I do not usually share full articles, however this one below from Truthout was so excellent I could not bear to quote just one part. I invite you to read and send add your comments about a place you may see in your community to make sparks, sustain hope and create change.
A Place to Make Sparks
By Babara Andreassen and William Astore – Truthout Op-Ed
We’re all tired of the suffocating parameters of “left versus right,” of “blue America versus red America,” of manufactured conflict – the evil twin of manufactured consent. We’re tired of the haters, the snake oil salesmen, the hypocrites, the phonies. We’re tired of toxic politics, of baseless accusations, of cowardly efforts to wound with code words like “socialism” … all played out in our illiberal media.
We’ve had enough of the greed of dangerous people who are willing to get a little blood on their hands to get what they want, or at least to dance heavily on the heads of the little guys in an attempt to maximize profits. We’ve had enough of the excesses of the well-connected, tapping the power of our government to advance their own self-interests, pulling the strings, crafting shady deals behind closed doors, rewriting our policies and our laws in their favor.
We all know there’s something wrong. We all sense the dark underbelly of our politics. Yet so many of us are misdirected to some extent or another. The naked exploitation of the many by the few is so obvious, yet so many refuse to see it. Our political discourse, as interpreted for us by our media, is nothing less than surreal.
What we need is a forum for education, reconciliation and reform: a detoxification center. What we need is the resurrection of journalistic integrity and credibility that fosters intelligent and civil debate. What we need is a movement that maintains its focus and sustains the discipline necessary to reach attainable goals and that builds morale through the success of achieving those goals. A movement that isn’t tied to a political label or party. A movement made up of a combination of movements. A meeting place. The catalysts’ hub. A place to make sparks.
Let’s rekindle the spark of hope; let’s revive our pursuit of a better America. Not an America of expansionist militarism; not an America of universal soldiers but no universal health care. Not an America of unlimited bailouts for the overpaid but draconian firings of the underpaid. We’ve had our fill of that America. We’ve had enough of celebrating the game-fixing of the victors while blaming the victims for losing a game they never had a chance of winning.
There’s no room for mockery of the “hopey changey stuff.” The message of hope and change, as yet so imperfectly achieved, was delivered with purpose from one of the most powerful platforms in our political universe, to every corner of our planet. It still resonates. And there’s still time.
Obstructionism and cynicism are so easy; it’s funny how self-styled tough guys get off on striking poses, and saying “no.” Inspiration, imagination and idealism are so much tougher; opening yourself to hope and change requires courage – the courage to say “yes,” to dare to dream.
It’s time for zero tolerance of brayers and naysayers, the betrayers of hope and its promise. It’s time to stop trimming our sails to safeguard a status quo that favors the already powerful over the powerless.
It’s time to come together to spark some new ideas – it’s time to rekindle our courtship of a better, freer, more caring America.