Step Forward And Give Something Back This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine.

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   I have always felt that during one's lifetime, an individual chooses a personal "battle" to fight - maybe a struggle against cancer, terminal diseases, prejudice, fears ... The list is infinite, and so it must be, for no two individuals share the same battle. It is something one must do, something one must choose to overcome. And we can all win our battles with confidence and courage. We can all give something back to a world which has already given us so much.

It is human to think of this world negatively. Obviously we are not without problems: drugs, eating disorders, stereotypes and violence. But what can be done about this without action? Can the world as we know it even begin to improve if we only watch it passively, complaining all the while?

I never really felt "called" to make a difference until eighth grade when we discussed skin pigmentation in science class. It was on that day that I learned that the only difference between black and white skin color was a difference in the amount of pigment. That is it? I thought, relatively puzzled. That is all that keeps us apart?

I made a promise to myself that from that day on I would stop racism (or at least give it my best shot) and that even if I only reached out and truly touched one prejudiced individual in my entire life, my struggle would still have been worthwhile.

I am still fighting racism today, especially through my writing, leaping at every opportunity to step forward and reach another individual. It has evolved into a passion, a desire, and a dream: to live in a world where discrimination no longer holds us back ...

Most likely I will not live to see my dream become reality. But there is still hope that my children may ... or their grandchildren.

I have picked my battle and I will hold to it. My question is: have you picked yours? ?


This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. This piece has been published in Teen Ink’s monthly print magazine.






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