working collectively, slightly than passively wishing for change.

My technology has been deemed the technology of activists by many as we aren’t solely prepared to make use of our collective voices to talk out however attend marches and protests to advocate collectively for what we imagine. The Black Lives Matter (BLM) marches that befell after George Floyd’s dying and the Girls’s Marches that have been held following the 2016 election have considerably impacted me and my technology. On the time of each the 2016 and 2020 elections I used to be too younger to vote, as was most of my technology, so protest grew to become one in all our major technique of influencing our nation. Social media was additionally extremely influential and helpful throughout this time as we have been capable of collectively mobilize as a gaggle. I capitalized on the usage of social media to submit petitions for individuals to signal, discover widespread assembly locations for protests and occasions, talk about variations of opinions and find sources that different teenagers have been importing.  

Collective motion, significantly voting and protest, is important for making certain that American democracy upholds its values of being inclusive and consultant of the nation’s demographic. Though protests are a big and precious instrument, I wish to be part of collaborative efforts that additional my position in evolving our nation and contribute to the answer, which led me to intern at ReflectUS this summer time. Because the nationwide, cross-partisan coalition of main ladies’s illustration organizations, ReflectUS has the distinctive capability to develop political management for all ladies. Provided that change and progress happen when individuals come collectively, ReflectUS’ skill to carry individuals collectively, work throughout racial, ethnic, ideological and get together variations to construct a nationwide motion for change made it the proper subsequent step for me. The work of accelerating gender parity in our political system in any respect ranges is important to American democracy—one which echoes the nation’s composition at 51 p.c ladies slightly than its present abysmal rate of roughly half that.

It’s simpler to construct robust kids than to restore damaged males.

Frederick Douglass

The majority of Gen Z have misplaced religion in our authorities, however many, together with myself, imagine that we have now the facility to make the change and do it in another way, particularly if we work collectively. I’m optimistic that in the future our nation will uphold its values and our authorities will signify and embrace all its residents. For that to happen, individuals should be prepared to work collectively throughout race, gender, ideology and get together strains to acquire a extra simply society.

Frederick Douglass understood that extra development happens when completely different minority teams come along with a standard purpose of reaching equality. The partisan nature of the nation is presently stifling our skill to make progress.  The one approach to make sure change is for People to work collectively, kind coalitions, and for my technology to proceed difficult the established order and reshape the present system—to really mirror us.

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