By: Emiliano Diaz de Leon, Guest Blogger
As a men’s nonviolence educator and a father, I would like to celebrate the fathers and father figures in our community, especially those who embody the values of strength, character, and courage in their daily lives.
We celebrate fathers, step-dads, and all father figures who work hard, promote respect and harmony in their families, and demonstrate great love for their children.
We celebrate fathers who actively engage in raising children and who do their share of family chores, showing by example that it takes everybody’s hard work to make a home.
We celebrate fathers who love and respect their partners and work honestly to maintain equality in their relationship.
We celebrate fathers who encourage their children to feel good about themselves and who promote understanding and respect between boys and girls.
We celebrate fathers who place their children’s need for love, safety, and support first, whether they live with them each day or some days.
We celebrate fathers who make the difficult choices involved in balancing family and career, ensuring they make time for their children.
We celebrate fathers who challenge prejudice that demeans not just their sons and daughters but everyone else’s, too.
We celebrate fathers who advance the idea that peace and harmony in the home are preconditions for peace and harmony in the world.
Each of these principles, when put into practice on a continuous basis by both fathers and father figures, help to protect young people from domestic violence. This Father’s Day, I want to celebrate fathers who are cultivating nonviolence in their homes, but I also challenge them to look beyond their homes in order to promote peace in their communities by taking a stand against domestic violence with a public pledge.
Alongside millions of Texas dads and father figures, I have been a positive but silent example of what it means to be nonviolent. Today, for myself, my family, and my loved ones, I am speaking up. I pledge that I will not be silent about, commit, or condone domestic violence. I pledge that I will teach my children about healthy, nonviolent relationships, and that I will act to make a difference in my home and community.
I wish all fathers and father figures in our community a Happy Father’s Day and encourage them to commit to living out this pledge.