The recent death of Troy Davis hit me hard. I didn’t know him or anyone else anyone directly involved with the case, but was drawn in due to my general opposition to the death penalty, and the many questions surrounding his guilt. So I joined the many, many voices opposing his death sentence, but the government ignored us and killed him on September 21, 2011.
For me this is the latest in a string of many political disappointments: hot issues like tax breaks for wealthy people coinciding with cuts to education and unemployment benefits; elections of officials who didn’t live up to my expectations or who lost their way in empty scandals; protests and outcry such as for Mr. Davis or on Wall Street that are ignored.
Perhaps the biggest of these was when the world joined together to ask then-President Bush to leave Iraq alone. “Between six and ten million people took part in protests in up to sixty countries” rose up and said “please don’t,” and they were summarily ignored as he launched a horrible, completely unjustified war that killed so many innocent people…
It’s as if politicians and the government simply doesn’t give a shit about us and what we have to say.
So the “We need a revolution!’ meme takes off and people get all wound up. Some want general strikes, others want to shoot and take over with force. Many, it seems, just want a new boss in the big chair, but most everyone they’re looking at sure seem a lot like the old boss.
I want a revolution too, but instead of just toppling the current or next regime, let’s take away the government’s power by simply not needing them anymore.
Let’s neuter the government. Let’s occupy ALL streets.
- Instead of relying on social security, let’s invest ourselves and be prepared for when we’re old and ready to retire.
- Instead of needing welfare or unemployment benefits, let’s find new ways to make money through strong, ongoing entrepreneurial efforts that break boundaries and expectations.
- Instead of bemoaning cuts to arts organizations, let’s donate to the ones we want to see around (perhaps instead of donating to the candidates who most likely will disappoint us if elected).
This isn’t a perfect nor all-emcompassing plan to be sure. The government may still want to execute a possibly-innocent person, start more unjustified wars, destroy more precious land for fuel that pollutes, people who may not be as strong as us will still need our help when the government tries to ignore or vilify them, and so on. When these things happen (and they will, dammit) let’s find whatever works to try and stop them.
However when it comes to you and me and our neighbors, imagine if more of us say “nope, we don’t need you.” The empowering feeling of being free from the government’s frivolous ways will be worth a 100 ignored protests!
And who knows? Perhaps like a spoiled child who is suddenly ignored, maybe the government will pay attention to us again, because then we will indeed be in power.
- Professional – “Work hard, get paid, go home, rest.”
- Personal – This is the toughest bit if all…