Friday, November 4, 2011

Know your enemy

For years, we've had some mysterious and distant enemy to be afraid of. Someone out there who wanted to do harm to our way of life and only some flag-draped politician could save us. First it was Communist Russia, then it was Al-Qaeda, now it is our neighbors.

We've been divided, for the sake of politics, against each other. Republicans vs. Democrats. Fox News vs. MSNBC. Intellectuals vs. rednecks. Blacks vs. Whites. Gay vs. Straight. Christians vs. Atheists. Catholics vs. Protestants. Jews vs. Muslims. Hippies vs. skinheads. Crips vs. Bloods. East Coast vs. West Coast. Yankees vs. Southerners, etc. Every made up enemy is supposed to want to do harm and force us to live under their ideals.

The fact is, we're mostly all human beings who want to live our lives and raise our children right. The problem has been that over and over and over again, we've had it pounded into our heads on a nightly basis that there is so much to be afraid of. Stop being afraid. Yes, there are people out there who would wish harm upon us out of some mental psychosis but for the most part, we're all just trying to get through our lives the best we can.

Now that we are almost 2 months into "Occupy Wall Street", the people who have been setting us against each other for so long have been putting the spin machine into overdrive to try to stop something that could finally break us out of this mess. They've tried to paint supporters and protesters as "dirty hippies" and conveniently leave out the elderly who are front lines as well. They ignore or vilify the veterans who have come home and are now unemployed because a private contractor making triple their salary has taken their place in Iraq or Afghanistan. They love to preach patriotism, until it comes time to actually fund veteran's benefits, PTSD therapy and job placement.

We have politicians from both parties who have made very comfortable careers for themselves pretending to be representing us, all while taking contributions from the very people who are dividing us against each other. Even if we catch on to their game and vote them out, they are usually assured jobs working as a lobbyist to perpetuate the cycle with their replacement.

This has to end, someway, somehow. We can institute term limits, reform campaign finance laws, bar members of Congress from ever working as lobbyists and take money out of politics but that won't be enough. Only until we wake up, realize that our real enemy is the culture of fear and stop voting for the politicians who reinforce that, will we ever be truly free.

This is why we are Occupying Wall Street.