Life Arts

911 Stand Up

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Anonymous CD recording by renowned artists, passed out at a peace rally, 72 mins 

The 911 poem, entitled "Self-Evident" by Ani DiFranco, evokes the mood of 9-11 within New York City, and is transcribed below. Also included on this bootleg CD is Melissa Etheridge’s “An Inconvenient Truth,” Eminem’s “Mosh,” some Black rap, British rap, a clip of Jon Stewart asking, “Dr. Rice, does the buck stop anywhere near you?,” and an excellent parody of “I Am the Walrus,” called “I’m the Decider” (see http://decider.cf.huffingtonpost.com/ 

John Fogerty’s “Déjà Vu All Over Again” also appears on the disc. Many recordings of Bush, Condi, Cheney and Rummy lying to the American public are set to ominous or soulful music, and interspersed with TV news clips.   

The compilation is recommended as a well-constructed piece of counter propaganda that motivates and inspires, fostering the right amount of pain, sadness, anger and courage.  

King gives his compelling “Silence is Betrayal” speech (also transcribed below), with tinny scratches lending authenticity to the words.  Also included is his “Now Is the Time” speech. 

Now is the time for collaboration, perhaps, instead of competition. Now is the time to train the thousands of captains who will lead coordinated acts of withdrawn consent, sharing strategies and resources across broadly diverse groups. 

This compilation achieves that, reminding us that the revolution is not being televised, and alternative voices will not be found on the radio. 

Self-Evident (by Ani DiFranco)

Us people are just poems. We’re 90% metaphor with a meanness of meaning approaching hyper-distillation.  And once upon a time, we were moonshine rushing down the throat of a giraffe.  Yes, rushing down the long hall despite what the PA announcement says.  Yes, rushing down the hall, down the long stairs, in the building so tall that it will always be there. It’s part of the pair. 

There on the bow of Noah’s Ark, the most prestigious couple just kicking back parked against a perfectly blue sky on a morning beatific in its Indian Summer breeze on the day that America fell to its knees, after strutting around for a century without saying thank you or please. 

And the shock was so sonic and the smoke was deafening between the set up and the punch line ’cause we were all on time for work that day. We all boarded that plane for it to fly. And then when the fires were raging, we all climbed up on the windowsill and then we all held hands and jumped into the sky.  And every borough looked up when it heard the first blast and then every dumb action movie was summarily surpassed. And the exodus uptown by foot and motorcar looked more like war than anything I’ve seen so far… so far… so far... so far.

So fierce and ingenious – a poetic specter so far gone that every jackass newscaster was struck dumb and stumbling over, “Oh, my God,” and “This is unbelievable,” and on and on.  And I’ll tell you what, while we’re at it, you can keep the Pentagon. You can keep the propaganda. You can keep each and every TV that’s been trying to convince me to participate in some frat school punk’s plan to perpetuate retribution, perpetuate retribution. 

Even as the blue toxic smoke of our lesson in retribution is still hanging in the air and there’s ash on our shoes and there’s ash in our hair.  And there’s a fine silt on every mantle from Hell’s Kitchen to Brooklyn and the streets are full of stories – some twists and near misses. And soon every open bar is crammed to the rafters with tales of narrowly averted disasters.  And the whiskey’s flowing like never before.  As all over the country folks just shake their heads and pour. 

So here’s a toast to all the folks that live in Palestine, Afghanistan, Iraq, El Salvador. Here’s a toast to all the folks living on the Pine Ridge Reservation under the stone cold gaze of Mount Rushmore. Here’s a toast to all those nurses and doctors who daily provide women with a choice, who stand down a threat the size of Oklahoma City just to listen to a young woman’s voice. Here’s a toast to all those folks on death row right now awaiting the executioner’s guillotine, who are shackled there with dread and can only escape into their heads to find peace in the form of a dream, peace in the form of a dream, peace in the form of a dream.

’Cuz take away our play stations and we are a third world nation, under the thumb of some blue blood royal son who stole the Oval Office in that phony election.  I mean, it don’t take a weatherman to look around and see the weather. Jeb said he’d deliver Florida, folks, and boy did he ever.  And we hold these truths to be self-evident: 

No. 1. George W. Bush is not president;

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In 2004, Rady Ananda joined the growing community of citizen journalists. Initially focused on elections, she investigated the 2004 Ohio election, organizing, training and leading several forays into counties to photograph the 2004 ballots. She officially served at three recounts, including the 2004 recount. She also organized and led the team that audited Franklin County Ohio's 2006 election, proving the number of voter signatures did not match official results. Her work appears in three books.

Her blogs also address religious, gender, sexual and racial equality, as well as environmental issues; and are sprinkled with book and film reviews on various topics. She spent most of her working life as a researcher or investigator for private lawyers, and five years as an editor.

She graduated from The Ohio State University's School of Agriculture in December 2003 with a B.S. in Natural Resources.

All material offered here is the property of Rady Ananda, copyright 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009. Permission is granted to repost, with proper attribution including the original link.

"In a time of universal deceit, telling the truth is a revolutionary act." Tell the truth anyway.

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