“Above all, she was very clear, that nothing would mean anything if I didn’t live a life of use to others. And I dint know what that meant for a long time. And I came into this business young and worried about my own experiences, and my own pain, and it was only when I began to travel and look and live beyond my home did I understand my own responsibility to others. And when I met survivors of war and famine and rape, I learned what life is like for most people in this world. And how fortunate I was to have food to eat, roof over my head, a safe place to live, and the joy of having my family safe and healthy. And I realized how sheltered I had been. And I was determined to never be that way again. We are all, every one in this room, so fortunate. I have never understood why some people are lucky enough to be born with a chance that I had – to have this path in life, and why across the world, there’s a woman just like me, with the same abilities, and the same desires, same work ethic and love for her family, who would most likely make better films and better speeches, only she sits in a refugee camp, and she has no voice. She worries about what her children will eat, how to keep them safe, and if they’ll ever be allowed to return home. I don’t know why this is my life, and that’s hers. I don’t understand that, but I will do as my mother asked, and I will do the best I can with this life to be of use.”
Angelina Jolie’s speech melted my heart. It would be very hard to have this point of view from someone in a pedestal if she didn’t go out of her castle every once in a while. I am in no way like her in terms of status, wealth and fame, but still, I can relate to EVERYTHING she said. Like her, I have fully understood my role as an influencer, doer, and helper when I started traveling meaningfully. And like her, I have long realized just how fortunate I am – so much that my complaints have evolved from “I don’t like the food today.” to fighting for injustices around us. And like her, I too, cannot understand WHY there is inequality. Whenever people say I receive blessings and good things in life because of my good intentions, I know they mean well, but then I think of the hundreds of people with good intentions and an unfortunate fate, and I realize this logic isn’t exactly true. But like her, I can only do what I can with what I have – and that is to be of use. Whether in terms of reaching out to people, helping them first hand, or speaking in behalf of those with no voice. I admire Angelina Jolie for using her voice and fame to move mountains, and I can only wish more people would be like her.
Great job, Mrs. Pitt! You have earned a fan right here!