I am angry. In fact, furious. So much that, a few days ago, I woke up and said out loud, “I am raging!”. I was on my own, and it was terrifying to hear my voice. It has been a few years since I didn’t admit my anger. I didn’t allow myself to be angry, at least to express it. Maybe it was because I had too much of it and thought the rage would devour me once I began. I wrote in Together that we need to choose attention over anger. That was to say that anger had been commodified in our age of social media, for it was the best catalyst for interaction, thus an easy profit for social media companies. Anger was no longer the emotion to trigger social change or political action. I also argued that anger, on a personal level, is consuming rather than invigorating and that it isn’t dependable, especially when it comes to sustaining the necessary determination for our political commitments. Despite having written all this, I feel impossible not to be very angry over the last few days.
After confessing anger to myself, I did what I could do the best — write.
The Gezi Trial going on for the last three years came to an outrageous closure last Monday. Osman Kavala, a dear friend and a man of unmatched moral values, was sentenced to life imprisonment, and the other seven defendants, all my acquaintances, received 18 years of prison time. It was one of those historical moments where the fascist intentions of political power were relentlessly rubbed in your face. I felt like there would be no more home for people like me to return to. Rage filled me up to the limit of total paralysis for 24 hours. But the following day, after confessing anger to myself, I did what I could do the best — write. It was almost like the night of the 15th of July 2016, when the fighter jets were flying over me during the military coup attempt in Turkey. This is how I deal with life — if you can call this dealing. So, I wrote a piece for my friends, published in Der Spiegel.
Can you “produce” action through anger?
So now, I am asking myself whether I was right to think that anger is nothing but consuming. Or does it also activate the core of resistance against pain? What do you think? Can you “produce” action through anger? Can that action be trusted in terms of sustainability? Is it a dependable source of reason? Or do we always have the luxury to contemplate such choices? Or is it something that happens to us regardless of our preference?