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Work 4 Peace,Hold All Life Sacred,Eliminate Violence! For now, I’ve returned from my Joiyssey to participate in the "revolution":I’ve been at many Occupy sites across the country:1st in D.C. Freedom Plaza I faced & challenged racism/white supremacy, sexism/patriarchy, classism, heterosexism & eventually was kicked off the island; then I offered workshops as I drove to CA:“Anti-Racism Geared for White Occupiers”; “NO DRONES” "Successes and Pitfalls of OWS"

Saturday, March 03, 2007

A done deal ...... N O T!!!!

I was so disheartened after our dinner meeting with Medea on Friday evening. We all sat there and heard Medea say the newly-elected democrats – the ones we’ve worked our butts off, over the past 6 years, if not to get them elected then to have the ‘issue’ of ending war be front and center in the election thereby paving way for their victories – are going to buy the war in less than two weeks. Period. They are going to buy the war.

We sat there and heard her say the same thing about the Senate and how the majority democrats in the Senate were also going to buy the war in less than 2 months.

My immediate reaction to Medea saying beyond any doubt that this is so, was reminiscent of those democrats we talked with all last month in Congress who essentially told us the same thing/different words but just as shadow-less: they KNOW their fellow Democrats will vote for the supplemental and they KNOW HR508 will lose in this Democrat majority-run House of Representatives.

What is the difference between them saying ending the war will not happen and us saying that we agree: Democrats are not going to vote to end the war?

I guess the disheartening thing is not so much that we feel so pessimistic about our Congress – but that we can say this with such assuredness, such a given truth, and then not duck in anticipation of walls falling in or the bay bridge tumbling, or lightning striking. For shouldn’t something earth-shattering happen if we the people of the anti-war movement truly believe our newly-elected representatives are NOT going to represent us and ARE going to continue war in our names?

If we accepted this as true or even as most likely probable, why did we not all jump up in arms, alarmed and kicked into high gear, ready to go into intense battle to confront these democrats, or at the very least to strategize once and for all how we will ensure they do NOT buy this war? And BELIEVE we are going to prevent them from buying this war? At least as strongly as Bush believes he will continue and win war in Iraq?

I have said many times since the 2006 election, these first few weeks/months of this new Congress, this is our BEST opportunity to end war in 4 years. And if we do not do everything in our power to push our leaders into stopping war now, doing everything above and beyond our powers, then we are so very damned. Forget us – so many, many, many human beings are being so very hurt and killed in our name – as our privileged lives continue for the most of us and for the most part as they did prior to our invading Iraq.

Our Congress is balanced on the precipice: either in the next few weeks they will plunge into buying this war; or they will end war and bring our troops and contractors home NOW.

How many multitude times in the past 6 years have I been struck numb, expecting a huge grassroots outcry at the very least, rioting in the streets and the tearing down of these horrific corporate ‘leaders’ at the very least – and instead we have basically continued life as usual in this country.

I heard Friday night wimmin speak about making it ‘easy’ for folks to get involved; about not ‘scaring’ away those that might timidly want to participate; about painless, happy and fun protests; and about expending energy gently cluing in those who are clueless on how to end war; about taking 15 minutes to write a letter, send an email, make a phone call. Still, after over 3166 U.S. deaths, close to 1 million Iraq deaths – we are embracing, defending and coddling American privilege.

I heard us make plans for what to do when the Congress buys this war; what to do months from now when we might be able to begin to end war – again I was struck with the similarity to Hillary saying she’ll end war when she’s president in 2008, not tell us what she is doing to end war when she’s senator in 2007. How can we point the finger & hold Hillary & Obama accountable when we don’t hold our own selves accountable?

Are we not buying the Democrats logic, their camouflage of warmongering, by accepting as fact they are going to vote to buy this war from Bush?

And if we truly believe that the Democrats are going to do this, then why didn’t we drop everything and begin to haul ass to D.C. or at the very least begin to make a daily plan for the next 13 days for preventing this from happening? Why aren’t we putting out the call to “call in PINK” for the next 10 days?

It seems to me that it is like knowing that Bechtel is planning on bulldozing Sacramento on March 14th and instead of making plans to barricade the roads, blast the news thru the media, infiltrate the corporation, lay our bodies 100 thousand million deep around the city, we are gathering medical supplies and food, building caskets, making space in graveyards for all the casualties of the pending devastation.

In other words, we are accepting defeat as a done deal. As the Democrats in the hearings we sat in on were accepting the ‘surge’ as a done deal.

How can we claim to be against war, how can we claim to be a compassionate people, how can we claim to care about other people, and to not have our lives substantially, essentially and immensely different then they were 4 years ago?

We have talked often on this list about the pros and cons of working locally verses working in D.C.

I urge you again to come to D.C. not because local action is not essential and necessary but because action in D.C. is critical and crucial to our ending war for many reasons:

1) actions in D.C. often give us NATIONAL media coverage, that we cannot get most of the time through local actions
2) in D.C. we have daily – if not several times a day – access to actual Congresspeople: as they step out of or into hearings, their offices, their cars and houses
3) in D.C. we are working 24/7 to end war – no distractions, no daily life, no pressures from home and hearth
4) in D.C. we have critical access to influencing huge varieties of people from political representatives and staff, to the public, to the military, to people from other countries, to students and tourists, to lobbyists, corporate folks and of course, to the White House.

Working locally is essential but I ask you, how much work are you likely to do on a daily basis if you stay at home? If you are committed to working 24/7 at home, then right-on. Don’t come to D.C. Make your impact at home. But if you are going to be distracted and pulled by your maintaining your lifestyle as you stay at home, then come to D.C., especially from now until April 2nd. And prepare yourself to come back, stay longer.

This is our reprieve granted to us by this last election. Let us all pretend that it is our mothers, our sons, our great-grandmothers that are about to be killed or maimed or tortured in the next 2 weeks, and let’s pull out all the stops, put our bodies on the line, and end war in our name.

Or better yet, let us pretend it is our very own lives that are about to be radically altered if not terminated in the next few weeks if we do not act NOW.

Let us work together to undo the done deal! We CAN do it – together – but we need YOU, no one else but you.