John Lennon became famous because he was part of the Beatles band. His name is also associated with peace and political activism. Lennon’s interested were varied and was observed based from his musical styles all throughout his 20 years of career in music. The songs ranged from distrust to authority, politics, and literature, to spirituality, and Primal Scream Therapy. All of these songs were immortalized by this famous singer. However, among the causes he was committed the primary one is his devotion to the anti-war movement.

john lennon
john lennon

Lennon’s involvement with anti-war movement started when he got married to avant-garde artist Yoko Ono. Both of them started with the famous ‘Bed-Ins for Peace’ in their honeymoon at the Amsterdam Hilton in March 1969. It served as a launch pad for their anti-war efforts, where Lennon invited the worldwide media to join them in their hotel suite. Lennon and Ono sat in bed for two weeks straight, from nine in the morning to nine at night while having a discussion about world peace. A second ‘bed-in’ happened in Montreal after three months. During this time, Lennon wrote and recorded ‘Give Peace A Chance’ that became the unofficial refrain of the peace movement. Another famous anti-war song of John Lennon wrote is called ‘Imagine’. Other celebrities tried to repeat the ‘bed-in’ but were not successful.

After the ‘bed-ins’, Lennon and Ono became more activist-minded and lend their support to the working class. Together, they voiced out their discontent over the brutal murders of 14 unarmed civil rights protesters in Northern Ireland, bemoaning the death toll from the uprising at Attica Prison, and holding forth with leading American peace activists during that time including Jerry Rubin and Abbie Hoffman. Lennon used his talent in music as the medium for their messages. He wrote the songs ‘Luck of the Irish’ and ‘Sunday Bloody Sunday’. Lennon released his album titled Imagine in October 1971, which became his musical calling card for world peace.

The peace movement led by John Lennon worked and had a major impact. He was very famous, so there was several media coverage on everything he did and many people saw what he was trying to do. On the second Vietnam Moratorium Day, half a million people gathered and all started singing ‘Give Peace a Chance’ as loud as they could.

John Lennon taught all of us to stand up for what we believe in and to dream big. He protested for peace and many people listened. Thus, he will be remembered as a peace activist and his legendary ideas.

In activism it is important to have a strategy in order to promote their campaigns. It has to be organized, huge effort should be put into it to create change, and it should be guided by thoughtful planning. Activism not only happens in politics, but also in private companies and organization. In bmwpedia.net, you will see that the BMW company has a labor union. Before pursuing any action, activist should learn as much as possible about:

  • The existing situation
  • The people that can be affected by the campaign issue, both positive and negative
  • The proposed changes that could improve the situation
  • The resources, tactics, and tools available to implement a campaign that will address the issue.

Using these, the activists will be able to create their strategy to guide them in planning, implementing, acting, monitoring, improving, and evaluating their campaign. Some of the questions that every campaign strategy should be able to answer involve the problem, vision, change, stakeholders, relationships, and targets:

  • What problems are being confronted?
  • What is the vision of the activist once the problem is solved?
  • What change/s would bring about this vision?
  • Who is affected by the problem, both positively and negatively?
  • How are these people or group related to the problem and to each other?
  • What is the organization trying to reach?
  • If the campaign is successful, who will be affected?

With the help of these key questions, the planners will be able to develop a more suitable campaign strategy. It will guide what you need to do, and it should be update regularly as the campaign is implemented and the situation changes.

campaign strategy
campaign strategy

The first step in every campaign strategy is creating a common vision. The whole group should be involved in exploring the problem, vision, and the changes that the group wanted. A shared understanding of the problem will stimulate ideas about possible actions to take, and will also help the group to stay motivated and focused during the campaign. Plus, creating a common vision will also help determine ways to monitor, and put necessary adjustments of the actions to be implemented.

Here are some of the steps that can be used to formulate a campaign strategy, which involves the problem, creating solutions, and the resulting change:

  1. Decide what core problems your group wanted to address and create a campaign. Elaborate all the adverse effects of this problem.
  2. It is better if every person in the group will give their own answer to the question: What would a world without this problem be like? You can use words, diagrams, and illustrations. And then, discuss and enumerate all the benefits of this proposed world.
  3. Compile the answers of every individual; from it create a single common vision for the campaign. Discuss which actions or changes would resolve the problems that were identified and the scope of the campaign. Decide if it has multiple components, then narrow the focus of the campaign or create a multiple campaign strategy.

Activism is one of the means in which we as a people are able to express our views on certain subjects that would otherwise be unchecked. Throughout history, activists have rallied for change which brought about social revolutions that ended human inequalities and human irresponsibility and cruelty. Unfortunately, the majority of people don’t really become activists and only a small minority of the population ever really become involved in activism. This is despite the fact that activists are the ones who bring about the change to social benefits that the majority now enjoy. So why is it so important to become an activist? Because, as John Lennon once said, “If everyone demanded peace instead of another television set, then there'd be peace.”

