Did Someone Say 'Revolution'?

by

“The greatest challenge of the day is how to bring about a revolution of the heart, a revolution which has to start with each one of us.” – Dorothy Day

If you were to publicly declare your discontent with the U.S. government and your subsequent desire to abolish that government, the Land of the Free™ would likely reward you with an orange jumpsuit and a one-way ticket for an all-inclusive visit to Guantanamo Bay. Now imagine if you instead chose to stand in front of a crowded room and utter something along these lines: “I think all men are created equal and are endowed with certain undeniable rights, including life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. To secure these rights, governments are created and derive their powers from the consent of the governed. Whenever any form of government tries to destroy or take away these undeniable rights, it is the right of the people to alter or abolish that government and replace it with a new one.” Bingo: you’re a middle school history teacher! Okay class; turn to page 257. Today we’ll be talking about Patrick Henry and don’t tell me “give me liberty or give me death” sounds an awful lot like what one of those damn evil-doers might say. Thomas Jefferson can pronounce: “Every generation needs a new revolution.” But that doesn’t mean I can. Honest Abe once opined: “Any people anywhere being inclined and having the power have the right to rise up and shake off the existing government, and force a new one that suits them better.” Hey, I’d love a government that suits me — and all earthlings — better, but making plans to “shake off the existing government and force a new one” would just about guarantee me a place on that secret no-fly list. “The most heroic word in all languages is revolution,” stated Eugene Debs, but if good ol’ Gene were around today and typed “revolution” into a search engine, he’d find the top response was a goddamned TV show. Reality: As long as you’re not talking about the U.S. government or one of its allies, you can spin as many revolutions as you please. You can have 33 per minute, for all the NSA cares. In fitness, music, film, art, and countless other ways to turn a profit — the mutinous mood is alive and well. This time around the revolution was indeed televised and is now enjoying a long, successful re-run online. Can the huddled befuddled masses snap from their self-induced trance and embrace a subversive spirit? I’ll give the last word to the sainted Mr. Lincoln: “This country, with its institutions, belongs to the people who inhabit it. Whenever they shall grow weary of the existing government, they can exercise their constitutional right of amending it, or their revolutionary right to dismember or overthrow it.” Remember: Abe said it, not me. Mickey Z. is the author of 12 books, most recently Occupy this Book: Mickey Z. on Activism. Until the laws are changed or the power runs out, he can be found on the Web here. Anyone wishing to support his activist efforts can do so by making a donation here.

Like What You’ve Read? Support CounterPunch
August 27, 2015
Sam Husseini
Foreign Policy, Sanders-Style: Backing Saudi Intervention
Brad Evans – Henry A. Giroux
Self-Plagiarism and the Politics of Character Assassination: the Case of Zygmunt Bauman
Peter Lee
Making Sense of China’s Stock Market Meltdown
Paul Craig Roberts
Wall Street and the Matrix: Where is Neo When We Need Him?
Kerry Emanuel
The Real Lesson of Katrina: the Worst is Yet to Come
Dave Lindorff
Why Wall Street Reporting is a Joke
Pepe Escobar
Brave (Miserable) New Normal World
Ramzy Baroud
‘Islamic State’ Pretence and the Upcoming Wars in Libya
Paul Edwards
Capitalism Delenda Est
Norman Pollack
The Political Culture of Rape in America: Further Thoughts on the St. Paul’s School Case
Stephen Lendman
The Monied Interests That Run America
Pedro Aibéo
Democratizing Finance (With Bitcoin?)
Alfredo Acedo
Climate Change and Capitalism: Challenges of the COP21 Paris and Climate Movements
August 26, 2015
Paul Street
Overworked and Out of Time: a Democracy Issue
Sharmini Peries - Michael Hudson
Behind the Market Crash: the Smoke and Mirrors of Corporate Buybacks
David Mihalyfy
Reform Higher Ed? Treat Badmin Like Bankers
Ruth Hopkins
Police Shootings in Indian Country: Justice or Else!
Gary Leupp
ISIL Advances While Its Foes Cannot Unite
Fred Gardner
The Psychiatrist’s Bible: Defining ‘Marijuana Use Disorder’
Yorgos Mitralias
The Catastrophic International Consequences of the Capitulation of Syriza and the Criminal Responsibility of Mr. Tsipras
Walter Brasch
Katrina: a 10-Year Review
Jim Connolly
Seven Questions and Seven Answers: a Sandernista Makes Reasonable Predictions About the 2016 Contest for the Democratic Presidential Nomination
Pedro Aibéo
Selling Austerity to Finland
Franklin Lamb
Heritage Destruction in Syria is a War Crime
Binoy Kampmark
Tourism’s Disaster Temptation: the Case of Nepal
Jeffrey D. Pugh
Trial by Fire for Ecuador’s President Correa
Vacy Vlanza
A Palestinian Novel Par Excellence
Alvaro Huerta
Confessions of an ‘Anchor Baby’: Open Letter to President Donald Trump
August 25, 2015
Gary Leupp
Why Donald Trump is So Scary
Jonathan Cook
Israel’s Thug at the UN
Steve Early
How “Brother” Bernie is Making Labor’s Day
Carl Finamore
An Affordable Housing Victory: High-End San Francisco Development Implodes
Henry Giroux – Chuck Mertz
The Spectacle of American Violence and the Cure for Donald Trump
Robert Eisinger
Trivializing Anti-Semitism
Brian Platt
It is Time We Discussed Abolishing the Police
Alexander Reid Ross
Trump the Fascist
Nicola Perugini - Neve Gordon
Mohammed Allan at the Door of the Israeli Supreme Court
Ted Rall
The United States of Stupidity
Heather Gray
A Message to American Mothers About Sex in the Military
Jo Leinen – Andreas Bummel
How to Democratize the UN
Lawrence Davidson
The Iran Agreement and Israel’s Claim to Speak for the Jews
Mark Hand
A Well Pad Next to Every 3-Car Garage: Suburban Sprawl Collides with Texas Frack Jobs
John Laforge
U.S. Bows Out After Plowshares Conviction is Vacated: Appeals Court Ill-Informed on Nuclear Overkill
Norman Pollack
Gender Freedom and Sexual Liberation: The St. Paul’s School Case
Kathy Kelly
Let It Shine