We won’t win greater justice if we don’t fight for it

Social and economic justice organizers like to say, “When we fight, we win.” Oh, if only that were so! In truth, there is, unfortunately, no guarantee of victory in any justice campaign – ever. The soil of human history is literally soaked and littered with the blood and bones of justice warriors who fought with courage and dedication to a righteous cause – and lost.

What is most assuredly true, however, is this: If you do not fight, you cannot win. The fight is indispensable, for power gives no gifts, grants no freebies out of respect for fairness, goodness and truth. One of America’s greatest justice warriors, Frederick Douglass, nailed it with spare precision: “Power concedes nothing without a demand. It never did and it never will.”

Educate, organize, mobilize. Fight and struggle for justice, wherever you are and whatever “client system” you work with. It is far, far better, fellow social workers, to fight and lose than never to engage with the continuing struggle for justice.

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