In the continuing and occasional series around my fixation with signs, this one highlights the Summer of Love exhibit in San Francisco last year. Wandering through the museum, I experienced an intoxicating blast from the past, counterbalanced by a sobering reflection on the lack of societal change in the past 50 years.
If you are of an age (and have enough brain cells left) to remember 1967, congratulations! You’ve made it! I wasn’t sure, as a bell-bottomed, fringe-loving, black light poster, guitar playing wannabe hippy, that I would make it past 30. I campaigned for George McGovern before I could even vote (don’t judge me…). I practiced biodegradable recycling before it was ever a thing. I was naïve enough to think change would happen just because we wanted it to happen. The idealistic Korie of high school truly believed our generation would make a difference; a drastic difference.
50 years later, I’m sorely disappointed. Did our generation give up? Did we get too busy with our careers and children? Did we get too comfortable? Is change really that hard? And does it really take this long? The answer appears to be “yes” and the next question is, “What are we fighting for now in 2018?”
I know I’m a liberal verging on socialist. I live in the bluest of the blue. I believe deeply in a woman’s right to choose, equality for all, universal healthcare, high-quality education for every child on the planet and technology as a tool for good.
I took a look at these signs and thought, “How do I change these to be positive for my children and grandchildren? Where can I find hope in our current political climate?”
There was a radical hippy news reporter on our local radio station for years named Scoop Nisker, and his tag line was “If you don’t like the news, go out and make some of your own!”
Well, look at the Parkland students.
They went out and made some news, alright. As our 21st century version of the 60’s activists, they have given me hope for the first time in a while. I pray their future sign will be “2018 Rational Gun Control”.
We have more signs to change and we cannot wait another 50 years to change them.
How will you get involved? What are you passionate about changing? For inspiration, I have a few examples to share from my CTI leadership program. This team of 17 has a variety of projects they are passionate about, and as a tribe we are committed to seeing them all succeed. They include changing the face of healthcare, one doctor at a time; changing the way men express themselves, with compassion and kindness; changing the automotive industry to include more women on an equal basis; changing the way we embrace our bodies in a positive, loving way; changing the conversation around raising children, free of shame and blame; changing the way companies lead with true, core values; changing our consciousness to commit to living a life with purpose each and every day.
What’s your personal sign for change? I’d love to hear ideas and resources. We owe it to the next generation to show up as role models and mentors for change. Let’s go out and make some news of our own.