I love Progressives. I kind of have to since I am one. But sometimes I watch the things that Progressives do and I feel a bit like I'm watching a herd of very naive children. There are certain realities of human nature that the regressives on the "Right" have accepted and used to their benefit that Progressives continue to either ignore or even worse act deliberately contrarily to. One of the most important of these has become the concepts known as framing and branding. At the most fundamental level this is about the words we use to convey important ideas. If words are chosen poorly it means that people can be turned against an idea without ever really understanding the full nature of it.
I fear that this has been the case with the current movement to attempt to redress the horrible imbalance that has one percent of the United States population in control of a disgustingly disproportionate amount of the resources. The aims are noble. And the attempt to form a movement that goes beyond simply spouting "demands" to those in power in hopes of getting a few scraps is even more so. The problem however is that this movement has chosen, or allowed to be chosen for it a name that I fear guarantees that it is not going to be perceived well by the majority of people. Occupy. The use of the word carries with it connotations of illegitimacy. Occupying forces are enemy forces who have seized things that don't belong to them. The Nazi's "Occupied" France during the second world war. I suspect that the average person hears of Occupy Wall Street, Occupy This, Occupy That, Occupy The Other, and the image formed is that of petulant children trying to take things that are not rightfully theirs. Their minds are stopped. They do not have any further interest in hearing more because the name has already told them all they need to know. Or so they think.
The truth of the matter of course is that the movement is seeking to take power and resources from the one percent to be shared in a more equitable fashion with all the people. We seek not to act as Occupiers but as Liberators. And it is under that name that the movement should have begun its actions. Liberate Wall Street. Liberate Wisconsin. Liberate America.
I don't know if it's possible to re-brand the movement successfully at this point. But I think it's worth trying. Start calling it the Liberation movement and see if maybe that doesn't serve to help some people at least to keep an open enough mind to learn what we are really about. Because a truth that is even more fundamental than the realities of branding and framing is the truth that until we are able to get the majority of "average" Americans involved even at an elementary level of basic support for our aims we are all but doomed to failure.
And I sincerely fear that if this fundamentally peaceful movement to Liberate the wealth, and institutions of the United States fails, what will come next will be something much darker, and much bloodier. And I fear for the kind of country we would become because of it.
Keep The Faith My Brothers And Sisters!