Wednesday, March 11, 2009

ON REVOLUTION- Peaceful or Violent

Anyone who reads my posts with any regularity and/or anyone that knows me at all, knows that I have been speaking out against various administrations, their policies and the disintegration of the America created by our founding fathers for years now. But no matter how many bad things I noticed and discussed, no matter how many signs and symptoms I observed that we were losing our freedoms and that the ruling classes were gaining unprecedented power and wealth, I could not have believed even six years ago that things would get as bad as they have. The fundamental flaw in my logic was believing that the wealthy and powerful loved this country as I do, valued freedom and democracy as I do, and felt the same allegiance to our founding fathers to maintain what they fought, suffered and died to give to us as I do.

Those of us who have paid attention in the past thirty years have watched as everything that we were taught to value and love, all the precepts and fundamental ideas that this country was built upon, have slowly been eroded and replaced with the kind of system from which our forefathers fled. Opportunity became a thing for the wealthy-- blue collar workers were devalued; manufacturing jobs that paid a living wage disappeared and were replaced with service jobs that were largely minimum wage; public education was defunded and college tuition sky-rocketed. Meanwhile, unions were demonized and busted, attorneys were demonized and civil liberties degraded, the “wall” separating church and state was chipped away, and corporate interests seeped into every corner of our government like toxic waste. Our society began conflating capitalism with democracy, elevating greed over service, equating dissent with treason, and valuing blind nationalism over liberty and freedom. We as a people have been divided by race, religion, social status, financial status and political philosophy. It was under the Bush II Regime that my eyes were fully opened, but this has been coming for a long time.

Many who have been watching this have come to the conclusion that only violent revolution will turn things around. They have given up on the system; they have given up on all leaders. They sit on the sidelines and stew in cynicism. They have good reason to feel the way they do. Many of them have been very aware for many years that America as we know it is slipping away. And they have been active in attempting to change things, to no avail.

Though I understand where they are coming from, I am not there yet. I will not reject the possibility that they might be right, but I am not ready to accept that we cannot change our system using non-violent means. I will continue to advocate for change from within until I see proof that there is no hope.

I am advocating that EVERYONE get involved. Every time you hear a concerned citizen voicing the idea that somehow it is somebody else’s job to turn things around, you should be telling them that nobody else is going to rescue this country, it is up to them. If people want to turn things around, YES THEY CAN, if they will only: Get Informed!, Get Involved!, and Get Active! You are the change that you have been waiting for; you are the only change that you can believe in.

We all know that the media is pure propaganda. From Katie Couric to all of Fox News; you can’t trust them, you can’t believe them and, if you must watch or listen to them, you must do so with extreme prejudice. However, there is an occasional reason to hope and Glenn Greenwald writes about one:

This Fox News interview with Virg Bernero — the Mayor of highly unionized Lansing, Michigan and himself the son of a retired GM worker — is, for several reasons, really worth watching (h/t Brainwrap). The glaring discrepancy he notes — between (a) the consensus of our political class that workers must endlessly give up wage, health and other benefits even as (b) we shovel trillions of dollars in government subsidies to Wall Street for ongoing massive executive bonuses and the like for the very people who caused the collapse — is one that (whether you agree or disagree with it) is rarely heard in our mainstream debate with such clarity and passion.


It gives me hope to see that people who are part of government, even local, are thinking this way. They are seeing the same things we are seeing and instead of pulling away, they are getting inside the system. They believe that they can be the change that they are seeking. Others are marching, joining groups, planning protests, speaking out, blogging and getting organized. This is the way that the people of this country have been able to bring about change in the past. I can’t say for certain that it will be successful in these days and times. But I still have hope.

This is not to say that I would not support violent revolution if it comes to that. Our Constitution lays upon us the duty to overthrow authoritarian rule. But it is a tool of last resort and I grow increasingly suspicious of those that are vigorously advocating that tool.


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James A. Ritchie said...

I strongly suspect a violent revolution is coming to America, but exactly the opposite of the one you seem to want.

You seem to be on the side of those without the guns, without the soldiers, and without the ability.

Everything I've seen tells me a violent revolution is coming, probably within twelve years, but it's going to bring about much you won't like, much you will hate.

ksliberal said...

It is hard to say what the future will bring. We are all under the corporate yoke.

However, if a faction of the people in this country decide that they want to violently overthrow the corporatists in order to make this country into some sort of militaristic, authoritarian dictatorship, don't underestimate the abilities or capabilities of progressives like myself. Don't underestimate the will of the people to be free. There are many that own and operate weapons and those that use their brains as weapons and I am convinced that the people of this country will not be trampled and cowed.