John Lennon was assassinated in December 1980 in New York. But 36 years on, he continues to speak to us. And we should all listen very carefully to what he says.
A message just as relevant today as it ever was
In an interview posted on Yoko Ono’s Imagine Peace website, Lennon says:
We can get peace now if we want it now. And the left wing talk about giving the power to the people… [but] the people have the power. All we have to do is awaken the power in the people.
Both Christians and non-Christians will probably recognise Christmas as a season of giving and goodwill; and the Bible says angels proclaimed upon Jesus’ birth “peace on earth and loving mercy towards all people!”
Now Lennon was not a big fan of religion. (Nor was he a fan of nationalism or capitalism, as his song Imagine shows.) But his insistence that we can “get peace now if we want it” is incredibly poignant at a time of year which is supposedly all about peace and love.
Awakening the power inside us
The idea of awakening the power that everyone has inside them in order to bring about change in the world is not uncommon. And numerous images on the internet have long sought to stress the importance of ordinary people uniting in order to stop oppression or exploitation. Some of the most prominent examples being:
And who could forget the pyramid of capitalism – whose bottom level could easily bring those above it crashing down?
That was precisely John Lennon’s point: ordinary working people have immense power, no matter how powerless they may feel at points. As he said in his last major interview:
It’s quite possible to do anything, but not if you put it on the leaders… You have to do it yourself.
So change can come. If everyone realises the power that they have. And if they all come together to make that change happen.
For inspiration, there are already many examples of this actually happening.
In Britain’s environment of skills shortages and worsening employment conditions, some citizens have set about creating solutions. They have rebuilt local economies from the ground up. They’ve turned away from large corporations and towards independent local businesses. They’ve grown food. And they have stood up to the fossil fuel industry. Together.
Elsewhere in the world, citizens are bypassing the rule of corrupt elites to create more participative democracies. And in the middle of the worst war zones, they’re building a cooperative, sustainable future while taking a firm stand against ethnic, religious, and gender discrimination. Together.
Get Involved! No, seriously. Please get involved…
Unlike most media outlets, we always aim at The Canary to finish our articles with a comment on how to support positive causes and oppose negative ones. Because while journalism is a job for us, it’s also a mission. We want to create a better society through our articles. To make a living while breaking through corporate media bias and spreading the news (good or bad). Not to become millionaires or to defend millionaires. But to encourage our readers to get involved. To unite. To mobilise. And to act.
So share articles from The Canary or other outlets involved in the ongoing media revolution. Join a union. Join a campaign group. And start conversations. Spread knowledge and hope. Not just with people who share your views. But with family members. Friends. Colleagues. Or even strangers. Because any person capable of trembling with rage whenever injustice occurs can be a powerful agent of change. And together, we can make a difference.
– Follow the hyperlinks in the ‘Come together’ section of this article to read more about the experiences mentioned. For more about the democratic experiment in Rojava in particular, see the featured book below.
– If you appreciate The Canary, please consider supporting us.
– Check out other new media organisations which are delivering news, analysis, and opinion in a more independent and ethical way. If there are any you think we’ve missed out, please add them in the comments section:
Media Diversified, Novara Media, Corporate Watch, Common Space, Media Lens, Another Angry Voice, Bella Caledonia, Vox Political, Evolve Politics, Real Media, Red Pepper, Reel News, ROAR, STRIKE! magazine, The Bristol Cable, Manchester Mule, Salford Star.
Featured image via YouTube
We need your help ...
The coronavirus pandemic is changing our world, fast. And we will do all we can to keep bringing you news and analysis throughout. But we are worried about maintaining enough income to pay our staff and minimal overheads.
Now, more than ever, we need a vibrant, independent media that holds the government to account and calls it out when it puts vested economic interests above human lives. We need a media that shows solidarity with the people most affected by the crisis – and one that can help to build a world based on collaboration and compassion.
We have been fighting against an establishment that is trying to shut us down. And like most independent media, we don’t have the deep pockets of investors to call on to bail us out.
Can you help by chipping in a few pounds each month?