In this week's Conversation Corner, we discuss how actions speak louder than words (so make your actions count).
In our world (that has become so intertwined with social media) it is easier now, more than ever before, to post about things that matter to you on the internet. Although posting on social media is such an invaluable asset to causes that need our attention, I have started to wonder, are we no longer calling ourselves to action in the "real" world? This week's interviewee has proven that there are still many young individuals making a difference outside of social media (as well as on it).
Recently the Post and Courier published an article entitled, “Black Lives Matter: What it is, what it does and how it fits in the history of civil rights” (go read it: article), which spoke about @macusmac's post-graduate activities, “When he’s not at the cafe (at the East Side Community Development Corporation), McDonald, 23, is coordinating with an inner circle of colleagues, attending public meetings about civic issues, promoting criminal justice and education reform, and registering voters. Sometimes he leads a local protest, using his trombone as a beacon of dissent.”
“McDonald is the leader of the Charleston chapter of Black Lives Matter.”
I have known Marcus since my freshman year of college, and I have never been able to see him and not smile. He's such a bright light to everyone who knows him, yet while I was reading this article, I felt like I was not just reading about a friend, but about someone who is changing the world.
As our constant disclaimer, the Conversation Corner has one rule: it will always be real. No B.S., because quite frankly there is enough of that already on the internet.
So here we go...
DD: Quote you live by?
MM: “'You spent time (to) prepare the song while the song is not being sung' - Fortune Cookie Quote”
DD: Explain that quote a little bit more for me?
MM: “A lot of times I feel like we are always waiting for that moment to happen and/or somebody to give you the green light (to go) when often the time (to go) is right then and there. Sometimes you just gotta go outside and yell.”
DD: When you look back at 2020, what will this year have meant to you?
MM: “A year of change, a year of revolution. I’ve discovered (the) power in myself (one) that I didn’t know I had. I’ve learned how to be an effective leader. I’ve learned about building relationships. (I've) learned about the importance of civic engagement.”
DD: Who inspires you the most?
MM: “My grandad; he worked his a*s off to create his catering service and was still very politically active!”
DD: What do you think is most important for our generation to know about the upcoming election?
MM: “Focus on local elections.”
“It’s important because it’ll affect us longer than it’ll affect older generations. Not only will we feel the effects as we get older, (but) our kids will feel them tenfold.”
DD: What can you do beyond just voting?
MM: “Civil engagement only starts at voting. Vote at every election, calling/emailing council members, creating programs, and groups that support communities in need, educate yourself on the issues share that info with your friends, encourage people to vote, hit the streets, and protest! It doesn’t need to be 1,000 people. You can protest with you and 20 others as long as you can cause a disturbance and start a conversation (then) you will succeed.”
DD: Now for our final question of each interview, what now?
MM: “Continuation of civic engagement, community service, and artistic expression. I just want to continue to be my own boss and pave the way for younger folk to do the same.”
Marcus is truly doing exceptional things, and my hope is that his story inspires you to go out and make your own mark.
We are all different. We all have different callings and passions, but we all have power, the same power that @macusmac spoke about within himself. We all can make a positive change on social media and even more importantly in the "real" world.
You can start by registering to vote and voting on Nov. 3.