Sunday, April 9, 2017


Advocacy and Social Justice Commentary

Wondering how many people have watched the entire commercial. The backlash that has resulted from this is mind blowing.

World of Writer Mom's Insights

What I thought this ad was trying to convey:

"With great privilege comes great responsibility."
"We are all responsible for participating in social justice."
"The concerns for social justice span the globe and there are many issues that have the capacity to either destroy or unite us."
"Even small gestures of unity can provide a conduit for change."
"Don't be afraid to join a movement that promotes and encourages unity."
"Be brave enough to find the things we have in common in an effort to collaborate and share resources."
"Remove the barriers to communication that may exist and step away from your comfort zone to make a statement."

The ad caused an incredible outpouring of vitriol and was pulled.

What that said to me was:

"Only some individuals are allowed to express outrage."
" If I wish to be an advocate and promote peace, tolerance, and unity I must first possess the qualities and persona that are expected."
" I need to analyze every motive, thought, and presentation to the point it becomes almost unnatural."
" I need to shut my mouth out of fear my opinions, beliefs, and efforts will be misinterpreted, misrepresented, and dismissed."
"Stepping out of one's comfort zone is a mistake and it's better to maintain your distance with issues where you are not directly affected."

Before anyone judges these view points or makes assumptions:

1. I have experienced assumptions and prejudice from others b/c of who I married.
2. My children have experienced assumptions and prejudice for being multi-cultural. (My daughter was recently told to go back across the border even though she was born in the USA.)
3. My interest in advocacy is sincere and I want my children to be able to stand up for themselves and others.
4. I want to promote a family legacy of advocating for others without fear of being ridiculed or accused of false representation.
5. I have tried many types of modalities toward advocacy of various issues and concerns and will continue to do so.

Perhaps we need to come together and provide ideas for acceptable advocacy methods. I believe there are many people who would love to become more involved and put themselves out there. When they see things in the mainstream, like the Pepsi ad being pulled, it sends the message that every one's voice, methods of communication, and insights are not necessarily valued or needed.

We can't have it both ways. Either we allow ALL to have a voice toward peace, unity, and justice or we will ALL remain stuck in our expectations, disappointments, and judgments.

So how are YOU going to make a difference and promote respect and collaboration?

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Mary Varville-Rodriguez, BSW, Child Development/Early Intervention Specialist/Advocate (15+ years), Prior experiences: AFAA Certified (Frankfurt, Germany) & Global Wellness Certified (Augsburg, Germany) for Personal Trainer/Aerobics Instructor/Exercise Prescription, UTMB at Galveston Dept. of Pediatrics - Project LAUNCH - Community Outreach/Referral Development/EIS-C, Current: World of Writer Writer/Publisher/Marketing Affiliate/Advocate