We could start to take action and resist in 2010. Or, we could do like these people and just try to buy our way into a better future.
(Image by Michael Holden) Permission Details DMCA
As 2011 begins, it is clear that many who long for radical change are increasingly desperate for that change. Good-hearted citizens who have been following American politics and the regular conduct of the U.S. government closely for decades are either wholly cynical or are seeking out ways to cope with the current situation. It is not that they have given up on the idea of resistance and change, but they just want to resist and work for change in a way that will help them not be torn to shreds by the talons of a system that continues to support the wants and needs of the top 1% at the expense of those at the bottom.
The collective American population has given up much ground to business or corporate interests. They have allowed political leaders to shift from being representatives of the people to being representatives of financiers, which fund their brand as politicians in Washington. They have conditioned themselves to accept piecemeal change or reform as all that they can get out of this system and they have even developed a keen ability to take measures that are labeled with the word "reform" and celebrate that measure even if it doesn't really reform anything at all. (For example, health "reform," which delivered customers to private insurance companies by making it mandatory for citizens to have health insurance under penalty of law.)
The consistency with which the American people give in to power cannot continue without producing more dire consequences. It cannot continue without certain minorities, like Muslims or Latino immigrants, being persecuted more. It cannot continue without the few social programs that government allows citizens to lean on in order to survive being lost entirely. It cannot continue without corporations taking more control of politicians and making politicians more indifferent to the misery and poverty of people suffering from the rot, which those in power have created over the past decades.
Thankfully, a small percentage of the American population do
not tolerate the coalescing of power, which the military industrial-complex,
the security industrial-complex, the congressional industrial-complex and other
complexes in this country. They continue to put sacrifice before
greed. While many Americans live a life seeking out materials, consumer goods
or some kind of social status that can satisfy their ego and make them feel
like they have some worth, a number have given up a quest for all that. They
are putting their future and well-being on the line by first being curious and
asking questions and then often acting upon that curiosity and any information
gained by engaging in protest -- acts of resistance.
2011, like every year, has the potential to be a year of resistance. Many instances of resistance happened in 2010, but as is typical, they went unreported or under-reported.
As the TSA stepped up its totalitarian invasion of people's privacy through pat-downs and body scanners and claimed it was a response to a Christmas Day bomber last year, many Americans resisted this turn toward totalitarianism and pledged to not fly or refuse to be groped. In the face of health "reform," single-payer healthcare advocates pledged to double their efforts in working for real healthcare for all, some of them committing to engage in protest and civil resistance. Tens of thousands of Americans gathered in Detroit for the U.S. Social Forum and spent five days developing agendas or plans around key issues in America that desperately need to be confronted by citizens.
The BP Gulf Oil Disaster saw Gulf residents in and around the Gulf area standing up to BP and the government cover-up. They worked to get out the truth about what the disaster had done to the environment and the Gulf seafood, which fishermen had depended on for their livelihood (many of those residents continue to fight).