A couple of weeks ago, Diane McEachern of Bethel, Alaska took her three rescue dogs, Mr. Snickers, Seabiscuit, and Ruffian, with her to a site on the Alaskan tundra, held up a cardboard sign that said “Occupy the Tundra,” and had a photograph taken. She sent the photo to the Occupy Wall Street organizers and it was posted on Facebook, where it went viral. Why do I, and so many others, find this photograph so moving?
Diane is one little person off in the wilds of Alaska who thinks it’s important to raise her voice and be counted. And she’s right. The way the world will change is one person at a time, one step at a time. No matter how isolated we are or how small the sound of our own voice may seem, we must speak up anyway. Each voice added makes the message slightly louder. And who is to know what small action will make a big difference? As snowflakes pile up on a great oak tree in a storm, eventually one of those snowflakes will be the one that causes the tree to break. I have seen it happen. Which snowflake was it?
I also loved hearing that one of Diane’s co-workers saw her picture on Facebook and offered to join Diane on the tundra the following weekend. As my mathematically gifted husband points out, “Diane has already doubled the size of her demonstration.”