Can humans evolve beyond war?

There was a time when our ancestors roamed in hunter-gatherer bands who lived on the frayed edges of existence. Outsiders were seen as a threat, a valid one indeed. Our survival was insured by this protective, cloistered behavior. We as many other species thrive in a group, a pack or tribe.  This us vs. them is a part of us. It is inborn and innate and it starts early.

At one time this tribal mentality worked to our advantage, but as global populations swelled and competition for resources increased, our survival depended not only on the cooperation of a small group but on the greater one at large. It truly does take a a village to survive for most of us.  We are not only connected in this village but we are dependent on each other. At the very least, what I do effects my neighbor and vice versa.

 

Earth large

This is not a choice. It is a fact.

Another fact:  the earth is changing. Regardless of why, it is and we as a species must adapt. This requires cooperation and understanding.  This at least requires an honest and constructive discourse with each other and ourselves.

Circumstances and surroundings change faster than we do. It is our ability to adapt paired with luck that has gotten us this far.

There is no room for us vs them. This way of thinking leads to the inclusion of some at the exclusion of others. It is a childish attitude that must be eradicated.  We need to grow beyond all this. We all belong to each other on this beautiful planet we share.  We are beyond boundary lines and colored shapes on a map.

most-powerful-photograph-27.preview peace

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We as a species have always seemed to thrive on war. Is it even possible for the human race not to have war? Will fate allow us the time it takes to evolve past this ultimately self-destructive inclination?

Is it even possible for us to evolve past this?   Is it within the capabilities of humankind to not only see humanity as a whole but as a connected and thriving whole capable of almost limitless potential?

Can we even entertain this as a realistic outcome to our present manic state?

box tax war

“Non-violence leads to the highest ethics, which is the goal of all evolution. Until we stop harming all other living beings, we are still savages.”
― Thomas A. Edison

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I am reminded of the story of the Scorpion and the frog.

The-Scorpion-and-the-Frog1

One fine spring morning a scorpion spied a frog at the edge of a stream. “Hello friend frog.” said the scorpion with a smile. “Could you please ferry me across to the other side of the stream?”  At first the frog refused; bringing up the valid point that it feared the scorpion would sting it. After much sweet talk the scorpion convinces the frog it will not. “After all…” said the scorpion to the frog: “I cannot swim therefore if I sting you we shall surely both perish.” The frog finally consents and allows the scorpion to climb on its back. It proceeds to make the swim across the stream. Suddenly the scorpions stings the frog.  “Why did you do that?!” asks the frog as they both sink below the surface. “It is my nature”.  The scorpion explains.

Isn’t it fortunate we are human beings and not scorpions or frogs? It is possible to evolve past our violent and self-destructive nature into something wondrous and incredible. We are a thinking, reasoning species and we do have the advantage over other animals because we can and do play a a major role in guiding our evolution.

We as a species are about to embark on a great challenge and opportunity.  It can be an opportunity if we see it that way.

“In the middle of difficulty lies opportunity” 
― Albert Einstein

Wishing you a fantastic and peaceful day!

Strawberryindigo.

war-is-over if you want it lennon christmas

“They’re in love.  F*** the war.”
― Thomas PynchonGravity’s Rainbow

“If everyone fought for their own convictions there would be no war.”
― Leo TolstoyWar and Peace

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world peace in public domain

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Fresh Quotes: REVOLUTION

 

REVOLUTION

revolution money

Must revolution always be wrought with bloody violence?  Must it beat down the door and thrust a gun in one’s hands? Or may the revolution creep along quietly like a whisper, serenading sweet somethings into the collective consciousness of humanity beckoning “come closer”, ever so gently? Need a revolution be a destructive prospect? Should we automatically fear it?

Could it be that revolution is part of a natural growth process? In some circumstances could a revolution be a good thing, a wonderful thing?

Perhaps it is the duty of the next generation to challenge the ideas of the preceding ones, to stretch boundaries and reach just a little bit further.

As we traverse the present and head on straight for tomorrow what will we find there? Isn’t change constant and could we possibly encounter tiny revolutions at every step? Change happens whether we look for it or not, whether we even notice the change at all. Could we be amid a quiet revolution right now; at this very second and not quite realize it?

world-peace

“A revolution is coming.  A revolution which will be peaceful if we are wise enough. Compassionate if we care enough. Successful if we are fortunate enough–but a revolution which is coming whether we will it or not. We can affect its character. We cannot alter its inevitability.”

~Robert F. Kennedy

Peace1-random psychodelic color art

“The most important kind of freedom is to be what you really are. You trade in your reality for a role. You trade in your sense for an act. You give up your ability to feel, and in exchange, put on a mask. There can’t be any large-scale revolution until there’s a personal revolution, on an individual level. It’s got to happen inside first.”

~Jim Morrison

Don't tread on me revolution flag snake

“Until they become conscious they will never rebel and until they have rebelled they cannot become conscious.”

~George Orwell

wolf sheep revolution

“A society of sheep must in time beget a government of wolves.”

~Edward R. Murrow

revolution peace is patriotic

“Remember, remember always, that all of us, and you and I especially, are descended from immigrants and revolutionists.”
― Franklin D. Roosevelt

revolution wall

“The greatest challenge of the day is: how to bring about a revolution of the heart, a revolution which has to start with each one of us?”
― Dorothy Day

Oak-Trees

“Revolutions are not made ; they come. A revolution is as natural as an oak. It comes out of the past. It’s foundations are laid far back.”

~Wendell Phillips

peace protest rev

The challenge remains. On the other side are formidable forces: money, political power, the major media. On our side are the people of the world and a power greater than money or weapons: the truth.
Truth has a power of its own. Art has a power of its own. That age-old lesson – that everything we do matters – is the meaning of the people’s struggle here in the United States and everywhere. A poem can inspire a movement. A pamphlet can spark a revolution. Civil disobedience can arouse people and provoke us to think, when we organize with one another, when we get involved, when we stand up and speak out together, we can create a power no government can suppress. We live in a beautiful country. But people who have no respect for human life, freedom, or justice have taken it over. It is now up to all of us to take it back.” 
― Howard ZinnA Power Governments Cannot Suppress

tiger king

 Here’s to taking life head on like a hurricane and seizing the damn thing and making it your own.  My tiny revolutions start today.

Right on! 

~Nancy

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box police state its ok

Stand up for Peace

world peace in public domain

“Never be afraid to raise your voice for honesty and truth and compassion against injustice and lying and greed. If people all over the world…would do this, it would change the earth.”

―    William Faulkner

The following is a rant….it is my little way of speaking out…speaking my mind right or wrong. What follows is no assertion of fact; it is only the opinion of one person: me: SBI.

