Writing about the life-changing experiences of walking on the Camino, I feel like an advocate for WALKING and how pilgrims meet people from all over the world, speaking the language of peace and equality, with our feet and our hearts. Walking the Walk!
Off the trail, I continue to be an advocate, writing about my beliefs, convictions and values, but action, more than talk, makes change. My feet and WALKING are metaphors for the saying, “action speaks louder than words.” By now, my feet have had years of experience, walking on, walking out, walking away and walking forward. The road hasn’t always been smooth and I’ve had my share of blisters, but Walking the Walk has made a profound difference in my life.
I started high school in the sixties (Yes, 1960s!) and in those turbulent years, began learning that I could raise my voice against injustice and inequality. The years of civil rights marches, pro-peace and anti-war protests, conflicts, rallies, are all examples of people coming together, speaking in one voice, standing up, often against the tide of power and money and for justice, peace, equality and environment.
Generations later, I continue to speak out, as an advocate, especially for young children whose voices often aren’t heard or considered. I believe that the current marches, protests and gatherings are for our future as much as for the present. Marian Wright Edelman, a children’s rights activist and founder of the Children’s Defense Fund, is one of my heroes. She wrote, “Service is the rent we pay for being. It is the very purpose of life, and not something you do in your spare time.”
As a retired teacher (but always a teacher), public policy intern and member of National Association of Education for Young Children and Peace Educators…
my focus of advocacy has been on the rights of the child, as well as working to make the world a better place for children now and in the future.
And NOW is the time for all of us to speak up and out for changes that affect everyone, as one human family!
So in the past few weeks, I put on my boots to again walk the walk,
starting with the Martin Luther King, Jr. candlelight vigil and march in my hometown, Placerville, California,
and on the third Saturday of January, for the second time, the International Women’s March, proclaimed in Sacramento as “Women’s Voices Day”, working to make Women’s Rights Human Rights, marching and gathering, 36,000 people strong.
One of my favorite quotes: Margaret Mead: Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed it is the only thing that ever has.
Walking, marching, gathering and speaking up and out have been tools for change through the ages, and today, in this century, we have the opportunity to speak for equality, justice and peace, with our voices and our feet. Lace up those boots!
To see more images from my collection, COURAGE OF WORDS, go to Irene Lipshin Photography, Visions of Home and Beyond.
Thank you for joining me today and Keep Walking!
It’s our journey on and off the trail, Irene Lipshin 2018