Thursday, November 03, 2005

Timely, or "Stuck in a Moment"

Juxtapose this!
Tuesday night, witnessing once again the phenomenon of "The Larry Mullen Band", all "Love and Peace", "In the Name of Love" , hootin' and hollerin' and singing with 20,ooo of my closest friends about human rights and global debt relief and lifting the seat when you pee (sorry, I made that last one up). It really was a great time. One of the things I was anxious for 8 year-old Sam to see was an arena full of people singing. He seemed kinda engaged, but really got wide-eyed when Bono asked everyone to hold up their lit cellphones. As the mighty Hewson pointed out, "a real 21st century moment." We got home from Los Angeles at about 2 a.m.
Wednesday morning. Awoke to CNN and MSNBC and FOX jumping in and out of the 2+ hours of Rosa Parks' final funeral. A modern name that correctly ranks and resonates for America with those of Attucks, Paine, Tubman, Lincoln, Malcom X, and, of course, Rev. Martin Luther King. Rev. King was her inspiration for his non-violence, Malcom X for his resolve. A quiet, positive, consistent life defined by a moment of courage that galvanized a movement and altered the course of the world. The eulogies were amazing, as they should have been. Rosa's challenge remains:
How many moments do we miss, every day, to make a difference?
Bono spoke of the efforts of ONE, what it has accomplished, in large part due to his and some other high-profile efforts. It is a unique, timely, and overdue coalition that sets aside the petty partisanship that we are so self-indulgently langushing in in this country. It's easy to follow their lead.
Rosa Parks resolve was not temporal. She had had trouble with this particular bus driver, before. Her courage was the result of her internal consistency. "The Movement" had tried bus boycotts, before. This one worked because, as one person said yesterday, they would continue to walk to work in the rain "because of Rosa."
I don't think that Rosa could have known the impact of her decision, it could have just as easily passed into the Montgomery city records without notice. It made no difference to her.
At this moment, I'm not sure if I've ever been personally presented with a moment where doing the right thing meant breaking the law - the question is, would I do so? Do I have to? Probably not. Can I then, at least, stand up for the little things? Just think, if we all could, then perhaps we could change the world.
Not a bad moment to be stuck in.