January 23, 2011


Because it is too easy to forget that those who stand up for the truth will have to pay the price, that those who go out and slay the dragons are more often than not be celebrated by the people back at the village, for they remind them of the fact that they - most of them - are cowardly, that they didn't stand up, didn't care enough to do so.

Those who do, they know that, in the end, they are alone.

And then get paraded out decades after they were alone in their fight, decades after they died, and everybody remembers them wrong, deludes themselves that they were there with them, in the stories that they tell, they were with those who resisted, who stood up, who were not Nazis, who were not cheering at the panels of McCarthy, who were not calling others niggers, who were not following blindly to wherever hatred and ignorance leads.

And they make their memories so that they believe it. That it was not the lone voice, the one who put his or her career, sometimes even their livelihood and their safety on the line. No, it was us. It was all of us, they tell their children. We were there all along.

But they are lying. It was never them.

It was always the few, the one, very often never more than one who stood up.

And there is a price to pay for that.

Not just now, there has always been a price to pay.

Most people are merely not willing to pay it.