Occupy movement is the first step

If the Occupy movement has done nothing else, it has gotten the general public talking. This kind of dialogue is badly needed.

If the Occupy movement has done nothing else, it has gotten the general public talking. This kind of dialogue is badly needed.

We may be deeply thankful for our traditions of democracy and human rights which our veterans and courageous civilians fought and died for throughout history.

We are fortunate that our sons and daughters who stand in protest aren’t facing tanks and snipers as their peers are in Syria or getting locked up for years on false charges in places like Bahrain.

Nonetheless, we need to talk about the injustice that prevails in our fortunate world.

People are going hungry in this place of plenty and facing cold nights on the streets in our major cities.

Productive, honest workers across North America and Europe have been thrown out of work and many have not been able to find a way back to earn an honest living because of financial wheeling and dealing by some members of the ultra rich who own no allegiance to anyone in that ninety-nine percent that is the rest of us.

The Occupy movement may appear pointless to some because it lacks a clear focus and because it is open to all in our society with grievances of all kinds and some who are going along for a lark.

I am sure that serious protest movements such as the anti-war protests of the sixties and the anti-nuclear ones of the eighties attracted some silly and bizarre hangers-on but those movements accomplished major, important changes.

The Vietnam War and a senseless slaughter of soldiers and civilians was brought to an end.

The nuclear arms race was wound down pushing the minute hand of the Doomsday Clock back for the first time.

As people join each other to voice their opposition or their support together they create a kind of synergy. Change begins to happen.

Sometimes it takes years. Sometimes it takes the right moment in history but it is clear that unless our leaders hear the message loud and strong, they will not be moved to challenge the status quo and the old injustices will prevail.

It is very important that we support those who are fighting for social and economic justice. It benefits us all. It may be untidy and a little disorderly but it is a good thing to do and may prompt real change in the long run.

Jos Sharp

Trail