FacebookTwitterGoogle+RedditEmail

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.

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. This piece first appeared at World Trust News.  

May 04, 2016
Kshama Sawant
It’s Not About Bernie: Why We Can’t Let Our Revolution Die in Philadelphia
Conn Hallinan
Baiting the Bear: Russia and NATO
Joshua Frank
Hanford’s Leaky Nuke Tanks and Sick Workers, A Never-Ending Saga
Paul Craig Roberts
TIPP: Advancing American Imperialism
Ted Rall
Hillary to Bernie Supporters: Don’t Vote for Me!
Eric Draitser
Hillary Clinton and Wall Street’s Neoliberal War on Latin America
Leslie Scott
The Story of Jill Stein: Putting People, Peace and the Planet Before Profits
Ann Garrison
Building the Greens Into a Mass Party: Interview with Bruce Dixon
Tom Clifford
Crying Rape: Trump’s Slurs Against China
Lawrence Davidson
Getting Rid of Bad Examples: Andrew Jackson & Woodrow Wilson
Ellen Brown
Bank of North Dakota Soars Despite Oil Bust: A Blueprint for California?
Nelson Valdes
Is Fidel Castro Outside or Part of Mainstream Thinking? A Selection of Quotes
Jesse Jackson
Don’t Send Flint Down the Drain: Fix It!
Nathan Riley
Help Bernie Keep His Halo
Rivera Sun
Remembering Nonviolent History: Freedom Rides
Clancy Sigal
Rachel and the Isolationists: How Maddow Blew It
Laura Finley
Changing the Conversation About “The Woman Card”
CJ Hopkins
Coming this Summer … Revenge of the Bride of Sophie’s Choice
May 03, 2016
Gary Leupp
Hillary Clinton’s Foreign Policy Resumé: What the Record Shows
Michèle Brand – Arun Gupta
What is the “Nuit Debout”?
Chuck Churchill
The Failures of Capitalism, Donald Trump and Right Wing Terror
Dave Marsh
Bernie and the Greens
John Wight
Zionism Should be on Trial, Not Ken Livingstone
Rev. John Dear
A Dweller in Peace: the Life and Times of Daniel Berrigan
Patrick Cockburn
Saudi Arabia’s Great Leap Forward: What Would Mao Think?
Doug Johnson Hatlem
Electoral Votes Matter: Hillary Clinton or Bernie Sanders vs Donald Trump
Chris Gilbert
Venezuela Today: This Must Be Progress
Pepe Escobar
The Calm Before the Coming Global Storm
Ruth Fowler
Intersecting with the Identity Police (Or Why I Stopped Writing Op-Eds)
Victor Lasa
The Battle Rages on in Spain: the Country Prepares for Repeat Elections in June
Jack Rasmus
Is the US Economy Heading for Recession?
Dean Baker
Time for an Accountable Federal Reserve
Ted Rall
Working for US Gov Means Never Saying Sorry
Dave Welsh
Hunger Strikers at Mission Police Station: “Stop the execution of our people”
John Eskow
The Death of Prince and the Death of Lonnie Mack
May 02, 2016
Michael Hudson – Gordon Long
Wall Street Has Taken Over the Economy and is Draining It
Paul Street
The Bernie Fade Begins
Ron Jacobs
On the Frontlines of Peace: the Life of Daniel Berrigan
Louis Yako
Dubai Transit
Bill Quigley
Teacher, Union Leader, Labor Lawyer: Profile of Chris Williams Social Justice Advocate
Patrick Cockburn
Into the Green Zone: Iraq’s Disintegrating Political System
Lawrence Ware
Trump is the Presidential Candidate the Republicans Deserve
Ron Forthofer
Just Say No to Corporate Rule
Ralph Nader
The Long-Distance Rebound of Bernie Sanders
Ken Butigan
Remembering Daniel Berrigan, with Gratitude
FacebookTwitterGoogle+RedditEmail