A 16-Year-Old + A Videocamera + the Web = A Better Future

Margaret Mead famously said, “Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it’s the only thing that ever has,” and legions of technology devotees (including moi) keep insisting that the Internet and digital technologies are ushering in nothing less than a new, global Renaissance. Both points by now seem like cliches…until something happens that brings them vividly to life.

I don’t know how I managed to miss this up until now, but there’s a 16-year-old schoolgirl in Montgomery, Alabama, Ava Lowery, who is making the most awesome anti-Iraq war and anti-Bush Administration videos, which she posts on her blog (itself, awesome) PeaceTakesCourage The blog is getting 30,000 visitors a day, and you should be one of them.

Would any of history’s most famous and influential artists, philosophers, statespersons, freedom fighters, scientists and other thinkers and doers have even dared dream of having the power to communicate and influence people on a global scale that a 16-year-old with a videocamera has today? I doubt it.

Todd Gitlin writes in Letters to a Young Activist that, “living with the knowledge that our country perpetrates moral abominations is an everyday burden.” It is, but sit tight (and maybe do just a bit more activism than you’re doing now): the best is yet to come.

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