Some people think that I'm a revolutionary, and that frightens them. But I'm not. I'm a rebel.
My definition of a rebel is one who stands up against authority in a just cause, as he sees it. Robin Hood was a rebel, as were many other great men and women throughout history who saw injustice in their world, in their time, and decided to do something about it.
I too, in my time, and in my own way, have and am doing what I can to expose the lies and illusions we have all been sold as gospel truths by a capitalist, corporatist system that is more about greed, power and exploitation, than it is about serving the people with compassion and good governance for the benefit and greater good of the whole, rather than for its thinnest part only.
In some peoples minds, that makes me their enemy. Well, too damn bad! For I prefer fighting my battles standing on my own two feet, than living on my knees, like them, in a world of servitude, willful blindness or ignorance, and intolerance.
To each his own, but this rebel will have it no other way...
Acts of rebellion permit us to be free and independent human beings. Rebellion chips away, however imperceptibly, at the edifice of the oppressor. Rebellion sustains the capacity for human solidarity. Rebellion, in moments of profound human despair and misery, keeps alive the capacity to be human. Rebellion is not the same as revolution. Revolution works towards the establishment of a new power structure. Rebellion is about perpetual revolt and permanent alienation from power. And it is only in a state of rebellion that we can hold fast to moral imperatives that prevent a descent into tyranny. Empathy must be our primary attribute. Those who retreat into cynicism and despair, like Dostoyevsky's Underground Man, die spiritually and morally. If we are to be extinguished, let it be on our own terms.
The rebel must, for this reason, also expect to become the enemy, even of those he or she is attempting to protect.
The indifference to the plight of others and the cult of the self is what the corporate state seeks to instill in us. That state appeals to pleasure, as well as fear, to crush compassion. We will have to continue to fight the mechanisms of that dominant culture, if for no other reason than to preserve, through small, even tiny acts, our common humanity. We will have to resist the temptation to fold in on ourselves and to ignore the injustice visited on others, especially those we do not know. As distinct and moral beings, we will endure only through these small, sometimes imperceptible acts of defiance. This defiance, this capacity to say no, is what mass culture and mass propaganda seeks to eradicate. As long as we are willing to defy these forces, we have a chance, if not for ourselves, then at least for those who follow. As long as we defy these forces, we remain alive. And, for now, this is the only victory possible.
Chris Hedges - 'Death of the Liberal Class'
You have enemies? Good. That means you’ve stood up for something, sometime in your life.