Wednesday, September 7, 2016

Never To Afraid To Reevaluate: Common Mistakes Among Budding Advocates

I read something I wrote to an old queen here. He's closeted, which I find weird, but I still find wisdom in him. After all he's been an old fag since the 70's. I read it to him in hopes of a critical stance. I write everyday and my only critique I get is myself. Its hard to grow when the student is also the teacher.

He began talking about the difference between writing an opinion piece versus a advocacy piece. Something I had never thought about. He drew a dividing line between being an advocate and entertainment. Which makes me seriously think. He was pretty comfortable saying it, almost as if he's said it before to many aspiring advocates. Like its a common theme amid people who are trying to make a difference but often fail to launch.

What am I trying to say? What is my endgame? What do I want to accomplish and is my writing helping any of that? Are my actions driving me closer to my goals or are my actions distracting from them? These are all questions that need to be answered daily.

Reevaluation can be a powerful tool to help you accomplish your goals. My own personal goals are many. This blog serves many purposes for my own life's goals, which include generating interest in the lives of the forgotten in here. I get a unique perspective on inmates that most of you never get. You get what the media shows you, perpetuating a hatred and fear of those who commit serious offenses. 

While its true that men and women I here have done some awful things, myself included, there is also this brokenness inside them that is evident. For many guys in here the common missing piece is unwaivering love and acceptance. Just one mans opinion though...

While I realize that I can't change everyone, or maybe anyone, I know a little about being gay and closeted and how for some this can be very damaging. I know the effects of bad religion, parenting and many other things. I see the result of them everyday. I know a little about being broken and alone and isolated and suicidal and feeling like not a single sole cares whether you live or die, though they express interest in the latter. I know what it means to fear. 

I also know that I can be the one person they meet that may say "your worth it, your worth my time, my energy, my love, my acceptance". as little value as it may be to many it may be all they get and it just might be enough to help them be lifted a little higher.

I am going to love until I die and then I hope the footprints I leave on this planet will continue to love. I will build a platform for men and women to use that will help them identify their needs and help them fix it through advocacy,referrals and encouragement. I will love them through it, unwaivering and unconditional. 

Once I release I will start pinpointing those in the community who are willing to take bold steps at prevention. I know what led me here and the warning signs I displayed. I can find them and help them BEFORE a victim is created. I will be proactive instead of reactive. It is possible and I don't care what kind of reason(s) you can find to tell me its not.

For anyone wishing to make a difference somehow in their community my advice is to start. Even if your a rocket without coordinates, just start. Everyday wake up and ask yourself the questions above, reevaluate daily, hourly if needed and don't be afraid of change and evolution in both yourself and your goals. Evolution needs action. It serves no purpose if you aren't living. Take the criticism you get and think about how you can use it to further your cause. 
You can change the world, but you have to at least start.

With Love,
Jeff Utnage. 

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