Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Standing together while it falls apart

World wide solidarity. With the recent world events, from random natural disasters to consciously initiated uprisings, there are more reasons to know your cause and stand with those who fight for the same standards.

As I am a liberal/progressive bordering on socialist American, I have lately been keeping an eye on the protests centered in Wisconsin that have also spread to Ohio, Indiana and several other states. The protests against union stripping measure are the most extreme in decades and have the ability to unify and mobilize the democratic party and liberals.  What Scott Walker is trying to do to unions in general pales in audacity only to what he has announced he will do to education in Wisconsin. "Walker also is proposing a nearly $1 billion cut in aid to schools in his two-year budget plan that would take effect in July. He argued that for that reason, districts need to get more money from their employees to help mitigate the loss in aid. Walker also wants to limit the ability of schools and local governments to pay for the cuts through local property tax increases."
courtesy of  Yep, this is the jackass who was elected in January and has since caused more political uproar over individual rights than I've known in my lifetime.
It's sickening as an American, and as a teacher.  My new bone to pick is going to be with the Deomcratic party for not supporting the Wisconsin 14, the 14 lone Democratic state senators in a large Republican majority congress. They were unwilling to give in and instead walked out to prevent the vote.  If you have not been following the issue you should. Rachel Maddow's coverage of this event has been informative, accurate and insightful. I download her show on MSN as a free podcast through Itunes. Do not believe that this is only about the budget, this is not about a fiscal crisis.  It is about a shift in power and money, from the working poor and middle classes to the rich.  While you're at it, look into the Koch brothersthat's enough to make even a moderate Dem sick. They're sort of like Paris Hilton, famous for being rich with money they didn't earn.  It came from daddy.
courtesy of  It's helpful to remember that the icon of the Republican party is an elephant, while the Democrats are a donkey.

This all came close on the heels of the upheaval and eventual overthrow of the government in Egypt.  I was riveted by that coverage, especially since I have Al-Jazeera in English, which probably put me on some kind of terrorist watch list since I am American.  The turn outs of 100,000 plus people to protests in the middle States of the USA is nearly as significant as the protests in Egypt, at least in my mind. (Note that link is not just protests in the US.  Look how few of those there are.) The protests there have lasted over three weeks.  People are angry and realize how unfair this is.  They aren't going home. There are petitions circulating to recall Scott Walker from office, even though that can't be done until January on his one year anniversary in office.  I hope and believe that people will be ready on that day, to walk in and drop the signature on his office, then vote his ass out of office.  When was the last time you saw people gather like that around a single issue in the US that wasn't a Lady GaGa concert? Probably to protest the Second Gulf War.  Before that?  Perhaps protests of the Vietnam War combined with the Civil Rights movements in 1967.  I've been in and seen large scale protests in both Spain and Indonesia.  I believe many Americans take their rights for granted and as a result, gather in numbers, for power and protests, much less than heaps of other citizens of other countries.
courtesy of  Outside the state capital in Wisconsin last week.
I meant to write in one blog about Wisconsin, Egypt, Bahrain, Japan and even touch on Indonesia. I will instead splinter them into separate blogs for reading ease. The theme?  Standing together.  For support - be it physical, monetary or emotional - and for much more.  In times as jarring and shocking as the ones we are living through right now,  I remind those I know, both near and far, dear to me and mere acquaintances, that I am here when you need me.  I tell those I've never met, who are struggling with political oppression, fighting to find a way to continue in the midst of chaos, or simply to continue living: I stand with you.  There are more just like me.  Those of us who can only send money to help. Who can help inform others. Who encourage you to carry on. My spirit and my hope is with you.

1 comment: