Before I start this video, it’s been suggested that Occupy might be floundering, or that there might be some that will not listen to these messages because a viewer might be against Occupy or not support it. I am not here to debate the merits of those comments. Instead, I will leave that to your determination and remind you that Occupy is just the most recent movement, and that is why I reference it in my videos. The reality here is simple, this information could apply to ANY movement. I just reference Occupy because I do support them, and as a frame for the context of the conversation. With that said, onto the meat of the video.
Hello, I am James Sanders, and I’m a new activist. Yes, I realize that sounds like an introduction from one of the 12 step programs, but I feel it applies to what I’m presently thinking as what we’re about to discuss has to do with the tools they use that keep us infighting and segregated into small enough groups for them to manage and control us. As such, the failed realization by the masses concerning this simple fact continues fueling our maladies as a people and a nation. With all the petitions available out there, many of which we’ve all signed, do you not question with such abundant signatures why those petitions fail pushing that change we all need? I know I have. I know I’ve signed far more than I can count yet most of what I’ve signed has resulted in no change as suggested by the petitions signed.
In reality, what this really boils down to is inequality, or equality, depending on how you choose viewing it, and I thank Curtis Occupy Globally Bard for drawing that distinction and realization as people were privy to my research before writing this and producing the video. At this point, I’d also like to briefly thank those who’ve followed me on FaceBook and participate in my thought dumps as I prepare material for your consideration. I value their contributions, questions, and thoughts that help me cover missing bases to provoke your thoughts on the real issues facing us as a nation, and the crucial help they provide ensuring an adequate and full picture for your own critical thought processes.
The lacking presence of minority groups in the movement is a key issue and problem. From what I’ve seen during my own involvement with Occupy, the participation from most minority groups seems minimal, and as such, this does not help ensure their representation within the movement. The minority groups have faced what the majority now face as a nation, but they faced it for centuries. It is no wonder they look at the present state of situation and question how things will permanently change for them when they’ve been battling for years without help in their quest for equality. So what happens should they band together with the majority? Maybe given they’ve been fighting this war, by themselves, maybe it is the majority that should band together with them? Equality issues should matter to all of us, not just minority or majority, and through this we all share a commonality, our plights of inequality struggling to obtain our equality. Occupy wants minorities involved and engaged but it’s not going to happen until a day and time that we can ensure such groups that their plight matters, that we recognize they’ve been fighting these atrocities for years while many of us sat back and watched, unwilling to help them in their fight for equality. For Occupy, or any of us as individuals to keep coming off like this oppression and inequality is a new thing, it’s a slap in the face to the downtrodden who’ve been battling it for decades.
As I suggested above, I am a new activist, and as such, I’ve only been active since roughly October of 2011. Do not let that fool you because although I’m new to activism, like many of you, I’m not new to the idea that there is something inherently wrong with our nation. To get to know me a bit, I offer you the other two videos before this, Occupy Unity and Occupy Awakening the Masses. You can find those here in my YouTube video channel. This video should help to push you past the isms and divides, to facilitate the unity I suggested in the first video.
During my awakening, I’ve asked myself why, with so many atrocities committed to my fellow man, have sufficient numbers not risen up against said atrocities and the tyranny we’re recently facing as a nation? With the recent gutting of our economy, the flat out assault of the very women we all love, our mothers, our sisters, our aunts, our significant others, our beloved female friends, surely with that assault and the other atrocities to hungry children and our hungry fellow man, there should be riots in the streets, yet there are no riots. Surely, there should at least be thousands, nay millions in the streets protesting or camping on our elected officials doorsteps, yet still such public outcry is not forthcoming. Why is that?
In this, I’m forced to look at my activism experience and some conclusions I’ve drawn relating to the vast numbers of disenfranchised people in our nation. Experience shows me that activists, and the disenfranchised, are very passionate people. Not only have I worked with, and watched, these people on FaceBook, but I’ve also seen them up close and personal at events like The Woman’s March in DC, The NATO protest in Chicago, The EPA March in DC, and even some Occupy Groups like Occupy Tampa in Florida. I’ve found that passionate people are stalwart in their beliefs and ideologies, some even to a fault that creates tunnel vision, and a potential Achilles heel for any successful movement.
