What Should a Person Give Their Life To?

Our friend, let us tell you from the start in order to do away with any suspicions: this statement is written to “brainwash” you.

Of course, you are taking precautions against their indoctrinations, and you verify the news you follow from many sources. You never play “pro-regime” channels on your TVs at home, and when it’s appropriate, you do not hesitate to tweet your own ideas.

Perhaps you even prepared aid packages for those who suffered from the İzmir earthquake, you were excited by the march of the Soma miners, and you got so angry with the arrests of metal workers that you raised hell in a WhatsApp group.

Like everyone, you are trying to distribute the weight of the days and the news. When the festivity of the “thank God these bad days are over, now worse days are ahead” chats disperses and a somber wind takes its place, you feel lonely, we know.

Maybe you think that “the conditions of pandemic” force you into loneliness, you’re wrong.

You are still alive…

You are not yet a number in the turquoise table[1] that is published (!) every day.

You are not yet sharing the same fate with Hasan whose heart could not handle being forced to continue working despite being sick with Covid-19 at Galataport where Survivor’s final episode was being broadcasted, we didn’t read you on the same page as Emine who committed suicide by leaving the hair dryer on because she could not keep her children warm, and you haven’t died yet like 8 years old Çınar who fell from the roof after following his father who was trying to help him connect to EBA,[2] or like 50-year-old Aziz who had a heart attack after climbing a hill to broadcast a lesson to his students because he was having internet issues, or like health workers who we lost one after another and who were told after 9 months that their masks were not working.

So, you are still alive.

Apart from the fact that you survive in an open air prison just waiting for one day to be over after another, even though your chest tightens when you look around, that you are part of the “herd” who has gained immunity comes to your aid.

The unbearable lightness of staying alive…

Are you there?

Are you still reading?

Now we can meet.

We are those who are searching for ways to not cease being human, not those who are content with staying alive but those who want to live humanly.

You certainly saw, heard and knew.

Perhaps you too aspired to say without hesitation “solidarity keeps us alive” and stand amongst us, perhaps you turned your head away saying “a bunch of lunatics,” you moved away “with fear” when you watched us get beaten with batons after just one slogan.

We want to “live humanly” and this is not about eating or drinking as one might initially think.

No, our steps are not towards earning Euros instead of Turkish Liras when we get the first opportunity.

We do not feel obligated to give our smiles towards 64 megapixel cameras.

And we are not those who lie in bed at the end of the day and comfort themselves by saying “thank God today has also passed without an incident,” while being filled with fear of unemployment, fear of bosses, fear of the police, fear of one’s neighbour, and fear of the future.

We do not want the crumbs that are offered to us, we want the world.

You want it too, we know.

“…Hearts of millions are weighing like dark nights,

Not enough to smash faces of the bourgeoisie

Is the labor of thousands.

But we know of days

That not even a light wind blows

We know that with a blast of thunder splits

The face of the universe

A storm covers the earth…”

We are revolutionary socialists and we care calling for you to join us, to join our ranks.

To be on our “ship” in the coming storm.

Look around you.

The world is covered with a virus named capitalism.

Everywhere in the world the humiliation, exploitation and imprisonment of humanity ensues.

That which kills the smallest child, and that which unplugs an elderly person left to his fate because there weren’t enough rooms left in a health system plundered throughout years for profit is the same despicable system.

It continues to play the chants of plunder-profit-war everywhere.

Just because of this, war for better days also proceeds everywhere around the world.

“…Adept ears

listened to the wind,

and said,

‘The storm is close,

take care to blow the fire…”

The voices we hear are not imagined.

At times we listen to Soma miners who say “God knows we are not scared of you,” at others we walk with women saying “Let our anger surround the world” in Taksim, in Şili we write “it was not depression, it was capitalism” on the walls, we light up the sky in Guatemala by setting on fire the central bank against the anti-people budget planning, in India we are millions striking, and from French slums we take it to the streets shouting “Freedom, freedom, freedom.”

