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MY HEROES ARE GONE

September 4, 2013

I went to Ken Tilsen’s funeral today.  Ken Tilsen was a human rights lawyer.  He was lead counsel for the criminal defense for the Wounded Knee prosecutions.  He provided representation for the Minnesota Eight (the draftees who broke into the draft office and spilled blood on the draft records).  He provided representation for the Honeywell protesters, and the list goes on and on.  He did this in a relatively selfless way.  Let me just say this.  At the grave-site service in the middle of the day today in addition to family, judges and lawyers there were more than a handful of radical lesbians from back in the day and what is left of the Lakota Elders giving homage.

It was a beautiful service.  But I think what made me unable to stop crying was the thought that this was my last hero.  Arthur Kinoy is gone.  Hayward Burns is gone.  Rosalie Wahl is gone.  Where are my current heroes.  I think of Keith Ellison as a compatriot but in ten years he will probably count.  But I can think of no one who rises to the level of these great heroes. 

Is it because our generation has dropped the ball?  This makes me sad.  So I think the only solution is to really up my game.  I’m not completely sure how to do that, but I have to do something.  I cannot live with the feeling that all of the heroes are gone.

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