I applaud any non-violent protest, even when I am on the other side of the issue, and especially in places and situations where there is no other recourse (BTW, implied or psychological violence is still violence, even if you don't actually shoot anybody).
It is all fascinating to watch. Especially where the usual attempts to demonize and/or marginalize the protesters seems to have stopped working.
But in this country, the big problem is voter apathy and disengagement. Voting seems to have become an optional, unimportant and seemingly ineffective right/responsibility. WHY? If you don't like what your elected leaders are doing, why did you let them get elected?
The Democratic walkout in Wisconsin is an effective, creative, and important tool for getting this story in front of the public, and I applaud them for it. However, it is NOT a way to legislate or govern.
I think the Governor of Wisconsin is gifting his state with a hostile, and resentful public workforce that will have an adversarial, bunker mentality against the very public, and the agencies they are there to serve. Which will make them less effective in their jobs, and reinforce the public attitude against them. It is a tragic downward spiral, and creates an environment that may take years if not generations to change, but that is apparently what the voters want in Wisconsin.
But, thinking forward, I do not see that this action is an effective long term strategy and they have gotten their message heard. Now what?
It will be interesting to see if voter turnout is up in the next Wisconsin election and which direction it goes. But in the same way that I do not respect the national Republicans refusal to bow to the will of the voters in 2008, I will not respect the Democrats, nationally or in Wisconsin, for not bowing to the will of the voters in 2010. I think the results will be tragic and potentially devistating, but maybe that's what we need to wake us up. Like it or not we ARE a stable democracy and we are in charge of our own political destiny, either through our action, or our inaction.
posted 2 years, 2 months ago
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