Looking back through my notes from the Fred Gray event, one quote by Mr. Gray really grabs my attention. “Don’t let it be an excuse.” I scribbled it down because it must have also grabbed my attention during his talk, but the problem with this quote is I am not sure what the “it” is exactly suppose to stand for.
I could venture to say he might have been referring to our race, gender, inabilities, or a number of different things we let be our excuses all the time, but alas, I simply do not know. Although this is somewhat of an ‘oops’ as a journalist, it still holds great meaning to me, because it can now apply to literally everyone. You simply fill in the blank on what your “it” is that you make excuses with.
For me, I love the excuse of being too busy. I go to class for maybe three hours a day, watch a guy make a giant cake on television, click through facebook pictures of people I have not seen since high school, and somehow that qualifies me as an extremely busy person.
It’s just one of many excuses each of us makes everyday. My question is when do we stop letting the “it” be an excuse for our lack of purpose? When does it no longer serve as a cop out for not doing things that matter?
Fred Gray did not have an “it.” He was too busy fighting for peoples’ rights, and too busy working to help others to dish out a bunch of excuses. He did not let anything become an excuse for him to give up or to stop trying to make a difference.
I am curious as to what it would look like if our generation gave up all the excuses, and challenged themselves to do something meaningful. That something could be working to help the environment, becoming a volunteer at an after school program for children, or raising awareness about the need for clean water around the world.
Getting rid of “it” as our excuse is the first step toward action.