When slaves yearned to be relieved from the oppression of their masters, it was they who staged a series of revolts, of active protests to disseminate information regarding their hardships.
When women longed for the right to participate in public life, to be granted the benefits of citizenship proper, it was they – the suffragettes – who went out on the streets to cry out against the injustices they were subjected to. And when workers could no longer stand by idle and see fortunes be made from their sweat, it was they who combined to hold strikes and strengthen their power to bargain.
History is full of such examples where oppressed segments of society seek to take matters into their own hands, to vigorously spit upon existing, conservative, reactionary conventions. Thus progress navigates its course.
Our time is no different, in this respect, from any hitherto – just like we look back at the past and deem many who came before us as perpetrators of vicious barbarity, so soon enough our descendants will think of us. Progress has not yet reached its destination. It still has some adverse tides to overcome.
Our age does differ importantly from past ones, however, in that the victims of social injustice had the opportunity to speak out for themselves. They were able to fight their own fight, whether slave, suffragette, or worker as aforementioned. The victims of today – though they are by far not the only victims – cannot speak for themselves; they cannot, through the powers of rhetoric and acute logic, sway the passions of audiences in their favor, nor can they make attempt at promoting their cause through the bearing of arms. These victims do not belong to our species, and thus cannot defend themselves. As such, they remain the daily fatalities of one of man’s greatest sins.
If their cause is to one day be victorious, those of our species that do sympathize with them have to speak loudly, to compensate for their silence.