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Indybay FeatureRelated Categories: North Bay / Marin | Global Justice and Anti-Capitalism
Let Our Future Begin Now
The occupy movement. Our future depends on our active participation in creating the social change we wish to see.
Let Our Future Begin Now
By: Sasha Kobler
Our future depends on our active participation in promoting social change. Being part of a democracy means more than just voting for the lesser of two evils every four years. Our active involvement in protesting for our inclusion in the American dream and demanding a sustainable future that benefits everyone depends on each and every one of us becoming involved. The Occupy Movement is one of the greatest people’s movements for social justice in America since the civil rights and is actively pushing forward toward a better future. Within one month after it began, Occupy protests sprung up all over the globe in over 1500 cities. In the USA masses of people hit the streets to protest their exclusion from the American dream and their dissatisfaction with the current system.
Through this movement we have been able to expose the deeply ingrained inequalities and corruption that are part of our system. It’s time for us acknowledge the truth that is present in all of our lives. We are currently facing a serious political, financial, and environmental crisis that will cause our system to collapse. Our society is faced by problems that are so grave that we can no longer plead ignorance and remain disengaged from the course of our future. We have stood by silently for so long that our fate has been turned over to a corrupt political system that functions for the interest of the wealthiest 1%. Currently the top 1% of the population control 42% of the country’s financial wealth. To take this even further, 97% of the country’s overall financial wealth is controlled by a mere 10%.
Where does that leave the rest of us? Well, our voices are unheard and most significantly our needs are unrepresented in government because it works to preserve the wealth and power for the 1%. The people that currently hold the fate of our future ignore the reality that the growth our economic system is based on is unsustainable and will inevitably collapse. We are faced with budget cuts to social services and education, bank bailouts, home foreclosures, unemployment, lack of medical care, and massive debt that has enslaved the people. The continued degradation of our people and the environment is having detrimental effects on our future that are irreversible. The depletion of our natural resources and climate change are leaving behind severe effects on our planet. Politicians have become so disconnected from the consequences and effects of their policies that the real issues of the people are unrepresented. The Occupy Movement is giving a voice to the injustices suffered by the people of this country. It is exposing the massive corruption in government and the influence of corporations in politics.
Occupy Wall Street Movement calls for a shift in our collective consciousness and a radical overhaul of the current system in place. It is calling everyone to action to envision and create the world we wish to live in. The dream of equal opportunity and that everyone has a fair chance to make it does not exist in this system and therefore the current ideology of individualism our system breeds can no longer be sustained. The prospects of our future and our environment are tightly correlated. We must strengthen our communities by, buying locally to keep money circulating in our communities and banking with banks that reinvest money into our communities. By doing this we are able to make ownership human again and realize that our success is interconnected with that of our community. We can no longer stand by silently and believe in the false illusions and hopes of the American dream. In order to live in a democracy we must become active in the political process. This means involving ourselves in social movements to demand the social change we wish to see.
Sasha Kobler is a student in the social movements class at Sonoma State University.