My grandmother loved words. She was a dirt farmer in the old south. Each day she would work the word puzzles in the newspaper, challenged and awakened by those words. At the turn of the Nineteenth Century, she received a college degree in English. But she returned to the land. She never cut her hair or said unkind words about others.
I aked her once if she could have been anything, what would it be. She said, ‘A cotton farmer, but the boll weevils ended that.’
It was words that took me out of the old south. It was words that took me out into the world.
It is words that can make peace or war. It is words that transform us into what we are becoming. Words awaken our spirits, they carry us forward.
Tonight when Peter Phillips of the Media Freedom Foundation threatened to sue me, claiming he owned the words ‘Censored News,’ I thought of my grandmother.
She lived in a different time and place, but she knew the power of words. She knew their beauty, she knew their resilience, and she knew that like the land and river water, no one can own the words.