Far too often I’ve seen that conviction of solution stifles cooperation relating to other potential solutions. Most, convinced of the viability of their own solutions, are unable to open to the possibilities of other potential viable solutions not their own. This situation is one of the key divisions I’ve witnessed as it relates to the Occupy Movement. Many fail remembering that as each problem has many facets so too does each problem have a potential multitude of solutions and various prongs of attack.
Far too many people seem to want to haggle over the “proper” solution as opposed to exploring all potential solutions, quick to discard any solution in rival to their chosen solution. This to me is ridiculous. Why does it happen? Surely with the number of activists and disenfranchised people amongst us, there must be plenty of bodies to take up the mantle of all potential solutions exploring them to their fullest potential and opportunity. So why is it that so many seem to prefer haggling over the method instead of action on all viable methods? How can so many passionate people be so divided? The simple answer is conditioning. The not so simple answer is isms and groups.
Throughout our lives, starting with our childhood and culture, we’re conditioned and indoctrinated into a way of thought complete with filters and views. Life experience adds another layer of complexity to the whole including those of interpersonal relationships, groups we affiliate with, and work experience as well. It’s part of human growth that we all experience and our own individualisms add to the mix through our own beliefs and ideologies. Nationalism, patriotism, classism, racism, and many other isms, play a role and factor in the final makings of the individual, and that making changes over time with additional experiences. I surely am not the same person today that I was in my childhood nor am I the same person I was even a year ago. We all adopt various ideologies, in part or in whole, when we affiliate with a given group. These adoptions forever change the way we think, process, and filter thoughts. Where do these groups and isms come from?
Before we discuss where they come from, first allow me to set them in the frame of context as tools. Like any other tools, their use, whether that of their intended purpose or misuse, like a gun used for protection as opposed to a destructive killing spree, dictates the value to society. One could suggest that groups and isms are labels to help people find orders and rationalities, for use in communication frames to provide definitions and context for conversation. Others might suggest they are broad stereotype tools for segregation that keep us divided, and that is the context I use for this discussion. One might suggest they come from educated learned people meant for the utmost of good intended purposes, perverted like the gun as a weapon against the innocent. Others might suggest they come from more nefariously reasoned intents of the rich elite and the establishment of enforcement. For those that would argue the thought on the intents of the rich elite, at the minimal, I’d offer that the rich elite pervert the definitions and meanings, spinning them to their own agenda and use. I will leave you to your own conclusions.
When I look at the issues we face as races, people and a nation, I constantly see where those with agendas manipulate the dialog and therefore control the debate. Most times, I also see perversions of the suggested facts combined with fear mongering as a means to manipulate views and thoughts on issues. These manipulations most times depend on the message to specific groups and center on isms. By nature, if we look at groups, many of them are diametrically opposed. One only need look at Democrats vs. Republicans, homosexual vs. straight, pro-choice vs. pro-life, Christian vs. Islam, or nerds vs. jocks and we can find proof of the suggested oppositions between them. Using logic, it’s easy to understand how this diametric opposition happens because groups form based on views and ideologies or beliefs, and as such ensures opposition, not unity.
Unfortunately, some of these groups have such hatred between them that facts supported by one group are potentially discarded by others, not upon the merits of the facts, but just because of the opposition between the groups. This is most true of the beliefs in opposition between the opposing groups, but it goes far beyond such beliefs trickling over into unrelated issues concerning other topics outside of group belief dynamics. This makes unifying opposing groups near impossible on potential joint issues that could benefit both groups. Our present situation with Congress is a prime example where the utter hatred between Republicans and Democrats, and the Republican’s hatred of our president, gave us a non-functional Congress.
