In the background for most of yesterday, I watched theotherr99 on ustream. It was pretty interesting watching people marching around NYC too occupy and protest and whatever else people feel like doing or saying nowadays.
Sometimes, I get the feeling many of the protesters are just in love with protesting. Listening to the speeches, seeing their hand waving, hearing “the people’s microphone”, and so on. I’m glad people are standing up for what they think, but the VIBE I get is they’re happier to be involved in a protest than they really care to get anything done. They enjoy their processess, and how they are different.
One speaker said how this was a “war on education”. What? I thought the complaint was they were told to educations, they did, and now they can’t get jobs that they wanted. Isn’t THE SYSTEM encouraging people to get educated, and the issue is the rising cost and elevated debt students come out with? It has nothing to do with a war on education. I bet the 1% is just trying to occupy your wallet.
Also, everything gets “occupied” now. Stop that, please. Think about what you mean; don’t just pick up words.
I’m VERY pleased that people are taking to the streets. I think that’s great. Historically speaking, the kind of change they are looking to implement only happens when things start to get violent. Why would anyone listen to these people? Government can ignore them, the media minimizes them, and even the average strained American thinks they’re a bit bonkers. We all agree that the political/industrial complex is an issue. These people are standing and speaking against it. It’s just that their thoughts don’t match up to most American’s thoughts. They’re not the 99% of America, but 99% of them probably represent America’s young adults, who were trained to think in a certain way. Their training was based on a lie, and now they’re pissed.
I do think it would be great if non-occupiers looked on the protesters with compassion. There’s a much larger narrative than can simply be solved with “get a job, lazy kids!”. They have serious loan problems (not that I’m saying part of the blame is not their own!), slim prospects for living the life they were “promised”, and things are not fair.
I was brought up being taught something along the lines of, “Work hard, apply yourself, excel, because it’s the right thing to do. You’ll probably get screwed over in life anyway.” When I was some some number of years old, less than 10, my parents “hired” me to weed the front shrubberies, or rocks, or who knows what. I knew I was going to get paid, and I was excited. So I spent all day working, and my dad came out, looked around, and said “Good job!”. He reached into his pocket, pulled out whatever change he had there. He used that as an opportunity to tell me never to accept a job unless I knew what the payment terms were. Pretty often in life, we don’t know enough about what we are doing to be realistic about the expectations, so we’ll get screwed over again and again. It’s a reality, but most kids don’t know that, and most of the protesters are still kids who are getting smashed with the realities of life. It’s definitely harder for them to succeed than it was for their parents, but “fair” isn’t ever going to be on the map.
However, I don’t think things are yet bad enough to force change. I think they’ll get there. It’ll be interesting to watch. Sometimes I wish I was old, so I could have more experience seeing and understand the broad strokes of history.