Home > The Body Politic > First they came…

First they came…

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A brief history of some of my political activism, set to a certain poetic style…

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In 1976 they came for the native forests Pureora and Whirinaki, and I spoke out for environmental protection –
Not because  I was a ‘greenie’*, but because it was the right thing to do.

In 1978 they came for the Soviet dissidents and I spoke out on behalf of the victims of state oppression –
Not because I was a Russian, but because it was the right thing to do.

In 1981 they came from an apartheid regime to play rugby, and I spoke out for democracy in South Africa –
Not because  I was a black man, but because it was the right thing to do.

Now in 2018 they came to deny transwomen their right for inclusion, and I spoke out for the right of transpeople to be accepted for who they identify as –
Not because  I am a transman or transwoman, but because it is still  the right thing to do.

If they ever come for me –
Others will stand with me and speak up for me. Because it is always the right thing to do.

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* I am now proud to call myself a ‘greenie’!
With grateful acknowledgement to Pastor Martin Niemöller  (1892–1984).

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This blogpost was first published on The Daily Blog on 7 December 2018.

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