We the people of this planet have the right to live peaceful lives. So much is lost due to the ravages of war; natural resources and precious lives. This world belongs to us; the people of this planet. We have rights dammit, and damn anyone or anything who tries to deny us our simple peaceful existence.

We the people don’t want war. It is those entities in seats of power; governments and corporations who profit from war. WE the people of this planet only lose out, again and again. This has played out through the centuries.

Those in power want us to believe that there is nothing we can do. They need us to think we are powerless. They know better and use whatever smoke and mirrors to trick us into believing whatever they want/need us to believe..

Don’t believe them. Together we ARE powerful. Together we can make a difference. Together we can change the world! YES we can!

This I believe, this I must believe. What we need is a spark, a spark in the dark that lights a candle, one candle can light countless others. We need to give hope to each other. We need to have faith in each other.

We must learn to see beyond the racial, cultural and religious differences that keep us apart. We are more alike than some may lead us to believe. I have met many special and beautiful people in my life. Stand-out individuals of all colors, creeds and faiths. Our diversity can strengthen us. We need each other, all of humanity is connected and we have so much in common. One of these aspects we share is the need to be loved and to be respected; the need to live a peaceful existence.

To do this we must fight, we must fight their ideas; the ones they cram down our throats. The ideas that say we must to this or do that. The idea that tells us that we must think of our fellow humans as the enemy.

The powers-that-be rule over us by fear. It is a time proven tactic. It has been used many times and it works. Fear leads to misunderstandings. Fear lead to hate and hate leads to war.

War has become big business in this world. To some a human life is insignificant. We cannot tolerate this. We cannot and we must speak out. We must stand up, tall and proud and say NO MORE!

unity earth from moon

We hold the power. We the people of this planet. 

It’s easy to get overwhelmed by all that is happening in the world…. and it’s unfortunate that our world is ruled by the all-mighty dollar.  The haves are distracting the have-nots with trivial bipartisan  nonsense.  This angers people who are frustrated and time and time again, these people lash out…Whether it is a person acting alone, a group or a nation. The world is becoming more dangerous and all we can seem to do is fight-fight-fight. We are proving our unworthiness to exist and our planet is turning us; we are turning on us. This needs to stop.  We as a society need to come together. This is easily said but not easily done. Our governments and media sets the tone.  Big business pulls the strings and calls the shots. We the consumers feed them. On a grassroots level, little by little we need to change this. We need to learn to become less reliant on a system that is not sustainable. This cannot happen overnight but in time we can change our ways.

This greed, this hunger for power and land and resources is the creature that drives this hungry machine. We can no longer depend on a system that created THIS; what we have now….this inflated monster that’s about to pop. It is overstuffed. We have fed it too much… given this machine of commerce too much control over not only our lives but the lives of everyone on this planet…and the planet itself.

Turn off the TV. Don’t BUY it..at least for today. The people have all the real power. LOVE each other. Spread compassion.

Strawberryindigo.

Peace-Signs-Solid-Preview-Full

“Peace has to be created, in order to be maintained. It will never be achieved by  passivity and quietism.”

Dorothy Thompson

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This has been a post inspired by BLOGGERS FOR PEACE. An online movement made up of caring individuals who believe that together we can make a difference! Please join us!  To join just click on the badge below…

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IMAGINE by John Lennon (youtube)

Teaching Peace to Children (stevesthinkingspace.wordpress.com)

The Art of Peace (bodhisattvaintraining.wordpress.com)

The Sea of Humanity (strawberryindigo.wordpress.com)

The Ascending Spiral of Love (spiritualworldtravelerblog.com)

Power to Change the World (donettas.wordpress.com)

Meditation to achieve global peace on Independence Day 2013 (8485 people needed!) (planet.infowars.com)

5 Solutions to Change the World (saunsea.wordpress.com)

Inner Peace is World Peace (southweb.org)

Nobel winners to discuss peace (belfasttelegraph.co.uk)

Here Comes The Sun

Cloud- Here comes the sunce

There are people who love to complain.  These people find the worst in everything. To them the glass is not half empty, it’s completely empty. I’m sure you’ve met a few of these bewildered ones in your travels through life.   It can be difficult to be in a sunny mood around them. It’s as if they are standing under a perpetual rain cloud and being in close contact with them is like being drenched in a deluge. It’s no surprise these naysayers are making themselves unhealthy. Negative thinking causes changes in neurotransmitters in the brain and impacts heart health, the immune system and digestion, as well as a person’s overall risk of mortality.

Its dangerous and frankly damn unpleasant to be around such people. They are toxic and the poison they spread is just that…poison.

sun-in-blue-sky.jpg

“We’re in the money, the skies are sunny; old man depression, you are through, you done us wrong!”
~Al  Dubin

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On the other hand there are a precious few, the ones who are the polar opposite of those poor negative souls. These wonderful ones see each day as a brand new start and every struggle as an opportunity. These people see that same glass as completely full and these people are happy to share the contents.

These are a rare breed indeed, they spread their magic wherever they go and to be in their presence is to be walking on sunshine. I don’t have to tell you the world need more of these shining stars. They light our way, give hope and inspire us to do better, be better. They encourage us to shine just as brightly as they do. Think of them as true miracle workers and unlike the empty glass rain cloud people, these sunny supernovas are healthier and live longer and they like their counterparts spread their attitude to whomever they come in contact with. These people increase the health and well-being of those around them because positive thoughts and happiness is good for your health.  Think of positivity as an immunization shot against poor health. Optimistic people have lower levels of depression, a greater resistance to illnesses; from the common cold to cardiovascular diseases and even cancer. Positivity gives one better coping skills during the inevitable times of stress and hardships that come our way now and then.  Positivity increases our lifespan on the whole and life, simply put, is better.

It is with these thoughts in mind that I set out today, vowing to become more like a sunny bright spot instead of a torrential rain cloud, not just for me but for everyone else who crosses my path….and my challenge to you my friends (you knew I was heading for this didn’t you?) is to not only embrace this sunny philosophy, as you probably do anyway, but to fill the glasses of those who are on perpetual empty. Although they don’t know it, they need this and we as a society desperately do. Just imagine if this sort of thing would catch on…positivity is catchy…it’s downright infectious and it feels oh so good!

My cup runneth over…wishing you a splendid day from the sunny side of the street…

Strawberryindigo.

SUNRiderWaite

“How wonderful it is that nobody need wait a single moment before starting to improve the world.”

