Thank You, Howard Zinn
by Matthew Rothschild, Published on Friday, January 29, 2010 by The Progressive
Thank You, Howard Zinn, for being there during the civil rights movement, for teaching at Spelman, for walking the picket lines, and for inspiring such students as Alice Walker and Marian Wright Edelman.
Thank you, Howard Zinn, for being there during the Vietnam War, for writing "The Logic of Withdrawal," and for going to Hanoi.
Thank you, Howard Zinn, for always being there.
Thank you, Howard Zinn, for being a man who supported the women's liberation movement, early on.
Thank you, Howard Zinn, for being a straight who supported the gay and lesbian rights movement, early on.
Thank you, Howard Zinn, for being a Jew who dared to criticize Israel's oppression of the Palestinians, early on.
Thank you, Howard Zinn, for being a great man who didn't believe in the "Great Man Theory of History."
Thank you, Howard Zinn, for taking the time to write your landmark work, "A People's History of the United States," and for educating two generations now in the radical history of this country, a history, as you stressed, of class conflict.
Thank you, Howard Zinn, for grasping the importance of transforming this book into "The People Speak," the History Channel special that ran in December and that should be used by secondary, high school and college classes for as long as U.S. history is taught.
Thank you, Howard Zinn, for opposing war, all wars, including our own "good wars," our own "holy wars," as you called them-and for pointing out that a "just cause" does not lead to a "just war."
Thank you, Howard Zinn, for pointing out that soldiers don't die for their country, but that they die for their political leaders who dupe them or conscript them into wars. And that they die for the corporations that profit from war.
Thank you, Howard Zinn, for urging us to "renounce nationalism and all its symbols: its flags, its pledges of allegiance, its anthems, its insistence in song that God must single out America to be blessed. We need to assert our allegiance to the human race, and not to any one nation."
Thank you, Howard Zinn, for stressing that change comes from below, and that it comes at surprising times, even when things seem bleakest, if we organize to make it happen.
Thank you, Howard Zinn, for stressing the value of engaging in action to make this world a better place, even if we don't get there.
Thank you, Howard Zinn, for this amazing, inspiring paragraph, which I've had on my wall for years now:
"To be hopeful in bad times is not just foolishly romantic. It is based on the fact that human history is a history not only of cruelty, but also of compassion, sacriﬁce, courage, kindness. What we choose to emphasize in this complex history will determine our lives. If we see only the worst, it destroys our capacity to do something. If we remember those times and places-and there are so many-where people have behaved magniﬁcently, this gives us the energy to act, and at least the possibility of sending this spinning top of a world in a different direction. And if we do act, in however small a way, we don't have to wait for some grand utopian future. The future is an inﬁnite succession of presents, and to live now as we think human beings should live, in deﬁance of all that is bad around us, is itself a marvelous victory."
Thank you, Howard Zinn, for recognizing the beauty and power of culture, and for exalting the poet, the singer, the actor, the artist.
Thank you, Howard, for being kind enough to write your columns this last decade for a relatively obscure magazine called The Progressive, and for doing so with the utmost intelligence and grace.
Thank you, Howard, for calling me your editor.
Thank you, Howard, for your wry and self-deprecating sense of humor.
Thank you, Howard, for your kindness.
Thank you, Howard, for your friendship.
Thank you, Howard.
© 2010 The Progressive - Matthew Rothschild is the editor of The Progressive magazine.
From Democraxcy Now! : Howard Zinn (1922-2010): A Tribute to the Legendary Historian with Noam Chomsky, Alice Walker, Naomi Klein and Anthony Arnove - We pay tribute to the late historian, writer and activist Howard Zinn, who died suddenly on Wednesday of a heart attack at the age of eighty-seven. Howard Zinn’s classic work A People’s History of the United States changed the way we look at history in America. It has sold over a million copies and was recently made into a television special called The People Speak. We remember Howard Zinn in his own words, and we speak with those who knew him best: Noam Chomsky, Alice Walker, Naomi Klein and Anthony Arnove.
A Radical Treasure - By BOB HERBERT - January 30, 2010, NYT Op-Ed Columnist - I had lunch with Howard Zinn just a few weeks ago, and I’ve seldom had more fun while talking about so many matters that were unreservedly unpleasant: the sorry state of government and politics in the U.S., the tragic futility of our escalation in Afghanistan, the plight of working people in an economy rigged to benefit the rich and powerful. More..
Para Noam Chomsky, su colega y amigo rescataba las raíces de las luchas colectivas- Zinn, rebelde que invitaba a hacer historia - David Brooks/ I - Corresponsal, Periódico La Jornada. Viernes 29 de enero de 2010.
Rescatar las incontables pequeñas acciones de gente desconocida, la labor de Howard Zinn- Activista por la paz y la justicia social, escribió al menos 20 libros e incontables artículos y ensayos - David Brooks- II y última, La Jornada, Sábado 30 de enero de 2010
Howard Zinn, el imprescindible - Tanalís Padilla* - En un país donde la figura del intelectual público es casi inexistente, la muerte de Howard Zinn deja un hueco profundo. Desde su labor como historiador, su trabajo docente y su participación en luchas populares, Zinn estuvo siempre con los marginados. Como lo expresa el título de su autobiografía, No se puede ser neutral en un tren en movimiento, Zinn buscaba que sus alumnos pensaran críticamente, renunciaran a la comodidad del silencio y combatieran la injusticia donde quiera que la presenciaran. “Esto –reconoció– es una receta que trae problemas”.Mas..