Wednesday, January 25, 2012

smoking is...

wrote this november 9th on a whim.
wasn't sure if i'd wanted to share it.
two months later, i guess it's too cold for change.

I don’t feel this is a solution, though I don’t feel that I have a solution for very many things. being part of the ninety nine percent is not some sort of shameful thing or a definition that we are part of those that lack. we just happen to be the result of a broken system that we perpetuate. this is the system we all have trusted for years, and even if we didn’t trust it, we followed it. there’s been a kind of involuntary slavery to it. for every moment we felt control slipping away, we should have been questioning and recoordinating from that very moment. sitting down in wall street is not affecting their bottom line. there are always going to be people who are going to be able to ignore the fact that one, a few, a many, or even all, dislike their concept or their means of getting to an end. seeing those who are trying to represent us in wall street either through sitting, occupying, or marching isn’t affecting their day. their eyes don’t even register revolution. they don’t recognize a new progress. for every cluster of you that boycotts their product or service, there are millions who still engage. of the 99%, those of us who are active in utilizing our voice to demand change, whether it’s through written word, presence, violence or otherwise, you are not even 1% of that mass. this method doesn’t work if you don’t get everyone on board. and everyone isn’t going to get on board. we’re not all going to go to the big cities to speak to this motion. your occupation requires attendance. even for things that are enjoyable, there is no way to guarantee that people would show up for such a thing.


I wrote that at 0540 one morning before work. I wasn’t even dreaming of the whole thing. I think I read something on google reader, and the solution seemed obvious to me. if you don’t like the rules of a game, you can leave the game. there are so many people shouting about the gravel being hot lava. if we cross it, and throw back a middle finger, or even just walk back into the school or back into our houses, anywhere, enough of us will realize that the bully has been convincing us about hot lava just so we can’t be first on line for lunch.

this whole movement has been unavoidable, being part of the generation, the demographic. I started doing a bit of research on the whole thing, the whole open thought of it. I wholeheartedly support what’s going on. my major issue with the entire thing has become the process of trying to figure out what exactly we’re doing about change, and overall what we’re really fighting for. what it’s all seemed like is a bunch of people my age standing around to represent that “shit ain’t right.” got it. I think we’ve been saying and hearing that forever. but there’s one quote that I finally read that stated the one demand that started the whole procession:

“one simple demand—a presidential commission to separate money from politics—we start setting the agenda for a new America.”

fucking refreshing. it’s taken so long, so long for me to finally find that nugget of information. and the one issue I was having finding that information was that I was reading about it in the wrong places. in fact, what am I saying? I wasn’t reading about it at all. I was talking to people about it. people who related to it, who supported it. and they hadn’t even a real, solid clue as to where it started, what’s changing, what the demand is. what they were telling me was what was happening to it. it was an endless oroboros. “the police shot rubber bullets, the police broke down the tent village.” got it. but why was the village there? “well. um. the um. the police sprayed girls with pepper spray.”

this isn’t the race riots. this isn’t about the police hating these people. or being taught to hate these people. this is more reactionary. these are the same guys who we used to hate in high school, the sloping, mannish strong-arm types who if you start a group of people laughing, will demand the spotlight and do whatever it takes to steal it. stand in his way, he will forcefully move you or make you regret it. got it.

but finally reading that demand, that one demand, puts it into perspective. make it so that those who we are voting for will make decisions based on moral fiber, genuine interest or belief as opposed to who is providing the most money to their re-election. with it. got it.

there’s so much to this whole scenario that no one’s really talking about on the outside. much of it may be happening on the inside, but I’m kind of afraid that… wait. I’m not afraid. not for real. I am convinced that a lot of what’s going on on the inside is a lot of preaching to the quire. the choir, you know. it seems a lot of the talking that people who are walking that line aren’t hearing is being kept cushioned deep within the heart of the whole occupy movement.

for different reasons, I get that the movement is important. but I feel that at every chance this whole group gets to really make a giant leap in the right direction, they end up looking either worthless or terrified because they aren’t able to really demonstrate outwardly and openly because of various rules of where you can and can not protest and other things like how you can do it and what you can’t say and onward. i feel like there’s a big thing happening. a great thing where this mass of generic progressive young people are making enough of a rustling to get noticed by press and media and the thought structure, but once they get the camera turned to them, once they get the microphone time, they sort of blink their eyes and get nervous and throw together their best coy smile.

I want to believe that there will be change due to this standing about. or at least ignited by it. but there is no leader. no real spreading wave of effective stirring.

I think we all at the very least understand what’s happening. but whether or not this stand is building to revolution is another thing entirely. it’s a very positive thing that a lot of people polled or interviewed aren’t seeing the occupiers as pigeon holed fist-shakers who are making a big stink over nothing. I think they’re being taken pretty seriously. but the lack of a stance makes it hard to climb or progress. I think that’s mostly due to the lack of quantification we can see. who comes out of the Door of Imagery waving a white flag with a puppy dog face, saying, “alright you kids! we’ll do it, we’ll make this better!” ? no one. we can’t change any chair and watch things overturn, get overrun, and then all of the color returns to Pleasantville. rather, we have to use this moment of silence in the room caused by an urgent, somewhat shy, but forceful ahem as a chance to gain a representation and a voice in the room that continues to get louder and louder of big wigs hearing themselves speak.

as long as these guys are counting zeroes on their checks, they don’t care. they’re not afraid of us. they don’t even see us. we have to make a radical change. an entire structure has to collapse, and the only way to do that is to operate outside of them. the unique opportunity of cities of this size is that if enough of us are on the same side, we really can make some major dents. I am genuinely curious if all of us in the metro new york area didn’t pay our credit card bills, or closed our bank accounts in a slow and quiet gliding landing of a movement, how big of an impact we would have on those companies.

I’m spinning off a little bit. I’m not sure what my point is here.

but I guess I’m stating where I stand on it, and putting my fingers to keys on a laptop is the easiest way to do it for me. I love this moment. I love it. I just want to treat it preciously and importantly instead of like something that we will look back and remember fondly. I don’t want this moment to be remembered. I want it to be a start of a new look, with new eyes. because this is not enough. we need a leader or at the very least a representative. a voice that will be recognized. we need someone who knows our priorities, and they must be defined. we need someone who will see us, our demographic, our generation (and those that follow it) as a people. the scale needs to shift. somehow, we’re still going to these schools and building college debts that aren’t helping us get the jobs we want to build the world we love with the skills we’ve nurtured for our entire lives. we just want to trust the system. and we’ve never had a chance.

from where we’re standing, we’re going to keep following the rules that we hate because we’ll reluctantly take the cues from a hierarchy we never elected because we never had a chance to show we had the credentials to have our voice sound like an equal because we never bought the proverbial suit that looked nice enough to let us into their meeting. our ideas matter because we are our own ideal future. we’re walking in the one big kid’s hot lava, and there are a dozen of us meeting eyes and rolling them. no!

we need that one voice, that one trust, that one small victory to prove we have a say in the way that our tide sways. I believe in all of this, I do. but even my attention is faltering.

clay dries so so slowly. but yes, the clay will dry.

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