The Egyptian Revolution took 18 days to topple 30 years of President Mubarak’s reign. In 1970, Gil Scott-Herron wrote the lyrics that “the revolution will not be televised.” But, the Egyptian Revolution was televised, tweeted, You-Tubed and text 24 hours a day for 18 days. Yes, the 21st century revolution was televised. During the French Revolution which began in 1789, songs were the one form of communication that was expressed by all the people. I’ve chosen songs to celebrate the Egyptian people’s revolution.
Bob Dylan’s 1963 Blowing in the Wind expresses the heart and sentiment of the Egyptian people. He poses questions about peace, war and freedom. Dylan wrote and sang:
How many roads must a man walk down before you call him a man?….How many years can some people exist before they’re allowed to be free? The answer my friend is blowin’ in the wind.
How many times can a man turn his head, pretending he just doesn’t see? The answer my friend is blowin’ in the wind. The answer is blowin’ in the wind. ….
Yes, how many ears must one man have before he can hear people cry? Yes, how many deaths will it take till he knows that too many people have died. The answer my friend is blowin’ in the wind. The answer is blowin in the wind”
The answer came on the streets of Cairo on February 11, 2011 for the Egyptian people.
The Beatles sang of a revolution on their 1968 album Revolution. The partial words to Revolution are:
“You say you want a revolution, well you know, we all want to change the world. You tell me that it’s evolution, well you know, we all want to change the world. But when you talk about destruction, don’t you know that you can count me out…Don’t you know it’s gonna be allright.”
And the Egyptian people did change the world with their revolution. They did it peacefully without destruction.
Seal sang a remake of Sam Cooke’s 1964 A Change is Gonna Come in 2008. Watch and listen to Seal belt out the feelings that must reflect those of the Egyptian people.
There is a season for everything. Pete Seeger took his lyrics to Turn, Turn, Turn, Turn from the book of Ecclesiastes in the Bible. His lyrics express the time was right for the Egyptian people to be free of Mubarak’s reign. Seeger’s lyrics to Turn, Turn, Turn are:
“To everything there is a season. And a time to every purpose….A time to buildup, a time to breakdown; A time to dance, a time to mourn… A time for peace, I swear it’s not too late”
February 11, 2011 was the time for the Egyptian people’s peace and freedom.
Debbie Hines is a lawyer and political/ legal commentator and lover of history. She also writes for the Huffington Post. She is regularly featured in the media speaking on race, gender and class. She holds a Juris Doctorate from George Washington University Law School and a BA from the University of Pennsylvania.