Speaking about social change and social justice can have dangerous consequences.

It can be dangerous if you speak out as someone who is or has been affected by the injustice.
People laugh at you.
They try to ignore you.
They try to say that “something is wrong with you”.
They try to say that you are exaggerating or seeking attention.
They try to silence you and if they think they can get away with it, they try to kill you.

Earlier this year I wrote a new book titled, “Speak, and End Child Sexual Abuse”. Before I did, I thought back to why I ever began speaking about child sexual abuse in the first place. But when I think of the lessons of the life of civil rights fighters in my own home & neighborhood, there are so many compelling reasons to speak.

Here are just 6:

1. We SPEAK to inspire.

Trying to survive anything can be a greater feat than running any marathon. Somewhere along the journey everyone gets tired, weak, and doubtful. When you speak you can inspire others trying to survive whatever has come against them. SPEAK and show others that survival is possible. You may grow weak, weary, depressed, and angry, but you can WIN!

2. We SPEAK to empower

We need to speak more often about the real dangers of child sexual abuse. SPEAK because every time that we speak we can provide people with a new set of tools.

3. We SPEAK to mobilize.

Sometimes we see a problem and it just rolls off our tongue. "Why isn't anybody doing anything?" Chances are that people are but when we're all diffused and unaware of each other it seems like no one is on the battlefield at all. SPEAK and begin to bring people together. We are stronger when we are united.

4. We SPEAK to educate

Child sexual abuse is a haggard, tired, and old form of evil. Yet, not enough people are fluent in child sexual abuse safety. When we speak, we seek to change this.

SPEAK because we are still losing this battle and people don't even know it.

5. We SPEAK to kill ignorance!

Our lives are more powerful than any assault weapon man can create. With our lives, we can fight using the only weapons known to effectively kill ignorance: Education, Integrity, Empathy, Love, Selflessness, and SERVICE.

SPEAK because it effectively, warns, notifies, mobilizes, inspires, empowers, educates and kills ignorance.

6. We SPEAK to warn and inform.

Perception and perspective are so diverse it is amazing. Have you ever found yourself fighting a battle and not only do people find it unbelievable that things can be as bad as you say, there are no things! They don't even believe that there is a battle.

You speak because you want to reach those who think that they are safe and on top of the world without even realizing that hell is just one floor below. To this day you still hear people who lived during the years of the civil rights movement, but obviously weren't as greatly impacted say something along the lines of, "Wow! I thought that everything was cool. You mean all that oppression, discrimination, injustice, and racism was/is an issue for you and your family?"

It is too quiet around here. We need to start yelling!

SPEAK because children are in danger!

Author's Bio: 

Tonya GJ Prince is a professional expert in both abuse & post-crisis growth. She is an author, activist, advocate, Survivor, speaker, counselor, & mentor. Tonya enjoys family, friends, laughter, music, movies, storytelling, reading, writing, DIY projects, and stage performance.

Tonya holds a BS in Organizational Management & Development from Bluefield College.