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“Who Are You to Say?”

“Who Are You to Say?”

By Dennis Loo (9/22/14)

Part 2 added late 9/22/14 and 9/23/14

This question - “who are you to say?” - gets posed, either explicitly or implicitly, fairly frequently by at least some, if not many, people in retort to those who seek to lead others in political change. “I have my own views. Who are you to say what’s right or wrong? I will do my thing and you do your thing. It’s all good.”

In the US where individualism and “personal choice” are highly valued by the dominant (mass) culture, the idea that anyone would challenge the notion that everyone’s opinions are all equally valid – or at least, depending upon what company you keep, the views that are most common among your chosen political persuasion - strikes many people as at best rude and at worst the views of someone you should avoid.

Who are you to say that evolution is true? Who are you to say that intelligent design is hogwash? Who are you to say that climate change is a dire emergency and not a hoax or an exaggerated response to “adverse” weather? Who are you to say that voting is worse than a waste of time? Who are you to say that your views are scientific/right/true and that (some) others’ views are not?

Read more: “Who Are You to Say?”

The Gravest Threat to Planet Earth – Ever

The Gravest Threat to Planet Earth – Ever

By Dennis Loo (9/19/14)

Since Earth’s creation, no natural threats to its existence compare to the danger that it now faces from climate change, caused by human activity.

Gigantic meteors have struck the earth and volcanoes have spewed out enormous amounts of smoke and ash that dramatically altered the landscape and deeply impacted the flora and fauna, and perhaps caused the massive die off of dinosaurs … but they are not as grave a threat to the existence of Earth now confronting us.

Nuclear winter, a threat during the Cold War between the US and the Soviet Union that could have been catastrophic had it happened, is arguably less of a threat than climate change.

Read more: The Gravest Threat to Planet Earth – Ever

Alice Walker's "Gather" Poem

Gather
©2014 by Alice Walker
for  Carl Dix and Cornel West

Editor's note: Alice Walker - on her own initiative - penned this poem in honor of Carl Dix and Cornel West, calling forth others to join in this October's Month of Resistance to Mass Incarceration, Police Terror, Repression, and the Criminalization of a Generation. It's a powerful and eloquent statement from one of America's greatest treasures.


It is still hard to believe
that millions of us saw Eric Garner die.
He died with what looked like a half dozen
heavily clad
policemen
standing on his body, twisting and crushing
him
especially his head
and neck.
He was a big man, too.  They must have felt
like clumsy midgets
as they dragged him down.

 

Read more: Alice Walker's "Gather" Poem

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Elaine Brower 2

Elaine Brower of World Can't Wait speaking at the NYC Stop the War on Iran rally 2/4/12