As citizens of the United States (and Earth) we face two pressing and major issues:
1) Global Warming/Climate Change
2) Loss of democracy/erosion of Bill of Rights
Upcoming actions around the US where you can stand up and be counted on these issues:
• ACTION: Aug 3rd Summer Heat in Richmond CA addressing Global Warming & the fossil fuel industry in its various forms: XL pipeline, fracking etc.
• ACTION: Aug 4th RESTORE THE FOURTH (as in 4th amendment) “1984” in various cities around the country.
These two major issues and most all the other issues stem from only one thing: the corrupting influence of Big Money (usually corporate) on legislators and government to the point where we have become a nation by and for Profit at the expense of people, nation and life itself. And although it seems as though it has always been thus (people stepping on people for personal gain and power) it is now at a point where our very future as a species is in the balance.
For the past few years, since retirement, I have felt driven to do all I can while I still can; not knowing just how many good years might remain. Plus when one is retired you have time to pay attention and learn what is happening. And it seems that the more I learn the more I am compelled to speak up and act: to stand up for democracy, justice and a future on earth. (Having grandchildren makes that last aspect sharper than it might otherwise be)
Today I had a letter to the editor published in our local newspaper that touched on these two major topics…and I would like to share it with you:
Kudos to the Marin IJ for its July 23 editorial on our growing surveillance state and the recent demonstration against it at a Democratic Party fundraiser in Belvedere.
Whereas many recognize that our democracy is being increasingly endangered and fractured — and many are thanking Edward Snowden for the whistleblowing that brought surveillance abuses to our attention — sadly some like Rep. Nancy Pelosi, Sen. Dianne Feinstein and President Barack Obama (all persons I supported) are blaming the messenger rather than addressing the problem.
For those who would say it is all about security; it isn't, at least not the security of "We the People" or our democracy and certainly not the security of our jobs, our homes, or our health care.
I think the security they mean is the security of the existing corporate power structures and their own share of the profit and power at our expense. If it were truly about security they would be fighting the only real enemy we have: global warming and climate change. But that is not happening.
I expect Feinstein to always stand with the "Military Industrial Complex" and existing power/money structures, but I wondered: Where are Sen. Barbara Boxer's and Rep. Jared Huffman's voices? Quite frankly, I expected Huffman and Boxer to be in the vanguard on this topic, protecting our democracy. So, it was good to learn of Huffman's July 24 vote on the amendment to curtail NSA and to read his press statement on the issue.
And yet, I still wish that one of them had spoken up for the brave whistleblower who pulled back that curtain.