Sunday, July 25, 2010

Where's the Change?

Congress didn't pass an energy/climate bill. Not even a wishy-washy Republican half-assed version of anything. We did get health care "reform," but it was basically a mid-1990's Republican version of health care reform, and it still supports greedy private insurance companies. Our long-awaited Democratic president who ran under the auspices of change is now considering off-shore drilling, and when he mentions green energy often speaks of nuclear energy, "clean" coal technology (oxymoron!), and other green-washed forms of energy. We have a Democratic president AND Democratic majority in congress, yet they don't seem to be able to affect much of that change we heard so much about. More and more democrats are becoming fence riding moderates, while the voices of right-wing nut jobs get louder and louder. I could go on for some time.

Let this be a lesson to my liberal and progressive-minded friends. What have we learned from the last year and a half?

1. Being Black doesn't make someone liberal any more than being a woman makes someone a feminist. (Meaning: Obama is about as moderate a president as we could get. He's no more liberal than Sarah Palin is a feminist.) Our Republican brothers and sisters really need to realize this, because every time they call him a socialist and compare him to historical socialist figures they make themselves look like the ignorant racist hillbillies they are.

2. People on the left need to forget about voting for who they think can get elected and start supporting candidates who have a strong record of making real social change. I hope Dennis runs again next time around. Or Al. I love Al. We also need to pay attention to our state and local officials and elect real movers and shakers.

3. Lefties need to get off their asses and start being seen and heard just as loudly as the *choke* *gag* *hurl* Tea Baggers and the like (only more intelligently and peacefully). If all they were doing was signing online petitions we'd hardly notice them. Get me?

4. We need to BE THE CHANGE. Our elected officials have proven that trickle-down government change is not going to happen. We can hope, we can vote, we can and should speak our minds. But ultimately our lives have to reflect our values. Care about women's reproductive rights? Volunteer at and/or financially support your local Planned Parenthood, independent midwives and local women's centers. Care about the environment? Stop eating animals, grow your own food, reduce~reuse~recycle (in that order!), carpool, ride your bike, etc. You get the picture. And hey, if you're really into politics, run for local office!