Tuesday, August 14, 2018

YOU! HAVE THE POWER | Dr. Ellen Brown

June 5, 2018 by  
Filed under Extra

DR. ELLEN BROWN

Stand Tall

BY DR. ELLEN BROWN

“Where you stand depends on where you sit.” — Miles’ Law

Harriet Tubman, Dr. Martin Luther King, Rosa Parks, Cesar Chavez, and thousands more all sat in places where they saw limitations placed on freedom and power for their people. They sat where they were told not to sit, stand or even enter — and they sat in jail cells without cause or concern for their own comfort.

Because they sat in places with extreme limitation on their rights, each one exercised courage and stood up in another place that led to freedom and equal rights for millions.

Each one of us “sits” somewhere. In that place we see, hear, feel, and draw conclusions about what we need, want, and deserve. Each place nurtures its own conclusion about what is needed to make change — and that is where your decision emerges: “Where do I stand on this issue?” Standing requires action and energy; in other words, “power!” Miles’ Law takes into consideration the varying places that people sit to justify “where we are coming from” when we stand up to voice our beliefs. It may not be a popular or even informed stance, but it exercises power, which leads to attention, which eventually leads to changes.

Where do you “sit” on issues that affect your child’s school? Your neighborhood? Your community and state? Where you sit is valid because your beliefs and conclusions are factors in the needs of others who feel and believe as you do. But sitting is not enough; how can you use your position on an issue to stand up? Where can you express your voice? Look around: community forums, open meetings, local organizations. Call your representatives, attend school board meetings, and don’t discount the ultimate: going to the voting booth.

Where you sat, observed, listened, discussed, supported, criticized, felt, and drew conclusions is valid — and it’s powerful in how it led to formulating your right to exercise your voice for change.

Ellen Brown is an affiliate faculty member in the School of Contemporary Liberal Studies at Regis University and a retired associate dean and professor at Davenport University.

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