"Je n'ai pas peur des représailles. Je n'ai pas de gosses, pas de femme, pas de voiture, pas de crédit. ça fait sûrement un peu pompeux, mais je préfère mourir debout que vivre à genoux." - Charb, one of the murdered satirists
Some context for people wondering what this is about.
Wednesday 7th, at 11am, 3 people entered "Charlie Hebdo" a very well known French satirical newspaper and shot 12 people with kalashnikov. Charlie Hebdo is also known, for their caricatures of the prophet Mahomet.
"Je Suis Charlie" means, "I Am Charlie" and is a message of support to the newspaper.
Just a small precision (I am French and following media closely):
- Two people assaulted the office, and killed 10, wounded 11 (4 of which considered critical).
- They furthermore killed 2 police officers on their way out, one of them point blank as he lay wounded and was asking for mercy (do yourself a favor and don't look at that witness video. I mean it. NSFL).
- They are on the loose and are reported armed with automatic weapons and a rocket launcher. No kidding.
- Their car was found in a suburban ghetto (Pantin, in Seine-saint-denis)
It will probably survive, actually. Many people will buy the journal in the next few weeks, even if they never read it before. There are many talentuous cartoonists that can help for a few months if needed. And even without that, how could the French government let that journal fail in the next weeks ? It would be a very negative symbol; that would mean "they" won.
As quoted in Liberation Theologies in North America and Europe (1979) by Gerald H. Anderson and Thomas F. Stransky, p. 281; this is sometimes misattributed to the more modern revolutionary, Che Guevara, and to "La Pasionaria" Dolores Ibárruri, especially in Spain, where she popularized it in her famous speeches during the Spanish Civil War, to José Martí, and toAeschylus who is credited with a similar declaration in Prometheus Bound: "For it would be better to die once and for all than to suffer pain for all one's life." The phrase "better that we should die on our feet rather than live on our knees" was spoken byFrançois-Noël Gracchus Babeuf in his defence of the Conspiracy of Equals in April 1797. In French it read, 'Ne vaut-il pas mieux emporter la glorie de n'avoir pas survecu a la servitude?' but transliterated this bears no resemblance whatever to the quote under discussion. see: The Defense of Gracchus Babeuf Before the High Court of Vendome (1967), edited and translated by John Anthony Scott, p. 88 and p. 90, n. 12.
¡Prefiero morir de pie que vivir siempre arrodillado!
I'd prefer to die standing, than to live always on my knees.
As quoted in Operación Cobra : historia de una gesta romántica (1988) by Alvaro Pablo Ortiz and Oscar Lara, p. 29
Men of the South! It is better to die on your feet than to live on your knees!
With an extension, as quoted in Timeless Mexico (1944) by Hudson Strode, p. 259
I would rather die standing than live on my knees!
It is better to die on your feet than to live on your knees!
I prefer to die standing than to live forever kneeling.
Prefer death on your feet to living on your knees.
La tierra es de quien la trabaja con sus manos.
The land belongs to those who work it with their hands.
Quoted as a slogan of the revolutionaries in Shirt-Sleeve Diplomat (1947) Vol. 5, p. 199, by Josephus Daniels, and specifically attributed to Zapata by Ángel Zúñiga in 1998, as quoted in Mexican Social Movements and the Transition to Democracy (2005), by John Stolle-McAllister