Are you hearing the voices?

We are living for beautiful days, fighting for beautiful days.

We are fighting for a world where work will not be a necessity for daily subsistence, for survival, and for being able to feed oneself; a world where the subjugation of humans by other humans and everything that comes with such subjugation will be eradicated, where all the possibilities of human beings will be developed freely, and where humanity will socially and once again be reborn, we are fighting for socialism, for communism.

And we will continue along this road until victory.

Because my friend, fighting against humiliation, exploitation, and oppression, not only for the future, but for today too, is the only way to live.

To get used to this humiliation, this system that stains and corrupts our humanity, not fighting against this exploitation, is the most painful of deaths. 

We are revolutionary socialists.

Revolutionarism is expressed through the attitude towards life.

Attitude taken towards death is a natural continuation of this.

When one cannot have a strong attitude towards life, when one does not live resolutely, death becomes both a refuge and a feared encounter. On the contrary, some deaths mean the transcendence of death.

“Those who defeat death for their faith

once again taught

that sometimes action

is the last breath given in the name of life

and that this breath

is worth tens of years

spent without meaning.”

It was 23 years ago.

We sent two of us to the sky.

Two revolutionaries, two comrades, to human beings, who defeated death, who stayed with their departure…

Burhanettin Akdoğdu was a student in Uludağ University. In Kaldıraç magazine, he wrote his poems and articles under the name of Bekir Kilerci.

He was a revolutionary theater actor, a poet.

Bekir joined the struggle during times when the wind was blowing from the opposite direction, when revolutionarism was being promoted as foolishness, when all kinds of ideological disinformation were being spread and turning away from socialism was being glorified, and he became the commander of the “ship.”

On the 13th of December 1997, in the same month that his poem for Erdal Eren[3] was going to be published, on the same day that Erdal Eren was immortalized, under torture in the Anti-Terrorism bureau in Ankara, Bekir was also immortalized without giving away anything.

“Those who cannot dare to fight for their ideals, die for the ideals of others,” wrote Bekir.

“If you ask me today, I am

neither Laz,

neither Arab,

neither Tatar,

nor Bosniak,

of course for reaching my roots

I am happy

but first of all, I am a man of my class.

I was born as a worker’s son,

I lived as a worker

and I will die as a fighter of my class,” he said. He lived as such, and he defeated death this way.

Ali Serkan Eroğlu was a student in Ege University.

He was 19 years old, his eyes were in the stars. He was a revolutionary theater actor, a poet.

He was the founder of Ege Ensemble (Theater Society Against the Wall). He was helping publish countless literary zines in his school. He read Kaldıraç magazine and fought for the free world he dreamt of. He was offered the chance to become an informer against his comrades, his answer cost him his life.

On the 24th of December 1997, he was hanged in his school’s bathroom. His departure was a scream, a Scream of Being Human.

“Whoever you are, die well!” wrote Serkan. To die well, you’d had to live well in the first place. That is how Serkan lived.

We commemorate our two heroes who fought and dreamt for a classless, free world without exploitation.

They continue to live everywhere in the world in workers’ and peoples’ rebellions against this despicable system.

They are amongst us, now and always!

While we remember them, while we tell of them, while we carry on their struggles, we invite everyone who wants to remain human, who wants a humanly and free life, to “live” like them.

“I searched for simple truths at first.

My head spun when I saw the realities.

How hard they were to grasp;

my brain couldn’t take it,

my hands started to work.

I started to change life.

How easy everything actually was

the whole issue was to

weave life

thread by thread.”

Join Kaldıraç to weave life thread by thread!

[1] The phrase is referring to the color of the daily coronavirus stats table government publishes.

[2] Turkish government’s online-learning platform.

[3] Anatolian revolutionary who was executed in 1980 at the age of 17. His age was officially taken a higher than 17 to allow the execution.