Here’s a useful post suggesting we keep on working for change in these crazy times from Petaluma writer Connie Madden. – RR
How to know what’s useful to do now
by Connie Madden
So we all took a deep breath of gratitude after the orange ogre left the Capital. But retreat to our couch doesn’t do a damn thing save get you fat. Would rather get outdoors, then stay well informed and take action that is truly useful with some help from great organizers, Bill McKibben’s weekly column in The New Yorker, Greta Thunberg with the Dalai Lama on YouTube, 350.org’s 46 Days of Action, Pachamama Alliance, more.
There’s huge work to get to a healthy human existence; the planet will survive but possibly not the humans!
Sunrise Movement, which we adore, says “We need absolutely everybody” and I assume you’re in that group? Watch Sunrise ED, Varshini Prakash for vivid, focused nudging of our electeds to actually do good work, to pave the way to a Green New Deal, a roadmap for survival, if you add the good work of others.
In the best podcast for a sense of direction I’ve heard since COVID, Jerry Brown with Michael Krasny on KQED’s Forum 2/2, Jerry makes the urgent case for diplomacy, mending fences with China and Russia, Iran and North Korea before the clock runs out, that clock of the Union of Concerned Scientists (UCS) currently set at 100 SECONDS before midnight: just a brief breath and we’re all toast.
Point being, we have to get way past petty differences and even huge ones (we don’t have to approve of authoritarianism of Xi Jin Ping or Putin) to ensure we don’t blow each other up! Our military and its supporters are still gung ho on building more weapons, continuing to encircle Russia with NATO weaponry and we keep talking about and to China rudely and they really DON’T like that. Between them, they could wipe us out over and over…beginning with “minimal” weapons leading to the big ones.
So we have these multiple whammies! COVID, the US economy (will the GLOBAL economy recover?) and Climate Justice, the words permanently linked! Black Lives still matter and we can’t happily live with a majority of People of Color (POC) without acknowledging the personhood, the rights to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness of ALL. Not lip service; being an Antiracist means making amends.
Glad Jerry Brown, ethical wise guy, also created the California-China Climate Institute as part of UC Berkeley Law, a way for China to work together with California to address climate and more. CCCI’s recent video with Nature Conservancy presented Nature Based Solutions to climate crisis, echoing our Pachamama Alliance Rights of Nature initiative; noted a webinar on that scheduled for TOMORROW…some people never rest!
This a.m., was pleased to follow along with 350.0rg’s TOOLKIT, the group now present in 188 countries. I signed a petition to divest from coal and cross-posted at least on FB, getting used to Instagram and Twitter.
Electoral politics: Follow The Squad, Alexandria Ocasio Cortez (AOC), Ilhan Omar, Ayanna Pressley and Rashida Tlaib, four brave souls who don’t quit, and then, in whatever way you choose, nudge pols to make dramatic, needed policy changes. All that takes courage, time, deep consideration.
I refer often to Gandhi’s genius in calling for “A Day of Prayer and Fasting” when the British were in power – that amounted to a General Strike, and the British realized they were no longer in power – it was Power to the People, the old chant we cried in Berkeley during the Vietnam War protests. Non-violent resistance shows the power OF the people… and glad to know Joe Biden was a Veteran Against the War…one of the good guys! Let’s hope we can nudge him to deep enough action to save ourselves.
We gotta keep on truckin’ as Mr. Natural used to say. Keep on protesting criminals in high places, police violence and gun violence of all sorts, the violence of treating people as less than us so their lives become less than they might. Stop the lies online that fed the fury of the wild bunch that tried to take over the capital.
So HOW can our tribe, our friends, our local/global links, block the evil in the world and restore the earth and our souls? Like the Dedication of Merit we read together at the end of our weekly meditation group, “defeat the enemy, wrongdoing.” Not defeat a person; defeat wrongdoing. Yes.
So, just as it was when I was a little girl handing our leaflets for Adlai Stevenson, so it is now: “If you don’t like the news, go out and make some of your own,” said Scoop (now Wes) Nisker on the old KSAN radio, San Francisco. Agreed.