“Hang on to one of your most precious parts of youth,
laughter—don’t lose it as many of you seem to have done,
you need it.”—Saul Alinsky, Rules for Radicals:
A Pragmatic Primer for Realistic Radicals (1971)
An activist without a sense of humor is like a baby without an immune system: won’t live past five. Activists need to laugh more than most. It’s the only way that they can maintain their sanity. Cheerless puritans invariably burn out. What’s worse, they then proceed to get into yoga, self-help, and positive thinking. Before you know it, they’re telling you that “the best way to change the world is to change yourself” (a notion so self-evidently wrong that it’s laughable). Few years after that they’re voting conservative, moving to the suburbs, and working on a memoir about their silly days as an activist.
—John Faithful Hamer, From Here (2015)