Friday, November 21, 2008

Reality Check

Last night I went to the board meeting of the daylaborer center where I work. The majority of the board are daylaborers or former daylaborers. The executive director had asked me to come do a training on board fundraising. This was my first time to meet some of the board.

For introductions, the president asked us to go around the circle, say our names and what our dream job would be.

I said that my dream job, in a different world, would be to be a baseball player, and a rock star in the off-season. Another white woman mentioned being a back-up singer for James Taylor.

One of the workers said her dream job was to be an immigration lawyer so she can help her people. Another said it was to go back to Mexico and farm his own land -- to plant corn and raise livestock. And a third said his dream job was to work every day -- right now day labor is scarce -- so that he can make sure his youngest child can finish school and go to the university.

I felt rather silly...although in a certain way this work at the center combined with my church work IS my dream job, it's evidence of my own white privilege, that I can dream of work that is outside of the justice movement. I choose to be here.

It's making me think.


  1. Well, we need activist-minded baseball players and rock stars, too! Glad you are doing such meaningful work, Towanda.

  2. This post keeps coming back to me since I read it. It really is important to remember and acknowledge the privilege we have. That, for me, has been the hardest part- acknowlegding that I do have a degree of privilege in this world.

  3. Yes, to all of the above, Iris. I think what struck me about this episode is that sometimes we don't even realize some of the privilege we have.


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