United We Stand, Divided We Fall
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 for me.
Martin Niemöller (1892–1984) was a prominent Protestant pastor who emerged as an outspoken public foe of Adolf Hitler and spent the last seven years of Nazi rule in concentration camps.
This quote couldn’t be more relevant today.
We, humans, are divided by religion, race, sexual preference, political status, financial status that we fail to see each other as equals. We are taught segregation from birth, by our families, society, friends, marketing etc. We are taught to be selfish, judgmental and that our beliefs hold more validity then someone else’s. What if we took the time to put ourselves in someone else’s shoes? We are all people striving for the same things out of life. To be happy, respected and loved.
How different would the world be if we stopped trying to walk over people to get ahead and tried to help those in need along the way? There are moments in all of our lives when we are down, whether it is physically, mentally or emotionally, and we need someone to help us. So why do we look down at others who are not where we are? Why do we not offer that helping hand to a stranger is who down for the moment?
I have heard many people say “I’m only one person, what can I do.” They decide to walk with their heads down and act like they don’t know what is going on. They act like they do not see the world getting worse and worse. Or if they do they simply say “what you gonna do? It’s not like I can change the world.” This is the mentality that has allowed the world to get into the shape it is now. Where we choose war over peace, where it is easier to lie then to tell the truth, where we are edified with sex and drugs instead of meaningful edified relationships.
It only takes one to stand up and have the masses listen. Why do we think so little of ourselves to be that one? Martin Luther, Rosa Parks, Jesus, Nelson Mandela and Ghandi, were just one and they caused history changing movements. Their actions caused the masses to wake up and see that the time for change was among them.
New York has a slogan for antiterrorism “If you see something, say something” Although I believe this is a marketing tactic for us to snitch on our neighbor I do believe that if we put the words into action and spoke up for what is fair just and right we would no longer be divided but instead we would be united as the masses and we together we would be the change the world so desperately needs.
If we don’t united and speak up for those without a voice when they come, who will speak up for you?