The following is a short intro to different kinds of people in the public domain today whose gutsy attitudes should be known and admired:
- A self-proclaimed British -Muslim political crusader for peace, justice and equality. Salma has carved herself out a political career as a Birmingham city councilor and leader of Stop the War coalition in the city plus leader of the socialist party RESPECT. She’s also a psychotherapist, wife and mum of three -phew busy lady.
- Salma stepped into politics when she was spat at walking down the road after the 9/11 attacks. She since has been a figurehead and human bridge between the public and the majority of decent, law-abiding Muslims. An empowered role model, she confronts xenophobes and male Muslims who won’t accept the UK’s consensus of equality for women.
- Known for writing thought- provoking commentary and her outspoken views, she says: ‘ it’s necessary for politicians to be accountable for their decisions.’
- Probably the most influential left-wing intellectual in the world. He is a pioneering theorist of Linguistics and Philosophy, prolific author and political activist.
- Since the Vietnam War in the 1960s Chomsky has been an outspoken critic of US Foreign Policy and the influence of big business over the US government and has written tens of dozens of books and articles that inspire people worldwide.
- One of Chomsky’s most famous books is ‘Manufacturing Consent’, a critique of government and media today and is famed for quoting Walter Lippmann who said ;the public are a ‘bewildered herd’ who need to be controlled by a media that gives a biased view.
- The Jewish 82 year old supporter of Palestinian rights is still aggravating the authorities, only today Israel barred him from entering the country to give a seminar at Bir Zeit University.
- Journalist and broadcaster Goodman launched independent media channel Democracy Now in 1996 with her friend Juan Gonzalez. It is now aired by more than 700 TV and radio networks in the US and seen as the alternative to mainstream news.
- Amy says: ‘ The silence of the corporate media on certain stories means we need to take the media back.’ She reported on Chevron’s role in the oil rigs being violently seized from the people in Nigeria and was beaten up by officers for witnessing a Massacre in East Timor.
- She is the first journalist to win the ‘Right Livelihood’ Award for people with practical solutions to challenges that face the world. Author Susan Sarandon said about her: ‘ She’s not afraid to speak truth to power. She does it every day. ‘
- Tatchell has been working for more then 40 years as a full-time and unpaid human rights activist, he tirelessly leads protests and campaigns to raise awareness of discrimination against gay people and injustices in the developing world.
- He founded the LBGT group Outrage to keep gay rights on the agenda and to change policy- such as in the police force. He is famed for his protest against Neo-Nazis in Russia and his Citizen’s arrest of Mugabe in Brussels. Beaten badly by yobs in both confrontations he now has permanent brain damage, which meant he had to stand down as a Green MP.
- Tatchell has endured hundreds of attacks over the years and survives on a meagre living. He puts up with harassment and death threats but he says: ‘ Quite simply, I love people and loathe injustice, I can’t understand why people accept things as they are.’