I stand and wait. It is warm but not windy. Dozens of bodies are scattered around me…on this significant afternoon. Significant because it’s my first major protest…second in all, but the only one where I haven’t been granted permission to express my views.
(Side note: Protest = formal, historical way of protesting. Rejection = modern, less cooperative version of protest. I reject.)
I am holding a sign. And I have a mask in my bag. The people around me are dressed in sarcastic, liberal T-shirts…and punk attire.
We are here for child abuse today. And sexual abuse. But I know, as we sip our beers and wait our turn for the megaphone…that this is about much more than the proclaimed subject.
This is about power. And the slavery people do not see. This is about language…and money…and equality.
No everybody speaks. Mainly victims speak – by this statue. Victim stories capture many passers-by, but completely scare some…Some of the public cower away into their murmurs of ‘pathetic’ and look down at Iphones.
In some ways, activism makes it worse. You go home – after pumping up all that anger to release – but nothing major seems to change. I know, I know…this is a gradual process. Revolution has to be gradual…we have to take stands in order for others to take a stand.
On my return…after stopping traffic outside parliament…I have thoughts. Lots of thoughts.
It is very sad to see thirteen year old girls walk around with orange faces and boob tops. It is very sad to see grey haired women speak to their managers with fear in their eyes…as I pass by the windows of shops and businesses.
It is sad to see parents lying to their children…then not expecting them to grow up confused and rebellious.
I recently lost my activism virginity. And it has left me with a beautiful dialogue in my head…I finally feel like I don’t need an audience or to explain myself. I now know how I feel.
Many people go about life planning to say or do things…but not really for themselves. People are insecure.
When I walk down the road, I see flames. And I feel shame. And I choose to observe rather than speak…just like all the wise men suggest.
It works. It is underrated, the act of observing fellow-man.
I’ll get back to you when I stop enjoying taking a stand so much…much of my writing comes from a place where I am angry at not being able to vent…but now I am venting, and other people see and hear and feel and agree…I think I am addicted.