How Relentless Are You?

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"Forget safety. Live where you fear to live. Destroy your reputation, be notorious. I have tried prudent planning long enough, from now on, I will be mad." ~ Rumi
Tomorrow's a big day. I have to appear in housing court. It's the last in a series that will hopefully end with me winning my court case. Right now it's about 1 a.m. and I'm riding my bike from downtown to Harlem. Suddenly, tragedy strikes.

Gracefully Intercepting Life's Challenges

In my relentless pursuit to empower myself by taking the management company and the landlord to court for failing to maintain the first flat I moved into after seven years of living on the street, life presented me with a test.

That night while riding my bike, I had a head-on collision with a taxi. The traffic lights changed suddenly as I was making my way through. A line of cars that were, at one moment, part of a still image had abruptly turned into a burst of energy. I flew two blocks, rolled out and quickly got up.

The adrenaline of appearing in court in my relentless pursuit of demanding my rights was more important than pain. The next day, I was full of bruises. Nevertheless, I hopped to the courthouse. Several months later, I won my case.

Human Rights Defenders Are My Heroes

As a journalist, I've had the pleasure of meeting many human rights activists and local journalists from around the world who continue to rise in the face of fear. Many languish in prisons for indefinite amounts of time, face torture, death, imprisonment or even exile but that doesn't stop them.

Some opt to engage in hunger strikes as a last appeal. What makes these people so impressive is that they know what they were sent to this earth to do. What keeps them going is their relentless desire for change and justice.

No one can put out your fire. It's controlled by your free will. Many will try but only you have the captain's seat when it comes to extinguishing the flames. Those who wish to stop you will try and control you by putting you in fear. Fear keeps you from uncovering your own truths, being that light that shines brighter than any other light or having the guts to say what everyone is afraid to.

It's truly an honour to listen, learn and share their unique stories.

Migrant Stories

Next time, I'm going to share an excerpt of an interview I recently did with a human rights activist from Myanmar. Despite being exiled, imprisoned, rumours spread and her family harassed - she remains relentless in her pursuit of uncovering truth.

Her story is part of the upcoming issue of Migrant Stories, which is a digital magazine that provides a platform for migrants, refugees, indigenous communities and homeless individuals to raise their voices, awakening the world to the journey they face.

Subscribe to get each free edition delivered to your inbox upon publication.

Your Turn

Join the conversation either on Facebook or in the comments below. Tell us how you or others you know are being relentless in the pursuit of claiming your rights as a human on this earth. If you work with a human rights organisation, introduce yourself and let us know about the work you do.