The TownhallSocial issues

The problem with ‘power to the people’

By Che 

“Power to the people.” This is the slogan heard around the world during the Civil Rights Era, when marginalized people cried out to their oppressor for the right to be treated with the same dignity and respect afforded to all human beings. 

The phrase itself implies an imbalance of power in society where the general population is left to the mercy of the ruling class. The problem with this phrase is that it’s been just that, a phrase, with no real meaning behind it. 

Today, pseudo revolutionaries try to relive the glory of yesteryear with the Civil Rights Era 2.0; also known as the social justice movement. The cries of “power to the people” have been reignited against racism, police brutality, and income inequality. 

But no one really pays attention to this demand. It’s a loose phrase thrown around to garner attention while, either knowingly or unknowingly, it empowers the very class they say they despise.  

What is power? This is the core demand at hand. The people want power, which implies people lack such power. But what does that actually look like? What does it mean to have power and be powerless?  

Let’s break down an extreme example of so we understand what we mean when we say, “power to the people”.  

After being incarcerated for almost 15 years, I was finally free sitting at my mother’s dining room table enjoying my family. When I got up from the table to get juice from the refrigerator, my uncle asked me what the best part of being free was. I paused for a second. 

I considered all the great things about not being in jail. Then I realized the answer was right in front of me. “This,” I replied, referring to the cold glass of juice I sipped on. 

The best part of being free was being able to get something cold to drink whenever I wanted, as opposed to resorting to lukewarm tap water from the sink in my cell. I now had the power to choose. 

As a prisoner your choices are limited. You’re not allowed to decide when you can go outside, when you can talk to your family, and what kinds of foods to eat. You’re not free.   

An extremely wealthy person is in the opposite situation. They have the means to go anywhere they want whenever they want. Their options compared to a kid growing up in the projects are significantly greater. Therefore, it can be concluded that freedom isn’t about the right to live, but the right to have options.  

The fight for freedom has always been about giving people options, that’s what freedom is.  The abolition of slavery gave enslaved Americans options other than living in captivity. The civil rights era materialized due to Jim Crow laws that limited African Americans’ choices. 

Black people couldn’t attend the schools, restaurants, movie theaters, etc. of their choice, so they fought and demanded to have equal options.  Fast forward to today, and you’ll see we’ve lost the true meaning of “power to the people.”  

Last year, we were introduced to a global pandemic. It’s eradicating the many choices we had as free Americans. We were told to shut down our businesses, schools, and churches all in the name of public health and safety. We couldn’t visit our dying loved ones, celebrate weddings and birthdays. We had to stay inside because a “deadly virus” ravaged through the streets. Now, they are stepping it up quite a few notches.  

The Covid-19 vaccine is the latest tool being used to strip us of our freedom, which we explained is nothing more than protecting our options. The state, in conjunction with private businesses, put the people in a corner: either get vaccinated or be left out of society. Options, once again, nullified.  

What’s even more ludicrous about this is that the radical leftist revolutionaries are eating up the propaganda and regurgitating ruling class talking points. Just look at protests held around the country against vaccine mandates. During these, suburban leftist trolls like Antifa and other pseudo revolutionary groups counter demonstrate, even to the point of being violent.  

Their reasoning is that the virus is deadly. Therefore, a vaccine, if administered to a majority of the population, would eradicate it completely. Mind you, the information they validate their stance with comes from the very same ruling class they despise. They want to end oppression while advocating for the oppressors.  

This Civil Rights Era 2.0 is the opposite of freedom. We’ve lost the true meaning of freedom being about allowing us the option to exercise self-determination. Instead, the movement is nothing more than a psyop manipulating the people out of power. They’re not asking for freedom; they’re asking for help and control.  

Somewhere down the line, we exchanged the true meaning of freedom for the state version which is about being taken care of and coddled instead of exercising our God given right to be free. Marches and protests are assembled not to demand freedom, but to demand government overreach in the form of handouts and entitlement programs. 

They want the government to “own” them. This is exactly what they mean when they say they want “investments” in communities of color. Last time I checked, investment meant one becomes an owner in the given investment. So, when the government says they want to “invest,” they just want to own.  

They want the government to control wealth through higher taxes, health care through government mandated health insurance, and housing through subsidized public housing, to name a few. They want the people’s right to choose completely usurped and given to the government. 

Nowadays, that same energy is used to give the government the power to do pretty much whatever they want in the name of public health and safety. People are being left powerless in face of government mandates that leave us only two options: get vaccinated or be out of a job.  

This past week NBA player Andrew Wiggins made the decision to keep his job by getting vaccinated, a reversal of his former stance. When asked, he had this to say:  

“I guess to do certain stuff, like work and all that, I guess you don’t own your body. That’s what it comes down to. If you want to work in society today, then I guess they make the rules as to what goes into your body and what you do.”  

There is no “power to the people” when the people don’t have options on how they determine their own path in life. It’s nothing more than a catchy slogan used to garner donations for causes that gives the ruling class the power to decide for you. 

You’re not free, you’re controlled. They own your body because you are misinformed as to what freedom truly is

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Che is a writer and host of “The No Spoon Podcast” on Scoon TV.

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