Freedom’s Just Another Word for Nothing Left to Lose

These cynical words which Janis Joplin made famous in her song “Me and Bobby McGee” if nothing else, express the bitterness of a rebellious youth who had come of age in the mid-20th century, witnesses to some of the most bloody and gruesome events ever to appear on the world stage.  If the 20th century could be given a name, or just summarized in a word, that name would be freedom. How many struggles for freedom were engaged in during those tumultuous, earth-shattering tumultuous years? How many countries threw off the yoke of empires to begin on the road to self-rule? How many ideologies entered bloody combat to decide which government system brought the most affluence and freedom to its citizen’s? How many liberation movements fought for the hearts and minds of their fellow citizens to create an atmosphere of tolerance so minorities and marginalized groups could yet live in freedom?

As we finish the first decade of the 21st century there is a feeling that the fight for freedom, even if it is not complete, is just putting out a few remaining embers. But it seems that across the globe the freedom of individuals and nations is the default setting, and any other forms do not seem to be viable. Whether this is a true assessment of today’s world climate will be seen as we continue to march along into the future, with our eyes towards more freedom.

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