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Kaleidoscope: Activism is Not a Race

Many platforms make civic engagement accessible and creative, allowing communities and individuals to spread information that can reach a broad audience outside of their homes. There are many resources that stem from social media posts with reputable sources or emails from credible organizations. However, I think it's important to note that activism isn't a race or a competition. When you commit to a cause or to being an advocate, this is not a commitment that means you score brownie points; it means that you are willing to build a platform for voices of marginalized communities that are facing the violent system of oppression. Individuals that make you feel bad for being passionate for a cause, using your privilege to bring about change, or belittle your efforts aren't extending kindness or compassion.

Remember that your activism method is valid, regardless of the number of people you can reach. Having a conversation with your family about privilege or taking time to self-educate about societal disparities can make a difference. Considering that social change requires collective action and movement, we all can push for positive change in our respective communities which can turn into the creation of new societal norms.

Advocacy work is an ongoing growth journey but we must be willing to be held accountable during our journey. During moments of being held accountable, please take it as a moment to listen and to learn. Establishing compassionate accountability is very important when it comes to advocacy and activism because we should be held to standards that will help push for constructive change and personal development.

We are all unique beings with different ways of advocating for change, so when we can combine multiple methods, we can build a vision of a better future. I want to bring awareness to the fact that activism isn't a race. Many social justice issues require sustainable change and commitments. I know it's hard to feel like you are doing enough, but your actions are making a difference and are significant. Regardless of your background, you can create a personalized plan to combat social injustice using your available resources and tools. Therefore, please don't feel like comparing yourself to someone else is necessary; advocacy isn't about competing to figure out who can reach the finish line first. I'm learning that social justice isn't an Olympic race to figure out who will be crowned the "best" activist; it's a constant struggle. Despite this, we must remove ourselves from the "Olympic race" mindset and focus on acquiring an individual growth mindset that will encourage collective action resulting in institutional change.


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