This I Believe: A voice can change the world

She was a lady who devoted a lifetime to feeding the impoverished and the destitute in Africa, touching the hearts of so many across the world and spreading the urgent word.

He was a black man in the predominantly-racist America who spoke for a justice no one else dared to.

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They were the ones who struggled past the jeering of men who scorned their biological roots only to discover a new century where women emerged major players.

The rest, we all say, is history.

Truly, a voice seeks to drive, to empower, to demand action. Even now, as I speak to you, I seek a call for action, for you and myself to freely express our own voices and with them, change this world of ours.

During my maturing years where I begin to explore autobiographies and personal essays, I became painfully aware that something was sorely lacking within my overly naive, shy and obscure self. My narrow horizons were stretched immensely as I read about the personal essays of numerous individuals across the world over possibly everything in life: love, family, friendship, change, betrayal, war, paralysis, and death. I soaked in the personal voices of these courageous unknown people, the valiant causes many of them were fighting for and the amplified voices of those plagued with misfortune and corruption.

If we all lived in a silent world, in a world where people like you and me kept our voices in our hearts, thinking that someone else would always climb a mountain in our stead, would the world have understood then? Would the world have understood the discrimination, the senseless hatred, the blatant apathy?

No, they would not.

All it takes is a voice for the world to stop and to listen to. All it takes, really, is a voice, eager, passionate and courageous enough to voice out the problems of our world, to ground us to reality and to evoke our humanity.

All it takes is one voice for the silence to be broken.

I believe that a voice fills others and myself with hope and courage. Personal voices are extraordinary in how they need not be mouthed through words alone. Martin Luther King’s speech “I dreamed a dream” shook the old America where discrimination was rife; the peaceful protests of Mahatma Ghandi against injustice was his voice and the many voices of others suffering in oppression; even the viral posts I chanced upon on Facebook by females all over the world on their bra colours vividly expressed a voice in support of breast cancer awareness. One voice awakens the voices of many others, and together, we can make a difference in this world. A voice empowers me with a strong sense of conviction and motivation and drives all of us to stand united for the same cause.

Hence, aspire, aspire to be the next Martin Luther King, the next Joan of Arc, the next Mother Theresa, or aspire simply, just to be you. Even as I am now, if my voice in this essay has struck a chord in you, and inspired you to voice your beliefs, I have succeeded in changing the world.

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