~Anne Frank

😀

***RELATED (YouTube) MUSIC***

Here Comes The Sun by The Beatles

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The Pursuit of Happiness: Characteristics of Happy People (psychcentral.com)

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Heal Thyself, Think Positive (newscientist.com)

Reframe pain (endoawareness.wordpress.com)

Coping Skills (myjourneywithdepression.wordpress.com)

The Sea of Humanity

The sea of humanity big-wave
Credit: Public Domain

“If we have no peace, it is because we have forgotten that we belong to each other.” 

~Mother Teresa

The best and the worst of us are inside us all. Everyone is represented. Every thought or idea. Every dream and every nightmare belongs to us as a whole. From the roar of the mighty tyrant to the whispering cries of the small and the innocent. That is us. This is we, this restless sea called humanity. Soft as a pillow on which to lie your weary head or as hard as a rock to bash your brains in. Humanity is kindness and love. Humankind forgives and understands. Humans are also selfish and petty, cruel and vindictive. We have it in our capacity to kill; destroy which we hate or do not understand…even ourselves. This is what we do. We also have within ourselves great nobility and courage. We have greatness and potential. We not only destroy, we can save and reserrect.
The darkest unspeakable horrors lie in our common past. We are animals after all and it is not so long ago that we needed that harshness, that willingness to embrace that dark part of us to survive. It is the nature of the beast after all and no matter how we try to hide it at times we are the beast. .

The worst and the best of us are inside all of us. Perhaps it is what it means to be human is to have this conflicting nature. Perhaps this is what gives us our drive. Think of us as you may, we are the dominant ones on this planet and it was our primitive ancestors who insured this legacy for us, we the so-called civilized inheritors.
We are the beast. The animal who watched wide-eyed the downfall of Earth’s last dominant species; the dinosaurs. Our rodent ancestors, the first of the mammals inherited purely by luck and then by sheer determination this fantastic planet. It was our predecessors who clung to the safety of trees. It was our for-bearers who climbed out of the safety of those trees and learned how to make and use tools. We learned to communicate and cooperate. It was this which helped us grow and expand, this banding together. This social bonding survives deep in our nature to this day.

Earth large
Credit: Public Domain

Where did we go wrong? Did we grow too smart for our own good? Did we grow too fast?  Did we forget that pure intelligence without wisdom is a recipe for disaster?Where we too successful? Will that killer instinct turn on us in the end and destroy us. We who shaped this planet into our own image.Or will that instinct help us survive and thrive?

Is our journey over?  Are we stuck on a plateau? Have we reached a golden age, never to return? Does evolution ever stop or are we still evolving?
I think we can, I think we are. I believe we have it within ourselves to grow into something amazing and quite wonderful. Some people believe we are at the end of our journey. They believe we have no business having traveled as far as we have. But we are not finished, we have only just begun. We are a child that has outgrown our playground. We are a child who is frightened to grow up. Growing is painful, growing hurts, but growing is what we must do….and it is within us all. It is up to all of us; every single drop in this sea of humanity.

Credit: Public Domain
Credit: Public Domain

We are all needed, but it starts with you…it starts with me. Together we can save ourselves and grow and change and become something we cannot fathom now, but something wonderful nonetheless.
It takes an act of kindness, multiplied by seven billion. It takes someone to stop keeping score. It takes a billion “I’m sorry’s” and “I care” and dammit, ” We can do this together!” It takes a trillion turns of the other cheek . It takes a light to shine the way and it takes seven billion to follow that light.

It will take all of humanity to save humanity.

We are frail, we are weak, we are human and together we are more powerful than any one of us can realize.

Thanks for listening,

Strawberryindigo.

 HumanPeaceSign
Credit: Public Domain

“One love, one heart, one destiny.”
~Bob Marley

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Fresh Quotes PEACE March

peace sign in public domain

There is a movement afoot called Bloggers for Peace. It is a crazy dream started by my friend Kozo from Everyday Guru’s. Kozo is a big-hearted person who believes that we can achieve this dream of living life in peace. I happen to agree and the more people involved the better. This blogging for peace is growing and growing and with every post published, we inch our way closer and closer to achieving this seemingly farfetched goal.  It had to start somewhere and Kozo wasn’t the first person to yearn for peace and he won’t be the last. Perhaps this is futile after all, but peace is a beautiful song and the more people who sing it the more beautiful it becomes and all the more powerful.

Please join us. Add your wonderful voice, let it be heard. All that is asked of you is devote your talents and energies to at least one post a month for peace. The details are here.

So in honor of Peace. I thought this month’s helping of Fresh Quotes would be devoted to this lovely cause.

Much happiness to you my friends, 

Strawberryindigo.

Life is beautiful!
Life is beautiful!

“Peace comes from within. Do not seek it without.”
~Buddha~

Flower Power
Flower Power

“I offer you peace. I offer you love. I offer you friendship. I see your beauty. I hear your need. I feel your feelings.”

~Mahatma Gandhi~

Sgt. Shane Pudgett hugs his wife goodbye as his son, Bryce, age 5, sheds a tear.
Sgt. Shane Pudgett hugs his wife goodbye as his son, Bryce, age 5, sheds a tear.

“Peace cannot be kept by force; it can only be achieved by understanding.”
~Albert Einstein

Peace + Love=Happiness
Peace + Love=Happiness

“Imagine all of us living in peace, it’s too beautiful to just be a dream.”
~John Lennon~

We can all do our part!
We can all do our part!

“It isn’t enough to talk about peace. One must believe in it. And it isn’t enough to believe in it. One must work at it.”

~Eleanor Roosevelt~

The faces of War
The faces of War

What can you do to promote world peace? Go home and love your family.”
~Mother Teresa

PEACE is the word
PEACE is the word

“Lord, make me an instrument of thy peace. Where there is hatred, let me sow love.”

~Francis of Assisi~

Just say "NO!"
Just say “NO!”

NEVER GIVE UP…No matter what is going on…Never give up…Develop the heart… Too much energy in your country…Is spent developing the mind…Instead of the heart… Be compassionate…Not just to your friends…But to everyone…Be compassionate …Work for peace…In your heart and in the world…Work for peace…And I say again…Never give up…No matter what is going on around you…Never give up”

~Dalai Lama

Our future lies in the heart of a child
Our future lies in the heart of a child

” If we are to teach real peace in this world, and if we are to carry on a real war against war, we shall have to begin with the children.”
~Mahatma Gandhi~

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Peace-peace-and-love-revolution-club-25246170-1500-1050

Save the Trees

“A civilization flourishes when people plant trees under whose shade they will never sit.”

