Thursday, November 17, 2011

What Comes After Occupying?

So the Occupy Wall Street Moved has planned a Day of Action today in response to various cities around the country enforcing laws and city ordinances regarding people being in public parks between the hours of midnight and 5AM.  Now whether or not this was a coordinated effort as urged by the Obama administration, as some have theorized, I have no clue and I really don’t care.  

Since this movement has started it seems like all we’ve heard is that these folks are pissed.  I get that.  I’m pissed too.  The economy is in the tank, our political leaders are little more than whores on sale for the campaign dollar, major corporations seem to care very little for the people that they employ or service, the working class is getting squeezed from every side imaginable, and those with power and money continue to rule society and often get away with whatever they want.  That’s some pretty jacked up stuff and it only scratches the surface of the problems that are facing our country.  So I get it, I really do. 

Now my question is, what are you going to actually do about it?  

Do you think this Day of Action is going to do much, if anything, other than inconvenience a lot of people who are just trying to get by?  Sure there will be some folks in positions of power that will be prevented for doing something for a day, but what in the blazes good is that going to do?  Lord knows I’m not giving those leeches a pass, but in all honesty what do those in NYC hope to actually accomplish today? 

And how will vandalizing a store or a bank fix the system?  

We have serious problems that are going to take serious people working towards serious solutions and I’m sorry but yelling in the streets isn’t going to get the job done.  

There are those who will compare the Occupy Movement to the Arab Spring and say that yelling in the streets brought real change in places like Egypt.  I submit that trying to equate the Occupy Movement to the Arab Spring is a false comparison.  Let’s use what happened in Egypt as an example.  The protestors there were protesting an authoritarian government and in doing so worked to disrupt the government and eventually bring it down.  That is not what is happening with the Occupy Movement.  The only legitimate comparisons that can be made are with either the Tea Party and/or the Civil Rights Movement.  So why have/did these movements work?  In both cases they held protests, but then went home and worked in their communities to change things.  If the Occupy Movement wants to actually do something, they need to follow that lead.  They need to pack up the tents, head home, and organize to work for change. 

It’s never enough to just scream that the system is broken.  There has to be more to life and to a movement than just being against something, and if a movement is nothing more than a bunch of people pissed at the world then that isn’t going to stick around for very long.  Hatred and rage can only fuel someone for so long and even then it creates a fairly empty existence.  

But there is hope.  We really can make the world a better place but it won’t be easy and it won’t be quick.  We must raise our kids with the proper values and show them that there is a better way (and I’m not talking in some crazy religious kind of way either).  We much teach them that respect and hard work and dignity and the Golden Rule are things that should be followed and adhered to, no matter what.  That is how we change the world, one person at a time.  

This entire thing reminds me of the ALL song “What Are You For?”.  I think the lyrics (see below) fit perfectly here. 
 If you look for something wrong long enough I'm sure you'll find it
Save your psychic self-defense
'Cause I don't care what you're against
What are you for?
I want to know, why don't you tell me so?
What are you for?
Quit giving me negative what makes you want to live?
They shoved shit down your throat and told you that
It smells like roses
But it was just too hard to swallow, then you got
Save your evil, save your breath
'Cuz I don't care what you're against
What are you for?
I want to know, why don't you tell me so?
What are you for?
Quit giving me negative what makes you want to live?
You're tired of being pushed around
Want to tear the system down?
Hey bro - let's go!
Just quit your bitchin' about the situation
It's not that tough and it's not enough to point your finger
And I don't know why you should listen to me 'cause I'm just a singer
Your open mouth don't make you tough
I see you and I'll call your bluff
What are you for?
I want to know, why don't you tell me so?
What are you for?
Quit giving me negative, what makes you want to live?
What are you for?
What are you for?

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