Our whole lives we have been told that we have “freedom”, that we live in a “democracy”, that “we the people” have the ability to choose the kind of society in which we want to live.
However, if you ask most Americans what kind of place they want, I guarantee you that a vast majority would disagree with almost every government action that has been put forward in their lifetime.
If we truly lived in a free society, we would not be in a half-dozen wars across the planet; we would not be subject to authoritarian policies such as the PATRIOT act and the NDAA; and the government would not have grown to become the biggest and most menacing dictatorship in the history of the world. It seems that in the past year these major events have really resonated with a great number of people, not just in this country, but throughout the world.
In the past, the oppressed would beg and plead with the very people who were responsible for their condition because they knew no other way of affecting change in society. People would ask the government to change their ways because they were under the impression that those in authority actually cared about them. After generations of failing to create change through politics, people are now shifting the direction of their message towards one another, instead of pleading with politicians and organizations that don’t care about anyone but themselves.
With the recent protests surrounding SOPA and PIPA, we have really seen this new method of protest becoming more pronounced. Sure, there are still millions drafting petitions and thousands joining marches and making signs. However, nowadays these people don’t seem to be petitioning their government; it seems that more and more they are petitioning their fellow citizens. This is because the government is an obstacle; one which stands between the people and their freedom. Therefore, it is completely impossible to solely use the government as a tool to achieve freedom; this would be like trying to use a hammer to fix a broken computer, in both cases you’re only going to make the problem worse.
Luckily, most Americans have learned all of this just in time for the pivotal votes this month regarding online privacy. SOPA and PIPA may seem unimportant when compared with the police state, the military industrial complex, genetically modified food and banking cartels, but if you think about it, without the Internet we would have an immense amount of difficulty dealing with any of the aforementioned problems. Thanks to the Internet, these issues have gone from taboo subjects to national issues in just a matter of years, which is the whole reason for the rollout of the SOPA and PIPA acts to begin with.
Many of us sat and watched horrified from our homes, as Obama signed the NDAA into law, after he promised us that he wouldn’t. With this betrayal still fresh in the public consciousness, fewer people are downplaying the authoritarian moves that our government is making, and of those people even fewer are considering politics as a viable method of achieving social change.
Today’s “Internet blackout” is a sign of the new political discourse that has been developing worldwide. Sure, I’ll admit that it’s going to take a lot more than a viral web campaign to bring us peace and freedom, but this is only a sign of things to come, and it’s a very good omen. Today, over a thousand websites, including Google and Wikipedia, have either shut down or have been modified in some way to protest next week’s vote on SOPA.
People are now reaching out to their neighbors and devising methods of solving the problems that are created by politics, without depending on politicians to fix them. In an article last month, I said that the only way we will truly win this revolution is if we take matters into our own hands in a series of small battles where we call the enemies bluff every time they attempt to assert their illegitimate authority. Right now is an example of one of those battles, and considering that I have probably never seen this level of activism and participation among the general public, I would say that we are at least moving things in the right direction.
J.G. Vibes – is an author, and artist — with an established record label. In addition to featuring a wide variety of activist information, his company — Good Vibes Promotions promotes for electronic dance music events. You can keep up with him and his forthcoming book Alchemy Of The Modern Renaissance, at his Facebook page. AOTMR will be released this spring, thanks to Leilah Publications. This project features nearly 100 different essays, just like this one, that cover a wide variety of topics. These essays give historical and philosophical insight into the many important issues that our generation faces. From banking cartels and alternative currency to eugenics and the drug war, AOTMR offers a complete and comprehensive breakdown of the counter culture’s struggle.