~Greek Saying

The tall pines of the Pacific Northwest

I’ve always had a thing for trees; I am a tree-hugger from way back, before I knew there was such a thing. I admit I’ve always carried a torch for tall guys and trees. The statuesque pines of my native Pacific Northwest really do it for me.  I feel safe in the woods among the wild green of the forest. I have always been strangely drawn to them…perhaps it’s in my blood; a throwback to my very distant Native American ancestors, maybe it’s because I am fortunate enough to live a stonesthrow to a temperate rainforest or it could be that trees are just really that wonderfully special and useful structures that are a vital part of out global ecosystem.

I love to be in the forest right after a tender rainfall. The fresh scent of pine is so welcoming to me. The way the morning sun shines through the boughs of the trees and how the steam rises from the tree tops. I feel privileged to witness such an event.

Beyond their majestic beauty, trees provide we the inhabitants of this marvelous planet with so much, they give us their all and we as the human stewards of this land have not returned the favor.  Ever since our beginnings as small rodent-like creatures living in a reptile dominated world we clung to the trees for our very lives. Ever experience the phenomena of falling asleep and feeling the sensation of falling only to “catch” yourself? That is a leftover from our distant mammalian past.  Back to the days when our ancestors lived their entire lives in the tree canopy.  Our close relatives the apes still swing from branch to branch; adept as ever, holding on with one hand whilst using the other to reach for tasty fruit.

mount tabor tree view

Trees today provide sustenance and shelter to a wide variety of lifeforms and they in their wide variety have perfectly adapted to our planet’s many climates and microclimates. Trees are powerhouses of natural resources and we have depended on their immense wealth for as long as we have been here. Unfortunately, I think we take them for granted; believing them to always be in abundance.  There has always been another to chop down…and another and another.

This has led to major deforestation. According to data compiled by the World Resources Institute, our beautiful planet Earth has already lost 80 percent of its forest cover due to deforestation.

Deforestation has many negative effects on the environment.  Seventy percent of the planet’s land animals and plants live in forests, and will perish without their homes. Trees play a crucial role in absorbing greenhouse gases. Fewer forests means larger amounts of these gases entering the atmosphere and this increases the speed and severity of global warming.

Deforestation must stop if we are to continue on this planet.  I think some don’t realise how much we need trees and as a lover of trees, like my literary hero, The Lorax,  I shall speak for the trees…

lorax on stump
“I am the Lorax. I speak for the trees. I speak for the trees for the trees have no tongues.”
~from The Lorax by Dr. Seuss~(credit: Public domain)

Forests are vital to our Ecosystem

Forests counter erosion by holding soil together with their roots, this helps keep the nutrient rich topsoil in place which gives plants something to grow and flourish in, this also helps reduce flooding.  They protect agriculture by modifying local climate extremes and ensuring water supplies. They help prevent pollution by acting like natural sponges and air filters; absorbing storm water that normally would end up in our rivers and streams.

Trees sequester carbon and absorb other airborne pollutants. They even have the ability to clean contaminated soil and ground water. One mature tree releases enough oxygen to support two people.

The leaves of trees absorb light energy, reducing reflected heat. When trees absorb water through their root system, they release moisture through leaf surfaces by a process called transpiration.  This cools the air and can reduce the surrounding temperature by as much as 10 degrees Fahrenheit and the temperature directly under the tree by as much as 25 degrees Fahrenheit. Tree canopies blocks the sun’s rays during the day and holds in heat at night. Without them to protect us this will lead to more extreme temperatures swings that can be harmful to plants, animals and humans.

Trees help return water vapor back into the atmosphere. Without trees many former forest lands can quickly become barren deserts.

Trees and People

Studies have shown the relationship between trees and nature and mental and physical health. Patients in hospitals heal more quickly if they have a view of trees and nature. People are much more likely to go outside and walk through tree-lined communities,  helping to provide a sense of community and well-being which in itself enhances people’s health. Simply viewing nature, or urban greenery decreases stress levels and enables people to cope better with day-to-day hardships.

Trees are Economical

Trees, especially mature ones, increase real estate values. They muffle urban noise and during the cold season; act as windbreaks; saving on heating costs. During the hot summer months their shade helps cool a house thus saving on air conditioning costs.

Trees are good neighbors

Trees are good for business

Trees not only improves the ability of residential neighborhoods to build community, they also contribute positively to business districts. Studies have shown that shoppers prefer to spend more time in canopied business districts and perceive merchants in those districts more positively than merchants in districts with fewer trees. This ultimately results in wider community networks encompassing not just where we live, but also where we work, shop, and play.

I think I’ve presented a good case for trees. Obviously we need them and they need us . How can we help our friends the trees?

friends of trees

How to help trees

Deforestation is such an immense problem. It is easy to feel helpless. Where do we start?

What follows are some simple ways your average person like you and I can do:

  • If you have the room on your property plant a tree or two…or more. If you must cut one down, replace it with another in a different spot.
  • If you don’t have the room or the opportunity to plant a tree, consider joining the Plant A Billion Trees Campaign and help protect The Brazilian rainforest which is home to 23 species of primates and 1,180 species of mammals, amphibians, reptiles and fish and 1,000 species of birds, almost 200 of which are not found anywhere else on Earth. Rainforests help regulate the atmosphere and stabilize global climate.
  • Help support The Nature Conservatory. This is a good cause which needs all the help it can get. Click on the link to read more about this fine organization.
  • Want to help closer to home?  Support Local Land Trusts and Parks. There are many to choose from, just a quick Google search will uncover many.
  • Cut down on junk mail. It’s fairly simple: Register for the Mail Preference Service on the Direct Marketing Association website. For $1, your name and  address will be removed from prospective mailing lists. This should end about 75% of your junk mail within about 90 days. ( Who likes junk mail anyway?)
  • Use Paperless Billing. It cuts down on paper and really simplifies your life, giving you more time to go out and enjoy nature.
  • Another way to save paper is to simply reuse scraps. I use old envelopes for my shopping lists. Also when printing something consider using both sides and while you are at it, ask yourself “Do I really need to print this?” Sometimes you sincerely don’t need to.
  • Libraries are the perfect place to go for free access to newspapers and  magazines in print. E-readers like the Kindle and tablets like the iPad makes it easier than ever to read the digital editions of your favorite publications.
  • Use reusable shopping bags. It can be a hassle to remember but once you get used to it, it gets easy. Keep a few in your car or by the front door. Lead by example and show other shoppers you care about the environment. Perhaps you’ll prompt them to do the same.
  • While you are shopping, whether it be furniture, building materials or paper goods, look for FSC- and SFI-certified products. The FSC is the Forest Stewardship Council, which sets standards for third-party certification of private forests worldwide. The SFI is the Sustainable Forestry Initiative, which focuses on wood from North American Forests. Another excellent way to shop is by using Rainforest Alliance Certified Products, for a list visit their website.
I've got the whole world in my hands
We’ve got the whole world in our hands. Credit: Public domain

WE CAN DO THIS!

