Taking To the Streets

Sunday, February 18, 2018 – Taking To the Streets

To sin by silence when they should protest makes cowards of men. ~ Ella Wheeler Wilcox

When an individual is protesting society’s refusal to acknowledge his dignity as a human being, his very act of protest confers dignity on him. ~ Bayard Rustin

Against eternal injustice, man must assert justice, and to protest against the universe of grief, he must create happiness. ~ Albert Camus

The strongest bulwark of authority is uniformity; the least divergence from it is the greatest crime. ~ Emma Goldman

It’s not an effective protest if it’s not pissing people off. ~ John Scalzi

Disobedience is the true foundation of liberty. ~ Henry David Thoreau

You never change things by fighting the existing reality. To change something, build a new model that makes the existing model obsolete. ~ R. Buckminster Fuller

Those who make peaceful revolution impossible will make violent revolution inevitable. ~ John F. Kennedy, remarks on the first anniversary of the Alliance for Progress, 13 March 1962

Patriotism means to stand by the country. It does not mean to stand by the president or any other public official. ~ Theodore Roosevelt

Nothing exasperates the spirit in man more than power which seems unconquerable and which makes impotent all protest. ~ George William Russell

Trump’s America is not America: not today’s or tomorrow’s, but yesterday’s America. Trump’s America is brutal, perverse, regressive, insular and afraid. There is no hope in it; there is no light in it. It is a vast expanse of darkness and desolation. And that is a vision of America that most of the people in this country cannot and will not abide. ~ Charles M. Blow

To spend one’s life being angry, and in the process doing nothing to change it, is to me ridiculous. I could be mad all day long, but if I’m not doing a damn thing, what difference does it make? ~ Charles Fuller

Nice people made the best Nazis. My mom grew up next to them. They got along, refused to make waves, looked the other way when things got ugly and focused on happier things than “politics.” They were lovely people who turned their heads as their neighbors were dragged away. You know who weren’t nice people? Resisters. ~ Naomi Shulman

During the Vietnam War, every respectable artist in this country was against the war. It was like a laser beam. We were all aimed in the same direction. The power of this weapon turns out to be that of a custard pie dropped from a stepladder six feet high. ~ Kurt Vonnegut

Much protest is naïve; it expects quick, visible improvement and despairs and gives up when such improvement does not come. Protesters who hold out longer have perhaps understood that success is not the proper goal. If protest depended on success, there would be little protest of any durability or significance. History simply affords too little evidence that anyone’s individual protest is of any use. Protest that endures, I think, is moved by a hope far more modest than that of public success: namely, the hope of preserving qualities in one’s own heart and spirit that would be destroyed by acquiescence. ~ Wendell Berry

I saw courage both in the Vietnam War and in the struggle to stop it. I learned that patriotism includes protest, not just military service. ~ John Kerry

The protest years were over, not just for me but for a whole generation, and in music, just like in politics, many of the greatest talents were dead or in exile, and their place was filled by third-rate imitators. ~ Nina Simone

In such ugly times, the only true protest is beauty. ~ Phil Ochs

At least I had frost on my nose, boots on my feet, and protest in my mouth. ~ Jack Kerouac, The Dharma Bums

Our civilization is founded on the shambles, and every individual existence goes out in a lonely spasm of helpless agony. If you protest, my friend, wait till you arrive there yourself! ~ William James

It is the nature of a man as he grows older to protest against change, particularly changes for the better. ~ John Steinbeck

Peaceful, lawful protest – if it is effective – is innately disruptive of ‘business as usual.’ That is why it is effective. ~ Naomi Wolf

That cry of the soul to be lifted out of the bondage of the narrow circle of life, which carries up to God the protest and yearning of suffering man, never finds a more sublime expression than where humanity is oppressed and religion is corrupt. ~ Hall Caine

Disobedience is the true foundation of liberty. The obedient must be slaves. ~ Henry David Thoreau

If you are neutral in situations of injustice, you have chosen the side of the oppressor. If an elephant has its foot on the tail of a mouse, and you say that you are neutral, the mouse will not appreciate your neutrality. ~ Desmond Tutu

If you will protest courageously, and yet with dignity and Christian love, when the history books are written in future generations, the historians will have to pause and say, there lived a great people – a black people – who injected new meaning and dignity into the veins of civilization. ~ Martin Luther King, Jr.

Every new baby is a blind desperate vote for survival: people who find themselves unable to register an effective political protest against extermination do so by a biological act. ~ Lewis Mumford

That only a few, under any circumstances, protest against the injustice of long-established laws and customs, does not disprove the fact of the oppressions, while the satisfaction of the many, if real only proves their apathy and deeper degradation. ~ Elizabeth Cady Stanton

It should be remarked that, as the principle of liberty is better understood, and more nobly interpreted, a broader protest is made in behalf of women. As men become aware that few have had a fair chance, they are inclined to say that no women have had a fair chance. ~ Margaret Fuller

Man, born of woman, has found it a hard thing to forgive her for giving him birth. The patriarchal protest against the ancient matriarch has borne strange fruit through the years. ~ Lillian Smith

I love America more than any other country in the world and, exactly for this reason, I insist on the right to criticize her perpetually. ~ James Baldwin

I don’t know about you, but I only have one life, and I don’t want to spend it in a sewer of injustice. ~ Wallace Shawn

I went to jail for eleven days for disturbing the peace; I was trying to disturb the war. ~ Joan Baez

It has always been the prerogative of children and half-wits to point out that the emperor has no clothes. But a half-wit remains a half-wit, and the emperor remains an emperor. ~ Neil Gaiman

Protest is when I say I don’t like this. Resistance is when I put an end to what I don’t like. Protest is when I say I refuse to go along with this anymore. Resistance is when I make sure everybody else stops going along too. ~ Ulrike Marie Meinhof

The dissent we witness is a reaffirmation of faith in man; it is protest against living under rules and prejudices and attitudes that produce the extremes of wealth and poverty and that make us dedicated to the destruction of people through arms, bombs, and gases, and that prepare us to think alike and be submissive objects for the regime of the computer. ~ William O. Douglas

Poets can’t march in protest or do that sort of thing. I feel that’s against the rules, and pointless. If mankind wants a great big final bang, that’s what it’ll get. One should never protest against anything unless it’s going to have an effect. None of those marches do. One should either be silent or go straight to the top. ~ Robert Graves

There is absolutely no greater high than challenging the power structure as a nobody, giving it your all, and winning! ~ Abbie Hoffman

I learned early that crying out in protest could accomplish things. My older brothers and sister had started to school when, sometimes, they would come in and ask for a buttered biscuit or something and my mother, impatiently, would tell them no. But I would cry out and make a fuss until I got what I wanted. I remember well how my mother asked me why I couldn’t be a nice boy like Wilfred; but I would think to myself that Wilfred, for being so nice and quiet, often stayed hungry. So early in life, I had learned that if you want something, you had better make some noise. ~ Malcolm X

Now, it’s true that some of the protesters are oddly dressed or have silly-sounding slogans, which is inevitable given the open character of the events. But so what? I, at least, am a lot more offended by the sight of exquisitely tailored plutocrats, who owe their continued wealth to government guarantees, whining that President Obama has said mean things about them than I am by the sight of ragtag young people denouncing consumerism. ~ Paul Krugman

Not voting is not a protest. It is a surrender. ~ Keith Ellison

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