Progressive Activism Is Bubbling Up Across the Country -- Here's What's Happening That the Corporate Media Can't Be Bothered to Report
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And, it is great to see people planning ahead. We got notice this week from activists in Maine planning for an October Drone Walk. The anti-drone movement and Guantanamo protests have had very positive effects. This week, President Obama had to admit that he killed four Americans with drones, mostly by accident – even though the DoD claims drones are accurate. Also this week, activists filed a war crimes complaint against Obama, Brennan and other officials seeking their prosecution. And Thursday, Obama was forced to make a public speech at the National Defense University about both the drone program and Guantanamo Bay Prison. Medea Benjamin of CODEPINK, interrupted the speech several times such that the President had to acknowledge her and she asked powerful questions as she was escorted out by security. [ See video and transcript.] Guantanamo activists responded to the president saying “no more excuses” and vowed to keep the pressure on!
So, just as author Mike Lux saw in the 60s, there is a lot going on, lots of issues coming to a head at the same time and people taking action to confront them. How do we get to the next phase of popular resistance?
Long time writer on movements and transformational change, Sam Smith, the editor of Progressive Review wrote “The Great American Repair Manual in 1997,” we reprinted a portion of it this week: A Movement Manual. The essence: movements are “propelled by large numbers of highly autonomous small groups linked not by a bureaucracy or a master organization but by the mutuality of their thought, their faith and their determination.” He recommends: organize from the bottom up, create a subculture, create symbols, develop an agenda and make the movement’s values clear. He also recommends becoming what you want to be – become an existentialist – writing “existence precedes essence. We are what we do.” As far as building community power, we recommend this video from “The Democracy School” on how to use local governance to challenge corporate power.”
Do not despair when the media says there is no popular resistance. We have been covering the actions of the movement with weekly reports since 2011 and even before the occupy movement began, we saw Americans beginning to stand up. We knew it was the right time for occupy and we now see it is the right time for a mass popular resistance. We will be announcing a new project in mid-June to help bring the movement to a new level. Sign up here to hear about it and how you can help. To create the transformative change we want to see, we need people to get involved.
We agree with Mike Lux who writes: “just as it took several years for the seeds planted in those 18 months in the early '60s to take root and begin to bring about the changes of the years to come in terms of civil rights, women's rights, and the environment, it will take several years for the seeds being planted now to fully take root. But I believe more and more that it will happen.”
The government responds with police force and ignores the demands of the people. Super majorities of Americans agree with the views of the popular resistance, even if they are not yet acting. This is a recipe for a mass eruption of movement activity. We are in the midst of the pre-history of historic transformational change: a transformation, which will end the power of money to ensure that the people and planet come before profits.