I realise what I’ve said here is simplistic and the problem goes so much further than any one person or any one nation for that matter.  I could cover my property in trees and never use a single piece of paper again. Everyone reading this could do the same, but the problem would still be there.  I suppose that’s why I’m writing this; to help keep a dialogue going because we as a society need to have this discussion.  We need to make saving our forests and saving our planet a priority.  Our governments could do so much more.  Socially, we can do more.  We are a constantly evolving people and what was acceptable once doesn’t mean it has to be acceptable in the future.

Many believe that growing our economies is more important than growing trees. These two important causes do not need to be mutually exclusive. We the people are a force to be reckoned with.

Write a blog post; better yet, write your local government official, write the president, any president… tell them we need to stop the abuse of our planet, if not for our sake, for the sake of our children and our children’s children who will inherit the mess from us.  Think the environment is going to hell now?  This is nothing compared to the nightmare that future generations may inherit if we don’t act.

I don’t mean to sound negative because I am hopeful.  We have made it this far in the evolutionary ladder. This is another stepping stone to our ultimate destiny, whatever that will be.

We in the first world can lead the way, together with the rest of the world we can fix this. The time of the United States’ domination is over. We have set the standard for the rest of the world and it’s not fair to blame other less fortunate countries from trying to get a piece of what we have. Instead of condemning and punishing them, we need to help them. We need to work together on this. This planet belongs to us all and so does the problem.

We can do it!

3 trees

“Trees are poems the earth writes upon the sky, We fell them down and turn them into paper, that we may record our emptiness.” 

~Khalil Gibran

UNLESS someone like you cares a whole awful lot, nothing is going to get better. It's not.
UNLESS someone like you cares a whole awful lot, nothing is going to get better. It’s not.

The Benefits of Trees (newswatch.nationalgeographic.

Deforestation Facts and Stats (worldpreservationfoundation.org)

Reforestation (oregonforests.org)

The Friends of Trees (www.friendsoftrees.org)  An excellent organization

“Look Now–The world in facts, stats, and graphics” ©2010 by Joe Fullman, Ian Graham, Sally Regan and Isabel Thomas

“The Urban Tree Book” ©2000 by Arthur Plotnik 

“The Lorax” by Dr. Seuss (one of my all-time personal favorites)

electric blue sky with pines by SBI

I speak for the trees (strawberryindigo.wordpress.com) One of my first posts

Severe Drought In The Amazon Is Caused By Climate Change, Study Finds (planetsave.com)

Tree and human health may be linked (sott.net)

Real Estate Tip:Trees Improve Energy Efficiency (themarycoxteam.wordpress.com)

Clones of the world’s oldest and largest trees,… (rivalanimus.com)

PEACE is Possible

uni-minimalistic-peace-sign-hd-wallpapers

“When I say it’s you I like, I’m talking about that part of you that knows that life is far more than anything you can ever see or hear or touch. That deep part of you that allows you to stand for those things without which humankind cannot survive. Love that conquers hate, peace that rises triumphant over war, and justice that proves more powerful than greed.”
~Fred Rogers

Peace Rose
The Peace Rose

 P E A C E    I S    P O S S I B L E

It may be idealistic

Perhaps a bit simplistic

To hope for what may seem

Impossible

improbable

And just plain unrealistic

But I can see

 The need is intrinsic

We are born altruistic

Because the world at peace

Is logical

And possible

If we can cease being pessimistic

And believe Peace can be a Reality

Rainbow Peace

That is the first step…

And this is my first post in Bloggers for Peace. Kozo at Everyday Guru’s has started this wonderful online movement for everyone that wants to join and blog for peace.

The details are here.  I believe this is a truly worthy cause and very doable. Please use your blogging talents and influence and spread the word!

Thank you,

Strawberryindigo.

bloggers forpeace6

This is the place to go for information on how to join (bloggers4peace.wordpress.com)

Bloggers for Peace (spiritualworldtravelerblog.com)

We can make a difference right here right now (everydaygurus.com)

Bloggers For Peace: WE Can Make A Difference (theobamacrat.com)

An Artist For Peace (spiritualmysticism.wordpress.com)

Peace is Not a Season (heartflow2013.wordpress.com)

‘Salud mi familia’ (autumninbruges.wordpress.com)

Monthly Peace Challenge: Acts of Kindness (everydaygurus.com)

We Can Make a Difference–Right Here, Right Now (sarahneeve.wordpress.com)

Vote, Dammit.

A couple of weeks ago I spent a considerable amount of a beautiful autumn Saturday knee-deep and totally involved in the exciting and glamorous world of politics and intrigue, out there amongst The People. Me with ponytail and clipboard, voter registration cards and a friendly spunky smile with attitude…in my long-winded way I am saying that I was registering people to vote.

I know, the activism gig again. I can’t help it. I am a bit of a nut when it comes to well….a lot of things and one of them is democracy.  I am big on voting. It may sound corny but I am what I am and I had a blast!

Me with potential voters

True, there was some hard work involved but it was fun work. I got to meet so many interesting people! It was fantastic. Portland is such a quirky town and I savored all that quirky goodness.

I was just recently downtown and was ecstatic to be back. My turf was a section of The Portland Farmer’s Market at PSU. It is a lovely and lively place full of Farmer’s market type of people, college students and tourists.

If you are ever in Portland on a Saturday visit this place! It is full of good food and an eclectic and interesting mix of musicians and street performers all under beautiful trees in the south park blocks.

So there I was with a huge smile plastered on my face asking anyone and everyone who passed by if they wanted to register to vote. I found out that Portland, being the kind of town that it is, a lot of people have already registered and so it seemed more to me as if I was taking a poll than really helping anyone, but I was enjoying myself in the morning sun, talking to citizens about really how crappy the world is and laughing a lot.

Perhaps I was enjoying myself too much. An especially loud guffaw marked a change of tone just as old sourpuss entered stage left; apparently my spot was high on the list of appealing spots for do-gooders to stand. He made it clear through a series of looks, handshakes and innuendo that I was late on the scene; this was his spot.

“I’ve been here quite regularly. Several Saturdays in a row.” He told me.

His lips were moist and his breath reeked of old coffee. He stared at me with big bulbous fish eyes that quivered as he spoke. I’ve dealt with this kind before. I knew his type…

This was a prime spot–must be because of the close approximation to the coffee tent and Pine Street Biscuits which I hear is very good. I had a cute little grassy knoll with a street lamp to lean on. I liked the spot and I know this sounds a bit much but I wasn’t going to give it up without a fight!

