Social Question

syz's avatar

Do you have what it takes to be an activist?

Asked by syz (35647points) June 5th, 2010

I just finished watching The Cove and I challenge anyone to watch it and not be moved, regardless of your stance on animal rights or the environment. Is there anything that you believe in enough to fight for? To what extremes would you go? Is it just rhetoric, or have you done something to right a wrong?

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16 Answers

Talimze's avatar

I get in the mood to firebomb some houses when I hear people talking about gay rights. That’s probably the only thing I could get motivated enough to do anything about.

DominicX's avatar

I agree with @Talimze on this one. I am staunchly pro-gay-rights and anti-homophobia. I could see myself being an activist for that as I feel very strongly about it and am passionate about it. Haven’t done all that much for it yet, but I would certainly be willing to.

YARNLADY's avatar

I take my political activism to the top, where it really counts. I support or oppose the politicians that I agree with, and frequently let them know where I stand of various subjects.

I always take every chance I get to spread the word about how easy it is to help fight world hunger without going anywhere or spending anything, just click once a day on

I also advocate using for every internet search instead of Google or Yahoo. They make a donation for every search to your favorite charity.

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

Without a doubt. Being an activist has been a deeply important part of my life for over a decade.

lifeflame's avatar

For those of you who want to watch “The Cove”, here is a 15 minute excerpt on vimeo. (In English, with Japanese subtitles)

It’s terrible, and at the same time it makes me think about how any industry that involves the killing of animals on a large scale is usually equally bloody. I mean, dolphins are known to be particularly sensitive and intelligent mammals, which makes this particularly inexcusable, but this type of violence is probably present in many many other contexts. (In this case, after watching it, it made me glad to be vegetarian. I signed the petition, passed it on to friends to watch)

This question of “what does one do?” is one that continually haunts me. There is so much that goes on a local and global scale that it’s just really daunting at time where to start. This year I was part of a local protest against the building of a high-speed rail that would raze a village down, doing satygrha walks. I think it was my first real piece of civil disobedience, and it opened the door to me thinking about the extent in which I was ready to challenge the powers that be for a particular cause.

At times I feel that I’m not doing enough; but the least I can do, I think, is to remain conscious, and try to live in a way that is ethical. Sometimes I think the most radical things are not even the protests or violent action, but the ones that demand a lifestyle change.

I asked this question a while ago on ‘how far would you go’, and would you ever consider using violence in protests… perhaps this may be of interest.

MissAnthrope's avatar

I’m with @Simone_De_Beauvoir.. absolutely. I have been an activist for as long as I can remember. In fact, my first protest was at age 14, against the first Gulf War ultimatum (‘get out of Kuwait or we attack you’). I laid in a body bag on the steps of the SF Federal Building, came this close to getting arrested, and then the protest turned surreal and we ended up marching onto the Bay Bridge. The last protest I attended was the million-person pro-choice march on DC a few years ago.

Anyway, I have a lot of passionate beliefs and I feel it’s immoral to sit idly by while injustice happens around you. As they say, If you’re not outraged, you’re not paying attention. I feel particularly strongly about women’s rights, gay rights, and the humane treatment of animals and children.

augustlan's avatar

There are a few things I’m passionate about, and I’ve considered becoming more involved in a few causes. I think I’m kind of paralyzed by the overwhelming-ness of it all. So, in the meantime, I do what I feel able to do: I teach my children well, debate passionately with friends, get the word out on facebook and tumblr, and speak up rather than back-down – both here and in my real life. It’s not enough, but it’s something. I feel like if everyone did the small stuff, maybe there wouldn’t be a need for the big stuff… Improve your little piece of the world, and maybe all the little pieces will eventually connect.

ubersiren's avatar

I had the same reaction after watching The Cove. As seen here I donated to several wildlife charities, including the one on the website for The Cove. I wish I knew how to effectively give more of myself. I give to humanitarian efforts, too, but animals being mass slaughtered or under habitat destruction are my passion.

As it turns out, I do not have what it takes. Time, patience, energy, and more patience. People are always looking to bring you down and make it harder on you. I’m not tough enough, at least right now.

It’s so hard to want to make a difference, but know that you alone can only make so much of an impact.

Silhouette's avatar

I am an activist. I’ve marched on the state capital, I write my presidents, I join activists groups like Code Pink and the Yes Men and I support them if and when I can. I am a rabid defender of abused animals but I don’t belong to any animal activist groups. I fly solo on this one, I focus on the animals I have personal contact with. I was all over Kathleen Blanco when she ordered the National Guard to “shoot and kill” looters in New Orleans. Letters, phone calls, e-mails. Wasn’t much, but it was the best I could do, so I did it.

tranquilsea's avatar

I spend a lot of time researching various problems and then researching possible solutions. I’m more politically active than anyone I know and I spend a lot of time trying to educate them without driving them nuts.

Mostly, I just wish more people would spend even just a little time finding out how the world really works and what happens to create this consumerist system we have.

El_Cadejo's avatar

I see myself doing a lot for coral reefs in the future.(when i get out of school) It seriously makes me cry sometimes thinking about the fact that they have been there for millions of years and there is a very strong chance they will be gone in the next 100 due to humans.

Val123's avatar

I’m a passive activist. My passion is kids who haven’t had the breaks they should have in life. Didn’t have a parent who cared, or whatever. I’ve stepped into that gap many, many times. Lots of kids lived with me off and on over the years, at my own expense. It’s one of the reasons I teach, too.

Val123's avatar

@mattbrowne WAY too aggressive there!!

mattbrowne's avatar

Critical thinking activist, science activist, environmental activist, peace activist.

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