Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Thanksgiving - I am thankful for my brave clients.

I love Thanksgiving, and it's not all about the food - especially since I do most of the cooking.  I enjoy Thanksgiving because of the enrichment my family and friends provide to my life.  But, for this article, I want to thank and be grateful for my clients and how they have enriched my life.

There's Ruth Bates, who taught me what true courage and perseverance was.  She felt within her what was right or just and followed her gut.  She acted with dignity and courage in the face of media barrages and intrusions.  Ruth handled herself with dignity, while the opponent could have taken lessons in decorum and self-esteem from her.  Plus, I had the joy of getting to know her and her wonderful family and how they came together in Ruth's hour of need.  There is not enough that I can say about Ruth Bates.  Who says you can't fight city hall.

There's Terri Wallace, who after 7 years, finally made justice happen. Through two appeals and one jury trial, Terri persevered and prevailed.  She did not set a 7 year goal, but when she saw that 7 years is what it would take to receive justice, she didn't balk or lay down.  Heroes come from humble beginnings.

To the Campbell family, who hopefully will get some closure after the brutal killing of their father.  I particularly respect Debbie, who made her peace personally with the officer who killed her husband.  That took great courage and taught me a valuable lesson in forgiveness.  The girls are doing so well now.

To my former brave clients, who have given me strength through the years (this is not a comprehensive list) -
Of course, Serita Wright, one of the bravest women I know; Nancy Watson, who started it all for me, James Brock, who displayed incredible courage; Marlene Hickerson and Shirley Stroud, who showed what it meant to believe in moral values; Vera Sims, who refused to allow herself be treated like a piece of meat, and to the many others through the years who have helped so many, and particularly who have kept my hope for society's future alive.  To the brave and true nurses.

And there are the clients whose cases are pending - Christie Helm, who had the courage to tell the truth about a judge, and others I shouldn't name until we are finished with the case.

I went to the Holocaust museum and bought myself a tee-shirt with a quote from Margaret Mead, "Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful committed citizens can change the world: Indeed it's the only thing that has."

I am deeply indebted to all of these brave people who are willing to bare their souls in the name of justice, in the quest to eliminate discrimination and dishonesty in America's workplace.  And as the saying now goes, "How the workplace goes, so goes the U.S., and someday the world."

Thanks again to all of my clients.  You probably don't realize what difference you have made in my life.

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