Posted by pancho (188.8.131.52) on February 02, 2002 at 11:56:42:
In Reply to: Re: To Alli.. forgot someone posted by David Chibo on February 02, 2002 at 03:00:04:
We all have parts to play...mine is to piss everyone off. I've reached the age where I know how to do that well...I've earned the privillege.
When I was 22 in Seattle Washington there was a great debate about criminal justice in this country. The Federal government was spending like crazy trying to buy out the problem of what to do, especially with juveniles.
There were demmonstrations, sit ins and all of that stuff. I never attended any of them. I don't "Do" politics. I always remembers Che's admonition to starry eyed gringo college students who went to the mountains in Cuba to fight alongside the Cubans...he told them to go back to Washington DC, where he coundn't go, and do the dull boring work it would take to get the Octopus of American imperilaism off their backs...said he was forced to hide in jungles and dodge bullets...that it wasn't fun or romantic, not in the least...and wasn't particularly effective either...as you can see.
Real change will come from mobilizing lots of people and raising their consciousness...it is a long boring haul, no exciting car chases and bullets into the bodies of young pawns and puppets...but he knew it was the real way.
I didn't march or protest...I found a Foundation to give me a thousand dollars, applied for a license to run my own group home facillity in Seattle for young murderers, street walkers and drug heads...kids with no homes or families who would be turned into full fledged criminals by a system that had nothing but jails for them...I am still the youngest person in the country to get that kind of license and they didn't know till years later that I wasn't a college graduate with a degree in Social Work...they never thought to ask me.
For three years I shopped, cooked, cleaned, made curtains, held wretching and miserable children, that's all they were...the tough stuff was sheer defense and they needed it badly...I saw through medical crisis after crisis, disarmed them...fought with them, washed clothes with them...taught them to boil water...all the while vioilating standard proceedure by living in the same house with them 24 hours a day seven days a week...no support staff, no relief...no nothing.
I let myself enter their world and go crazy...right along with them. Through that intimacy and constant stress with no escape, I thought up the idea to strand us all on an island...I believed these kids had marvellous potential deep inside, but no one was asking for it....no one was putting them in situations where they would face life and death challenges they could actually benefit from, just the other kind...because only in that way would they reach deeper inside and pull out the skills I knew they had...knew it because I was around in their faces too much and they couldn't bullshit me the way they'd learned to play the other people...including themselves.
I got a grant from the federal Government...lied through my teeth about everything. We nearly set the island on fire the first day and had plenty of close calls. But I got to see what I believed was there. Other programs like that were set up after that...but they were missing the crucial inbgredient...I was willing to get us all killed to learn what had to come next. Had not my own sons step father died of a drug overdose I would have expanded that program...but the thought that my son might someday become a resident of my group home made me close the thing down and go back to California and college to be with him and then finally kidnap him and go to New York to be the best damn Assyrian sculptor I could manage to be.
Therefore...I have a problem with Majidi. I know how easy it is to increase your heart rate by diving into community activism...I also know it is a great substitute for lots of other things and you can feel after some few years that you gave your all to a difficult task, and you did.
I have a choice...I can take to the hills and fight, but it would be a false choice for me, for there is another sort of work that needs doing, and I can do that better...as I could the other.
It's a matter of personal style. I like to be effective and put out on every cylinder I have. What I do now absolutely challenges me in every way...it brings out the best and most complex and will get me killed if I do it right.
I can't wait.
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