Time for the biggest march on Washington DC EVER!

The bombardment of bad news is relentless. For an empath like me, it’s literally painful, even self-destructive to open myself up to it. Today they are permitting the shooting of hibernating bears in their dens. Yesterday they threw out the rules against trophy imports of elephant and lion parts.

Tomorrow they’ll vote on a tax bill will savage students, the elderly and the working class, while sending the rich laughing to the bank. Word is that the senator from Alaska has decided to vote for it, despite misgivings, because she can’t resist the pork thrown her way: carte blanche to drill in the Artic National Wildlife Refuge. And then there’s the possibility of war with North Korea, which has Hawaii resurrecting World War II era missile warning systems.

Meanwhile, the insane man who stole our White House is busy inflaming old hatreds, undermining confidence in our most respected news organizations, and getting away with crimes that other men are now being fired for daily (Garrison Keillor, the latest head to roll for sexual misconduct).

How should we conduct ourselves in the face of such overwhelmingly bad news?

Like most people I know, I’m just continuing to go through the motions of my life. As a teacher, I go in to teach my classes, and most of the time current events doesn’t come up, even in my media studies classes. The students don’t want to discuss politics or current events. They don’t want to get into arguments or risk offending each other. They just want to do their work, get good grades, and move on with their lives.

I can’t blame them as I’m following the same playbook. We all are. Yes, there’s some outrage expressed on social media, but if we really allowed ourselves to wake up and feel the full measure of the slow-motion disaster that is our present moment, we’d be doing more than posting angry faces and sharing editorials.

Graduate students, who are among the biggest targets of the disgusting Republican tax bill being rushed through Congress, are taking to the streets to protest. As usual, the young lead the way. We should all be out in the streets protesting!

I am surprised that no national organization is calling for the mass protests that should be occurring in Washington DC this holiday season. Last January women turned out en masse not only in Washington but all over the country to protest the ascension of “grab’em by the pussy Donald” to the highest office in the land. Where are they now, when all our worst fears for the Trump era have come true, and then some?

Protesting to your social media friends in virtual reality is ineffective because you’re not reaching your “enemies,” the people in power you’re protesting against. The Republican-controlled government is in its own echo chamber—45’s 43 million Twitter followers are cheering him on, giving him the illusion of invincibility.

Trump and his Republican toadies need a wake-up call, and it needs to be delivered with boots on the ground, not easily ignored virtual reality.

Today I’m calling on the leaders of every progressive organization in America to get off their butts and start organizing the biggest march on Washington our country has ever known.

We are in the midst of a crisis of epic proportions, affecting every sector of society (save the 1% and the big corporations). The health of our society and environment has never been more threatened.

It’s a storm-the-Bastille moment, and yet here we are, all mesmerized and immobilized by our screens.

Let’s use virtual reality to organize: who’s ordering up a bus for my town? What about yours? It’s time to go to Washington to remind the politicos who they work for, and what the democratic creed of America stands for.

We need to do it now, before they lock in legislation that will cripple our economy and bankrupt our future for generations to come.

Fired up? Ready to go!

***

While you’re waiting for the bus, you can call these senators who are said to be open to rational appeal on the tax bill:

Collins (ME) 202-224-2523
Corker (TN) 202-224-3344
Daines (MT) 202-224-2651
Flake (AZ) 202-224-4521
Johnson (WI) 202-224-5323
Lankford (OK) 202-224-5754
McCain (AZ) 202-224-2235
Murkowski (AK) 202-224-6665

And consider submitting your writing, photography or art to the new online magazine I’ve just founded, Fired Up! Creative Expression for Challenging Times.  It’s true that online activism can only take us so far. But it’s a good way to let off some steam and inspire ourselves and others in the process!

Leave a comment

1 Comment

  1. Gerry

     /  November 30, 2017

    Excellent post! Thank you!

    The bad news is astounding in its quantity and quality. I and my wife and many others can’t handle it all, and have to ration it. But then of course you wonder what you are missing.

    The bad news is not just the news we hear. Some of it shows how diminished our democracy is. I doubt that the tax bill would be even close to where it is if we had a functioning democracy. But between money in politics, gerrymandering, the disenfranchise of voters, the voters who have given up, and the refrain “You can’t fight city hall”, democracy has been greatly weakened.

    Which is another reason for a grand gesture, where everyone concerned about justice, fairness, and democracy unite to fight for democracy.

    A march on Washington, DC sounds good! But can we do better than that? A march on all 50 state capitols? A march on all large city halls? … Or maybe a combination of all three?
    I mention this because there are many who can’t find the time or money to go to DC, it’s 3,000 miles from the west coast, about 5,000 miles from Alaska, and about 6,000 miles from Hawaii. And long distance travel adds to our climate footprints.

    I’m a little confused, however. You say students don’t want to talk about politics, but the graduate students are out protesting? Why the difference? What’s going on now will have more impact on the young, I think.

    I’m not very surprised that no national organization is calling for massive action. It seems to me that in the past few decades, the left and the Democrats, with a few exceptions, have typically fought for crumbs instead of a better world. Of course that’s sad and scary at the same time. All the more reason that it would be good for every citizen to be more active.
    … I do have the impression that more people are becoming active, but yes, how many are acting constructively? I agree that online actions are not enough.

    And as for the 1% (maybe it should be the .1% or .01% instead) and the big corporations, they may be reaping short term rewards, but I think they will probably suffer in the long run as well.

    And it’s normal to go through the normal motions of life, we still need to work, eat, sleep, take care of family… but why can’t we find more time for politics? Nader once said
    “If you’re not turned on to politics, politics will turn on you.”
    http://www.quotationspage.com/quote/36865.html

    Reply

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: