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Top ten reasons to become a member > #7 We the people…

December 31 2009 | Activism, Jim's Blog,
by Jim

We have all heard the story of the person on the Detroit-bound plane who tried to set off an explosive device. The detail that caught my attention was the failure of our $50B security system and a random passenger's actions that changed the course of what could have been the worst Christmas memory in ages. My point here isn't to suggest our security policies and procedures are bad or a waste of money but instead to point out that the terrorist was stopped by a passenger. A citizen stopped things from escalating. This person acted and made a difference.

Related, I recently heard a news segment focused on the horrific violence in Juarez, Mexico. The story detailed how virtually all government organizations are failing. Anarchy reigns. The police department is no longer able to protect the people. Astronomic homicide rates characterize the city. With a backdrop of defeated institutions, the story pointed to a loose affiliation of doctors. The doctors have organized to offer an impartial service for dealing with ransoms associated with kidnappings. It's not like this was something they want to do... it's simply that they see the need and know how to act... they can make a difference. This story, like the one above, points to an individuals' role of taking action.

These are stories of activism. These stories are not about oceans, waves or beaches. They are stories about activism and THAT is the intersection with our mission. Our mission is about individual action. Our mission is about activism aimed at our coastlines.

There are countless examples of successful activism throughout our collective history. From William Wilberforce's role in the abolishment of slavery to Rosa Park's Civil Rights statement, from the twelve disciples of the Christian church to the founding fathers of the United States. These, and the many like them, can be summarized in the oft-quoted Margaret Mead line...

"Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed people can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has"

So, as we turn the page on another year... be reminded that your actions can make a difference. Join Surfrider Foundation.

Connect to a Surfrider chapter here.
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