Delegate Spotlight: Darryl
Our blog series, Delegate Spotlight, feature past participants from SHARE’s major delegations. A delegate is someone who travels with a group (delegation) to El Salvador to learn about the history, politics, and people to better accompany the Salvadoran people. Interested in becoming a SHARE delegate? Check out our major delegation page for information on the upcoming Romero Delegation in March! – See more at: http://www.share-elsalvador.org/delegations/major-delegations
Spotlight on: Darryl Moore from Berkeley, CA
Major Delegation Experience: The Election Observation Delegation, Jan. 2014 – Feb. 2014
Why did you decide to participate in SHARE’s major delegation?
I wanted to see participatory democracy in action. I wanted to serve as an election observer to make sure the election in El Salvador was done as fairly as possible, at least in the places I observed. Also, I wanted to visit the country that has ties to Berkeley and our former Mayor Gus Newport. To see the beautiful country and meet the Salvadorans who in recent history had changed the lives of its citizens for greater equality and to see and witness their struggle for justice, economic grow, and liberty.
What was the most memorable part of the trip?
Visiting the LGBT Center in San Salvador was one of the most memorable parts of my trip. Meeting with the LGBT community and hearing their stories of inequality, persecution, discrimination, and violence directed at them for being who they are was deeply emotional for me as a gay man serving in the Berkeley City Council. At the same time, I was encouraged by their spirit and commitment to make things better in their country for Lesbians, Gays and Transgendered Women and Men. Many of them were on the front-lines fighting for equality, the right to vote, the right to health care, jobs, housing, and just to be treated fairly and like everyone else. I was so touched by their fight for social justice that I came back to Berkeley and sponsored legislation calling on the Berkeley City Council to support the work of the LGBT Community in El Salvador in asking the government to recognize the LGBT Community in its constitution and to bring about Equality for all LGBT People living in El Salvador. I worked very closely with SHARE in drafting the resolution that passed the Council unanimously.
What was your favorite part of the experience?
Meeting the people of El Salvador and hearing their stories was one of my favorite parts about my trip to El Salvador. Hearing the sad stories from the Mothers who lost their husbands and sons during the revolution and getting no real help or restitution from the various governments broke my heart. Hearing the stories of the Priests, Nuns, and Peaceful Volunteers that were brutalized and killed fighting for peace and the rights of the people was shocking and disturbing. Watching folks line up early in the morning, hours before the polls would open, to vote in the Presidential Election was inspiring. Watching teenagers helping the senior Salvadorians into the polling place and the seriousness and dedication everyone showed towards the voting process made me wish if only American’s took their right to vote as seriously.