I gave him one of those looks I sometimes give to my teenagers: it’s the “Don’t even try it or there will be hell to pay” look. I have perfected this and it never fails to work. Today was no exception. Mr Sourpuss moved on to the other end of the park. I would catch a blurry glimpse of him from time to time fueling up on coffee: he’s quite the drinker. He gave me a sourpuss smile. I beamed my bestest fake smile back, after all, aren’t we on the same side here?

These women had already registered but looked so fantastic I asked to take their picture.

I registered 12 people that day. Probably not a lot. Perhaps old SP made out better. I did however talk to a lot of people. I have found in my travels through life that we are more alike than different.

I talked to some independents, a smattering of Republicans (Blue State here) lots of Democrats (again Blue State) and a few alternatives; two leaning toward socialism and one anarchist. I was surprised by the number of people who choose the option not affiliated with any party.

Most of the people I talked to were articulate and engaged and passionate about our community at large. Many of us talked about how life was changing. We spoke of the economic downturn. I did not meet one person who hasn’t been affected.  Most were hopeful, but wary and many were confused. Everyone I talked to agreed on one thing: this partisan bickering fighting between the two major parties must stop if we are to move forward and fix what is wrong with the country, not to mention the world.

Our children will inherit what we have created.

I encountered some indifference, though not as much as I imagined. I didn’t try to sell anyone. I wasn’t aggressive. I represented myself with dignity. I was knowledgeable and engaged. I was polite to everyone and felt that I was an ambassador of sorts. Maybe not so much just to register people but to raise awareness about the importance of voting, because it is important. Many people have given up their lives for this right!

Too many….

So when THAT date rolls around, whether it be November 6th, 2012 or some other date, if you are fortunate to have the right to vote do me a favor, do yourself a favor, do your fellow citizens a favor and let your voice be heard.

VOTE, dammit.

One voice may be so quiet it is difficult to hear…keep adding voices and it becomes a roar of a sound that cannot be put asunder…

“Nobody will ever deprive the American people of the right to vote except the American people themselves and the only way they could do this is by not voting.”

Franklin D. Roosevelt

BEST WISHES,

Strawberryindigo.

“It is better to vote for what you want and not get it than to vote for what you don’t want and get it”

Eugene V. Debs

Mind the Gap–The One Hundred Percent

I remember the beginning of The Occupy Movement; first came the stories, little blurbs on the news. People started talking and it grew and grew and what started in a park in New York City spread like wildfire and many cities, one of them my town of Portland, Oregon joined in the protests.  It was new and exciting and no one could seem to know what to make of it.

I was stoked! I am a firm believer of Power to the People and all that. The whole movement had this air of fresh hopefulness. Looking back now I think I saw what I wanted to see; a grassroots effort leading to something big and changing the world. I admit that I am a sucker for that sort of thing.

However, I was not as exuberant about the methods of the movement which struck me as unsustainable. The entire concept of occupying didn’t sit well with me. I was cautious. I was afraid the fledgling movement would just make some noise, spiral out of control and then die on impact.

I wrote about the movement back then. I pleaded with the protestors in a series of posts, to be careful. I knew they needed a leader and I was hoping one would emerge…

To my dismay a leader did not step forward and the movement, like a chicken with its head cut off, ran around and around in circles making a huge mess and then just up and died. There seemed to be no clear goals or agenda, just occupying.

I visited the Portland camp a few times.  I remember the people there. The hopeful and the not so hopeful. The extremes of humanity.

I remember the friendly man in the tie dye who welcomed us to the occupation, I remember the art tent, and the free condom jar. I remember the makeshift kitchen and the line of hungry and grateful people.

I remember the teenage girl in white shorts and flip flops, hungry, dirty and cold eating a glazed twist like it was heaven. I wonder what happened to her? I wonder what happened to many of them. I remember their faces. I remember the despondent man in the wheelchair and the little old lady who screamed at us, and the boy with the fancy rat…

I remember the kind people who showed up with a giant urn of coffee and the woman and the little girl who were passing out homemade cookies with the tiny M & M’s.

I also remember the number of obviously homeless and mentally ill staying in the encampment. Many of them seemed to be there just to “make the scene”.  Most were not concerned with equality or social justice. Many just came for a hot meal, and who could blame them? Some came for a party.  It seemed many had nowhere else to go and were just taking advantage of the situation…

.

Did the movement accomplish anything beyond becoming a parody of itself? A messy and expensive one at that. The same conditions are present, nothing has changed, our problems have only deepened.

In my opinion one of the core reasons the movement did not meet its objectives is because it had no objectives except to occupy; to take, to seize public and private property in the name of protest and damn everyone else.

We need more togetherness in this world.

The movement alienated the very people whose support it needed; your average citizen. The responsible adult who has bills to pay, perhaps a family to take care of, a job to go to (if they are lucky.) Who has the time or inclination to sit all day in a park and “protest”?  I think frankly the whole thing scared and upset a lot of our citizens. To succeed a movement needs to be inclusive, it needs to bring people together, it needs to solve problems not create more.

Occupy Portland, October 21, 2011

The thoughtful voices calling out for fairness and equality, for rationality, were drowned out by the storm of senselessness the movement became. It became a circus and the media gave us all a front row seat.

The few who truly cared were striving for social change.  I think they may have been in a bit over their heads and for all their lofty ideals and ideas, the practicalities of life got in the way as they have a tendency to do.

Perhaps in all reality, all it was just a bunch of angry and frustrated people, not knowing what to do about being angry and frustrated.

It is easy to sit back and judge. To say it was all for not and that it was a complete and total disaster…but I don’t think it was all loss…

What can we learn from this?

If anything, The Occupy Movement showed us the ugly side of our society. It shed the light on just how many angry and desperate people there are and what they can and will do. It showcased the need for equality and justice and what happens when our safety net of social services gets pulled out from underneath us.

I think recent world events have helped put it all in perspective for me.  What we Americans deem important at the time can look puny in retrospect compared to what people in other countries have to endure. I think many of us, myself included, take our freedoms for granted.

Everyone wants, but no one is willing to work for it…it’s pass the buck, follow the crowd, don’t dare think for yourself and leave the mess for someone else to clean up.

They say revolutions can get messy, I will agree to that but revolutions bring change, The Occupy Movement in this country was no revolution–just a mess.

Life isn’t easy and our problems as a society cannot be solved easily. Our biggest strength as a nation, is our diversity. We live in a land of a million ideas and a million ways. This perspective makes us special and unique and this makes us strong. Whatever and however we solve our problems, and we will solve our problems, requires not just work but it requires…

We the people, by the people, for the people..

