What do we do?
Ferguson and Baltimore are the most visible signs of the underlying issues of widespread injustice in America. Money has purchased our political system, the media, and continues to fund the military at unconscionable levels, block all attempts to try to address the environmental crisis that threatens our very survival, while insuring those with money don’t contribute much in taxes. We are in a fundamental struggle of wealth and corporations against the rest of us.
We are moving closer to a totalitarian society. When I thought we might next see concentration camps, I realized we already have them in for-profit prisons. Slogans and anti-intellectualism are used to inflame the ill-informed to support the status quo, i.e. the wealthy. Irrelevant social hot button issues work time and again to distract those who should know better from addressing the real problems we are facing. Insult is added to injury when those in power implore those they abuse to use “nonviolence”.
True nonviolence is the only moral and effective choice we have to restore justice. But nonviolence is NOT the passivity those in power want to see. Are we committed to a nonviolent response, and what would that be? Choosing not to act is an act.
Quakers since the beginning of the movement have instructed us to look into our own lives for the seeds of war (and oppression). The focus must be on correcting the underlying conditions of injustice, not on those who are reacting to being oppressed so badly for so long.
We need to speak out. We need to invite our neighbors to the meetinghouse to discuss these issues, and how we are part of the problem, and how we can be part of the solution.