The world we live in. It’s overwhelming.
If you let yourself you can quickly be overwhelmed by noise and day to day activities that we all have.
Hate. Anger. Prejudice. Social media trolls. Drama queens looking to stir trouble.
If you’ve read my stuff here on the blog for any amount of time you know I’m generally talking pro wrestling, pop culture, movies, sarcasm or drinking. But there are times when I get a bit introspective and get in a mood. Today is one of those days.
I ran across the final speech of from the Charlie Chaplin film The Great Dictator a couple of weeks back and bookmarked it cause I wanted to come back to it. It’s quite simply awesome and it speaks to what the world SHOULD be about.
If you’re not familiar with The Great Dictator, it’s a 1940 political satire comedy-drama film written, directed, produced, scored by, and starring British comedian Charlie Chaplin. He plays both leading roles: a ruthless fascist dictator and a persecuted Jewish barber.
I’m sorry, but I don’t want to be an emperor.
That’s not my business.
I don’t want to rule or conquer anyone.
I should like to help everyone if possible.
Jew – Gentile – Black Man, White.
We all want to help one another, human beings are like that.
We want to live by each other’s happiness.
Not by each other’s misery.
We don’t want to hate and despise one another.
And this world has room for everyone, and the good Earth is rich can provide for everyone.
The way of life can be free and beautiful, but we have lost the way.
Greed has poisoned men’s souls, has barricaded the world with hate, has goose-stepped us into misery and bloodshed.
We have developed speed, but we have shut ourselves in.
Machinery that gives us abundance has left us in want.
Our knowledge has made us cynical.
Our cleverness, hard and unkind.
We think too much, and feel too little.
More than machinery, we need humanity.
More that cleverness, we need kindness and gentleness.
Without these qualities life will be violent, and all will be lost.
The aeroplane and the radio have brought us closer together.
The very nature of these inventions cries out for the goodness in men – cries out for universal brotherhood – for the unity of us all.
Even now my voice is reaching millions throughout the world – millions of despairing men, women, and little children – victims of a system that makes men torture and imprison innocent people.
To those who can hear me, I say – do not despair.
The misery that is now upon us is but the passing of greed – the bitterness of men who fear the way of human progress.
The hate of men will pass, and dictators die, and the power they took from the people will return to the people.
And so long as men die, liberty will never perish. …
don’t give yourselves to brutes – men who despise you – enslave you – who regiment your lives – tell you what to do – what to think and what to feel!
Who drill you – diet you – treat you like cattle, use you as cannon fodder.
Don’t give yourselves to these unnatural men – machine men with machine minds and machine hearts!
You are not machines!
You are not cattle!
You are men!
You have the love of humanity in your hearts!
You don’t hate!
Only the unloved hate – the unloved and the unnatural!
Don’t fight for slavery!
Fight for liberty!
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!
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.
By the promise of these things, brutes have risen to power.
But they lie!
They do not fulfil that promise.
They never will!
Dictators free themselves but they enslave the people!
Now let us fight to fulfil that promise!
Let us fight to free the world – to do away with national barriers – to do away with greed, with hate and intolerance.
Let us fight for a world of reason, a world where science and progress will lead to all men’s happiness.
in the name of democracy, let us all unite
Some pretty powerful stuff.
Like I said, I ran across this speech in a video of great movie speeches. In the video (which also includes speeches from A Few Good Men, V For Vendetta, Fair Game, Wall Street and The Wolf of Wall Street) there’s an outstanding piece of music playing over the clip. It starts around the 5 minute mark.