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A merry, r’evolutionary Christmas for Occupy supporters everywhere!

Excerpt from an article that originally appeared in the Peoples' Weekly World, 
Dec. 22, 1999 (USA).

Nearly smothered beneath piles of gift catalogs and sale circulars, nearly drowned in a sea of synthesized elevator-music Christmas carols, in a locked theological vault guarded down through the centuries by legions of preachers, priests and pontiffs, there burns a persistent secret flame. It is the flame of a revolutionary hope – hope for a better world, a more just society, where the social order is turned upside down so that the poor are fed and the rich are relieved of their ill-gotten gains. And it is something that working people of any culture, any religious or philosophical background can relate to.

When you look at the Christmas story closely, you find a story of working-class people living in difficult times, in circumstances not too different from those faced by millions of people today. These are people who are aware of their history of struggle. They draw strength from the lessons of the past and nourish hopes and dreams for a better world.

Mary, the young mother in the Christmas story is supremely confident that the future will be better. Her song, known as the Magnificat, is nothing less than revolutionary. This revolutionary aspect of Christmas is also found in the popular Christmas carol “O Holy Night” (Cantique de Noel). The words were written by the French socialist Placide Cappeau de Roquemaure and it was translated into English by the American abolitionist John Sullivan Dwight.

“Truly he taught us to love one another; his law is love and his gospel is peace. Chains shall he break, for the slave is our brother; and in his name all oppression shall cease!”

The political ramifications of this carol were well understood by some reactionaries in our own country and it continues to be controversial. The song was banned for years in many conservative churches in the U.S. and many radio stations in the South refused to play it.

So, whenever you get weary of the holidays and all the claptrap that surrounds them, remember the young family of the Christmas story, how they hoped and dreamed for a revolutionary transformation of their country and how they persevered in the face of oppression.

Whoever you are, have a merry and revolutionary Christmas. And let us then enter the new millennium resolved to wipe out homelessness, poverty, racism and injustice once and for all!

Photo: Chicago’s Daley Plaza, 2006. (http://www.flickr.com/photos/laffy4k/ / CC BY 2.0)

6:33 pm in Big Picture, FoO Media by George PórTags: , history, hope
1 Comment »

1 response to A merry, r’evolutionary Christmas for Occupy supporters everywhere!

  1. christmas with love and peace for you george
    d

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