I was in Dallas for a fundraiser this weekend led by the Leos–the youth wing of the Dallas Everest Lions. These were high school, and even a few grade school, students, and they wow’ed me with their incredible spirit, energy and vision. They wanted to make a difference. To help others. To engage the world. To make a difference. These are future leaders. Folks we want to be part of our future. Their President will start at MIT next year. Another member at Harvard. Impressive kids all.
One of them is from an undocumented family who came across the southern border 14 years ago. Dad became a mechanic. Mom cared for the family. One son is now an electrical engineer. Their daughter is in college And the young Leo in the family? He is headed to one of the most prestigious universities in America
We talked about the current issues and executive orders. I told them that, for me, their efforts were the best reflection of American values. That we are at a best when we reach out to engage the world not when we build walls to keep it out. That we are our truest selves when we have the courage to be compassionate and to help others rather than letting ourselves be driven by fear that leads us to turn our backs.
We can’t guarantee the future, and I couldn’t promise that all these problems will disappear soon — though many of us hope they will. But I did tell them that I still believe in America. I told them that I believe we will find the path that allow us to remain true to our values and to be the nation we have always been.
It may take some time. It will take commitment. But I believe we will get there.
Today I wrote to ten members of Congress. More letters will follow. And with each passing day the realization that we must engage beyond our comfort zones and our accustomed roles grows stronger.
I was just a touch too young to be a major part of the culture of activism in the 60s. But in my 60s perhaps I’ll have the chance to make up for it.
The young Leos, some born abroad, some first generation Americans, love our nation and are committed to fully reflecting the values that allowed their families to build new lives. Their spirit must be our spirit. #committoaction