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We Must Fight (BOYCOTT) To Insure The Next 245 Years

Unrepresentative Policy of the Week:Our Democracy is Under Threat

July 4th celebrates the first founding of this nation 245 years ago. The second founding of the nation was of course in 1865, the ending of the civil war and the signing of the 13th, 14th and 15th amendments, refounding the government and its relationship to the people. With a restatement once again, of equality, under the law. Some might include the Civil Rights movement as an attempted third founding of America. Each time, these foundings have been built on the great principle enumerated in the Declaration of Independence, “all men are created equal.”

Yet as Frederick Douglas so eloquently pointed out in his July 5th 1852 speech, “What to the Slave in the 4th of July?”this proposition, truly radical and admirable though it may be, has never been lived up to by our nation. Worse still, much of our history recounts those in power attempting to thwart that great promise, of equality for all.

Each time we take a step forward, towards freedom, we find ourselves stumbling over the unresolved wounds of the past. Our original declaration excluded all but land-owning white men from voting and full citizenship. In 1865 this was expanded (in theory at least) to all men, regardless of race or status, and in the early 20th century finally to women as well.

Even as we struggle forward, expanding the circle of liberty, there is a relentless backlash from reactionary forces who would prefer things as they are, with the power only in their hands. The rolling back of Reconstruction, and introduction of Jim Crow laws in the late 19th century, the killing of civil rights leaders and the Reagan revolution in the late 20thcentury, are clear examples of this reactionary, anti-democratic strain in American society.

Now we find ourselves once again with our Democracy in peril. In times, not entirely unlike that in which Frederick Douglas spoke: where the contradictions between our stated values as a nation and the reality of daily life are so distant it cannot be ignored. In the last year and a half, our government totally failed to address the largest health crisis in modern history, Covid-19, Republicans attempted an insurrection after losing the last election, and SCOTUS has just issued a series of devastating rulings gutting voting rights, labor rights, and regulatory oversight of corporations.

Our Democracy is under threat, and the American people know it:

Alive and Well: 29%

Under Threat: 67%

Yet despite the miraculous mandate handed to the Democrats by the people in the 2020 elections, we seem to find ourselves still at an impasse, unable to rise to the occasion, and pass policy, from voting rights, to infrastructure, to healthcare and climate, that the American people not only want, but Democrats seem to acknowledge is critical to the survival of our Democracy, and their own power!

This is an opportunity to hear the cries of the people, repair the damage left by so many years of institutional neglect, and ruthless private pillaging, and begin to confront the myriad of challenges ahead of us. Yet Democrats, cannot even pass a voting rights bill, while Republicans, from state legislatures to the courts work to rig elections and disenfranchise voters in broad daylight.

So it is an odd time to be celebrating the birth of our nation, but perhaps we are in one of those periods of rebirth, when through our actions we might live up to our revolutionary and radical past that first brought this country into being. This an opportunity to re-engage with our government, but as our ability to hold corporations accountable through the justice system slips away, and our politicians become ever more beholden to them, it will take organizing power outside of the ballot box to reclaim our Democracy. Corporate power cares nothing for Democracy, only profit, so we much speaking a language they understand.

So join us each Tuesday as we build an economic cudgel to the fight for democracy and representative government. Together, we are larger than the donor class, and we can outlast them, until we get a government that represents all of us, not just a few, and our democracy is no longer under threat.

Don’t Shop on Tuesdays!

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