Saturday, October 29, 2011

Current Events.

Kind of awesome.

Last night Nathan & I hung out with two of our college buddies. We just sat around and talked, eating homemade bread. We ended up on the topic of Occupy Wall Street. We discussed its complexities and strengths, and had a wonderfully engaging conversation. Then this morning I went to a social justice committee meeting, where I typically just quietly listen to the powerful things others have to say, and the entire meeting was devoted to the Occupy Nashville movement. My biggest apprehension about the movement is its lack of color. The Black community has been dealing with a LOT of these struggles, largely unnoticed, for decades. Not until middle-class white majority felt the sting of corporate greed did it ever gain attention as being problematic. Nonetheless, the Occupy movement has shown that the people of our nation still have a moral compass & the ability to stand up against an unjust system. Even if not everyone can quite articulate what the movement is "supposed" to accomplish, they are together in solidarity to acknowledge that something is wrong in our system. I see it every day with the people I serve. They bear the brunt of corporate greed, but they likely won't be at Occupy Nashville because they have more pressing needs- food, health, medicine.

Nathan & I have a peer that recently was arrested during the Occupy Nashville protests. She is an admirable, educated, compassionate, strong Black woman, and I am proud of what she is doing. I agree with what she stands for, and I think her message is a profoundly powerful one. She also organized a march for Troy Davis a few weeks ago. Basically, she's what I want to be when I grow up (but she's my age, whatever).

Another of Nathan's Vandy Div classmates getting arrested.

I know there are flaws in the Occupy movement. But I think the more important thing is that there is finally movement. I hope I can find the time & emotional energy to be actively involved in the movement. Right now though, I've got to do some self-care & prioritization.... I'm trying to focus on the new job, the new marriage, that whole thing. I think Nathan & I are a part of the movement, but in a service model rather than an action model. Nathan's helping get healthy food to folks in food deserts & revolutionize the way we think about food & health. I'm working with the folks most adversely affected by our current social system to get them the things they need day-to-day to succeed against the odds, including empowerment and choices. I'm not patting us on the back or anything; rather, I'm just reflecting on the various roles within the broader social justice movement that is happening across the nation.

I really loved this article & video about the Freedom Riders' support of & reflection upon the Occupy Nashville movement. Please read/watch! And my friend Keith & his daughter are in the video at the beginning. hehe. =)

That's all. I know it's a controversial issue, and I know a lot of people have different opinions. I certainly don't think I know all of the complexities of the issue or anything. I hope that, if nothing else, the Occupy movement generates conversation among the American people & spurs us toward justice & equality.

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