Sunday, November 10, 2013

To All the Brown People Making Things Happen in the Background

Act #314:  Thank you.  And dare ponder stepping into the light.

To All The Brown People Making Things Happen in the Background,

I see you.  You are Vice Presidents, Associate Deans, Campaign Managers, Speech Writers, and "Next in Command".  Others may see an "educated" black Asian who is "assimilated"....a Hispanic who can "help us bridge cultural divides"........but I see YOU.  I see your drive, your passion, your impact.  I see that they aren't that different from the man standing just a few steps in front of you.  Sometimes, they are even stronger than his.  I see your journey.  The hurdles, hoops, barriers you had to jump over, and through to be standing right the quiet shadows.  Every time your mother told you, you had to work twice as hard.  Every time you refrained from interjecting in your college classroom discussions.  Every time you had to act in a way that only the majority would be able to accept and appreciate. 

And when your gifts and potential became so undeniably apparent and people took note, I saw how quickly you were plucked and thrust....almost into the limelight. 

But not quite. 

Your powerful words began to impact others....but only when delivered through someone else's lips.  Your face became a symbol for "the right-hand man", "the counsel", the "up and coming", yet there you still stand, in the shadows.  It's just like your mama said - that in order to be the exception, you have to  know your place, play the game, work the system.  The statistics, the studies, the polls all tell you that you are already an anomaly, and that maybe you shouldn't keep pushing your luck.  That at the end of the day, it doesn't matter whose face is in the light.  As long  as it still shines on us all. 

But maybe, just maybe.... the light has always been beckoning for YOU. And that everything you've done, are doing, will preparing you not to propel others into the light,

But to finally claim your place, and step into it yourself.

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