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OpEdNews Op Eds    H3'ed 3/29/16

"Democracy Awakening", God knows we need it

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Rendering of signers to the Declaration of Independence

Come the weekend of April 16-17, according to an article [1] by Jim Hightower, "thousands of mad-as-hellers will be converging on Washington to launch a nationwide mobilization of people power to halt Big Money's control of our political system".

It's being dubbed "Democracy Awakening". God knows we need it.

It actually begins this Saturday with a patriotic rally at the Liberty Bell in Philadelphia followed by "a 10-day, 140 mile trek from Philly to Capitol Hill". Then on Sunday April 17 a "protest march followed by a 'Rally for Democracy' on the Capitol lawn"-check the articles links for details.

Since the Occupy encampments of 2011 were summarily shut down nationwide by coordinated inter-governmental police actions there's been a sort of eerie quiescence of these type movements in the country-although not totally which I'll allude to shortly.

Internationally our endless wars continued in Afghanistan, got worse in Syria and Ukraine-now both with tenuous cease fires- Libya, Yemen, Iraq again. ISIS arrived with its special brand of beheading vengeance.

Domestically "Black Lives Matter" came abruptly on the scene rebelling against the unjustified police killings of peoples of color-captured on cell phones cameras occurring all over the country- revealing the unmistakable racist nature behind the killings. Throw in the acquittals of officers by grand juries and prosecutors refusing to indict the fallacy of our institutions failure "to serve and protect" is there for all to see..

Meanwhile since the disastrous SCOTUS ruling on Citizens United in 2010 outright, overt corruption of the electoral process goes unimpeded with an avalanche of big money from billionaires, Super PACS, lobbyists, undeclared dark money blatantly revealing no semblance of a representative democracy all but replaced by a plutocracy of oligarchs with their political toadies selected and elected to do their bidding.

The graft is no longer hidden. Even billionaire presidential candidate Donald Trump in a recent Republican presidential debate openly admitted when he previously contributed to a candidate running for office-whether Republican or Democrat- he expected something in return. It's blatant corruption yet made permissible under current law.

That's hard not to be noticed even for a people mostly disengaged, passively indifferent and intentionally oblivious to what's happening beyond their own personal interests.

Our democracy has been stolen by the 1% along with an economy serving those interests whose austerity measures are foisted on and decimating the middle class along with the rest of the 99%. Something the Occupy movement enunciated clearly during its short time on the scene. That may be its greatest legacy.

If we look where the country is now it mirrors similar conditions that brought the signing of the "Declaration of Independence" in 1776.

Re-read the document or at least the parts about "Governments are instituted...from the consent of the governed". Does anyone believe that to be true today?

"That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or abolish it, and to institute new government" that "when a long train of abuses and usurpations...reduce them under absolute despotism, it is their right, it is their duty to throw off such Government". Is that not where we are now? Of course it is.

It's time for a new Declaration-as was done in 1776-clearly enunciating the "long term abuses and usurpations" that exist today.

It remains to be seen whether "Democracy Awakening" will boldly take the next steps necessary to begin to restore the "consent of the governed".

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