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Work 4 Peace,Hold All Life Sacred,Eliminate Violence! I am on my mobile version of the door-to-door, going town-to-town holding readings/gatherings/discussions of my book "But What Can I Do?" This is my often neglected blog mostly about my travels since 9/11 as I engage in dialogue and actions. It is steaming with my opinions, insights, analyses toward that end of holding all life sacred, dismantling the empire and eliminating violence while creating the society we want ALL to thrive in

Thursday, December 11, 2014

Another Perspective on Property Values and Smashing Windows

 It is very difficult to see "property" objectively when we live in a society and country that for at least 400 years has put the ownership of property over the lives people.

We have all internalized the glorification and pursuit of property, placing a much higher value on property than any other thing on this planet from human life, to clean water, to fresh air to breathe, to trees, soil, food, plants, insects - all the things Mother Earth provides for our survival. These ALL take a back seat at best - often they're not even in the vehicle - to the quest for the holiest grail of PROPERTY.

Before you claim you're not one of those, if we didn't value property over life, we would no longer be putting gas in our cars, using plastic or any chemical, only buying organic.

Furthermore, the value of the human being is in direct correlation to the value of the property that human has stolen, 'worked' for by exploiting the labor of others, horded for himself.

So human beings are not valued in our society because they are sacred life - or if you're religious, children of the creator.

But they are valued if they have extreme amounts of property - the more property they own, the more they are valued.

So we come to the destruction of property. We need a paradigm shift here. Is the destruction of property really violence?

I think not. I think it is the destruction of property. Why do we continue, in the light of knowing police are murdering Black people - women, children, and men - EVERY DAY as well as murdering mentally ill people, poor people, autistic people, deaf people, disabled people - all the 'weaker' members of our society, why do we continue to value property over everything else?

Police don't kill the 'stronger' people - or even people equally armed. There is no equality, no fairness in an encounter or fight with police. They are armed and dangerous.

But I digress - i don't want to talk about the police but it is the destruction of property and the definition of violence I'm talking about here.

Why do we continue to buy into the valuing of property so highly? Why do we have time to even think about property when lives are at stake, AND not just human lives here but the life of the planet is at stake.

We live in a society that values PROPERTY over ALL else.

PROPERTY is NOT important: LIVES are important.LIFE is important.

Furthermore, why does society - i.e. the wealthy - get to define "violence"? 

We need to define "violence" and wells farto is VIOLENT; crate & barrel is VIOLENT; all slave & child labor, all manufacturing practices, all banking practices that defile human life and cause irreparable damage to our planet and to human lives is VIOLENCE.

Tossing stones at property is a response to capitalism, racism, injustice. Who is to say that those of us who choose not to toss stones are responding correctly to the killing forces that prevail?

Have you ever walked around union square at night & seen destitute hungry people in rags hanging out on sidewalks in front of windows sporting a $300 vase and $4000 shoes and want to toss a brick thru that window? 

I certainly have been so enraged at the cruelty of depriving humans basic needs so someone can spend thousands on what, a pair of shoes??? that I've wanted to smash windows.

I have often wondered how people who have so little can be peaceful in the face of such wonton ugly 'luxury' and blatant deprivation of their ability to survive and thrive.

And lastly, it is the power of the media that forces us to address labeling smashing windows "violence" while ignoring and even circumventing our SHUT IT DOWN message from getting out to the broader public.

It is the power 'speaking' back to our uprising that focuses us on the smashing of windows and demands we spend our energy first agreeing with them that smashing windows is violent, and second dividing us from those who choose to smash windows as their response to the real violence of murder.

I am not advocating the smashing of windows. I am advocating awareness of divide and conquer tactics of those in power - they've had centuries to hone and sharpen this tactic that helps keep them in power - and of our never allowing these powers to move us off message.


Salmon, Sacrifice or Murder

I want to share a story with you – a very important story that, for those who fully grasp the meaning, it will resolutely guide our work during these opportune times.