.  The Occupy Movement showed us something about ourselves, it showed that We The People are a force to be reckoned with. There is power in strong emotions including anger, but that energy needs direction. True change requires work from all of us.

All 100% of us.

…and this reminds me of a quote. The author is unknown, consider it your typical everyday citizen. It came from a piece of graffiti on The Berlin Wall, it was found and recorded after the fall of that famous wall.

“Many small people, who in many small places, can alter the face of the world.”

The dream is not over, only postponed.

Strawberryindigo.

Based on :Image:Peace Sign.svg, drawn with thi...

Much has happened since The Occupy Movement began….

‘Occupy’ costs U.S. cities at least $13M – USATODAY.com

Occupier’s Occupy woman’s home (citizenjournalistdotorg.wordpress.com)

Cameron Whitten from Occupy Portland to mayoral candidate to hunger strike (photo essay) (photos.oregonlive.com)

Occupy Portland Website (www.portlandoccupier.org)

We The People (strawberryindigo.wordpress.com)

Occupy What Next? (strawberryindigo.wordpress.com)

Occupy Standoff (https://strawberryindigo.wordpress.com)

Occupy Moves On (https://strawberryindigo.wordpress.com)

Occupy Portland, October 21, 2011

 What others are saying…

*****************************************************************************************************

This was written in response to The Weekly Writing Challenge put on by The Daily Post.

To participate in the challenge, tag your posts with “DPchallenge” or leave a link to your post in the comments. We will keep an eye on the tag and highlight the week’s best posts on Freshly Pressed each Friday.

This week’s theme: Mind The Gap: “As we revisit the events of Occupy Wall Street one year later, or cover the new happenings, some WordPress.com bloggers have begun speaking about what the Occupy Movement does or does not signify for them. For this week’s Mind the Gap, let us know: What does the Occupy Movement mean to you?”

Occupy moves on

occupy berlin

From its infancy the occupy movement has run the gambit of highs and lows of the human experience. The movement started in New York as a protest against the unbalance of wealth in our society and it has grown and morphed and spread all over the country and the world.

A movement born out of frustrations brought on by hard economic times mixed with vanishing natural resources, dwindling opportunity and the remains of a system once created for the common good that is now corrupted by the few and the powerful who put profits over everything else.

The American dream is slipping through the fingers of many Americans.  Our golden age is tarnishing. We the people have lost our way.

Occupy Portland March - 60
Image by merrick_monroe via Flickr

I believe this movement is only a beginning and it is a sign of more to come.  The events of late have truly surprised me and have caused me to re-evaluate my feelings on the Occupy movement more than once.

I  have always supported the ideals of the movement, in that there has never been any doubt in my mind. However, I have not always supported the means. This occupying has from day one struck me as unsustainable.

The road to hell is paved with good intentions and all the good reasons and high ideals cannot trump cold hard reality. These camps created by Occupy degraded into a health and safety hazard that cost our cities dearly at a time when city and state budgets are strained to the max. This occupying also cost the movement valuable credibility.

They showed why it is illegal for a group of people to take possession of a public park and just squat there indefinitely. No matter how worthy the cause, those ends do not justify that sort of means.

Night march through Portland
Image by K. Kendall via Flickr

In most places the cops have moved in and used a varying degree of force to retake the parks once occupied.  Every city is different and in my city, to my surprise, it was relatively peaceful thanks to all involved. The local police showed uncommon restraint and the protestors themselves seemed to police themselves in many instances.

The crowd, estimated to be 2-3 thousand, gasped as a fiery projectile thrown into a row of mounted police injuring one of them and causing him to be taken away during the eviction last Saturday.

The perpetrator was quickly pointed out by the crowd and the man was promptly taken down and arrested. Then in a move that surprised me, the police backed off and allowed the protestors to form a drum circle in the middle of the street, dancers in the hundreds surrounded the circle, cheered on by the overwhelming number of spectators.  A party atmosphere prevailed into the wee hours. There was a sense of unity shown that gave me a sense of long forgotten city pride.

I felt I had been a bit hasty in my predictions of doom and gloom but then I looked around and found the reaction in my city to be unusual.

Occupy Portland
Image by drburtoni via Flickr

The next day 50 people were arrested and the Occupy encampment was retaken by police.  A handful of protestors remained and helped clean up the disgusting mucky mess left behind in the two city parks held hostage in this all too human drama.  Many citizens came out to see the damage and confronted leftover protestors milling about  It seemed not everyone was happy with all the mess and the cost of the occupy.

Heated debates sprung out on street corners.   People that would have never spoken to each other before were voicing their varied but strong opinions,  exchanging ideas and solutions. Citizens were taking to each other instead of just ignoring.

occupy portland
Image by snap turtle via Flickr

By Monday, a press conference was held by what serves as our local occupy leadership fronted by youngish woman in a bright red cap.  She spoke eloquently as she demanded an apology from the mayor and the chief of police for the use of force during the eviction.  Tears welled in the eyes of a nearby protestor as the woman in the red cap spoke of a member of their group, a sign language translator who had apparently been hurt in the scuffle and was now in a wheelchair.

Evidence is sketchy on this and I have this natural inclination to believe the protestors  though I cannot say as I was not there. I have only seen what is claimed to be altered footage of the event.

When asked if they were planning on occupying any more parks, the spokesperson beamed a smile and said “no comment”.  I had hoped for a sign of leadership or a clear focus from the group.  They seem intent on continuing the movement and will not let anyone but themselves know exactly what they have planned.

On Tuesday, the protestors marched and invaded an upscale shopping mall.  On Wednesday,  they marched in solidarity with local university students protesting high tuition and an unfair treatment of school loans.  Today is dubbed “N 17” and a protest on the banks is planned. Events turn on a dime. Only time will tell how this all plays out and how history will view this phenomena.

A smart person once told me that revolutions can be messy and that all that mess makes people stand up and take notice. I have to agree.

It is  prompting us, forcing us  really to look at ourselves as a community of connected individuals who can all have a say in our collective future . This movement has opened a dialogue with ourselves, all 100% of us. It is a discussion that is long overdue and if we want any real and lasting change for the betterment of us all, we need to have it.  If this movement has achieved anything it is this and it is the most essential.

fire
Image by matthewvenn via Flickr

The Occupy movement has provided the spark. To succeed the spark must grow and for it to grow and become something formidable, it must kindle the fires by adding new converts with clearer heads who can focus the attention on key issues.  For this movement to move it needs the help of everyone.  It cannot afford to alienate.  There are many problems and the protestors have every right to be angry, but their anger and a lack of clear focus hurts the very cause most they and I support so very much.

Strawberryindigo.

