Someone once famously said “democracy is a verb, not a noun.” For a long time I didn’t understand what this meant. Then I read Mary Robinson’s memoir.
Mary Robinson is someone that does. And in the doing she has made the world a better place, and inspired and empowered others to do the same.
As a lecturer, legislator, President of Ireland and United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, she tackled seemingly intractable problems, advocated for the world’s poorest, and spoke truth to power. She visited those ravaged by war; and brought the calm light of hope to some of the world’s darkest places.
Her memoir is the kind of read that makes you grateful there are such amazing people in the world. The title of her book says it all. She has lived her life fiercely defending the belief that everybody matters, and has fought courageously and compassionately for the dignity of every human in need.
This book makes you want to put on your best suit, get a good haircut, and get elected to high office. But then there would be so much to do! This is what stops most of us in our tracks. But probably only after buying the suit and getting the haircut.
2013 Hodder & Stoughton