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Permission granted by author for anyone to distribute this
writing free of charge (including translation into any
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and that it remain intact and complete, including title and 
credit to the original author.

Ezekiel J. Krahlin


© 2003 by Ezekiel J. Krahlin
(Odin's Witness)

Here are four quotes about being a "dissident", which I think
some here will heartily enjoy, and others refute (considering
how I am so well-reflected in them):

          H.L. Mencken:
          "The notion that a radical is one who
          hates his country is naive and usually
          idiotic. He is, more likely, one who likes
          his country more than the rest of us, and
          is thus more disturbed than the rest of us
          when he sees it debauched. He is not a bad
          citizen turning to crime; he is a good
          citizen driven to despair."

          Vaclav Havel:
          "You do not become a 'dissident' just
          because you decide one day to take up this
          most unusual career. You are thrown into
          it by your personal sense of
          responsibility, combined with a complex
          set of external circumstances. You are
          cast out of the existing structures and
          placed in a position of conflict with
          them. It begins as an attempt to do your
          work well, and ends with being branded an
          enemy of society."

          Justice William O. Douglas:
          "Political or religious dissenters are the
          plague of every totalitarian regime."

          Woodrow Wilson:
          "Liberty has never come from government.
          Liberty has always come from the subjects
          of government. The history of liberty is
          the history of resistance."

Refresh our memories...who was:

     (You old timers should get this one:)

               -H.L. Mencken (1880-1956): American
               journalist, critic, and essayist, whose
               perceptive and often controversial
               analyses of American life and letters made
               him one of the most influential critics of
               the 1920s and 1930s.

     (Baby-boomer radicals like myself adore this man:)

               -Vaclav Havel (1936- ): writer, reformer,
               and president of Czechoslovakia
               (1989-1992) and of the Czech Republic
               (1993-2003). He was the center of the
               peaceful revolution that usurped his
               nation's old communist one with a new,
               democratic one...which movement was dubbed
               "The Velvet Revolution"...after which I am
               inspired to coin the term for my own brand
               of activism: "The Lavender-Velvet
               Revolution". Mr. Havel was an artist (a
               writer), who became political leader. I
               follow the same path.

     (If you don't know who the following is/was, you should at
     least guess "a judge of the Supreme Court", considering the
     appelation "Justice". That would be considered "an educated

               -Justice William O. Douglas (1898-1980):
               "For thirty-six and one-half years - a
               record not likely soon, if ever, to be
               broken - the feisty, determined, outspoken
               judicial activist for liberal causes and
               underdog individuals remained a highly
               visible member of the [Supreme] Court..."
               -- Henry J. Abraham

     (Wasn't this one below, a beloved TV cartoon character in the
     50's & 60's? Oh, wait, that was "Woody Woodpecker". Never

               -Woodrow Wilson (1856-1924): 28th
               president of the United States
               (1913-1921), enacted significant reform
               legislation and led the United States
               during World War I (1914-1918). His dream
               of humanizing "every process of our common
               life" was shattered in his lifetime by the
               arrival of the war, but the programs he so
               earnestly advocated inspired the next
               generation of political leaders and were
               reflected in the New Deal of President
               Franklin D. Roosevelt.