- . I want the people we elect to office to look more like real Americans. This means they have average American salaries (the real average, not the congressional average which is NINE TIMES that of an American). This of course, means that there must be political reform as to how we run our elections which can cost up to millions of dollars in media buys, marketing and staffing. I want our politicians not just to mirror Americans economically but also racially and by gender as well. I want more parity in our elected officials because I don’t believe I can be represented by a 65 year old millionaire white male.
- I want universal health care for all. How do we do this from a budget standpoint? Here’s a suggestion: invest in holistic health care practitioners that address the underlying problem rather than the symptoms. All healthcare practitioners should prescribe as much preventative medicine as possible. This however, cannot happen if people cannot afford to get regular check-ups. We are the ONLY industrialized nation in the WORLD that does not have universal health care for its people. What does that say about the priorities of one of the richest countries in the world if it can’t even invest in the health of its people?
- I want less spending on war and more investment in green technology, education and small businesses. It becomes a huge problem when the military industrial complex becomes far more powerful than the citizens, something I fear has already happened in our country.
- I want my future children (if I have them – still concerned about the world’s overpopulation issue – largest threat on earth to mother earth) to grow up in a better society where are differences are celebrated rather than similarities rewarded. What I mean by that is for people to stop talking about diversity and to live it; this means more diverse individuals in positions of power as authors, politicians, business leaders etc.
- I want a lot less sexism in every single media outlet worldwide.
- I want a lot less sexism in every single boardroom worldwide.
- I want the farming industry to stop putting chemicals in the soil.
- I want any animal farmed for its flesh to live full lives where they roam free, see sun, and eat what they are intended to eat i.e. cows eating grass instead of being force-fed corn which they can’t digest, etc. and killed with compassion for their being. I want the FDA to regulate HUMANE practices across the board. As Gandhi said: “The greatness of a nation and its moral progress can be judged by the way its animals are treated.”
- More than anything, I want my American peers to rise up and do something about what they see wrong in this world. That is what inspires me the most about Occupy Wall Street. People standing up for what they believe in is what our nation is built on. It’s not shopping malls and mass consumerism; it’s not corn-fed cows and hormone injected chickens, it is democracy. This nation is built on the belief that majority rules and that belief is being challenged by the tiny minority. I don’t want to live in a country where everyone is too comfortable, stagnant and placated on their i-pads and playstations anymore. I demand much more.
I know people who believe being patriotic means listening to all the messages the media sends us. It means embracing capitalism in its current form, enjoying steak and potatoes and apple pie and supporting any big business because after all, corporations are so American.
I know people that are afraid to say what they really want to say when it comes to politics because they fear the repercussions on their career, status and circle of friends. I felt fooled into that role for a minute and then I remembered what it was to be an American in the light of this mass movement: Occupy Wall Street.
Being American means you have a right to an opinion, a voice and the right to protest your government when you believe they are wrong.
I’m not going to pretend to be intimately involved with the movement. I’m not and in fact, only recently have I begun to pay attention. What’s so unique about this movement is that it’s not a movement based on a single issue, but rather on the greater discontent of society as a whole. It’s a multi-generational movement and yet I can understand those Gen Yers out there the most.
I was born in 1984. I came of age in a period of disillusionment. I have few friends that didn’t owe at least 15 grand by the time they were 22 and shot into the “real world” without much cushioning and consistent calls from loan collectors. I was born into a world of shifting powers and globalization all of which contributed to my worldview.
This however, does not hinder my vision of the world I’d like to live in. I thought I would breathe some life into this vision and share it with you. Rather than say what is wrong with society, which I think we have a tendency to do too often, I am going to write what I’d like to see. Politicians – take note:
Thank you to the OWS movement for the inspiration! Everyone else, do with this, what you will and take action – join a movement, go vegan, spend less time watching television and more time campaigning for issues close to your heart. Donate time or money to what you believe in and leave this world better than when you came into it.
A patriotic American Citizen