Small Acts Make A Big Impact

While the Coronavirus has created an ominous frame of reference to our daily lives, Tusk wants to remind folks of the power we possess to promote hope through micro-activism.

By Janica Torres

Micro-activism is the idea that little acts of compassion and resistance can lead to social change on a larger scale through our daily interactions with each other and ourselves.

Now more than ever is the time for small acts of kindness to highlight our humanity, uphold community, and maintain connections while social distancing.

Tusk engaged our Titan community about what micro-activism means to them and how it can make a world of difference.

 

RJ Abesamis, sophomore double major in Cinema & Television Arts and Asian American Studies

“I do micro-activism by hearing people out and sharing space. Really listening to a person and giving them room is very validating.”

Dr. Xhercis Méndez, associate professor of Women & Gender Studies and affiliated faculty of African American Studies

“I enact micro-activism through what I teach by setting up my syllabi to ensure students have access to work by scholars and activists of color and by trans and gender non-conforming queer folks. So I don’t continue to reiterate an understanding of knowledge as only white and Western.”

Alysia Batchelder, sexual health educator and owner of Pink Kitty

“For me, micro-activism is about getting information out and making sex a topic we can talk about. One of the biggest problems with our culture is that we’re told we’re not supposed to talk about sex. Not talking about it is what creates all the problems.” 

Victoria Centeno, senior History major

“I was raised in a very conservative family. I think my very existence as bisexual in my household is a form of micro-activism because I’m trying to exist as who I am and not what they want me to be.”

Dina Bdaiwi, second year graduate student in Counseling and Clinical Mental Health

“My micro-activism is calling people in instead of calling people out, so with more compassion. I bring up topics of gender, race, and sexual orientation in my classes, and I use my assignments to call in different experiences and ideas to things I want to see changed.”

Steven Duran, fifth year, double major in English and Women & Gender Studies and a minor in Queer Studies

“One way I try to create social change is through improving the way I communicate. By continuing to learn and changing our language to use it more effectively and inclusively, we’re able to start discussions and share ideas that can lead to action.”

Evelin Franco, graduate student at the WoMen’s & Adult Reentry Center and an American Studies major

“Working in a center run by women that prioritizes the needs of women feels like a fuck you to the partiarchy. That’s how I do micro-activism.”

Mia Blue, second year Sociology major 

“I do things like waving or smiling to make someone’s day better. I’m very shy and anxious, and I tend to overthink, so I take that into consideration with other people and how they feel, too.” 

J. Jesus Rojas, fifth year triple major in Chicano studies, Spanish, and Linguistics, desk student lead for the Diversity Initiatives & Resource Centers

“I do micro-activism in my work by introducing underrepresented students to folks of color in positions of power and through opportunities to work with professionals in their communities. This empowers them to see their identity as something that can propel their future.”

Andrew Binnings, fourth year Finance major

“Simple ways of doing micro-activism would be remembering to say ‘please’ and ‘thank you’ to the cashier or standing up for people who need it. Micro-activism is really effective because little things can go a long way for individuals in a time of need.”

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