Friday, July 29, 2011

On never keeping silent

The world is not dangerous because of the harmful, but because of those who do nothing about it .
Albert Einstein
I grew up learning about the Holocaust. I'm privileged to have heard the stories from those who survived. What sticks with me more robustly than the images of the atrocities themselves is the fact that so many stood by and allowed it to happen. The conspiracy of silence is a sad side-effect of - and contributor to - the enormous tragedies that so often scar our planet. And us.

Makes me wonder when we'll start using our voices a little more courageously.

Your turn: When do you speak up? Why wouldn't you?


Kalei's Best Friend said...

Years ago Steven Spielberg put together a documentary on the survivors of the Holocaust.. My husband's employer was asked to speak his view on it since he was encamped in one of the prisons... He leant the tape to us.. He has taken each grand child to the prison that he was held in... He did it so that they would understand their history... When I watched it, it broke my heart that someone so sick and cruel could do that to innocent people.. What is worse is that Hitler took advantage of people who trusted...Jack (employer) is still alive... His wife, best friend and best friend's wife are gone... Jack is a strong man- and affectionate one at that.. surprising since what he went through was horrendous..
I will only be silent if I know that what I have to say would compromise a life... not mine but others... Or if I can not find a tactful way to get my point across w/out undermining or endangering another...

mmp said...

I've been in the difficult position of speaking out and yet there's been the very real sadness of knowing that my doing so has caused others to loose their employment....difficult monetary times to fall on their families...and relationships to be strained, almost to breaking point.

Would I do it again?
In a heart beat.

Because...the people that we were looking after deserved better than they were getting.
Because....I'd tried doing it the 'having a chat' way...and it didn't work. was looking as if no one else was prepared to speak out.

Didn't win me Any bunches of flowers though.....

H said...

I've spoken out when I've felt prompted to do so. It's hard, I haven't usually wanted to be the one, and often times get attacked when I do so, but hindsight tells me that I would do it again.

I appreciate all the "because" statements written by mmp. They are all so true and I often find myself wondering "why me, why do I have to be the one." Then I try to feel blessed for the opportunity.