Have you ever felt invisible? Ignored or unwanted?
Invisibility is not just a word. It encompasses emotions. Everything from sadness to frustration to anger. It leaves you or at least it leaves me with the following question,"What did I do wrong to be overlooked"?
During the summer, my best friend told me he was going to propose to his girlfriend. He then asked me to accompany him to a jewelry store to look at engagement rings. We went to a store located in Fall River, Massachusetts. From the moment we entered the store, we were under surveillance. Every time I turned around, I felt "eyes" watching my every move. After the ring was chosen, we approached the cashier. She had her back towards us and asked who was next in line. Instead of cashing us out, the only people standing in line, she decides to take someone out of line. I was angry and I wanted to say something but I chose not to.
Melody Hobson's TED Talk entitled, "Color Blind or Color Brave?" talks about how being open about race can bring our society to greater places. Towards the end, Melody says, "The first step to every problem, is awareness". We can not progress in our society, if we continue to tip toe around important topics in America. One of those being race. The key word tied around race is fear. Fear of admitting that we have not come as far as some people like to think we have. Yes we have an African American president but that does not mean racial discrimination is over. If that was the case, Trevyon Martin and Micheal Brown would still be alive today. Barack Obama's election was a historical moment in history but it does not change that people are still walking around colorblind in regards to race. Melody Hobson makes an excellent viewpoint towards the end of her talk. She defines color blindness as, Dangerous, and Ignoring the Problem. We need to discuss race. The more we ignore the subject and pretend everything in our world is fine, the more our next generation will suffer in regards to: equal opportunities and privilege.
When youth have a a space of their own where they can talk about their experiences, have a voice, and have confidence not only in themselves but their abilities, they are given opportunities. Opportunities to be anything they want to be. Youth in Action does this. YIA gives youth the chance to lead, gain a voice within their communities and excel.