I've been to several protest marches now in different cities... Yesterday I was in San Diego. I do think that there is something very important happening. I'm encouraged by the fact that people have decided to do something about the current situation in the country--an increasingly oppressive system based on crony capitalism and enabled by a corrupt political class.
Yesterday's march in San Diego was particularly inspiring, and what I estimate to be over 1000 people walked march through the Gaslamp District.
But there is a nagging worry that keeps coming to mind as I analyze the whole movement (insofar as I'm capable of). The chants "We are the 99%," or "They got bailed out, we got sold out," what do they mean?
What is the purpose of chanting? Is it to send a message? And if so, to whom? And what message are chants or slogans trying to convey?
Also, by now it has become almost orthodoxy for movement members to embrace the concept that "we don't need leaders," or a "clear message." And that one of the advantages of that is that it will help in attracting lots of people with all kinds of interests. And so I try to discern the progress, and I see the movement growing across the country.
But after each march, when people get to the destination to assemble, when I see the microphone and speakers setup, I get excited thinking that I'm going to hear a passionate orator with a clear and concise and powerful message. Instead, you hear the "peaceful" kids playing "beautiful" music and dancing "grateful death" style, the drumming, the jumping.
When speakers stand to talk, I hear all kinds of disparate message... A nice-looking young couple sing a peace and love song at the microphone, and ask perplexed protesters to follow along... But the lyrics don't flow, and are hard to repeat.
When people "rise up" and "take to the streets," and chant, and "unite because people united can't never be defeated," is the intent to try to send some sort of message of show of force and power to the ruling elite? It seems to me that that would be the object, unless I'm missing something.
But maybe is not, because I don't feel that's the message is being sent... And when people are interviewed by the media, the reporter asks "why are you here?" and people answer because I owe too much in student loans, or I can't get a job, or things are not fair. In every single news report I've seen everywhere the reporter always ends by describing the movement as leaderless and lacking of substantive and clear demands... They usually say that there are all kinds of different demands, some of them disparate.
People tell me, give it time, the movement will coalesce and it will get more focused. I'm all for that, and will refrain from criticism (as much as I can).
But again, some worries keep coming to mind... Could this eventually fizzle away due to a lack of inspiring leadership, and focused approach? About the public relations aspect? Is the message reaching people in a way that inspires increased participation and support?
And most importantly, are the people we are "rising up" against, the least worried?
I can't help but to think that if a I was a zillionare tycoon, owner of a few private jets, five huge homes, and a yacht, at this point I would not be worried in the least, from what I've seen so far.
But maybe I'm missing something... And hence, this inquiring diary. I really don't mean it to be (too) critical. I just want to get "your" input as to how you see the movement evolving and achieving its goals--And BTW, what are those goals?