Howard Zinn on Activism

"[A]fter all, and this is a very important thing to understand, the power of governments and the power of all large entities like corporations, rests and depends upon the obedience of people. The government and the military, as powerful as they are, cannot carry out a war.” - Howard Zinn, speaking on the necessity of activism with Sunny Miller, Executive Director of Traprock Peace Center (August, 2006).

This fascinating 22 minute conversation by one of the great thinkers and activists of our time is available for download at //

Dr. Zinn encouraged activism in peace and justice movements, both for the sake of society and for the sake of ourselves.

“Historically we can point to the successes of these movements [such as civil rights and against the Vietnam War]….I think the other thing that is important to tell people who perhaps are on the verge of becoming active but are not sure what it will mean to their lives, and what sacrifices they will have to make. I think what is important for them to know is that there is nothing more satisfying than to participate with other people in a struggle or a good cause. That whatever sacrifices may be required of you, whatever troubles you may go through, whatever threats may be made to you, once you have been part of such a movement, you will never forget it. It will be a high point of your life. There is nothing so satisfying as getting together with other people who believe in peace and justice."

The audio is copyright 2006 Traprock Peace Center; all rights reserved. Audio may be downloaded for free for non-profit use; it may not be edited or copied for sale without permission of Traprock Peace Center. Radio stations and websites may replay it in its entirety only, with attributions to the participants and to Traprock Peace Center as producer. Any replay must refer to Traprock’s copyright. Permission to replay is not necessary, but notice of replay is required to

The MP3 audio is 22:14 minutes, recorded at 128 kbps mono, and with a file size of 20.4 mb. This phone interview was conducted and recorded in August, 2006 by Sunny Miller, Executive Director of Traprock Peace Center.

The permanent link for the audio program:


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