As we move into the age of Resistance we are all going to have to become more creative in how we relate to Bush&Co. policies and personnel. So, here's the beginning of a list; we welcome your input. Send us your suggestions, we'll sift through them, and add the best ones to this
Let's start with the obvious ones:
1. Get out in the streets and protest loudly.
2. Contact your friends and relatives outside the U.S. to put pressure on their governments to put roadblocks in the way of current and future plans for American imperial rule around the globe.
3. Contact your elected officials and don't let them off the hook when they give you a weaseling non-answer for why they don't stand up to what's happening domestically and internationally in our names, with our money.
4. Write letters to the editor of your local newspaper, letting folks know that there are other opinions out there other than the pro-Bush&Co. ones.
5. Use the internet: Write articles, contact your email list and urge action, read lots from both right, left and center websites. Get more educated and pass around what you learn to others.
6. Consider withholding your federal telephone tax as long as these wars go on.
7. Consider withholding a portion of your federal income tax for the same reason.
8. Consider intelligent civil disobedience on a creative scale. (Blocking commuters from getting to and from work, and ambulances and fire engines from helping in emergencies, might not always be the most productive tactic. Remember: Be creative.)
9. Form neighborhood groups, community groups, religious groups to discuss current events, and to take action when appropriate.
10. Keep a peace-light burning in your front window each night, to indicate your solidarity with those in opposition to Bush&Co.'s wars.
11. Get folks registered to vote.
12. Consider running for office yourself, maybe on the most local levels: school boards, water boards, etc., or volunteer to serve on human rights panels.
13. Form a Bill of Rights Defense Committee in your locality, to get municipal legislation passed saying that your town will not cooperate with the federal authorities when it comes to enforcing unconstitutional provisions of the so-called USA Patriot Act.
14. Organize, organize, organize; agitate, agitate, agitate. Hold their feet to the fire and don't relent.
15. Get you and your friends involved in a political party. Agitate from within.
16. Try to reach members of the military in tell them you support them but want to get them home alive, and want to support their decisions not to carry out actions that could result in war-crimes prosecutions.
Anyway, you get the idea. So get your thinking caps on, and send us your traditional or more avant-garde ideas for how protest can be creatively imagined.
Crisis Papers reader JazzMaster 1111 submits these ideas for Creative Resistance:
*Domestic and International boycotts that selectively target corporate brands, products, service
*Labor Agitation, Sympathetic Strikes in defiance of Taft-Hartley, "Shut it down"
*More international labor coalitions to countervail international capital
*Enlist more and more of the scientific community against America's anti-environmental jihad, effectively isolating, unveiling and reversing the prostitute-scientists and academics who get carte blanche right now.
International coalitions will be crucial in all these theatres. International participation is a necessary but insufficient condition for substantive change. There must be sufficient critical mass from USA dissidents in Academia: Sciences and Humanities, Local governments, Middle class "limousine" liberals, environmental activists and last but certainly not least progressive Labor organizations and at least some non-unionized working people (even 10% of this group would be formidable).
You are looking at a radicalized large minority -- with international support and links that never occurred before -- which can exceed the force that took over the Democratic National Convention in 1972 and brought McGovern the nomination. Even though he lost, the Progressive fallout from that era, including the mitigation of the Police State, the introduction of FOIA (Freedom of Information Act), the gains in race relations, the ceasefire in 1973 all were the culmination of a major progressive wave that had been germinating for years and that is responsible for some of the freedoms we have today.
Unfortunately, the Right Wing understood this and went to work very diligently in the late-'70s while the Jimmy Carter and Ted Kennedy centrists and Limousine Liberals were dumbfounded. Without militantly sustained mass public pressure, i.e. in the vacuum of non-participation, Reagan and his cronies not only seized power but effectively took over any opposition as well. A lesson dissenting Americans had better learn -- not only can they not rest, without massive proactive energy now, their country will slip further into darkness and the American experiment with democracy will end.