Posted 10 years ago on Dec. 7, 2012, 8:06 p.m. EST by therising
This content is user submitted and not an official statement
richardkentgates put it this way in a comment on this forum today:
"This is an information war. People have become complacent because they are unaware. Unaware of the problems, unaware of the right to stand up, unaware of why they should stand up, unaware of how to stand up. Become a soldier in the war for minds." (end of richardkentgates quote)
I'm very interested to know what people think about the best ways to spread the word to the most people in the most persuasive, efficient and effective way in order to win this information war.
Think about the Walmart strikes on Black Friday and how much that penetrated the mainstream press and was the talk around some break rooms, water coolers and dinner tables across the country. Think about how Occupy exploded across the nation and the world in a matter of weeks after being just a small group of people in a park on September 17, 2011.
Think about how Gandhi and his fellow citizens used the press to beat the British without lifting a sword. Think about how those who marched with Martin Luther King, Jr. won rights for countless citizens for generations without violence and befuddled the their opposition through their use of nonviolent resistance (and the resulting tension) and skillful use of the mainstream press.
Think about this quote from Martin Luther King, Jr. in his letter from the Birmingham jail:
"Nonviolent direct action seeks to create such a crisis and foster such a tension that a community which has constantly refused to negotiate is forced to confront the issue. It seeks to so dramatize the issue that it can no longer be ignored. My citing the creation of tension as part of the work of the nonviolent-resister may sound rather shocking. But I must confess that I am not afraid of the word "tension." I have earnestly opposed violent tension, but there is a type of constructive, nonviolent tension which is necessary for growth. Just as Socrates felt that it was necessary to create a tension in the mind so that individuals could rise from the bondage of myths and half-truths to the unfettered realm of creative analysis and objective appraisal, we must we see the need for nonviolent gadflies to create the kind of tension in society that will help men rise from the dark depths of prejudice and racism to the majestic heights of understanding and brotherhood. . . The purpose of our direct-action program is to create a situation so crisis-packed that it will inevitably open the door to negotiation. I therefore concur with you in your call for negotiation."
Think about what went right and wrong with the WTO protests. Think about the urgency of the environmental situation on so many fronts. Think about how quickly corporations are seizing more and more power in every realm. And also think about the power of the human spirit to triumph and how the "arc of the moral universe bends towards justice," as King put it.
Keeping all that in mind and going beyond taking appropriate actions in your own life consistent with your beliefs as an individual, what can we who see the urgency do to spread the word of the danger of the corporate takeover? What can we do TOGETHER in groups to more efficiently, persuasively and effectively spread the word to 10 times, 100 times, 1,000 times the number of people so that they too speak up and rise up?
PS - My personal view is that this is step one http://www.occupywallst.org/forum/you-may-have-seen-this-list-of-8-practical-goals-b/ but LOTS of hard work and details involved. The reason I focus on those 8 aren't because they're the end all be all but because they would help get the corporate foot off our necks long enough that we could breathe and organize to take even more important and transformative action. I also advocate for aggressive nonviolent direct action but of course this could only take place if the detailed legislation were put together in bulletproof form (civil rights movement was very careful about not leaving an easy out to the opposition on technicalities.
But maybe I'm wrong. Maybe other things have to happen first. The big question is: HOW DO WE MAKE THE AMAZING GROWTH OF OCCUPY LAST FALL LOOK LIKE IT'S SMALL? How do we reach 10 times, 100 times, 1,000 times the number of people and get serious results?