Before the rotten tomatoes start flying, a little disclaimer.
I support the demonstrations/protests/occupations/tent cities.
I am excited about this uproar of spirit and unity. I have a bunch of friends and family down there and I am intensely proud of them. They are some of the sweetest, most generous and environmentally conscious people I know.
I’m touched and moved and inspired by the fact that there are people in so many different countries sitting in together focused on a better good for man-kind of every race, gender and social status.
I think it’s great seeing so many people who otherwise make no effort to speak to each other every day, even when they are squashed intimately against each other on the subway each morning, copping a feel, breathing each others breath, catching each others colds etc…
I also think its fantastic that people are talking about what matters instead of which Hollywood star is cheating with whom and why and how much coke the crammed up their noses with which porn stars and where and how many millions of dollars the special effects cost in that new movie at the paramount… with no mention of how many starving people that could have fed or whose electricity could have been reconnected with that or, or.. or…
I’m happy that people are together, forming an alliance and generating ideas and standing up for themselves.
But… (here it comes)
I can’t help wondering…
If I were to go downtown Montréal today, with a giant basket, and a pledge sheet, how many people would pitch in their iPhones, Blackberries, laptops, name brand clothes and accessories, credit cards etc… and how many of them would commit to using and buying only homemade and/or locally grown and manufactured foods and products? And how many of them would stop bringing pre-packaged processed foods and plastics into their homes, stop driving their cars, stop feeding that big fat monster that they are so quick to point at and blame for this mess.
We created that monster people. And the enthusiastic protesters I saw sitting there so righteously in front of their tents chowing down on McDonalds Happy Meals the other day could probably use a little self-reflection.
We all could.
Franky and I discussed this at great lengths a couple of nights ago and his solution is for every single one of us to stop paying rent and utilities all on the same day. ALL OF US. And to grow our own food and generate our own electricity and take care of each other for real, not just point a finger at somebody else and demand that they do it.
I’ve tried that whole not-paying-rent thing and I agree, it’s not nearly as effective when the rest of the country isn’t doing it with you.
I’m taking a good hard look at my lifestyle right now and I have to tell you, baby steps count. Even the simple act of tossing out the plastic broom from dollarama that some kids in a foreign country made for 2¢ an hour and replacing it with a good old fashioned corn broom felt pretty liberating. Also… it sweeps better.
So protest your little hearts out. Sing it loud and clear and make sure the whole damn world hears you.
Especially. Your. Self.
Already on board? What are some of the ways that your family gets by without contributing to this mess we are all living in?
P.S. I stole that picture from Wikipedia in a violent act of protest but the artist in me feels guilty so photo credit goes to Wikipedia user JSquish. Thanks buddy.