This I Believe

Stephanie - Clackamas, Oregon
Entered on January 26, 2007
Age Group: Under 18
Themes: creativity

This I believe…as if it were so easy to write down just one. What I truly believe is something most people will agree with, and respect. Speak up and don’t be shy. Hold your head up, raise your hand and speak loudly! Don’t be one of those people who mumble and trail off with their words, and don’t be afraid to say something wrong. Half the things I say don’t make sense at all, but I learn a lot more because people will respond and give me feedback. The only dumb question is the one not asked and the only wrong answer is nothing at all. I won’t be satisfied with just a nod and smile in return, because in the end that’s worth nothing to me at all.

Honestly, I don’t have a certain experience where suddenly I just changed and thought that starting now I am going to stand up for myself when things get rough. Living life is an experience itself and everyday people get hundreds of chances to say what’s on their mind. I’m talking about the women who suffer from beatings by their husbands. I’m talking about those who let their parents choose there future for them, and those who have lived in the shadows their whole life. Even to those who simply don’t raise their hand in class. There have been a huge number of times where I let people walk all over me. It wasn’t till this past year I began to realize that I don’t need it anymore. I believe age has a lot to do with it because it’s all about growing up and figuring out what you want in life, and what you want out of it. So what could you possibly get out of life if you never voiced an opinion?

It’s like the big man said “Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter” (Martin Luther King Jr.) He raised his voice, held his hands high and took matters to himself. He set the structure for what the world should be like and look at us now. Sure, not all minds have changed on how we should live, yet he set the boundaries and showed people a new light. MLK Jr. has given people the inspiration to change and step out of this world where everyone’s afraid to converse their thoughts. And he’s only one example. Our president may be the one who has the most power, but in all reality one voice has just as much. The only thing that separates us from him is that he has millions of people praising him because he wears the title.

In reality it’s the people who make the change. Song writers, actors and actresses, singers, painters, photographers…the list goes on. But that’s just a fraction of what people do to express themselves world wide. Take a good look at the first white rapper, Slim Shady. Because he isn’t afraid of the controversy or of any type of consequence he may provoke, people look up to him because he has such a powerful, fearless voice. And at the end of his songs my eyes are open a little more.

People who literarily put themselves in a position where they are seen as an icon are automatically viewed as idols and have unlimited power within the people. We get ideas to try and improve or fix the laws we created by those icons to make sure history doesn’t repeat itself. And since we live by a democracy, “we the people” can easily change the ways of this country. People just have to realize that anything is possible and anyone can achieve wonders if they just believe a word is all it takes.