January 31, 2013 by voicescompetition
The year is 1963. The forum is the United Nations General Assembly. The speaker is Emperor Haile Selassie I, King of Ethiopia. And change is afoot.
Countless oppressed people around the world are rising up to reclaim something that is rightfully theirs – their basic human rights. In America, slaves were granted freedom in 1865 with the passage of the Emancipation Proclamation. Such is not the case in Africa where the governing bodies of many countries still treat blacks as second-class citizens.
Selassie I has an intimate understanding of the oppression countless Africans face throughout the entire continent. He takes it upon himself raise his voice and be their spokesman. He speaks on their behalf to what may very well be the most esteemed international organization the world has ever seen. I’m not going to tell you what was said that day – you’re going to have to listen to it yourself.
But wait, here comes the twist.
If you want to listen to his speech, you can very well do so by listening to Bob Marley’s song entitled “War.” In it, Marley takes his voice and uses the very same words Selassie I spoke in 1963. Marley converts them into a song that he himself sings verbatim. Check the video, it’s easy listening and you might even learn something too. So with no further adieu, I present you with “War.”
By Matt Alexander