I'm in a major U.S. city so that only multiplies that number. Here's the problem though; and this is important. They've been organizing a bunch of protests lately. Protests, no problem, but they're OVER organized. They're predictable. We, as a nation in whole, have become complacent and predictable.
We sit and hide in front of our flat screen monitors and watch CNN and call and email and meet until we have a specific date planned and it's usually a day with specific meaning directly associated to the people we oppose. Then we paint the city in bright green posters and stickers announcing our date with Democracy! People in Action Joined Under a Common Cause!
Then streets are blocked off and the police get organized. Everything must run smoothly, safely.
I see all this. This complacency in our irritation and every day, every single day I walk by a hill in which a major riot took place. I've smoked cigarettes on it, sat under the statue, watched from my window as kids rode on sleds down it. Is this complacency the fault of the people or has the government made this possible? To this question I do not know the answer; I can't make up my mind.
Have we all just been weaned from discourse and restlessness over time? Have television and the internet become too much of our daily lives to the point where it requires so much attention? Or is it the ever imposing gun laws making it harder and harder to acquire firearms, means of protection, weapons? Is it the fact that we can't compete against a machine that can attack from the air or simply run us over like a child walking on bugs? It is a question of such magnitude that it must be chewed slowly. Its contents evaluated before swallowing.
When I see hear about these protests I sigh. I sigh and I curse the fact that I know it's going to solve nothing. Why would anyone listen if we can't give them reason to fear us? How can we make people fear us, the people, the backbone of the country, if all we're going to do is talk? People respond more to deeds than words. My football coach always reminded us that "no matter how much crap we talked before the game, all that mattered was how we played during it." And that's what I want. I want for us, the people, to put that fear back into our leaders. I want them to look in the mirror and see their own shaking eyes as they remember that no matter what, they are servants to the people. And what the good people give, the good people can take away.
Then again, maybe I'm the complacent one. Maybe after this has been written I'll do nothing more and fade away into oblivion. What matters is that for a moment that complacency was lifted enough and something slipped out. Hopefully someone, anyone will have the ability to just pick up that something, and run with it.