Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Raising My Voice in the Spirit of Occupy Wall Street!

As you may or may not have noticed (depending on your chosen news source) we are in the middle of a change and at this point there is no concise definition or the added security of a clear goal which we can comfortably grasp onto once we assume we have reached the “end” of this transformation.  Without a clear beginning or end – how can we even start to know what to think whilst in the middle of this (r)evolution?  
This is where I challenge you!
This is an incredible opportunity to be in a place and time in history where we can pause to watch what is happening and hopefully learn from what we see.  Today I was happy to spot an insightful comment on Twitter where this individual wrote, “Lots of different agendas appearing in Occupy Wall Street but it is simply: people before profits, community before corporates.”   What this person wrote is so true! 

During these last two weeks, as I have watched the crowds grow and hear the voices of the people as they rise-up and continue to get louder across our great nation, I am also witnessing the confusion of friends and family whom cannot grasp the idea of what Occupy Wall Street is about.  They spend their time creating a list of grievances regarding the numerous issues they have with the policies of our nation- but, sadly they do not feel empowered enough or that their problems are actually worth taking into the streets.  Watching these events unfold has made me start to wonder, have we become a civilization of people who feel discomfort unless we are told what to do or spoon fed the information which tells us what to think? 

By living without clear definitions or labels people are becoming uncomfortable. 
Without the ability to neatly tuck our ideas into a little box and then tidily place them upon a shelf, people are at a loss and are finding themselves struggling to cling to any assimilation of control they can find during and as a result of these demonstrations.

I am tired of feeling the need to label this movement, it is made-up of people – all different – but, all with a voice.  For as long as I can tell, throughout history, we have lived with the deception of labels.   By doing this, people have suffered while living with the assumption of someone else having the control or power over their lives.  Because individuals have been allowed to label other people as they see fit, this allows for an assumption of authority, which has made it difficult for those “other” people to reach the same level of influence as the people who are falsely regarded to be in control.  Also, by living in a system which allows only the intellectual elites who are afforded the opportunity to pursue a quality education (or live a life of debt as a result of it) and by categorizing people based on socioeconomic influence, their race, gender or ethnicity, we truly hold back the voices of people who still have experiences, insight or knowledge to share with others.

For once I would like to see our lives lived without the added oppression of labels, right now while we join together, we don’t need to limit each other’s potential with these inaccurate terms of convenience.  What we truly need is dialogue and this is where the beauty of Occupy Wall Street and of the other Occupies around the world come in, this is a place where it doesn’t matter what you have been labeled within your society, you have a place to speak and to honestly be heard.   Then naturally, as time goes by and after we have had a chance to express our grievances with the comfort of knowing that we have been heard since we are truly listening to each other, and when we are finally equals in each other’s eyes without the man-made limitations of race, gender, nationality, and class – we can then hopefully begin building the platform needed for a movement unlike any other we have experienced before.
I have lived with your labels for too long – leave this moment alone and let it grow as it should - without hatred, prejudice, and with an open heart.