“It’s always easier to believe it’s impossible right? Because if it were possible, it would require complicity.”
This quote is from the movie La Historia Oficial, one I highly recommend. This movie is about the Dirty War (La Guerra Sucia) of Argentina which happened in 1976. This coup d’etat over threw Isabel Perón and General Videla took power. From 1976-1983 over 30,000 people disappeared, vanished, gone. Some women we taken while they were pregnant and their children were born while in captivity. The babies were given to various military families, the children never knowing what happened to their birth parents, some of the parents were thrown out of planes into the ocean, tortured, raped and killed in horribly brutal ways, too brutal to even describe. After the dictator was removed, the grandmothers of these missing children demanded that they receive justice and find their grandchildren. So far they have located over 80. This movie details the life of Gaby (a fictional character, but her story is details the events after la guerra), one of the disappeared children and how her mother slowly finds out that the father was part of the military cover up and the true origin of her daughter. The movie is on Netflix and is subtitled in English so I highly recommend it.
This isn’t quite what today’s blog is about though. This quote gave me chills when I first heard it. Sometimes I worry that people, some not all, would rather choose to believe that something doesn’t exist because if it did and they did nothing about it, then they would be a part of it.
No matter how corny this saying is, be the change you want to see in the world! One person makes a difference! Look at the 3 young girls who were just rescued in Cleveland after being held captive for 10 years! 10 YEARS! One man walked by and thought there was a domestic abuse problem and he STILL helped the woman get out. What if her abuser was still there and attacked him or shot him or something like that? He did one brave act and saved 3 girls and a baby that were held captive and abused in so many ways for 10 years of their lives!
That act just warms my heart so much! However, I then read about a few brothels that were busted in Chicago, my home. They contained trafficked girls, one was 14-year-old girl and men would line up outside of this house to be serviced. There was a line of men and people were silent and those girls were being terrorized.
Going back to the example in Argentina. The group of grandmothers gathered every Thursday in the Plaza de Mayo and walked in front of one of the capital building in Buenos Aries. Several of the founders’ names were added to the list of disappeared people in Argentina. They kept going and persisted and the group grew and grew. Now, they have added clauses in the Constitution (I believe articles 7,8, and 11) about the right to know your identity, they have aided in the removal of 2 laws that pardoned the military personnel who were responsible for the Coup and those who committed the acts of torture and stole the children (Ley de Punto Final and Ley de Obediencia Debida) and they also pushed for the Truth Commission which published Nunca Más (No More), a report that is over 500 pages, detailing thousands of cases of torture from ’76-’83. All of this started with 4 grandmothers walking around the Plaza demanding justice for their children and missing grandchildren.
So in just these examples we have 1 man who saved 3 girls and a baby from years of torture and 4 grandmothers who forced an entire country to never forget and sought justice for their families and others like them. Then we have a case where no on reported anything and a brothel with trafficked children remain, every day being tortured, forced into sexual slavery. Wouldn’t you rather be that 1 person making a phone call rather than 1 person that allows that act to happen?
Remember, you make a choice every day how you impact another person’s life. You could be the rude person yelling a secretary for no reason other than she was the first person on the phone, making her want to cry. You could be the negative in this world, the darkness that we see in society, no matter how small that is. You don’t have to kill someone to make a negative impact in the world, all you have to do is be rude, mean and hurtful to someone you don’t know and in that moment of your anger or ignorance, you have just taken a little piece of that person away, no matter how small. It doesn’t matter if he/she will be better tomorrow, YOU hurt them today and that is all on you. Just because you don’t see the hurt, doesn’t mean it isn’t there and you have no idea how badly you hurt that person.
You could also be the positive in the world, the person who tells a stranger you like their shirt and watch their face light up. The person who smiles at a stranger who looks upset. The person who asks someone if they need help when they look like they are in trouble. The person that brings little sparks into this world because if that is the choice we all make, the well will glow and burn eternal for the world to see! We will engulf this world in a flame that burns away every inch of blackness, every spot of infection which is the evil in this world. I have no doubt of that.
This is your choice, so what will it be?