Tuesday, March 22, 2011

A system that leaves us helpless

Climate activist Tim DeChristopher talks about his guilty verdict:
"The big question for us at this point is how we as citizens are going to respond to [what those in power do to maintain the power, order, and security], what we as citizens are going to be willing to do to our fellow human beings in the name of just following the law. When the government tells us that it's not our job to question whether that law is right or wrong, as the judge did in this case to the jury, I think we need to be prepared for that moment, and make a more conscious decision of what we want our role to really be.... You could see it in [the jurors'] minds when they made that switch of accepting the fact that they weren't allowed to use their own conscience, and they had to make a certain choice, even if they thought it was immoral, and that's a really dehumanizing thing." [emphasis mine]

Under a Cloud in California, Charles Shaw:
"When the system we are told we must put our faith in and depend on leaves us helpless, and then mocks us for trying to help ourselves, it might be time to consider that perhaps its time to break from that system.... In an age of institutional failure, we--each other--are the solution to the problems we face, which are only, invariably, going to get worse, until we have finally shaken off the plague of the old world order and can proceed again with the business of living, this time, in the manner of our choosing."

1 comment:

  1. All of this cuts pretty closely to the heart of the matter, the existential predicament we find ourselves in, and for the foreseeable future. And related to the question of our conscience vs. the Law: fear.

    How much pain, how much will we lose if we stand against unsanity? We've seen how the US treats Gitmo detainees: no trial, no charges, no lawyers. The US imprisons at one of the highest per-capita rates in the world. Home of the free!

    How brutal, how desperate can the Ruling Class get in order to cling to what they have? Each of us has to decide how much to risk.

    If we go down as a species, I think the main reason will be that we never learned how to modulate the fear response vis a vis perceived threats.