Taking an authentic stand for what you believe has always been something I admire in others. Courageous, bold and bright, these people who cry out “enough” are the ones that make my internal being and external human self smile with pride whether it is someone close to me or simply read about in the news, regardless if that opinion is heard by the masses of our society or ignored, or if it is on a topic rated low in the minds of others or sits in the forefront of our psyche.
Recently my Hair Stylist, Antonio Darden was one of those individuals that left me glowing with inspiration. Antonio is a strong gay male with a beautiful heart, gentle demeanor and warmth, but don’t let that fool you, he is also a man who will not allow others to tread disrespectfully on the foundation of his life nor lifestyle.
If you search Antonio Darden, through your chosen internet search engine you will find yourself inundated with a number of news stories regarding his recent refusal to accept the Governor of New Mexico as a client. Why? Because Ms Susana Martinez loudly attacked the gay rights movement.
Simple as it may seem, Antonio’s stance has become a globally discussed act. Featured on radio shows that touch worldwide audiences, receiving requests for interview from reputable newspapers and even TV channels have made him somewhat of a hero amongst the equal rights movements.
We all know that entrepreneurs are often struggling to make a living, and even the most successful are usually willing to put aside their beliefs, foundational values and views to embrace a client who can act as a magnet for success simply through word of mouth or testimonials. However, for this man it meant little, instead he held true to his authenticity, something I appreciate and respect.
I wonder how many others out there would do the same thing? Would refuse a potential money maker in exchange for respecting their own truths? I like to think there are hundreds if not thousands.
Always remember, no matter how big or small the potential, no dollar amount is worth your breaking your personal foundation for.
I would love to hear your thoughts!
For those interested, here is a link to the story in the LA Times.