Wednesday, February 11, 2009


“Now renegades are the people with their own philosophies They change the course of history Everyday people like you and me”

“Never give up just live up Fed upon America We be spittin' it upRippin' it up”

Funny enough it was through music where I learned to be active and the meaning of activism. The quotes lyrics above are of a band that I heard when I was 16. When I heard them I was left dumbfounded and I could believe that a group had that courage stand up and say something with such power and passion. Groups like Bad Religion, The Clash, The Coup, Talib Kweli, KRS One, Bob Marley, Rage Against the Machine, Pearl Jam and other where my keys to knowledge and activism . Music gave me an opportunity to learn more about Geronimo’s courage, Martin Luther King’s dream, Yaqui’s way of knowledge, Feminist movement and its struggle against patriarchy, Marcos and the Zapatistas 500 year struggle, The Armenian Genocide and much more. And not just learned from music and book but it gave me the desire and determination to engage in social issues, to take risk and speak out. It gave me the passion to speak and defend for those, that instead of gratitude and honor, they only receive the abuse of the dominant. I leaned that our voice is our weapon, and it has to carry out and echoed through the halls the streets and the world. Let it be heard.
Activism is an important element in the process of social transformation and a key to civic involvement. And most importantly activism is the genuine concern for people. Lastly, activist must be engaged in society, partaking in the joy and suffering of ordinary lives, to listen to respect, and to be involved in the journey of his or her people.

Below is a quote that I have been caring around that has giving me the strength to continue my passion.

To laugh is to risk appearing the fool;
To weep is to risk appearing sentimental;
To reach out for another is to risk involvement
To expose feeling is to risk exposing your true self.

To place your ideas and your dreams
before the crowd is to risk their loss
To love is to risk not being loved in return
To live is to risk dying
To hope is to risk despair
To try is to risk failure.

But risk must be taken,
because the greatest hazard in life
is to risk nothing
The person who risks nothing, does nothing,
has nothing and is nothing;
They may avoid suffering and sorrow,
but they simply cannot learn,
feel change, grow, love, Live
Chained by their certitude, they are a slave,
they have forfeited freedom;
Only the person who risks is free.

~~ Author Unknown


Gozie Ibeji said...

nice song/poem.totally agree with what it says.if you are scared of taking risks, then you will bypass your blessings in life because some of the blessings we get come from the risks we took and the lessons, experience and accomplishment that comes from when it says "To live is to risk dying"-it shows that if you are not ready to risk anything especially what you stand for and believe, then why is it worth living for you.

Dr. V said...

Loved your comments!! I listen to those same groups and always fill uplifted when I do. Lyrics and poems are very powerful forms of activism.

Anna Mann said...

I love the poem. It is so true!

bowker3273 said...

Congrats man, you totally win the best theme award. I liked how you took in into the personal likes you have and transform them into your blog. I congratulate your view and your taste in music sir.

Derick the Crowell said...

Yeah here's my vote "for teh win"