I've not said much here about recent goings on in the U.S. But like anyone not living in a cave, I've been paying attention. I am aware. I am frustrated. And angry. And sometimes frightened. Several weeks ago many folks were posting on Twitter in support of Elizabeth Warren. And then I saw two tweets:
@danielpunkass: The Senate may be surprised how many previously apolitical people are awakening to the reality of our shameful representatives.
@danielpunkass: I consider myself politically astute, and I'd been relatively tuned out. Now, many who never game a damn are active daily. New democracy.
I responded with:
@dennyhenke: @danielpunkass I would suggest that it is shameful that our citizenry allowed itself to become apolitical. That should NEVER happen in a healthy democracy.
@dennyhenke: @danielpunkass We have this thing we refer to as activists which is an indicator. There shouldn't be “activists” as all citizens should be active.
But then, a little bit later I got on a roll, what do the youngsters call it? A thread. And realized after that really it's the sort of thing I should have posted here. So, I've edited a bit.
I'm not a fan of the 2 party system in the US. I'd love to see it fracture into many. I'd love to see Elizabeth Warren and Bernie Sanders start a new party. Which is to say, begin the break-up of the Democratic Party into several parties. We need stronger progressive politics and the Democrats won't do it as they are beholden to capital just as the Republicans are.
Not that party politics is the answer. We need US citizens to remember they are meant to be in power. All citizens should be “activists”. And it's not just about politics in D.C. or our state gov. It's our counties and cities and neighborhoods. And it's not even just politics but community. Active citizenship should encompass how we live our lives, which is to say, how we meet our physical needs. How we work and purchase. Democracy, if it is meaningful, should encompass economy and community. It's all interwoven like a tapestry. A participatory tapestry.
Politics isn't something owned by a group of predominately white guys in D.C. It is our food supply and our electricity and transportation. We make choices everyday that contribute to our problems. We should stop waiting for solutions to be provided by a broken system. We should be the solution in our communities empowering ourselves with green technology and healthy relationships with our neighbors.
The world is what we make it and for too long we've been silent and complicit. We've waited for solutions to come to us, to be delivered.
So, what does it look like, this community-built life, this tapestry? It looks like every kind of co-op you can imagine. People working together to recycle bikes and teach each other how to repair them. People growing food together in neighborhood gardens. Community resource centers in garages and un-used spaces with shared tool libraries for check-out. Educational workshops for everything. Each one teach one. It's people taking care of one another. It's meals together. It's bartering and sharing. In other words, it's a life with reduced consumption of resources and energy that is better for the planet and very likely better for all of us. It's reducing the role of middle men we call capitalism. It's a reduction of he profit motive in exchange for greater fulfillment and health.