Chris Hedges: Know That If We Resist We Keep Hope Alive


Image by j_mills via Flickr

Dandelion Salad

with Chris Hedges

Christopher Smiley on Jun 3, 2017

Chris Hedges speaks at memorial day rally hosted by Veterans For Peace.

My work:

Full transcript, April 18, 2017


“We may feel, in the face of the ruthless corporate destruction of our nation, our culture and our ecosystem, powerless and weak. But we are not. We have a power that terrifies the corporate state. Any act of rebellion, no matter how few people show up or how heavily it is censored, chips away at corporate power. Any act of rebellion keeps alive the embers for larger movements that follow us. It passes on another narrative. It will, as the state consumes itself, attract wider and wider numbers. Perhaps this will not happen in our lifetimes. But if we persist, we will keep this possibility alive. If we do not, it will die.

“Dr. Rieux in Albert Camus’ novel “The Plague” is not driven by ideology. He is driven by empathy, the duty to minister to suffering, no matter the cost. Empathy, or what the Russian novelist Vasily Grossman called “simple human kindness,” becomes in all despotisms a subversive act. To act on this empathy—the empathy for human beings locked in cages less than an hour from us [here in Princeton], the empathy for undocumented mothers and fathers being torn from their children on the streets of our cities, the empathy for Muslims who are demonized and banned from our shores, fleeing the wars we created, the empathy for poor people of color gunned down by police in our streets, the empathy for girls and women trafficked into prostitution, the empathy for all those who suffer at the hands of a state intent on militarization and imposing a harsh cruelty on the vulnerable, the empathy for the earth that gives us life and that is being contaminated and pillaged for profit—becomes political and even dangerous.


“Accept sorrow—for who cannot be profoundly sorrowful at the state of our nation, the world and our ecosystem—but know that in resistance there is a balm that leads to wisdom and, if not joy, a strange, transcendent happiness. Know that if we resist we keep hope alive.”

From the archives:

Chris Hedges: The Issue Before Us is Death

The First Thing They Steal Is Courage

How to Fight a Tyrant

Shifting Systems With Nonviolent Strategy + Think Outside the Protest Box by Rivera Sun

The Problem is Civil Obedience by Howard Zinn + Matt Damon Reads from Howard Zinn’s Speech

All Must Be Unleashed To Rouse Our Fellow Humanity From Their Stupor As They Sleepwalk Toward The Cliff Edge

We are Hurtling Toward Death–Step Out of Line and Resist

Chris Hedges: The Power of Writing as Resistance + Q&A

Chris Hedges: A Recipe for an Emerging Dystopia

Chris Hedges: My Goal Is The Utter Destruction Of This Corporate Kleptocracy, interviewed by Joe Sacco

Chris Hedges: Stop Fascism

If Hope Remains Dormant, Freedom Remains Elusive by ashiftinconsciousness

The Seeds of Hope by Tristan A. Shaw

Chris Hedges Booed off the Stage as He Delivered a Graduation Speech on War and Empire (2003)

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