Richard Goldstein is an American journalist and writer. He wrote for the Village Voice from June 1966 until 2004, eventually becoming executive editor, specializes in gay and lesbian issues, music, and counterculture topics. He gets it right when talking about the stuggle for racial, sexual and humanistic equality for all.
What do you say to your students about how to wage this struggle (of advancement and opportunity and equality?
Wage it. Refuse to accept it. Get on the street. Move your ass. An Instagram is not a life. Understand and feel the ecstasy of moving with your peers in pursuit of a just cause. It’s a great pleasure that young people have more or less forgotten, that’s been repressed for them. That’s why I think the Occupy Movement was so important. It doesn’t matter what it did or didn’t do. What matters is young people got off their asses, and they understood what protest is for. The solution is to stomp it down — it’s still “no justice, no peace.” Also to force the government to give money to poor people, tax the rich — and that’s something that you do at the ballot box. You have to do both.
I’m not talking about overthrowing the system — this is something that was an illusion of my youth, and we didn’t succeed in that anyway. I am talking about simple clear paths to justice. That’s something you have to struggle for, and it constantly has to be struggled for. I’m glad there are struggles for women’s rights and gay rights, but those people also have to stick up for racial justice. That’s where it all comes from. If you’re a feminist or a gay liberationist, if you’re going to get married to someone of your sex, the reason that’s happening is because of the black struggle. And so you have to pay your dues. You have to acknowledge your debt and participate in securing justice for everybody.
Via Rolling Stone