Click here to go to the Home Page The Revolution STILL Will Not Be Televised - Keeping it Real By Larry Pinkney, Editorial Board (includes video)

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"Historically, the most terrible things - war, genocide, and slavery - have resulted not from disobedience, but from obedience."

-Howard Zinn

"If you tremble indignation at every injustice then you are a comrade of mine."

- Ernesto 'Che' Guevara

In recent days the sad news of the passing-on of the politically conscious musician and poet Gil Scott Heron, struck this nation and world like a thunder clap. Among other things, Gil Scott admonished us about the dangerous and prevalent political 'Winter in America,' and had repeatedly spread the word that 'The Revolution Will Not Be Televised' (Small Talk at 125th & Lenox ).  His physical body is gone from us now but his message is more relevant than ever. We everyday Black, White, Brown, Red, and Yellow people know only too well that the revolution still will not be televised-- "it will be live."


The late people's historian, author and activist Howard Zinn demonstrated a complete understanding of Gil Scott's message when he said, "I'm worried that students will take their obedient place in society and look to become successful cogs in the wheel - let the wheel spin around them as it wants without taking a look at what they're doing. I'm concerned that students not become passive acceptors of the official doctrine that's handed down to them from the White House, the media, textbooks, teachers and preachers." In a sense, if we are conscious and critical thinkers, no matter what our color, gender, or age might be; then we must all be, as critical thinkers, "students" and political & social scientists.

BC Question: What will it take to bring Obama home?"The revolution" [i.e. the struggle by everyday people for economic, political, and social justice, human rights and systemic change] is ongoing and in constant flux. Moreover, history is not a set of linear packaged and so-called major events to be recalled and regurgitated at the programmed prompting of this system's "media, textbooks, teachers, and preachers." Genuine and relevant history is wholistic, and it is the narrative [i.e. the story] of just plain ordinary everyday people - not that of presidents, other political big wigs, corporate barons, the corporate-stream media, or kings, queens, and princes and the like. The everyday people's history is not merely past but is in the making every second of every day - which is precisely why systemic gate-keepers relentlessly seek to distort and/or omit it entirely. Indeed, "the revolution will not be televised" - but it is being made in this nation and throughout the world. It is being made without fanfare or pious exhortations. It is being made by the 'salt of earth' [i.e. ordinary everyday Black, White, Brown, Red, and Yellow people]. "The revolution will not be televised" - it will however, be realized and brought to fruition as a result of the ongoing and protracted economic, political, and social struggle on the part of just plain everyday people!

Malcolm X [el-Hajj Malik el-Shabazz] correctly noted that, " Of all our studies, history is best qualified to reward all research." And Howard Zinn further elaborated on the urgency of this point when he said, "If you don't know history, it is as if you were born yesterday."

The 21st century lies and obfuscations by the ilk's of George W. Bush and Barack Obama are a part of a continuous and deliberately perpetuated systemic pattern whose purpose is not only to control and manipulate everyday people, but also to grotesquely disfigure and distort the precious and important history [i.e. narrative] of everyday people in this nation and around the world. The late author, activist, and political theoretician Rosa Luxemburg was right on point when she reminded us that, "Those who do not move, do not notice their chains." And indeed, it is the constant objective of the U.S. corporate-plutocracy [in concert with its corporate-stream media] to ensure that everyday people of all colors are kept in a perpetual state of ignorance of our own narrative [i.e. our own story or history], so that we "do not move" or "notice [our political, economic, and social] chains." Due to the corporate multi-national nature of the corporate-stream media, this corruption, distortion, and omission of the everyday people's narrative is not by any means limited merely to the United States. It is global. Nevertheless, the corporate / military elite of the United States is, like an octopus with global political, military, and corporate tentacles, that continues to be the primary purveyor of disinformation, misinformation, and omission in this nation and globally.


Deceit, manipulated fear, and deliberately perpetuated ignorance are the cornerstones of the systemic political, economic, and social oppression and control that everyday people are enduring throughout this land and planet-wide.

However, an increasing number of critically-thinking, politically conscious people of all colors, realize that the systemic corporate-stream media, in all of its various guises, has utterly and thoroughly discredited itself. Yet, it is the masses of everyday Black, White, Brown, Red, and Yellow people that must be collectively extracted from the jaws of lethargy and corporate control and manipulation. This task is as challenging as it is important.

The late South African activist and organizer put it this way: "The most potent weapon in the hands of the oppressor is the mind of the oppressed." These words have as much, if not more, relevance in the 21st century as they did when they were first spoken decades ago.

Critically-thinking, politically conscious people have the formidable task of consistently challenging and unveiling the litany of outright lies, obfuscation, and distractions utilized to disembowel and 'neutralize' the very thought processes of we everyday people. This means , that notwithstanding human frailties and weaknesses, we must politically organize on every level and creatively dissent even as we unceasingly educate one another.

We must connect the dots for ourselves and others. For example, links must be clearly explained -- regarding the trillions of dollars being spent in 'America's' morally indefensible corporate / military wars abroad (in Iraq, Afghanistan, Pakistan, north Africa and elsewhere)and the concomitant alleged lack of funds for decent jobs, affordable educational opportunities, housing, health care, child care, senior care, etc. right here in this nation.  It must, for example, be explained that this nation does not in reality have a "defense" budget -- but has a bottomless and massive corporate / offense military fund that serves to grind everyday men and women to pieces (physically and/or psychologically) as cannon fodder for the insatiable appetite of the avaricious corporate / military elite, while simultaneously enhancing the cycle of human terror and misery at home and abroad.  It must be clearly explained that there is no actual Social Security "crisis," but rather, there is a very real crisis of corporate greed and give-aways to the richest 1% who run and control this nation and their corporate- elite bloodsucking  minions. There is a crisis of hegemonic corporate plutocracy gone stone mad in this country.  We must also, for example, clearly explain that there is a de facto military-draft which is being hideously carried out under the veiled auspices of corporate economic apartheid against everyday Black, White, Brown, Red, and Yellow people in this nation.  We must connect the dots re these and other extremely important realities. Time is of the essence!

It is the collective narrative, the collective stories of everyday people that we must tell unflinchingly and without let-up.


We can ill afford to play the role of the political ostrich. We can ill afford to allow our Mother Earth to continue to be environmentally ravaged through wars and corporate greed -- which more often than not are one and the same. The conflicts are truly already at our door steps, and if we are to reverse and change these insane realities, we must first quickly recognize them for what they are.

To reiterate: Time is of the essence! Let us regain our collective sanity and snatch our narratives away from the prevaricating, blood-dripping mouths of the corporate / miltary government and its corporate-stream media. Our Mother Earth and our posterity demand nothing less from us! The Revolution STILL Will Not Be Televised!

Onward then my sisters and brothers! Onward...! Editorial Board Member, Larry Pinkney, is a veteran of the Black Panther Party, the former Minister of Interior of the Republic of New Africa, a former political prisoner and the only American to have successfully self-authored his civil/political rights case to the United Nations under the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights. In connection with his political organizing activities in opposition to voter suppression, etc., Pinkney was interviewed in 1988 on the nationally televised PBS News Hour, formerly known as The MacNeil / Lehrer News Hour. For more about Larry Pinkney see the book, Saying No to Power: Autobiography of a 20th Century Activist and Thinker, by William Mandel [Introduction by Howard Zinn]. (Click here to read excerpts from the book.) Click here to contact Mr. Pinkney.

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June 2, 2011 - Issue 429
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