When you hear the word revolutionary, the first thing that comes to mind is the American Revolutionary War or the more famous lyrical quote of Gil Scott Heron: “The revolution will not be televised”.
Let’s take a deeper dive into the meaning of revolution and revolutionary. Grammatically, both words are nouns that mean change or “turn around”. However, a revolution is a political disruption within a government or nation. Now, let’s attach the word revolutionary to a person.
This, my friends, changes the game.
Once again, from a grammatical standpoint, we’ve now turned this word into an adjective, because we’ve given it the title of an attribute.
Revolutionary (adj)-a person that fearlessly advocates radical change. Revolutionaries don’t care about upsetting the masses to achieve their goals. I will just say it: sometimes they might just have to “Shake the table”.
That reason alone is why we need them!
We need people that want to change this world by any means necessary. Now, contrary to some beliefs, being a revolutionary does not always constitute being a rebel with a cause. Revolutionaries can also be quiet storms and the tranquility in the midst of chaos. Some have checkered pasts, while others just may not have the vernacular. Either way, the outcome is where it all matters!
Complacency tends to paralyze us into believing that, no matter what we do or say, some things will remain the same. Would you believe me if I told you that we all have the potential to be a revolutionary?
Just being your authentic self consistently is enough to be a change in this world. That’s right! There is the starting point of being a revolutionary. Now, I am not saying just being yourself will all of sudden give us world peace, equality, and justice for all. I am saying that being a voice for yourself will grab the attention of who it needs to.
Musical artists over time have been singing songs over beats and acoustic guitar strings about the changes we need to see within our communities, government, and even climate change! In all genres, from The Beatles to Kirk Franklin, singing their revolutionary-titled songs and letting the melodies and lyrics transcend all that would listen. For me personally, nothing spoke to me more than the lyrics from the great Nina Simone:
“And now we got a revolution
Cause I see the face of things to come
Yeah, your Constitution
Well, my friend, its gonna have to bend
I’m here to tell you about destruction
Of all the evil that will have to end.
Some folks are gonna get the notion
I know theyll say I’m preachin hate
but if I have to swim the ocean
well, I would, just to communicate
it’s not as simple as talkin jive
the daily struggle just to stay alive
Singin about a revolution
because we’re talkin about a change
it’s more than just evolution
well you know you got to clean your brain
the only way that we can stand in fact
is when you get your foot off our back”.
Revolutionaries will always be loved by some and hated by others.
In the process of writing this, the news spread wide about the assassination of a revolutionary in his own right, Ermias Davidson Asghedom, professionally and affectionately known as Nipsey Hussle. He was the true definition of this quote:
“Be the change you want to see in the world”- Gandhi.
August 15,1985 – March 31, 2019