We are being asked to say what 'solidarity' means to us.
Great question, because in my view, the word is tossed around a lot by many occupiers who do not seem to be acting in solidarity with their fellow human beings at occupy.
Right now, to me, solidarity is standing together for one main goal.
All other actions are but subsets of that goal.
I want the corporations and big money out of my government.
All the crimes against the people by the giant financial institutions must be accountable and to answer for their illegal actions against the people and to face charges. Corporations want to be people? FINE... let's see those 'people' in court. Let's push to make lobbying, bribery, illegal.
I think that most would agree that this is the bottom line, our base from which to work.
Here is what I have experienced from time to time:
Gossip... gossip, and more gossip.
Self-appointed authoritarian 'type' personalities putting themselves above others. Being rude, condescending, and out of line.
During the GAs small break off groups are having a lot of fun making a disturbance and not participating in the GA. This doesn't seem to bother anybody. I find it rude and distracting. I have been reprimanded for asking them to be quiet 'as if' they were there for a party and who was I to intrude.
You want new people to attend and to keep returning. You WILL need solidarity and respect to accomplish this goal.
A new person (and I like to remember not to assume that new people know the drill, so being patient and considerate is in order) spoke at the G.A.. This person got a verbal lashing from one of the regulars who I find to be extremely unfriendly to people outside his own little clique, where in fact... 'in solidarity'... there are no cliques!!! I would imagine this new person will never return. The self proclaimed leader is quite obnoxious.
After have been raged at via gossip myself, these people not knowing what they were talking about having not been present at the incident, nor asking me what happened, charged at me with a video camera in my face telling me WHAT I CAN DO, HOW I CAN BEHAVE, WHAT DO I HAVE TO SAY FOR MYSELF... WTF? I don't have to answer to anyone for my personal behavior and choices. I believe that is the type of behavior that mirrors the very thing we are protestiing. I do understand that we are all products of this society, so that behavior still exists, unfortunately to take this cause seriously and to succeed we have to try to rise above this kind of petty behavior. This is NOT solidarity.
I will continue to be an individual. Nobody will tell me what I can or cannot do, say, like, dislike, etc. How childish is this?
I gave it a rest and returned to the GA on Monday. S.O.S.
Not mentioning names, but the arrogance of many people there, clearly in competition for 'who knows the most' or 'who has the best idea' or even 'who meets some hidden challenge to be able to actually feel a part of THE ACTUAL CAUSE!
I am seriously diappointed at the turn this has taken. I don't care about anyone's political choices. This is not an arena to preach personal politics. I'm sick of hearing it. We all have the same goal in America, to get our freedoms restored and remove the backroom 1% (give or take) from our government.
This same fight has been repeated over and over again in this country. The only circumstances that differ are the severity of the problem, and now the technology that can actually destroy not only the planet, but groups of particular people who have been targeted.
My opinion once again, it's fine for people to want to be vegans, spiritual, religious, not religious, but none of these things have to do with our broken government.
I don't believe you can turn it into something else unless first you fix it, and then you have the opportunity to fight for real change. As it stands now, it's pretty obvious that 'the powers that be' are not REALLY concerned about what we do, what we have accomplished, nor what we expose, as they continue to commit high crimes against people all over this planet. In oh so many ways, only now there is the threat of complete destruction.
We need to be more focused and serious about the problems that are facing our children and grandchildren.
It's wonderful for people to have their own agendas in life, but that is NOT what this occupation is about. We are fighting for our basic rights to be restored. Take a look at the political candidates that the mainstream seems to agree with. SCARY STUFF! So what are we accomplishing?
I more than likely will not return to occupy L.A. I have gone almost daily when we were a tented community, although I only spent the night a few times. It's not like I'm a stranger, so why should it be that I feel like a stranger when I show up?
Something is wrong with this picture.
People have been angry with me because I'm not a vegan. REALLY? How does this affect their lives? I was born an omnivore, and for now, that's what I choose to be. I still have that freedom in this life.
I'll close because nobody will own up to having these behaviors, we have all been brain washed by growing up in times of mass media, so it would be difficult to expect a real solidarity for THE really important cause that we have to fight for.
Peace and solidarity always... in absentia