Almost 75 years ago a man once said..............
"In the 17th Chapter of St Luke it is written: “the Kingdom of God is within man” - not one man nor a group of men, but in all men! In you! You, the people have the power - the power to create machines. The power to create happiness! You, the people, have the power to make this life free and beautiful, to make this life a wonderful adventure.
Then - in the name of democracy - let us use that power - let us all unite. Let us fight for a new world - a decent world that will give men a chance to work - that will give youth a future and old age a security."
These are lines from one of the greatest speeches ever made and ironically they were spoken by Charlie Chaplin in his movie "The Great Dictator."
Even more ironic was the situation surrounding the character that gave this speech in the movie and why.
You will have to watch the movie for that answer.
Rumor had it that the creator of the famous movie "The Tramp" had decided to make his first talking film.
Moreover, it was said that he would be playing the part of a character inspired by Adolf Hitler.
Think about the implications of a move like that.
Finally, after the long and painstaking process of revising and then directing, Chaplin presented "The Great Dictator" in New York on October 15th, 1940 while the world had just begun to immerse itself in another great war.
The historical circumstances in which he had found himself during those two years were quite extraordinary.
His native country, England, had declared war at the beginning of September 1939, but the United States, where he had been living as a permanent resident – but British citizen – since 1913, had resolved to keep out of the conflict.
By waging war against Hitler via the silver screen, Chaplin was making a personal commitment to expose to the world the tyranny and reign of terror that Germany was advancing.
This took balls, real balls.
Even before shooting began, "The Great Dictator" had enraged German and British diplomats posted in the United States and brought Chaplin to the forefront of celebrities harassed by the House of Un-American Activities.
He took a chance, with enormous personal risk.
I am the farthest you can be from being a political or religious man but I was so moved when I watched this speech that I had to share it with you my fellow Baby Boomers.
We are facing this same kind of tyranny and oppression and cruelty in our world and lives today in so many different forms.
Whether it's murderous dictators coming from countries of the middle east, our own greed driven Congress blowing up the economic structure of our own great country or short sighted and twisted murderers in our high schools or simply friends and neighbors who ignore the simple mores of honesty and decency we need to listen to this message from yesteryear’s closet in hopes of enforcing the sentiment that the “machine men with machine hearts” never have our best interests in mind in a world where violence and greed seem to be the guiding force of humanity.
How much have we learned since this speech was first made?
I do know that for the first time in human history, because of our advanced technology, the smallest and the weakest among us can have as much of an impact as any other.
Just like Charlie Chaplin in 1940.
Let me know your favorite.
If you found today’s blog helpful, interesting, or even funny, I bet your friends would too.
It's easy to tell them about it.
Forward it on to them or just email them my blog link at www.survive55.com.
The more Baby Boomers we can help, the better place we make this world !!!
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