Zinn reviewed the history of the abolitionists and the Vietnam War to encourage a new generation of resistance against the Iraq occupation and the war at home.
Legendary historian Howard Zinn joins us to talk about war, torture and the teaching of history. Zinn says had Obama heeded the lessons of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., he wouldn’t be escalating U.S. attacks abroad and increasing the size of the U.S. military budget.
Howard Zinn: I believe neutrality is impossible, because the world is already moving in certain directions. Wars are going on. Children are starving. And to be neutral, to pretend to neutrality, to not take a stand in a situation like that is to collaborate with whatever is going on, to allow it to happen. I did not want to be a collaborator with what was happening. I wanted my history to intercede and to take a stand on behalf of peace, on behalf of a racial equality or sexual equality..."
HOWARD ZINN: It’s interesting that the inauguration should come a few days after the celebration of Martin Luther King’s birthday, because here we have Bush being inaugurated as President after the — all of the hypocritical statements made on Martin Luther King’s birthday by our leading politicians, and who talk sort of very rhapsodically about Martin Luther King, but absolutely really taking what he stands for and pushing it aside, because Bush represents everything that Martin Luther King opposed.
HOWARD ZINN: Well, the contest, unfortunately, is not giving us any kind of fundamental reappraisal of American policy foreign and domestic. By a fundamental reappraisal, I mean we are dealing with a serious issue of the war in Iraq and we’re dealing with the serious issues of health and education, and what to do with the wealth of the United States to help people, and neither candidate is addressing the fundamentals.
Alice Walker, Kurt Vonnegut, Danny Glover, James Earl Jones and Others Read at Special Event
Howard Zinn’s A People’s History of the United States was first published 23 years ago. The millionth copy of the book was recently sold. To celebrate this feat a group of actors, writers and editors recently gathered for a public reading of the book.…
Who would have thought a history book could become a best-seller? Who would have thought that a history book could not only become a best seller, but could become ever more popular over the years? Who would have thought a little while ago, Professor Howard Zinn would have sold the millionth copy of his famous book, A People’s History of the United States? Well that’s what happened, and on Sunday night in New York City, a group of renowned authors, actresses and editors gathered to pay homage to the book that changed history.