I want to share parts of a text that a very dear person sent me, asking me to make an article out of his words because he wants to express what he feels, what he thinks, what he wants to say. And I have accepted, because I consider that his voice deserves to be heard, because I believe that his opinion is valuable, because his testimony is inspiring. I am quoting him verbatim, although I omitted many personal bits (for obvious reasons). I invite you to read his argument carefully, with respect, with empathy. I invite you to reflect on what he says, on what he implies, on what he proposes.
I quote - "... You know that I am a common worker, of those who get up early and go to bed late, of those who break their backs to earn their bread, of those who dream of a better future for their children. I am from those who pay their taxes, their debts, their services, and who barely have anything left to save or treat themselves to. that tell us how to live. Have you heard Oliver Anthony's song - Rich Men North of Richmond? a wave of support, empathy, indignation, rebellion. It says what many of us think, but we dare not say. It denounces injustice, inequality, corruption, the hypocrisy of those who govern us. I had something to say about all this, but they say it better.They are the spokespersons for a tired and fed up generation, they are the artists who have managed to capture the attention and support of the public, they are the unsung heroes who have given a voice to the voiceless. Maybe you dare to express what I feel in an article, I know you also have something to say. Perhaps you will join the cause, as so many have joined. Because we are many, and we are strong. Because we have something to say, and we are going to say it. Because we are not going to give up, nor are we going to shut up. Because we are the new world, with an old soul..." - end of quote.
I immediately "went out" to look for the song, even though I had already heard opinions about it.
The song opens by saying, "I've been selling my soul, working all day / Overtime for sh*tty pay / So I can sit here and waste my life away / Crawl home and drown my problems." How many of us don't feel this way? How many of us have not resigned ourselves to a mediocre life, without hope, without illusion? How many of us have not lost faith in the system, in the institutions, in the politicians?
He goes on to say, "It's a f*cking shame what the world has become / For people like me and people like you / I wish I could wake up and it wasn't true / But it is, oh, it is." How many of us have not felt this way? How many of us have not wished that everything was different, that everything was better? How many of us have not seen how the world goes to hell, and how nobody does anything to stop it?
He reaches his climax when he says, "Living in the new world / With an old soul / These rich men north of Richmond / God knows they just want total control / They want to know what you think, they want to know what you do / And they don't think you know it, but I know you know it / 'Cause your dollar's worthless and it's taxed to the end / By the rich men north of Richmond." How many of us have not felt this way? How many of us have not been victims of abuse, deception, theft of those who govern us? How many of us have not witnessed the power, the luxury, the impunity of those who exploit us? How many of us have not been aware of the manipulation, the censorship, the lies of those who control us?
The song ends by repeating the first verse: "I've been selling my soul, working all day." A way of showing the resignation, the impotence, the frustration of those who have no voice or vote. A way of showing the crude and harsh reality of those who live from day to day. A way of showing the urgent and vital need for change.
Oliver Anthony - Rich Men North Of Richmond
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