Occupy Standoff

It was only a matter of time  and  the local media is all abuzz. The too-white smiles and scared eyes of the local newscasters reporting live in front of a hostile crowd  tell the tale.  Tempers are high and people are nervous.  Down at the center of it all, our downtown and “Occupy Grand Central”.  A reluctant mayor, feeling the pressure given by  downtown businesses  concerned about the upcoming holiday season and the bottom line.  Drew his line in the sand and called out a warning to the local occupiers.  It was an ultimatum, really;  Get out by midnight Saturday or else. 

The protestors occupying two parks across the street from city hall have vowed to stay. They have sent out for reinforcements and witnesses from other occupy encampments in other cities.  They are making homemade weapons and shields.  They seem to be digging in and readying themselves for a fight. 

 

The stage has been set.  On one side; the occupiers. On the other; the establishment. Stuck in the middle;  The people.  The real  99%.  Victims of circumstance. People from all walks of life. Very human signs of these hard times. 

We decided to pay another visit  before time ran out on our local occupy. So MM and I went down there on this very overcast Saturday morning. 

We have been there before, earlier in the occupation.   I expected much of the same.  I could have not been more wrong.  The tarps and the tents looked the same but that was about it.  With the deadline looming; the people who could or would leave have left and what remain are the chronic homeless and mentally ill.   And with them remain an unhealthy cesspool of waste and filth. And mud, a foul-smelling gunk all over.  The stench is almost overpowering.  Wet garbage and clothing strewn about.  Food containers and human waste lie on the ground mixed with brilliant yellow autumn leaves.  I almost gag.  I want to leave. We go further in.

Gone is the D.J. and the music.  Gone is the library and medical tent.  The art tent is empty and the local radio station has withdrawn its booth.  The food service has dwindled.  The air of hopefulness is gone.  The unity is gone.  All that is left are the ugly remains. 

The tattered would be heroes.  Dirty, hungry and lost, smoking hand rolled cigarettes, huddled together, worn and wary.  A spirited few cheer on the others.  Pontificating and proclaiming to fight. 

 “This is my home.”  Says a young man in a red cap. 

 His friend, the one with droopy tired eyes, calls for “warriors.”

 

A good Samaritan has brought in coffee and a brown-haired girl with big innocent eyes passes out brownies, she looks about 8 or 9.  She is a sweet little thing and stands as a stark contrast to the mess around her.  As does the  teenage girl shivering in white shorts and flip-flops eating a  glazed twist and savoring every bite. Her dirty face looks sad and alone, I wonder where she’ll go? 

A despondent old man in a wheelchair sits forgotten and ignored, a scene erupts around him, involving a woman who is obviously distressed and upset.  She is almost in tears as she begs and pleads with some occupiers to use their energy for good and leave peacefully. A small crowd has formed aligned against her.  Her young daughter hides her face in her Mother’s warm and fashionable coat. 

Cops stand on the corners. Many of them have donned medical type masks. I suppose to keep from getting sick. I feel sorry for them.  They don’t want this.  I wonder what will happen tonight.  There is a certain queasy unease in the air that goes beyond the lack of sanitation.  I can see it their faces and in the faces of the ones with nowhere to go. Those are the ones I feel for the most.

Others have come to witness this. People here and there, like MM and I.  Some are taking pictures. Others have gathered at the parameters in twos and threes, whispering in an almost revered awe and shaking their heads in disgust.   I see surprise in some eyes.  I know the feeling. Whatever the dream, the dream is lying in a ditch by the side of the road.  It’s tired and hungry and it gets the feeling that no one is listening.

Many hand-lettered signs have been left behind and many of these have valid messages.  I think these people and many others in this country and really in the whole world feel they have no voice and that no one is listening.  The world is going to hell and we know it and there is nothing we can do. 

It seems hopeless.  Our problems are so huge and all the occupying in the world won’t change that.  It’s easy to sit here in my nice warm house tapping away on my nice white laptop and judge these people.  It’s also just as easy to  turn and look the other way.  But it is history we are witnessing here, right or wrong, good or bad.  

These people, those people….We the people. We are The People and we are all connected.  Whatever happens to the least of us happens to us all.  All 100%.

 These problems are not going away. Whatever happens on the streets of my city tonight, will not change anything.  It will only put an ugly face on a valid and much needed social movement. 

….And as the rain begins and  the darkness of night sets in across the city, I can’t help but wonder the outcome.  The deadline has been set and we are all watching and waiting……

Peace.

Strawberryindigo.

 

 

We the People

Occupy Wallstreet 10-5-2011
Image by cisc1970 via Flickr

I have been watching with more than just a casual interest, the events unfolding in the streets of many cities across the United States.

It has been building for some time but this public vein has only just opened up recently, about three weeks or so ago, in New York City.

The Occupy Wall Street movement started there but it has spread like wildfire, now to my city as well as many others.  I’ve never  witnessed such a formation of people happen in such this way before.

I have heard many opinions on the phenomena, from television pundits, to neighbors and friends to the crackpots on the street corner.  Everyone has a take on it and everyone has it right on the money.  Again this is new to me, all this agreement.

We have much in common; We the people, We angry 99%.  The American dream, that long gone ideal that’s been shoved down our throats now seems like an impossibility. Our whole way of life is threatened and it’s like nothing will ever be the same.  We are on the losing end of a golden age and we can all feel it.

People are angry and confused.  They feel helpless.  All this marching, this “occupying” is at least something.  We elected a new president who promised us change.  We thought this new president would end the wars, we thought this new president would make us great again.  This new president is too much like the old president.

We elected him. As we have elected all the rest of them.  It is hard to swallow, but in that aspect we deserve them.  It is our system that elects those with the best sound bites and the most money.  It is the system we must change.

Marching will only get us so far, we all know.. but what else can we do?  We the People are at a crossroads and the stakes couldn’t be higher.

I see it in the faces, the desperate faces from all walks of life, marching in solidarity. this is a powerful thing, this unity.  Knowing you are not the only one effected by all this decline, this decay. In this way I think that all the marching has been good for the collective national soul.

This movement is in its infancy and without leadership it may die a premature death.    Never before have I witnessed such potential power in a group of people.

It is a shame that this power has no leadership.  We are in search for a leader once again, We are searching for someone to represent us, to speak for us; We The People, and not just the 99% but all 100%.

I don’t know how this all will play out.  Only time will tell…..

…and that reminds me of this quote:

“Waste no time with revolutions that do not remove the causes of your complaints but simply change the faces of those in charge.”

Francesco Guicciardini (1530)

The more things change, the more things stay the same.

For more revolutionary quotes; go to my FRESH QUOTES page

Viva la revolution!   StrawberryIndigo.