November 11, 2011 1 Comment
Millions of people are out of work.
I stepped out of the train into Government Plaza (or “People`s Plaza”) into an arena flanked on all sides by large modern skyscrapers. These same skyscrapers are home to some of the largest corporations in America. Walking across the plaza you see lines of police, standing, watching, and waiting. Some may have been wondering how long till their shift is done. Well, it appeared so on some of their faces.
Looking towards the plaza there was a sense of optimism, joy, determination, and hope. It was a new energy about this protest something different compared past`s protests. We see people old, young, disabled, veterans, etc… All gathered with their own agenda in their own quest for their own personal idea of change in society. One of which I can say with my own bias that we desperately need in our grand American society. I sat down on the edge of an empty foundation taking all these thoughts in trying to piece together this phenomenon. There was a woman who was sitting next to me in her mid-30s I presume, and engaged her in conversation. I found out her name was Nancy, a mother of two, and a registered nurse by profession. So, I decided to ask her the question of the day(“why are you here?”). She replied, “I`m here because, I am tired of seeing the country stroll down the path that it is. Our nation is too precious to be left for sale by the highest bidder.” She went on to say,”my two kids need hope in this country, a country founded on the principles of democracy, and I have yet to see real democracy in a long time”. This it would seem is reasonable enough a majority of the people squatting here would agree with her direction of views.
I parted ways with Nancy, and began to walk further about this mass collection of eclectic people. I ran into a construction worker, who had a very comical sign that read”Turn off Fox, so easy a caveman can do it.” This I had to take a picture of. The gentleman began to tell me that it was far too cold to put on the caveman outfit that he normally associates with the sign. The more I progress the more clever signs I see. All sorts of Organizations had tables set up, passing out their literature, waving flags, and showing solidarity toward the climate of the protest. The two most visible of these organizations were the local Socialist Action chapter, and the I.W.W.(Industrial Workers of the World). These groups are naturally very suspicious of capitalism and would love nothing more to rid society of it. Which the attitude of the Occupy Movement seems to embody.
Although given the large percentage of these two groups they wasn’t a driving force of leadership. A small organization of a few college kids had organized this OcccupyMN movement, which is very interesting to note. The embodiment of true Democracy takes place in this movement.Everyone has a stake in the decision-making process, no elite few, but a group decision. This is the true center piece of this movement: true Democracy, no elitist hierarchy, but a government for the people by the people. We have seen a new awakening among the common people, a peasant`s revolt of sorts, but a revolt that is a long time coming. Americans seem to be waking up to the reality in which they truly live, and quite frankly are pissed off. Every American needs to exercise their right of protest whatever their ideology.
Democracy isn`t a system, but an embodiment of ideas. It is made up of people, people with their own ideas, and envisions for the future. Together, as people we can bring back what Democracy truly is: Hope.