This story was told to us by an Indigenous person whose people live in Canada along the Pacific coast. She received the story from an elder, who told her that many many generations ago, her people were anticipating the return of the salmon – for it was that time of year.

The first day of salmon season, no fish appeared. The next day, they waited, and still no fish appeared. They waited day after day, the next week and the following week. Still no salmon.

On the very last day of salmon season, the salmon returned – but only a handful. The people got together and talked about what they would do. The group consensus was to not harvest the salmon this season so that they would have a chance to grow and return abundant the following year.

That winter, over half her people died of starvation. But the salmon returned the next season and her people survived.

These people were willing to sacrifice their very lives for the sake of the future life of the peoples.

She spoke of our present day need to find the willingness to make the short term sacrifice, to accept the present day loss, for the long term good, for the long term survival.

She told us how her people believed they MUST consider the next SEVEN generations when making any decision.

For us, living in this day, in this country, the question of “sacrifice” is not about going without salmon but is really moot: for look around us, look at our very lives. Very few of us are living a life that we love, that we are proud of, that brings honor and respect and kindness – let alone a clear conscience – to our beings and families and country.

And because of our true history of how this country was ‘cleared’ of First Nation people in order to make a country for white society, and then how Africans were stolen and enslaved to build wealth for white society, and how we’ve militarily attacked nearly every country in the world to grab even those resources, and how we destroy the Mother Earth in order to be the 2 largest consumers of fossil fuels on our Mother Earth (the u.s. military #1 consumer, our country #2) – because we are rooted and growing in these bloody, ugly truths of our nation, even if you THINK you’re happy, not hurting anyone, guilt-free, you are not.

For the life planted, nourished and grown from the amerikkkan nitemare is froth with destruction of a whole lotta someone’s lives, where valuing property and money over human life and life of the Mother Earth reigns and cannot be separated from the amerikkkan nitemare.

So when we ‘sacrifice’ that amerikkkan nitemare, we are merely gaining our humanity, liberating ourselves as we know liberation for the first time ever.

Freedom is not free to exploit or take advantage of historical exploitation of others but is the release from the clutches of the quest for amerikkkan nitemare, of extricating the internal damage of amerikkkan nitemare infused in our cells, and then we or our 7 future generations can stumble on the path to finding true meaning that is planted and grown from only one thing: the sacredness of all life.

Have you watched real footage from the Algerian Revolution when the people overthrew the French? We often say in this country there are many, many, many more individuals than police. When looking at the footage of these courageous people, hundreds of thousands of them clothed in civilian garb maybe with a stick in their hands or a stone, faced men in military gear hoisting rifles over their shoulders.

The people charged the soldiers knowing many were going to be killed. Row after row after row of civilians did fall, but the rest of the people broke thru the lines and lines of soldiers, eventually disarming them, and shouting their victorious freedom.

The willingness to sacrifice short term life for the long term good.

We know, those of us that see, we know that we are not just talking about our freedom from capitalism, racism, sexism, violence, wars, the amerikkkan nitemare but we are talking about the very survival of life on this planet.

200 species of life are eliminated EVERY DAY on our planet – not by “human beings”, not by the sheer numbers of us, but by OUR EMPIRE. We need to stop trying to “sustain” our lifestyles but work to dismantling OUR EMPIRE.

For we all know, those of us that are looking around, seeing, feeling, hearing, we all know, in our heart of hearts, if we do not make our short term sacrifices, there will be no long term life.

Right now, First Nation people, all over our planet, are putting their lives on the line to stop the exploitation by oil and mining companies that is killing the Mother Earth – so we in the U.S. can be the people of the world that have cheap gas, 24/7 electricity and 1,500 plastic water bottles a SECOND.

Right now, Black people are in leading uprising into the streets, working to SHUT IT DOWN!

I think we all need t ask ourselves, what short term ‘sacrifice’ are we willing to make to ensure the future of life on our planet? 

The other choice, which many u.s.ofa. people seem willing to choose for all life on this planet, is to be the murderers of Mother Earth.