Revolutionary Secrets

I spend way too much time on Twitter, I'll admit. I follow all sorts of left-wing types, especially those who believe in revolution as the only way forward (it isn't, and it may actually make the problem worse given the ah...messy transfer of power involved) and shun consumerism like it's going out of style.

They have an agenda - that much is obvious. Everyone has an agenda. Theirs involves shunning human weakness - presumably it is unbefitting of a revolutionary.

Meanwhile, when the mainstream media does pick up on those people (if ever), they're characterised either 1) as brave freedom fighters who could never put a foot wrong or 2) as one step above terrorists, and sometimes not even that.

As for the people who know them, the people who are closest to them? They may describe them as being obsessed with power/freedom/whatever. It can be scary to see someone that fired up about something.

I will tell you a home truth now. It will seem obvious to you after I say it, but remember that I only told you because you never mentioned it - because you never even hinted at understanding it. You may not like me saying it, because it will make you rethink your worldview, but take comfort in the fact that they won't like me saying it either - it would make them look too human for their liking.

Revolutionaries are human beings, are people like us; people with hopes and dreams and fears, not just grand dreams of freedom and equality, but small ones too - of getting good exam results, of the sun shining tomorrow, of stretching themselves out on the beach...for all their fine talk, they fear death and illness. They may be just as uneducated as any random member of the public - because after all they belong to that public too, much as they may hate to admit it. They're just as partial to retail therapy as any common mortal, just as likely to crave a fancy phone or a pair of jeans.

Does this make them weak? No. Perhaps they - and perhaps you - think so, but they'd be wrong; it simply makes them human.

Remember this and you remember something very important about people.