Saturday, September 6, 2008

we should be scared

I've been thinking a lot these days about the connection between our ability to gather together to build community and our ability to create a better world. There is absolutely a link between our ability to freely exercise our rights as guaranteed under the constitution (freedom of speech, freedom of the press, freedom of assembly) and our ability to make a lasting change in the way we protect (or refuse to protect) our planet.

I'm beginning to doubt whether substantive changes will ever take place after some of the news out of Minnesota this week. We keep hearing about the gradual erosion of our civil liberties, but most people don't actually seem all that concerned. Why?

A journalist named Amy Goodman was arrested with two of the producers of her news show while they were recording protest events at the RNC, despite wearing their press identification and verbally identifying themselves as press. Do your own homework, but if you think this is wrong, consider contacting the District Attorney or other public officials and demand that they drop the charges against these journalists.

There were many other abuses of power and authority in St. Paul last week - this is an excellent editorial that looks at some of the arrests and the reasons behind them.

I'm disgusted and appalled. I don't even have the stomach to write more.


Pat said...

i agree with you. The heaviness I feel, have been feeling for quite awhile, is beginning to erode my ability to do the kind of writing I like to do. I subscribe to a variety of blogs and sites, many of them artistic. Increasingly I see them posting political comments, and 100% of the comments are liberal. I'm glad you spoke up. We all need to in whatever arena we live.
My concern is not for my own creativity, though that matters. It is more about the survival of our planet, and of the humans and other persons that live on it.

Green Bean said...

Scary stuff. My stomach hurts when I watch this stuff and I almost want to give up . . . almost. But really, that is not an option. Let's keep getting the word out there. Good to see you post. :)

Jennifer (of Veg*n Cooking) said...

Thanks for this post, this is very scary stuff. You are seeing police in riot gear on the streets of the US, roughing up permitted protesters (why, may I ask, do they need permits to protest in America?), journalists, and all around flounting an excessive use of power and force.

I can only hope that this is not a trend that will continue.

It is an abomination that people are not more outraged than they are. Does the mainstream media even report on this stuff? I recall hearing on Democracy Now that an Associated Press photographer was roughed up and arrested, and I checked AP for 2 days, and not a word...

Deb said...

If people knew the injustices that take place in the US on a daily basis they would be very scared. I am very disillusioned and I don't think I can be quiet much longer. Maybe it is time for a new blog with a new direction. Thanks for bringing this important subject to the attention of your readers.

kale for sale said...

Thanks for posting this. We have to keep writing and speaking up about injustices. I try to remember to appreciate what is good and beautiful in the world at the same time so the other doesn't eat me alive though.

Melissa said...

pat, I agree, the heaviness can be overwhelming!

green bean, thanks - I've been feeling a little too overwhelmed by things to post lately, but I think it's good for me :)

jennifer, I think you're right that the media doesn't report on this stuff for the most part - and when they do, people's tendency seems to assume that law enforcement is in the right and that those people must have done something to deserve the treatment they received. I'm afraid that by the time we wake up, it might be too late. Kind of like the situation with the environment.

Deb, I think you should speak up. I HOPE it can't go on as is much longer, but my fear is that things are only going to get worse.

kale for sale - you are right; part of the reason I haven't been posting more is I do feel like some of this stuff is eating me alive, and it's all too big and where do we even begin? but that's not a productive way to look at things, is it? maybe I should take that dance class I've been thinking about to balance out the scary stuff with something beautiful!

Green Bean said...

Melissa, I had to come back to this. The mainstream media does not report a lot of this stuff because the mainstream media is owned by 4 companies. They control what we learn. But they don't control the Internet. They don't control our blogs and the news we spread here so I think it is important to use the tools we have to keep the word out there as much as possible.

"In a time of universal deceit, telling the truth is a revolutionary act." - George Orwell