Appreciate Passion

RECEIVED Thu., Sept. 8, 2005

Dear Mr. Editor,
    Kurt Cobain once wrote in a private journal (that is now sold in bookstores across the country) that "life isn't nearly as sacred as the appreciation of passion." Marching down Congress with Cindy Sheehan on Aug. 31, those words came back to me. For me, it's not just about supporting Sheehan. It's about showing others that when you see a cause that is worth standing up for, you have to do just that. Fear is often the death of our passions. While Sheehan spoke at City Hall, I stood with a few others on Cesar Chavez, holding signs so that passersby might be inspired to seek some passion within themselves. Across the street, counterprotesters held their own signs. It was beautiful to see them expressing passion, even if it was directed toward a different purpose. My makeshift "poster" (a peace sign hastily scrawled on the back of a notebook) seemed to draw the attention of a male counterprotester holding a "Footprint of the American Chicken" sign. He mocked, I smiled. The point I'm making is that at least I have passion. He obviously does also. And the fact that we are on different sides of an issue should be irrelevant. I'm sure I will receive criticism for making that statement, but passion is the point. If you have no passion, life really isn't of much importance. Voltaire said, "I disapprove of what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it." Sure, he's a dead French satirist and Cobain is a dead grunge rocker. But both were brilliant and both understood passion. I think we all could learn to appreciate passion a little more. No matter what side we are on.
Thanks,
Cassie Burnham
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