A voice. The verb given to expressing something in words. Having a voice usually means having something to say, an opinion, a sentiment, a view that the world deserves to hear about.
Each person has a voice but we, the people, dub each one legitimate or otherwise. We turn whispers into screams, and muffle screams into hums. We allow people the privilege of having a voice, and take our own for granted. We live in such an age that a whisper can create a ripple that crosses the seven continents. From the comfort of our homes, and the extension of our fingers we can influence leaders and followers. We choose to let voices with less important things burn bright whilst those with embers of a social justice flame die out. We create a world where what you wear, who you know and the number of followers you have shine louder than your accomplishments and your attributes. We have voices. They may be small, they may be big. But a voice is a voice, no matter the size.
As simple as it is, being able to speak, having a voice, one with any form of importance, is a luxury that not everyone can afford. For centuries, people of colour had their words stripped of significance and their voices muffled. They fought long and hard in order to be given the right to have their words heard. The world we live in, gives us so much power just by hitting a few buttons. We can type a few sentences and watch the numbers rise, each digit quantifying the legitimacy of what we have to say. 1 like. 13 likes. 456 likes. 67,890 likes. That is was determines what we should read and what is ‘’worth’’ our time.
We have the chance to make a difference, but what we choose to share, is a stupid insignificant post about a stupid insignificant thing that no one cares about. Of course not everything we share in our lives should be all "BLACK LIVES MATTER" all the time, but is it not upsetting that Alton Sterling’s death trended for three days whilst, Kylie Jenner’s Lip Kits won’t seem to disappear off my feed? The world we live in is not perfect, in fact, it never will be, but it’s our job to keep striving to get as close as we can. There are so many issues that we should acknowledge; racism, sexism, homophobia, gentrification to name a few. But the most our generation seems to do is cry about it for a second, before moving on to who wore what, where, and when.
I’m not saying that all these problems can be solved by joining the world's keyboard warrior crew, in fact I'm saying the opposite, but the one thing we can all do, is speak up about all this injustice around us. We see people suffer, we watch it with our own eyes, and we turn and pretend that nothing happened, I can't pretend and neither should you.
Standing at podiums speaking poetry that serenades peoples ears, yet simultaneously touches their souls Martin Luther King said ‘’I have a dream’’. Four words that to this day carry the meaning of a thousand words. What would our world be if Martin Luther King decided to stay quiet? To deprive the world of his voice, of his words.
This is our world, we live in it. I urge you to speak up about what you believe in, because the foundation of our futures depends on it.