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In 1970, the late jazz poet Gil Scott-Heron wrote The revolution will not be televised, which became an anthem for the black power movement.  His thoughts remain relevant.  I’ve broadened the context and updated the prose.

I remembered Scott-Heron’s poem while pondering why the average American seems so apathetic as our future is stolen by the rich and powerful.  Perhaps something like, “The revolution will not be televised,” can become the anthem for a movement where Americans of all colors and creeds will stand up for their rights.

You will not be able to stay home, brothers and sisters.
You will not be able to tune in, turn on, and cop out.
You will not be able to lose yourself on Twitter and Facebook,
Skip out for a hit during commercials,
Because the revolution will not be televised.

The revolution will not be brought to you by Coca Cola, Dow, General Electric, McDonalds, Omega, Panasonic, Procter & Gamble, Samsung, and Visa as a four-part special without commercial interruptions.
You will not see pictures of Charles and David Koch blowing the bugle as their conservative political lackeys loot America.
They started the revolution and made sure it will not be televised.

The revolution will not be on Masterpiece Theater and will not star Brad Pitts and Angelina Jolie or Beyonce and Jay Z.
You will not see pictures of energy companies digging up tar sands and leveling mountain ranges while they pollute America’s air and water.
You will not hear greedy corporate executives plan disinformation campaigns so their salaries can grow larger.
The revolution will not be televised.

There will be no pictures of cops beating protestors at Occupy Wall Street or blockades of the Keystone Pipeline.
No images of unemployed, able-bodied men, whose jobs were outsourced.
There will be no pictures of angry women protesting the closure of health clinics.
No images of poor folks being denied food, shelter, and medical care.
The revolution will not be televised.

The revolution will not be featured on NCIS or American Idol or Mad Men or The Game of the Week or Breaking Bad.
The revolution will not be on Saturday Night Live or the Sunday morning talk shows.
The revolution will not be on CNN or Al Jazeera or the Christian Broadcasting Network or the Home Shopping Network or the Do It Yourself Network.
The Revolution will never be discussed on the Fox News Network.
The revolution will not be televised.

There will be no highlights on the eleven o’clock news.
There will be no pictures of hopeless men and women huddled on grungy streets.
No images of starving kids begging for food.
There will be no pictures of the 99 percent who believe in Democracy.
The revolution will not be televised.

The revolution will turn on a message from our sponsor:
Just do it.
We try harder.
Don’t leave home without it.
Takes a licking and keeps on ticking.
Reach out and touch someone.
This land is your land…
The revolution will put you in the driver’s seat.

The revolution is not a game you can play with a thousand virtual friends.
The revolution is not a smart phone App that will give you the answer.
The revolution is not a laborsaving device,
The revolution is a lifesaving device.

The revolution will not be televised.
That’s just as well because they’re watching your TV, Xbox, phone, and computer.
They’re reading your emails, texts, and instant messages.
Fortunately,
The revolution will not be televised.
The revolution will be live.
The revolution will happen in your heart.


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