Clay, Thank you for that…! I am new here, and I am still struggling to find my written voice.
And, rest assured… I do share it..! Some 22 years later, I continue to share this story whenever a conversation rises around a young person’s struggle with whether or not to speak up. I try to use it as a teaching moment for them, and to let them know they are (most definitely!) not alone in their insecurities about dealing with such a situation.
I told my daughter this several times as she was growing up, and she is now a very vocal supporter of anyone she feels is being oppressed. One of the lessons we have gone over many times, when she’s been unclear about whether or not she was actually dealing with bigotry, was to switch out the “unclear” epithet, for one that was very clear. And to see if it could then be easily called bigotry. Works every time!!