In the wake of WWII, a German pastor, Martin Niemoller (1892-1984), penned this poem:
First they came for the Socialists, and I did not speak out–because I was not a Socialist;
Then they came for the trade unionists, and I did not speak out–because I was not a trade unionist;
Then they came for the Jews, and I did not speak out–because I was not a Jew;
Then they came for me–and there was no one left to speak out for me.
This wonderfully articulate quote speaks volumes concerning the paramount ethical importance of speaking out for minority views.
We may not directly see the immediate ramifications of minority views being suppressed, but from a globalized and society viewpoint, we will all experience those effects.
We may not fully understand how our current selfishness affects the coming generations, but without question, it will affect them. That responsibility is placed upon our shoulders to create a world in which our children and grandchildren can freely express themselves and lead meaningful lives, without the fear of subjugation based on personal preferences.
The spirit behind this quote is my reason for being an Ally for the LGBTQ community. It is the reason why I believe in providing a living wage for those who work hourly-wage jobs. It is the reason I believe in conservation, and reducing manufacturing processes that are crippling the sensitive ecosystem of the earth, which we are leaving to future generations.
Regardless of philosophy or theology, it is inarguable that we share our very molecular make up with everything else in the Universe (even in the same proportions). In a very real and non-metaphysical sense, “We are the Universe aware of itself.” There is responsibility in that truth. Responsibility to others, to ourselves, and to the Earth that bore us.
Watch at least the first minute of this video, and stand in awe with me, of our fascinating origins.