World Bloggers Call
for Action & Change
It may sound like an overkill to ask people to raise their voices above the loud cacophony of ‘me first’ drowning the cries for help from a growing contingent of disenfranchised, dispossessed, and unaccounted for, sleeping on our streets. In fact, it almost sounds like a cruel joke.
However, as it’s Blog Action Day, and millions of bloggers do it so exactly to give voice to that rising crowd, we’ve found 10 reasons why, indeed, there are valid and rightful reasons for anyone to raise their voices today in America, circa second decade of the millennium.
BUT, before we go any further, consider this: after hastily assembling this post, we awoke to the sad realization that arguably the most pressing issue of our time was badly overlooked: climate change. So let’s add it as a sort of hors concours.
* Make climate change a national theme. Add it as part of a core curriculum from the first grade on, and promote its discussion and search for solutions, with public grants and incentives to match it. Get this ball rolling now, before there is no snowballs to speak off, ever.
And now, please, proceed and do raise your voice today and ever to:
1. Rid democracy of big money. The electoral process is neither for sale nor is an investment towards some self-benefitting angle of the economy. Overturn the Citizens United rule now.
2. Equal pay for equal jobs. All workers deserve being paid according to their effort, not their gender. The economy must stop treating women and minorities as second class citizens.
3. Bring the troops home. Enough has already been asked from American soldiers; it’s time to stand by what they can do to build peace at home. We need their courage, wounds and all.
4. Prosecute white collar criminals with the same zeal as common thieves and law breakers. We need to hold Wall Street firms accountable for what they’ve done in 2008 before the decade is out.
5. Reform the system and legalize the undocumented, so they too can enjoy the fruit of their hard labor. Unified families and embrace the great immigration tradition that built this country.
6. Free and open higher education. Forgive student debt and force colleges and universities to place education above profit.
Assure STEM disciplines and the arts are at the core of learning.
7. Raise minimum wage to $15 and guarantee affordable and 1st-class health care to all Americans. Let Medicare choose providers, and curb grow of insurance companies. Patients are not customers.
8. Tax corporations based on their profitability, and close loopholes allowing them to hide profits. No tax breaks to outsourcers and no buybacks for shareholders of companies that left American soil.
9. Prison and gun reform, and stricter police supervision. No jail for profit or war weaponry for urban law enforcement or civilians. No gun without provenance. Immediate release for all drug offenders.
10. Institute a day for mourning for all American crimes committed on foreign soil; and another for acknowledgement of those martyred defending freedom of speech and of press.
There must be surely a lot more anyone could demand. But it’s no longer enough to simply defend the U.S. Constitution, as such a blank support has given rise to many forms of prejudice and intolerance. One could even argue that even such a fundamental aspect of American democracy could use some periodic oversight.
So, if you must, go out and join a worthy cause. Fight for fair housing laws. Volunteer to feed the homeless. Give your time to help your community reach more equalitarian goals. Support efforts to teach the English language to immigrants and join literacy programs for poor Americans.
There may be a better time to try all of that. Or rather, our timing not being in synch with enough people may render all efforts moot. Forget it. This is your time as long as you’re alive. This is already your country, no need to ‘take it back’ from anyone. Whoever owns it now it was given away by you before.
Bloggers all over will be adding their voices. Why not you? Anything you do today will have extra meaning and will be historical, in synch, with a quorum of millions and an unstoppable momentum. Get it on with the program, or do your own thing. Others, and great things, may follow.