Pour the Second cup: resistance to oppression [Read:] In every generation, a Pharaoh rises up to enslave us. In every generation, every human being must seek to free the community anew. [All join in singing:] When Israel was in Egypt's land, Let my people go; Oppressed so hard they could not stand, Let my people go! (Chorus:) Go down, Moses, 'Way down in Egypt's land; Tell ol' Pharaoh, Let my people go! Thus says the Lord, bold Moses said, Let my people go; If not I'll smite your first-born dead; Let my people go! Chorus) No more shall they in bondage toil, Let my people go; Let them come out with Egypt's spoil, Let my people go! (Chorus) We need not always weep and mourn, Let my people go; And wear these slav'ry chains forlorn, Let my people go! (Chorus) The devil thought he had us fast, Let my people go; But we thought we'd break his chains at last, Let my people go! (Chorus)

Pour the cup of grape juice. (Someone different reads each passage:)

Now the king of Egypt said to the midwives of the Hebrews -- the name of one was Shifrah, the name of the second Puah -- "When you help the Hebrew women give birth, if he be a son, put him to death; but if she be a daughter, she may live." But the midwives held God in awe, and they did not do as the king had spoken to them, they let the children live. God dealt well with the midwives. (Exodus 1: 16-21).

"When I dare to be powerful — to use my strength in the service of my vision, then it becomes less and less important whether I am afraid." -- Audre Lorde

I could never again raise my voice against the violence of the oppressed in the ghettos without having first spoken clearly to the greatest purveyor of violence in the world today my own government. (Martin Luther King, April 4, 1967)

Fannie Lou Hamer, leader of the Mississippi Freedom Democratic Party, when the President of the United States offered the MFDP two symbolic seats at the Democratic National Convention instead of recognizing the whole MFDP as the legitimate delegation: "We didn't come all this way for no two seats when all of us is tired."

[Resistance to oppression of workers and the poor:]

"God came into the picture. What was the sign that God had come? It was a bush that burned and burned and did not stop burning. Moses had had a fire kindled in his heart once, but it went out, or at least died down. God is the Being whose heart does not stop burning, in whom the flame does not die down. "What was God all burned up about? The voice that came out of the bush said, 'I have seen the affliction of my people that are in Egypt and have heard their cry by reason of their oppressors."'

."And the proof that God had entered into Moses, and that Moses had really been 'converted,' was that he had to go back and identify himself with his enslaved people 'organize them into Brickmakers' Union Number One' and lead them out of hunger and slavery into freedom and into 'a good land, and a large, a land flowing with milk and honey."' (A. J. Muste , 1943).

"A true revolution of values will soon look uneasily on the glaring contrast of poverty and wealth. With righteous indignation, it will look across the seas and see individual capitalists of the West investing huge sums of money in Asia, Africa and South America, only to take the profits out with no concern for the social betterment of the countries, and say: "This is not just." -- Martin Luther King, April 4, 1967

[Resistance to war and militarism]

"Pharaoh’s heart and that of his servants changed regarding the people. They said, What have we done, sending free the Godwrestlers from serving us? So the king of Narrowness/ Mitzrayyim had his chariot harnessed, his soldiers he took with him, and he took six hundred selected chariots, every sort of Egyptian war-chariot. The Egyptians pursued the Godwrestlers and overtook them encamped by the sea, all of Pharaohs chariot-horses, his riders, and his army. YHWH caused the sea to go back with a fierce east wind all night, and the Godwrestlers came through the midst of the sea upon the dry land. But YHWH shook the Egyptians in the midst of the sea. The waters returned, they covered the chariots and the riders of all Pharaohs army, not even one of them remained." (Exodus 14: 5-9, 27-28)

A true revolution of values will lay hands on the world order and say of war: "This way of settling differences is not just." This business of burning human beings with napalm, of filling our nation's homes with orphans and widows, of injecting poisonous drugs of hate into veins of people normally humane, of sending men home from dark and bloody battlefields physically handicapped and psychologically deranged, cannot be reconciled with wisdom, justice and love. A nation that continues year after year to spend more money on military defense than on programs of social uplift is approaching spiritual death. -- Martin Luther King, April 4, 1967

Resistance to the destructions of the earth: [James Hansen's words in Uppsala on CD against coal. OR something from March 2 event] CHECK***


[Sing newer anti-oppression songs]

haggadah Section: Commentary / Readings
Source: SEDER FOR THE EARTH: Facing the Plagues & Pharaohs of Our Generation, Shalom Center