Using another potential example, we can look at religious groups vs. homosexual groups. When I look at homosexual groups, I realize their intent isn’t just about same sex marriages or relationships, there is a deeper meaning that most people miss. I will also say that no, I’m not homosexual nor do I pretend to fully understand them, but the one underlying deeper meaning they represent, I most assuredly DO understand. Homosexual groups are not just about the rights of same sex marriage and same sex relationships, but also about our rights as a people to love whoever we deem worthy of that love. That right of love, to me, is an individual right, not to be coerced nor dictated by another. It’s not something to be leveraged by another group using fear mongering and hatred to coerce homosexuals, bisexuals, straight, or any other sexism groups to suggested societal norms. On a side note, that is another thing I find quite funny as well, one large group suggesting the societal ramifications of their opposing group when both groups are large and comprise a large part of society to begin with. Why ANY group feels the self-import or right to dictate society belief is unconscionable, when all it’s about is control of society and “accepted norms”. Why can’t society be about the right of it’s entirety instead of the agenda of groups? I can sum it up in two words, inequality, or equality, depending on your view, and fear.
Using our religious example and the situation with homosexual groups, I see homosexual groups promoting the right to love whoever we deem fit, and the religious groups fear mongering to control a very personal and individual right based upon religious views of the suggested teachings of god. In essence, to me, the church substituted genocide during the crusades with a different kind of “politically correct” war. In history, it was fear that the heathens would destroy the way of life for god fearing Christians. Today, it’s fear mongering that homosexuals will destroy the way of life for god fearing Christians. Same theme. Why would they pervert a simple personal right spun into fear that love will destroy another’s way of life? How can someone being homosexual destroy another’s way of life if that other chooses not to be homosexual? To hear the church spin things, they suggest that homosexuals promote homosexuality as the overall societal goal, suggesting that one day, if homosexuals have their way, we’ll all have same sex relationships. I have NEVER heard ANY homosexual suggest they want the entire civilization, let alone the entire country, to convert to homosexuality, however, we all know that churches would support such wide spread conversion to Christianity. All homosexuals want is the right to love who they choose, and to have the same benefits the rest of us have when we love someone, like the ability to marry, insurance coverage, tax breaks, etc. How can a loving god hate anyone? How many times has the church spun different things suggesting that yes, indeed, an all loving god will hate you for this or that reason? “You’re going to burn in hell if you don’t” insert chosen action here. That is fear mongering. Given these views and hatred, it becomes obvious why these two groups find many obstacles to unity on common causes. Does hunger and poverty not affect both groups? Does political corruption not affect both groups’ members? Does failing education, crumbling infrastructure within our roadway systems, and the recent actions of big banks not affect both groups’ members? Does genetically modified foods and pollution at the hands of big business not affect both groups’ members?
This is not a situation limited only to the examples used, it happens in ALL groups. If that wasn’t enough, for these groups to target one another and tare one another apart, mainstream media, politicians, and big money are more than willing to stir the pot, between groups, as well as the means to push their own hidden agendas and shape public opinion. For proof of this suggestion, all one need do is watch forming public opinion on any given topic, then watch mainstream media stir the pot with group views to get us fighting once again between one another instead of advancing our society as a whole.
One recurrent factor is evident and comes to mind when President Obama came out in support of LGBT. What happened then? Mainstream media stirred the pot with religious views to discredit the president to move public opinion towards bashing him for the support. This is a recurrent theme that we all fall for, once again lead by the application of isms and group oppositions. In the end, rather than public opinion focused on equality for a group that only wants the same benefits the rest enjoy, it became about the un-American president supporting them, and how they’re all going to rot in hell for homosexuality while fear mongering suggested civilization as we know it will be forever changed because of supporting the right for an individual to love whomever they deem fit. How ridiculous is that? This is how they divide us and drive deeper the wedges to distract us to keep the present status quo intact.
Take any given opinion or a shift in public thought and you’ll see that they use a variety of methods to stir us up and get us fighting one another instead of unifying to create change. Division is an enemy to equality. Division keeps supporter groups smaller. Focus on our difference is what divides us all. Focusing on our commonalities unites us and brings us together in larger numbers. Controlling the status quo requires keeping people divided else they would have sufficient numbers to force change. When numbers grow and reach a saturation point, an idea moves from fringe to mainstream. If mainstream acceptance is against your agenda, you’re not going to want people uniting, you’ll want them divided into the smallest groups possible. This allows for control and manipulation because when they are divided, they’re not going to unite concerning common interests. If you keep them in anger and fear mode, they will not unite when you stir the pot to keep them fighting one another.