John Lennon
John Lennon

Without a doubt, being an activist requires quite a bit of time from you, time which you could devote to other things that you actually enjoy. These could be partying, playing video games, cooking, or even working. However, it does seem a little odd once you consider that many of the liberties that you currently enjoy comes from the labor of the few select people who took the time out of their lives, time which they could have devoted to things which they found more enjoyable, in order to give you the rights to do exactly the opposite. I don’t know about you, but once I started looking at things this way, I couldn’t help but feel that I had certainly responsibilities to at least give something back and being an activist in some way is a good way to do that. Barring touching on your conscience though, there are also other reasons why you should subscribe to some form of activism.

For one thing, it’s your civic duty. If you notice a wrong, you don’t just stand by and watch as it unfolds, not if you can do something about it. It doesn’t really even have to be anything major since you can do something as small as not buying the products or getting the services of a certain company or group whom you have an issue with. You could also post things on social media, tell your friends about it, join a forum where people of similar minds as you gather, so you really don’t need to do things like taking to the streets in order to be an activist. Of course, when the time comes, you could always join rallies or protests if the subject is of particular significance to you, but you’re not required by anyone or anything to do more aside from your own conscience.

Then there’s the fact that you would be doing something that you can truly be proud of if it comes to fruition. Honestly, once you become part of something that changes the world or at least a small part of it, you become part of history itself. You can tell your friends, your kids or your grandkids that you did something for the world and perhaps they would even be inspired by your own actions. Of course, this would depend largely on what you were trying to protest in the first place since not all causes are worth raising a fuss about. Back in the day, people rallied against allowing the mixing of different ethnicities and there was even a civil war to free people from slavery decades before that. History has shown those people to be on the wrong side and yet even now, their descendants celebrate their actions as if there was something noble about them. Make no mistake though, doing something is often better than doing nothing.

Che Guevara is one of the famous political activists, and played a significant role in the Cuban Revolution in 1959 against Batista regime. Then he shaped the economy of Cuba towards a productive and prosperous future by coming out with progressive plans. He gave his life for the downfall of imperialism and the establishment of socialism. Due to his relentless work, he became the countercultural symbol of rebellion and revolution. Throughout his life, Guevara held numerous profiles that includes being: a doctor, an author, guerilla leader, diplomat, and military theorist. He was listed in the TIME’s magazine as one of the 100 most influential people of the 20th century.

che guevara
che guevara

Che Guevara’s full name is Ernesto R. Guevara de la Serna. He was born in Rosario, Argentina on June 14, 1928 into a middle-class family. He studied medicine at Buenos Aires University. He travelled mostly in South and Central America and witnessed a widespread poverty and oppression. With his interest in Marxism, he was convinced that the only solution to these problems was armed revolution. He was disturbed by the living conditions of the poor and the hardships they were undergoing. It left a deep impact on him and propelled the emotions of anger and resentment which caused rebellion and revolution.

In 1954 he went to Mexico and was able to meet the Cuban revolutionary Fidel Castro. Guevara decided to join Castro in his ‘26th July Movement’, where he played an important role in the success of the guerilla war against Cuban dictator Fulgencio Batista. After the Cuban revolution, Castro took power in Cuba while Guevara became the president of the National Bank of Cuba, and then minister of industry from 1959 – 1961. He travelled the world as an ambassador for Cuba. In Cuba, h carried out plans for land redistribution and the nationalization of industry. He was also responsible for the considerate increase in the literacy rate of Cuba from 60% to 96%.

From Cuba, Guevara travelled to Bolivia and participated in leading the forces rebelling against the government of René Barrientos Ortuño. But with the US assistance, the Bolivian army captured him and his allies. He was executed on October 9, 1967 in the Bolivian village of La Higuera and his body was buried in a secret location. It was only in 1997 that his remains were discovered and returned to Cuba, where he was reburied.

Technology has played a significant role in connecting people with a common goal of change. The internet and social media have become powerful channels in raising awareness, calling citizens to action, learning about public policy issues, exhorting friends and family to vote, and supporting one’s causes for candidates. Digital tools have become essential for a variety of group seeking innumerable goals. Societies everywhere around the world have seen it to employ challenges to governments.

