If not now, why?
By Equality Rider Zachary Pullin
As I gathered my carry-on belongings and rushed to my last flight home from service in the Peace Corps, I chatted up the TSA agent when he asked, “So, what’s your next step?” It is this question – this precise question – that has peppered the moments between finishing Peace Corps and my adventure on the Soulforce Equality Ride. And I have responded with everything from grad school to living on a ranch in the middle of nowhere.
Unfortunately, I was attempting to answer the question without understanding my personal motivations. Then, we visited North Central University in Minneapolis. On the vigil line, a father and his two children joined us in silent protest against the discriminatory policies that have been the impetus for suicide attempts, homelessness, depression, and pain on campuses across the country.
It was this contrast of an LGBTQ family and the people in power who have brought so much harm that moved me to tears. Seeing this father with his two children reminded me of my own two, young brothers. I have a 5 year-old brother and 9 year-old brother who make me want to be a better leader and activist every day. I think about a Native proverb, “We do not inherit the Earth from our Ancestors, we borrow it from our children.” I reflect on the idea that what we do now is for the future. I reflect on my two, young brothers being the next generation in charge of continuing the march of progress. I reflect on the fact that the partnership of my generation and theirs will be the way to change.
Most importantly, I believe that, once I know my motivations, I can better engage my deepest desires. I think about the words of a great friend, “Let’s be young in our best hopes!” So, though I may not know what I want to do after the Ride, I definitely can say that I understand my motivations. And understanding our motivations is key to translating our hopes into reality.
About the Blogger:
Zachary Pullin pulls his beliefs about humanity from his Native American roots. He believes that the conversation must begin with compelling our brothers and sisters in faith communities to believe with their hearts and not their minds.
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