When I look at this recurrent pattern and what they pull to keep us divided, I have identified 11 key topics they use repeatedly. Those 11 key topics have group supporters as well. I’ll call them the top 11 wedges they use to control us and keep us divided.
- Stereotyped Social Groups
- Physical Appearance
Take any given issue and one of the above 11 groups has a passion and belief about it. When we further look at diametrical opposition, corporate controlled media sensationalize the issue to ensure it reaches the groups involved. Then political leaders step in and fuel the arguments with their views, pundits jump in with their views, group leaders step in with their views, and then, instead of a unification of the masses that potentially helps advance us as a society, the wedge and divide is driven home through our conditioned reactions depending on group affiliations. The differences are emphasized, the commonalities are lost in the arguments, fear mongering suggests a threat to a group’s way of life or beliefs, and they win their manipulation and distraction games allowing them to keep their status quo that harms all of us. Given any issue, the above 11 groups ensures division enough to distract us from solutions to the real issues of inequality. The day we strive for equality for all, and accomplish it, is the day we eradicate fear of inequality, poverty, hunger, sickness, abuse, and a great many other atrocities we face as humans, and we’re all humans. When will we stop devolving to hurt, spoiled children because we feel threatened? When will we stop feeding into the negative emotions they trigger? When will we stop letting them have their status quo because of the divides they orchestrate and promote?
The solution is simple, and part of that is an understanding of the processes and how the politicians, elite, and media leverage human behavior getting us to do their dirty work for them. The other part of the solution is love, and I’m not talking about the stereotyped hippie love of the 70’s protests either. I’m talking about their real meaning of the love they suggested, which most people miss the deeper meanings of as well. Love is like a container that holds many attributes and it’s not just about sexual intimacy with others or sexually intimate relationships, although many boil love down to sexual intimacy, once again missing the many other intimacies associated with it. When I say love, I’m not talking about what you might think I’m talking about.
Isn’t love about compassion? Isn’t it about understanding? Isn’t it about acceptance? Isn’t it about empathy? Isn’t it about compromising for win win situations? Isn’t it about respect or honoring another? Isn’t it about peace and harmony, live and let live? Isn’t it about unity instead of division? Isn’t it about caring for another human being, minimally because they are a human being and the commonalities that all human beings should have or things they enjoy? Isn’t it about equality? Don’t religious teachings tell us to love our neighbors?
I’ll offer another example of the way they divide us. Look recently at the latest tragedy in Colorado. We have media sensationalizing the loss while groups jockey for positions to leverage it to their agendas. We have groups suggesting gun control to prevent it, but that’s only scratching the surface when we think about it. We also have politicians suggesting their hands are tied because of “political suicide” at the hands of the NRA. What is the commonality in this? Well, a couple things when I think about it. Firstly, even if we remove the ability to obtain assault rifles and such, we’re still not dealing with the root issues that motivated this man to do what he did. What happened will still repeat in future, it will just happen through different means, and I’d suggest that bombings are more deadly and potentially take more lives than someone with an assault rifle. The only way to fix this is not through more gun laws, it’s through treatment of such individuals or fixing other things in society that cause people like him to snap. Secondly, if congress recognizes the danger with NRA and the money behind them, then why aren’t they passing legislation to remove this danger, a danger that also silences our voices as well? In both circumstances, they distract us with the surface issues rather than the roots that could really fix the situations.
In the end, we have one of two choices. We can keep focusing on our differences, allowing politicians, the elite, and mainstream media to stir the pot with our differences, or we can focus on our commonalities. All people want to be equal. They want to be understood. They want to be respected and have a shot at a life just as good as the next person. They want the same rights as anyone else and that includes the right to be heard and not marginalized or subjugated like some second class citizen. The day we stand together for equality, finding our commonality, is the day that we abolish most of the atrocities we face as a nation. The choice is yours. What will you do?