Nowadays, there are several ways for activists to campaign their purpose. There is the famous change.org, an online website that enables anyone to start a petition and mobilize support from local concerns to global issues. They are also taking advantage of using social media pages like Facebook and Twitter, and make group pages or events then invite all people to participate in the said activity.

activism in the internet
activism in the internet

In 1990, the first ever online protest happened and is currently growing. With the developments in the internet during these past years, everyone was able to have a voice in it and many people are taking advantage of this situation to support their beliefs. Back in 1990 there was a controversial product called Lotus Marketplace: Households. The software company Lotus and credit bureau Equifax worked together to create a product that contained names, addresses, and purchasing behavior of 120 million Americans in CD-ROM form. They aimed to revolutionize the marketing list industry but it raised concerns regarding consumer privacy that led to public action. Consumers organized through e-mail and message boards with the primary goal of determining how to contact Lotus and opt out of the list. 30,000 people did and due to this incident, both companies decided not to release the database.

Although, some people are concerned about how the digital world allows organizing without actual organizations. They noted that the internet can lower the traditional barriers to collective action. Some observers are concerned about ‘slacktivism’ or ‘clicktivism’ – these are two terms for pseudo-activism enabled through quick and easy online actions, where most people are not properly informed about the campaign and just simply ‘sharing’ or ‘liking’ it.

Another use of internet is helping online businesses. There are several tools that can help with managing your website and pages. If you are not sure which online marketing tool can help you, just visit 1minutereview.org. This website offers assistance in evaluating different online tools. It gives comprehensive review to let you decided which one can suit your needs.

Activism is an action for a cause that goes beyond what is conventional or routine. It is an effort to promote, impede or direct changes in different aspects such as: society, politics, economy and environment. Its major role was observed throughout our history as it ended slavery, challenged several dictatorships and presently protecting workers from exploitation, protecting the environment, promoting equality for women, fighting racism and many other current important issues. Activism can also be related to organizations such as corporations, government department, political party or labor union. The employees that challenge their employer’s decision can be also considered as activism. It is still not distinct how to clearly define what activism really is, because people have different ideas of what comprises this action. Therefore, it is not necessarily good or bad, it depends on the cause and the actions. In the end, it is all based from a person’s judgment.

 

There are different kinds of activists that constitute the group. Small activist groups are made up entirely of volunteers. They join such group because of their passion to fight for what they think is right. For large groups, some members are volunteers and some of them are paid staff. For international group, they are made up of numerous local groups with some paid staff in their office.

The most common way of activism is through public protest; it is usually done with public rallies and protests. There are two major types of activism action:

  1. Violent action

This is carried out by what we call as “freedom fighters” or terrorists. This is usually called as armed struggle because it involve actions such as beatings, bombings, imprisonment, killings and other physical resistance with law enforcers.

  1. Nonviolent action

This is further divided into three sub-types:

  1. First type: involves protests and persuasions, which is done through speeches, banners, slogans, vigils, marches and teach-ins.
  2. Second type: involves noncooperation through disobeying social custom, producer’s boycott, protest emigration, rent strike and wide variety of strikes.
  3. Third type: involves intervention through sit-ins, nonviolent occupations, guerilla theater, fasting and setting up alternative economic and political plans.

 

As the technology evolves, activist groups also adapt to these changes and use it to their advantage. Now, there is this thing that they call as “cyber activism”, it is an online activism that involves the use of the internet. Through the internet, activists communicate with other members or groups and they organize their action plan and goals. A direct form of activism through internet involves hacking government or private organizations’ websites. Some activist group set-up their own webpage and targets many audiences, where they campaign their beliefs, advertise their projects promoting change and to recruit members. Gaining visitors can be achieved through purchasing of website traffic. Ultimatewebtraffic.com is one of the popular websites that offers traffic packages that accommodates everyone’s needs. The internet helped activism in general, with the increase of speed, reach and effectiveness of their activities as well as mobilization efforts, the result has a positive impact.

problems activists
problems activists

If you are an activist, you must know that not everyone is willing to like you. There will be those people who will love what you do, while some will hate it. Whichever the case, the activists are supposed to show the people that they are willing to stand for what they love. The activists mostly get the challenges of restrictions to certain places. If the activists are restricted, they are likely to cause more trouble by telling everyone about the restriction. It will show that the activists have been right after all. The restrictions are common when the activists seem to go against a strong force in power. Nevertheless, such impediment is what makes them stronger.

Some activists at some point of their activism always end up in jail. Most of them are jailed in order to act as an example what will be done to their followers if the activism continues. Most people would always continue with the activism work after they are released from prison. The moment the activists are released from prison, it becomes easy for them to gain more followers as they stood for something that counts. Unfortunately, there are some activists that have died because of their actions. Some forces are always too powerful for the activists. The death of an activist might increase the activism or make the followers think twice about their decisions. Whichever the case, a message would have been sent out about the problem in the society.