Inspired by an excerpt from ” The Transformation of Silence Into Language and Action” by Audre Lorde
“I have come to believe over and over again that what is most important to me must be spoken, made verbal and shared, even at the risk of having it bruised or misunderstood. That the speaking profits me, beyond any other effect,” Audre Lorde. As I sit here reading this quote over and over and over again, I can’t deny that it strikes a resounding chord within me. Silence. It can be your worst enemy or your best friend, contingent upon the situation that one encounters. Silence can be a sign of the strong, as well as the weak. Silence can be a sign of peace or discomfort. Silence can inevitably lead to one’s demise or freedom. Silence. It is an unbiased element, whose complete meaning and power is in the hands of its user. Silence has never been, and will never be, my advocate.
Vocal self-expression is a birth-right given to all individuals who are born with the ability to do so. However, overtime based upon life-influences, modern media, peers, and overall atmosphere, the voice that we are given either magnifies or diminishes. I believe that either outcome is based upon the amount of support or discouragement that is perceived throughout the early stages of one’s life. Throughout the course of my life, I have learned that it is always best to express how I feel. Whether it is through a roar or a whimper, you MUST ALWAYS say what is on your mind. It is crucial to internalize the fact that your opinion matters, and whatever it is that you have to say is important.
Never ever give your right to your opinion to another person; because once you give it away, you may not be able to get it back. In the words of Audre Lorde, “Your silence will not protect you.” The absence of speech, to me, is the forfeit of choice. It is symbolic of the surrendering white flag. It is the mutual understanding of the withdrawal from the fight. Silence has never been, and will never be, my advocate.
© A. Nicholson, 2013-2014. All Rights Reserved.