Monday, May 22, 2006

Where Universes Intersect...

As I review my blog postings to date, I wonder what someone browsing this would think? SO many different threads, that seem unrelated...

But I have found a point where the lines of academia and advocacy intersect...

I was reading the Ragged Edge, BAADD Stories and came across a posting that was not too unususal: where is the commitment to advocacy, civil rights and social protest?

Here is the response I posted:

The core issue is what I am calling grassroots leadership. In my studies of leadership emergence, I am thinking it crops up like strawberries. They can be planted, and take root, but do not bear fruit for three years after planting. Strawberry plants are also very susceptible to frost, cold and harsh winters, and can die off easily. New leadership is a lot like strawberries. There is a need some someone to be planting new plants (IL leaders) tending to them through the harsh weather (funding challenges, discrimination and institutional racism) that kills off many plants (promising people quit or give up). I am studying Frederick Douglass, and Susan B. Anthony around this topic, but I think it will be applicable to a variety of social activism movements, including IL. We tend to put those who take those big risks integrating public transit, creating access, changing legislation, etc. as BIGGER THAN LIFE. We forget they started with no tools, skills, or training in the issues, like a spindly strawberry plant in the Home Depot or Builder's Square. Someone had to nurture, feed, and tend to them over time, to product the strong, effective leaders we see.

SO all need to get a trowel, a watering can and help tend to some plant; they may be the next leader to take disability rights to the next level.

If you wait long enough, and keep a sharp eye out, all roads lead to Rome.

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