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Monday, February 2, 2009

Despite doom, gloom and spiraling economy with crayons and paper in hand, President Obama and all of us can draw changes that will transform nation

Above center: Enlargement of smaller sign displayed on a bulletin board included during last year's exhibit entitled "Tacoma's Civil Rights Struggle - African Americans Leading The Way" at the Washington State History Museum in Tacoma.

n light of last November's election of Barack Obama, the word change on the smaller chocolate brown sign on the bulletin board in photos that accompany this blog at a recently concluded exhibit at the Washington State History Museum entitled Tacoma's Civil Rights Struggle - African Americans Leading The Way may be viewed a bit differently.

The highly fascinating and relevant aforementioned exhibit which closed in December offered local citizens a chance to look back at the past, become informed and celebrate the kind of faith, hard work and determination in this area and others that paved the way for the elevation of the nation's first president of African-American heritage.

Below: Photo of full bulletin board display at the civil rights exhibit at Washington State History Museum.

Pre-election, change was a call for something to happen in this case the election of a new president, the adoption of a new outlook and government to go with it all.

Post-election, change can possibly be viewed directly in a more personal and intimate way. Change is now what can we do to help our President, our government and leadership in cities, towns and rural areas around the country particularly in light of each day's passing and review of what seems even more rapid and dramatic changes in the economy some of whose full and possibly overwhelming effects are only beginning to be understood and absorbed as they trickle their way across the land.

Most of us - if asked suddenly, bluntly and off the cuff to contribute a concrete answer into a reporter's microphone in a neatly tied sound bite, may quite honestly have no ready reply in hand. Some of us are good talkers. Some of us are more skilled with the written word.

(As an example on this blog In Your Neighborhood local writers Stephanie Frieze's pieces on economizing within your own family (Being Cents-able, Making Do In Hard Times/Anytime) are a great start, as Joseph McGowan's sentiments (Good Time At The Monarch Hotel) on the value of building a positive mind set model thoughtful written ideas about changes to name just two.)

Yet rather than leave for another umpteenth time the sole responsibility and singular formation of answers to our government, previously identified policy makers, community leaders and others who have made up the vast majority of the writers and talkers allowed to make decisions such as these in our land, it may be increasingly clear that change for the better may truly be dependent upon just "U" and "I".

Furthermore when given crayons, paper and a charge to draw a picture of what this sort of change would look like, even the smallest elementary pupil and a few celebrity animals among us might become equal peers with full-fledged adults should we limited the compositions to stick-figures only.

What if all those who make-up Tacoma or South Puget Sound or Western Washington were asked in mass to take a box of crayons in hand, draw and hand-in just one picture of a change they'd really like to see? And what if all these pictures (or even a sampling) found their way onto the desks and attention spans of those men and women with whom we eventually rely to make and implement the kinds of changes which are required?

In my view putting one's vision of positive change down from a place tucked inside your brain. pulls it outside to air. Your creativity can breathe and enjoy the bright light of day. Committing it to paper and looking at it is like opening every window in a closed house (assuming you still have one) and shouting to your neighbors (assuming they haven't lost their mortgages) and all who come by (assuming any jobs are left to be had ) in a universal language.

At the very least, a request for a crayon drawing from the entire population may launch, encourage or yet discover the regional talent whether young or old who may subsequently travel the same road as modeled by one of my personal favorites, the Seattle Post Intelligencer's brilliant and award-winning artist David Horsey.

Should individuals such as Horsey be uncovered considerably more interesting change will be almost certainly assured if these heretofore unknown individuals should furthermore boldly step - drum roll please, into one of the most essential roles aside from say President Obama that any free progressive, creative and respectable nation has to offer the flexible lycra horizons of a social and political cartoonist!


Stephanie Frieze said...

Great post, Mizu. I think that we are all looking at each other differently. I have always considered myself colorblind, but I believe that even still am looking differently at people and I think they are looking differently at me. It is a wonderful time to be an American.

JosephMcG said...

Tonight I was enjoying some good time at Bertolino's Coffeee Shop... exchanging some brief thoughts with the barista, a white male in his twenties, and we got into it about young people today... I see his peers positively and as new community builders... we couldn't get any deeper into it... he had people to serve... but our exchange was sincere, civil, and we were still civil and interested in talking at the end of our time...
I Like the new me... just willing to strike up a conversation with a human being who differs with me in age and race...
And I am choosing to do what I need so that I can continue to present myself in dialogue that is sincere and honest...

What changes am I making... enjoying life and nuturing myself with wonderful music that just feeds me... right now I am listening to Louis Armstrong!!!

The picture... two people who are stgrangers, differing in age, gender, and race, sitting over a cup of coffee and enjoying each other's company

Joseph McG

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