Michael Moore
Rumble with Michael Moore podcast
The Genie That Will Never Go Back in the Bottle

The Genie That Will Never Go Back in the Bottle

(Part 1: Voices of a New Generation)

It is Day 19 today of the Great 2024 Nonviolent Student Uprising against the U.S.-backed slaughter of innocent Palestinian civilians (over 70% of the dead are children, women and the elderly). Nearly 40,000+ souls massacred by the Israel Defense (Offense) Force via carpet bombing, sniper drones, forced starvation and the mass mandatory removal of Gazans into “safe zones” where they are then bombed again and murdered by the Israeli army. 

This horrific assault is armed and supported by the U.S. government and funded by nearly 300 million American taxpayers. This slaughter could end in the next hour if we Americans just simply pulled the plug, closed the bank, cut off the free billions to the Netanyahu regime, and stopped sending weapons to conduct a genocide that is in violation of American and International law. One phone call from President Biden, one stroke of his pen and POOF! — War Is Over. It literally is that easy. 

The youth already know this. That’s why tens of thousands of them across the country and around the world are holding sit-ins, nonviolently occupying campus quads and administration buildings, demanding their universities divest from companies doing business with a rogue and racist regime. These students are risking their college careers, facing suspension and expulsion, future blacklisting as they seek employment after college, physical assault from pro-Israel gangs armed with clubs, mace and explosives, and being arrested by the police because they were exercising their Constitution rights to free speech, freedom of assembly and the freedom to redress their grievances against their government’s actions. 

And for doing this — the most humane, most loving, most American of acts — they are slandered and smeared and called… wait for it!… antisemites! By the very antisemites who back the slaughter of the Semitic people known as the Palestinians! Wow. Now that’s chutzpah!

Lie after lie, day after day, is told about these protests. They are not threatening Jewish students. To the contrary, thousands of Jewish students and faculty have shown up to support and participate in the pro-Palestine, anti-war, anti-genocide demonstrations. The Palestinian students join them for Shabbat dinner on Friday nights. At one encampment the Palestinian students did a Jewish folk dance for their compatriots. The hater pudits don’t want you to know that. Why not? Because they know that’s the world you and I want to live in — as opposed to the world they’re trying to maintain for us: A world without Palestine. These young people have decided they want NONE of that. 

I say more nonviolent civil disobedience! More tent encampments! More sit-ins. More citizens taking to the streets. It’s a proud and time-honored America tradition! We wouldn’t have the rights and freedoms we now enjoy without an entire history of it! 

There would be no women able to vote today if the suffragettes hadn’t thrown up a picket line surrounding and blocking the White House in 1917. For that they were arrested, beaten, imprisoned for months, with many later abandoned by their husbands. 

There would be no UAW or unions in general had not my uncle and 2,000 other GM workers in 1936 taken over the factories in Flint and staged a 44-day sit down strike. 

Outside agitators? More of that too! That was the description used by all the media and the racist mayors and governors when Martin Luther King, Jr. showed up to town. He held sit-ins, takeovers, he trespassed everywhere and thank God for him because he moved mountains. He was hated for it. He was slandered and called every disgusting name possible. 

There would be no civil rights laws, no Black members of Congress if King had not been a nonstop “outside agitator” and lawbreaker of racist laws. 

And trespassing? The #1 Trespasser in American History? Her name was Rosa Parks. She broke the law and trespassed into the white section of a Montgomery, AL, bus on December 1st, 1955. And that was that. President Biden said that students who cause “chaos” will be arrested. Joe, Mrs. Parks heard you say that. If she and Dr. King and millions of others had not caused a massive amount of chaos, disruption and lawbreaking, where would we be? What if in 1960 four black students at the Woolworth lunch counter in Greensboro, North Carolina had not refused to move until they were served? Within a week there were illegal sit-ins demanding integration in over a hundred cities. 

And what of Vietnam? Millions of students taking over campuses! Newsflash: Windows were broken! Oh my! My lifelong friend and co-producer Rod Birleson sent me this text this morning remembering his days as a student in the 1960s and 70s at Easter Michigan University:

It was May, 1970, just days after the National Guard killed 4 students at Kent State.

I was a student at Eastern Michigan University. 

EMU was shut down for 4 days. martial law declared. A group of 3 or more students gathered together outdoors was considered an illegal gathering. But the cops could not enter the campus in patrol cars or police buses for those they were going to arrest because we spread roofing nails and broken glass on all the roads leading into campus. Even the city street cleaner could not clear a path, as it also got flat tires. The cops in riot gear had to walk into campus. K-mart sold out of sling shots. When the cops tried to enter the residential dorms to arrest students they couldn’t even get through the lobbies. One dorm started pouring boiling water out of their upper story windows. When they did manage to arrest a student with long hair, the police would cut off their hair and make it into a pony tail and hang it on their “scalp wall” in the police station. The EMU Student Council started paying the bail for any student who had been arrested. Then came the police helicopter dropping tear gas grenades on any group of more than three students.

It didn't work. The entire campus was liberated. Breaking a few windows seemed like a small crime compared to an American B-52 dropping a load of 500-pound bombs on a village of Vietnamese people. 

Back then we were right. We were young and we were students. Today the young people are right. God bless them.

On this week’s episode(s) of my podcast, my crew and I disobey the college presidents’ and NYC’s Mayor Adam’s orders to “outsiders” to stay off the campuses and to stop trying to “radicalize” our youth (because young people don’t have a mind of their own). My crew (Angie, Donald, and “Anonymous”) paid a visit to the NYC protest encampments made up of students from Columbia University, City College, City University (CUNY), NYU, etc. to hear directly from the brilliant student organizers of these historic demonstrations. These are the voices you won’t hear on the mainstream media. Listen here to their eloquence and passion as they take a stand for the Palestinian people. 

And then either join them — or start one yourself.  


The transcript for today’s episode will soon be available here.

Click here to leave me a 60-second voice message (I might play it on a future podcast episode).

Photos by: Donald Borenstein

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Michael Moore
Rumble with Michael Moore podcast
Academy Award-winning filmmaker and political provocateur Michael Moore offers his subversive and humorous take on the issues of the day and talks to a wide range of people from comedians and politicians to the people who’ve tried to kill him. Plus various mischief with Mike’s friends, family and the neighbors who don’t work for the NSA.