Yale Daily News
Howard Zinn may be a historian, but he lives in the present.
As demonstrators for immigrant rights made their way around New Haven on May Day, Zinn assumed the stage at the Center Church on the New Haven Green, stressing the need for youth to engage in activism, to understand the darker aspects of American domestic and foreign policy, and to distinguish between allegiance to a government and allegiance to a country.
Evoking a rare mixture of political seriousness and light-hearted wit, the 84-year-old history professor spoke conversationally, prompting many audience members to laugh at his sense of humor or applaud when his musings culminated in calls for change.
“Our interests are not the same [as the government’s], despite our culture and the way it tries to indoctrinate us into thinking our interests are the same … we and the government, Exxon and me,” Zinn said to long, drawn-out laughter.
“Bush,” he then said with a pause, “and the young person he sends to war do not have the same interests.”
Strenuous clapping ensued.