I suppose as a writer I should contribute to this series a flowery soliloquy which paints this predestined fate of leading through written communication.
I could paint a picture with my words some tale that suggests I may have known all along this form of advocacy to be my calling.
But truthfully, it’s much simpler than all that.
I’m not an athlete, even less an entertainer, I’m mature enough to know my own strengths and weaknesses…and I write pretty well…
On the subject of education reform or community empowerment in general, it’s easier for me to put thoughts on paper than for me than to speak them into existence. In that vein, writing is more of a “how” than a “why,’ as I don’t view advocacy as an option, rather a responsibility for those with the capacity to do so.
The why, I suppose, is a bit more complex.
For me, the writing skills for which I’ve been blessed are only justified if channeled for good. Good, as I define it, is using those God-given assets to enrich the lives of others, thereby enriching oneself spiritually, emotionally and sometimes financially (selfishly…). Honestly, who cares frankly what I have to say if it does not serve the interests of others? Anything else is just words in print.
As a member of the great Indy/Ed Team, writing provides the vehicle to stimulate understanding and perspective on an issue for which I have worked most of my professional life. Far too often, the contention and ridiculously partisan nature of discussions surrounding our children’s futures give way to peripheral issues that only deepen divisions. What’s worse, often leaders of color do themselves a disservice in this arena by not leading the educational choice movement through advocacy and most importantly creation and maintenance of high-quality educational options.
Writing, and writing as part of this team, allows us to tear down false notions, in favor of honest discourse on an issue for which no one solution or policy prescription can resolve. And if, as a result of this humble writer’s musings, folks can be informed and compelled to act, then the writing is well worth it.
‘Cause I can’t get it done singing.