Don’t surrender your own identity and personal freedom

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Individual identity, freedom and diversity can never threaten a true democracy but only strengthen it. Racism, antisemitism, and white supremacism are the true threats to freedom and democracy. beYourOwnBrand. StandForSomething.

If you don’t have individual freedom, you don’t have any freedom.

To watch is as a video

To listen as a podcast

America is where I can be whatever I want to be.  I am free to invent myself, reinvent myself, however many times, in whatever way I want.

It is the freedom to be myself, to think for myself, that is truly American.

If I choose to be an American with Chinese heritage, don’t judge me as what you think I am. 

If I choose to add to my own identity other elements, such as an entrepreneur, a brand-building authority, a leadership coach, a poet, an artist, a startup mentor, a writer, a podcast host, a mother, a Christian… 

In America,

I am free to forge my own identity. 

I am free to choose my lifestyle, and expand my inner world. 

I am free to believe in what I want to believe.

It is for this freedom that I had given up so much, in order to come to America, to be educated in the US, to be a naturalized citizen, and to raise my children as Americans so they can have their own individual freedom and identity.

Only YOU can give up your own identity, to merge it with a leader, with a religion, with a marriage, with an ideology, a cause, a political rally cry, a cult… 

Only YOU can choose the comfort of “identifying” with someone, or some group, or some causes, by ignoring the painful and difficult truth that you’d rather not face.  

But sooner or later, the mirage will fade, and no one can escape the hard truth.

So please, don’t surrender your own identity, don’t squander your individual freedom, for the sake of your own soul and that of our country. Because if you don’t fully appreciate and safeguard your own identity, your personal freedom, you cannot protect, defend, and sustain our collective American identity as a “salad bowl” – NOT a melting pot – and our democracy which is based on individual rights and personal freedom.

First, #BeYourOwnBrand, #StandForSomething. Then you can #BeYourOwnSuperPower.

© Joanne Z. Tan    All rights reserved.

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