I have heard it said, as I am sure you have also, that "Now is the time to fight!" Well, my comrades, that is not the whole truth. You see, the fight has always been here. The fight has been in the homes of every person alive, at the check out lane, at the work place, at the school houses and churches, at the unenmployment lines and welfare offices across the country, the fight has been against us. The weapons used have been the destruction of workers unions, the scapegoating of public assistance, the copyright of god the churches and preachers have taken to control our spirit, the influx of drugs into our neighborhoods, the shark tacitcs of Slave-mart (wal-mart) and BigBucks (starbucks) McDeadly food for our children, television that does not inform but distract, the selling of sex and condemning of sexuality, the gentrification and stripping of culture of our neighborhoods, and the littany goes on and on.The fight was not over at the end of the Civil Rights movement, a time that many look back on as a great victory. To assume that this was a victory and not merely a launching point for a greater battle is to deny the ghettos and prisons of today, both being a breathing ATM for the wealthy in the form of drug trafficking and forced labor of corporate prisons. Our schools have been racially integrated, yes, but has there been a fair and equal distribution of funding? No. Black americans gained the right to vote, but has there not been voter fraud and a complete deletion of real black voices from the political sector of the world? Yes. The greatest movements of social change have not taken place in the voting booths, but by those who did not have the vote to rest upon. The minute that all americans could vote, the system adapted to make voting a ridiculous and crule joke, allowing for corporate america to buy off candidates and create wars for profit, despite the voice of the people in the streets screaming for justice and peace. This should tell us that there is not a concern by the those who control and profit as to what we believe. This should tell us that our vote and our anger are for nothing so long as we pay for the existence of these vultures. There has to be a new way to fight.If you are new to the idea of this fight, then I welcome you, and charge you to learn from those who are experienced in tactics of survival and promotion of a more just society. If you are not new then I charge you step up your game. Recently, a group called Move-On has celebrated 10 years of being in existence. This is no cause for celebration. This is cause for mourning and anger, that a group founded under the pre-suppositon that we must end war and corporate control has turned ten years old and we are in the midst of the most privatized corporate war for profit ever, and it is not over. We need to step up our game! The tools of our slavery have gotten heavy and we have allowed for it to happen in the name of our security, or in the belief that "I am comfortable, so everyone can be too". It is time we turn the tides and shake off the shackles together.Recently on blogtalkradio, there has been a harsh reminder that corporate interests do not coincide with the voice of the people. This is not a new notion to some of us, and a bitter awakening to others. Let us stop criticizing those who have been fighting, let us no longer say that "radical" is a bad word. Let us now learn the roots of our very rebellious nature and suck the sweet milk from them to nurture our branches of dissent into great flowers of revolt. Let us come together now to learn from one another, and have no shame for our ignorance, rather a yearning to mend it and irradicate it. Let us not rely upon the historical movements as proof we have existed, rather creat a new movement that is inspired by our past and nurtured by each others beauty and creativity.Stop asking and start taking. Take back our labor, our lives, our spirit, our streets and our voices from those who would rather see us numb and complacent. Turn off your television brothers and sisters, because the streets are alive and in full color, high definition, surround sound glory and they are ours. OURS! Stop working on the assumption that there are some people in power that are good, and start working on the notion that good people have the power to change the world right now, without political endorsements or fundraising campaigns. Leaders do not need votes, they need bodies in the movement all around them. Leaders do not need signs bearing their names, but signs declaring our demands. Leaders do not require acceptance from the status quo, and will rarely find it. Leaders teach, learn, cook, clean, change diapers, raise children, stay child-like and playful, join together with all people of struggle, and most importantly, leaders are not extraordinary people, just regular people with large dreams and larger ambitions. Let us all become the leaders we are crying for.We must understand that the fight has been against us for our whole lives, so now is the time to FIGHT BACK!We may not win today, but that must not stifle us. We may not win tomorrow, but that must not scare us, if we choose not to fight, we will never win, and that should move us into action more than anything else. We Must Fight Back!
The Franklin House is pleased to offer, as a service to the community, and to ourselves, Saint Charles’ first ever, FREE University!
