I rarely use the word hero but I wasn't sure what else would aptly describe an individual such as Howard Zinn. In technical terms he was a historian, a professor, an outspoken activist; for me he was inspirational, compassionate, just, and defiant (the good kind). He passed away just hours ago and so I want to dedicate this post to his memory.
This may seem to have little to do with veganism, but I believe that Howard Zinn upheld the same virtues as vegans say they do: compassion, rights, activism, and peace. If you have never read anything by this prolific and unconventional author, I suggest you start NOW. I'm halfway through reading "A People's History of the United States" (hey, it's 700+ pages of detailed history, I'm trying...) and have read "Just War" which is a transcription of one of his lectures (highly recommended!). If you rather watch something on a screen you can always rent You Can't Be Neutral on a Moving Train or other dvds about him.
I hope all of you take a moment to discover, rediscover or pay your respects to this outstanding individual. I am so grateful for all the thoughts he expressed and recorded which are a gift to humanity. May you find his writing motivational in bringing you to act upon your ideals.
“I'm worried that students will take their obedient place in society and look to become successful cogs in the wheel - let the wheel spin them around as it wants without taking a look at what they're doing. I'm concerned that students not become passive acceptors of the official doctrine that's handed down to them from the White House, the media, textbooks, teachers and preachers.” Howard Zinn
[trying to not be another cog in the wheel] EcoVegan