“We who have a voice must speak for the voiceless.” –Oscar Romero
Never has this ethos spoken to me as clearly as it did this past weekend, standing outside of the gates of Fort Benning, Georgia. The School of the Americas continues to operate in secrecy, as have many of its graduates returning to Latin America. As evidenced by the blank stares and questions from friends and families about the SOA, it seems that, indeed, it is crucial to educate others about the atrocities committed by graduates of this school.
My time at the SOA Watch has helped reinforce the passion that led me to Union. I have always desired to live my life in service of others. However, it wasn’t until I spent two years teaching in a low-performing, high-need school that I realized my calling. And, Union has encouraged me to embrace this idea…to provide a voice for the voiceless and uncover oppression in its many forms.
If we are to follow in the words of Señor Romero, it is crucial to become a voice for those without one. Drawing inspiration from our faith, no matter the tradition, is crucial in this quest. Standing with my brothers and sisters at the protest, my faith became even more central to my desire to serve others and to be a voice for others.
Thank you to all of those who made this trip possible. I look forward to sharing my experiences with you. Paz.