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North Bay / Marin | Education & Student Activism | Global Justice and Anti-Capitalism

Community is the Great Hope of the Future
by Brady Osborne
Tuesday May 8th, 2012 10:09 AM
This piece focuses on the goal of community which the Occupy Movement hopes to obtain. It is 355 words in length.
Community is the Great Hope of the Future

There has been much criticism of the Occupy Movement; that it is a haven for degenerates and anarchists preoccupied with some sort of violent, destructive overthrow of the government. That, of course, is the excuse given when law enforcement officials use violent means against Occupy protestors. However, in my experience with those involved in the Occupy Movement this is just not the case.

As a Sociology major at Sonoma State University I am currently enrolled in an undergraduate Investigative Sociology class. Along with my research team of 7, I have spent about 4 months conducting in-depth interviews with members of Occupy Santa Rosa. It is my experience that Occupy members adhere to the official stance of the movement, which is non-violent resistance. In fact, the Occupy Movement is dedicated to creating more peaceful communities. A society comprised of communities which are people-centered as opposed to money-centered seems to be the ultimate goal of the Occupy Movement. One can throw around terms that are divisive and demonized such as, socialism, communism, and anti-capitalism, but really the Occupy Movement wants to see thriving communities and that is a truly inclusive goal.

The Occupy Movement wants to see a unified 99% and it is understood that this can manifest itself in various ways. There is no desire on Occupy’s part to alienate people and in my experience “occupiers” have expressed an understanding that we all contribute in our own ways based on our own strengths. It is not expected that one must quit their job and dedicate themselves completely to organizing march’s and occupations of Bank of America, instead it is understood that every bit helps and nothing is too small an effort. If we as the 99% come to understand that we can live in a community which values our strengths and asks no more than we can give, then we can thrive. Occupy wants to create better, more self-sustainable communities and has in essence done so just in the formation of the movement itself. So check out your local Occupy group and see what community is all about.