The FREE University, or F.U., is a community sustained and operated school, for children of all ages, ranging from youth to our prized elders.
Classes will range from knowledge sharing to skill sharing, and pretty much anything that you can ever wish to know or share. For thinkers of the abstract to purists of the most high levels, this school is place for growth within our community. All of this is offered for FREE!
Participation is the only requirement to attend. Classes are limited for space, to allow for more direct conversation. The best person to learn from is not always one holding a degree, but often times the one willing to teach without benefit. What exactly is a free school? It is just as it sounds, and a little more than it implies. A FREE school is a school that requires no money to attend and offers no money to lead, yes, that is true. What it also offers is a freedom from arbitrary constraints placed upon other schools in the interest of the moral sanctity of the people. What I mean to say is, we do not tolerate any sort of censorship of information, whether it is what you want to hear or not. There is no agenda to be met and no lobbyist to please. We are FREE from accountability to any body of people or corporations that wish to delete segments of truth.
For instance, you will learn the truth about Columbus, how he ravaged and pillaged and murdered, and you will also hear the truth about Che Guevara, how he too murdered to reach his goal. Nothing is sacred outside of the truth. You will learn, also, that there have been amazing and beautiful people all along the road to this enlightened state. Ever heard of Eugene Debs? Emma Goldman? Arthur Rimbaud?
There are countless examples of the ways that our schooling, whether private or public, has served to disenfranchise us from our nature. We say enough. We are willing to recognize when we may be wrong, and will constructively hash through the years of subservient crap to find what we will come to understand as a better knowledge of self and others.
That, and we will learn how to make a kick ass dinner as well. Or how to sew your own handbag, or make paper from the trash which fills our rubbish bins weekly. We will learn the ins and outs of coffee, beer and wine. The possibilities truly are as endless as there are ideas.
The classes are led by the students, each taking turns at sharing skills or knowledge and having serious discussion about ideas, with the presupposition that most concrete ideas are weights on our creativity and must be ground into a fine powder before being reformed. We are not relativists, however, nor are we purists. We are contradictions and glowing examples of confused puzzles.
Each of us has something valuable to share, or at least a yearning to understand something a little deeper. Let this be the forum for that understanding.
Classes will be held based upon schedules of the leaders of the particular classes and the students schedules. This will be something you should make time for though, as classes will not resolve in one sitting and building ideas and communities will take time. Be willing to commit yourself to the class if you are interested.
Classes so far in the works are: Art History - a study of lives of select artists throughout history that have shaped the way the world sighs. Class led by Angela Franklin, including field trips.
History of Rebellion – Making use of the works of Howard Zinn and the information of independent media, we examine the forgotten or deleted history of revolution. Class led by Michael Franklin with a special messages from Howard Zinn through out.
The Romance of Dying – A class on how not to write poetry, rather how to read and embrace poetry. Ranging from Rimbaud to Whitman, Rumi to Kaufmann, Class leader Sean Arnold will take you on a poetic odyssey.
The Art of Making It All Up – After years of being pestered, Michael Franklin will welcome you into the kitchen for a crash course in throwing together delicious, healthy meals, with little or no money.
These are just a few examples of the classes offered, and the list will only grow with your participation. Please consider taking six to eight weeks of your life back and attending the classes. Child care will be available for certain classes.
This is happening in your own community, so you really have no reason to miss out on a opportunity to build ties to one another and to your self. Nothing reclaims the soul like heuristic living, and nothing can be free unless it is given away.
If you would like to get more information on F.U. or would like to enroll, email the franklin house at firstname.lastname@example.org or just come on by the house on a Sunday evening for a vegetarian potluck dinner. Be Well – the Franklin House
the franklin house welcomes back BARBARA ARRIAGA for a solo cello performance. her style is both classical and teeters on the avant gard. barbara played for us last with the cjboydsexxxtet. it was a life changing experience for many and we are excited to have such a talented and beautiful musician gracing us once again. tuesday nights are casino*town poetry open-mics, so we will have poetry dispersed throughout the evening. vegetarian potluck begins at 6pm and as always we ask for you to bring donations, if you can...no one will be turned away. Barbara is also playing in south city at mic boshan's house the night before she comes here, so make two nights of it!