Protest and Progress

Our country and most great things in the world were born in revolution. Revolution generally comes through protest which is a struggle between people who want to keep things the way they are and people who want to do things differently. Since our recent election cycle, it may feel as if there have been more protests and dissention than ever before, but this is not the case. Throughout the almost 250-year history of our country, there have always been these types of protests.

Micah White just released a book entitled The End of Protest: A New Playbook for Revolution. Mr. White is probably best known as the founder of the Occupy Wall Street movement. This group set out to draw attention to their cause of restructuring our financial industry by taking over public parks initially in lower Manhattan near Wall Street and eventually across the country and around the world.

The protest captured headlines for a number of months and seemed to have a lot of momentum, but when Micah White reflected upon it in retrospect, he realized most of their efforts were misguided and ineffectual. Public demonstrations are not necessary to get public attention. The Internet has changed the political landscape and the world in which we live. An issue can go viral and be in everyone’s consciousness in just a few hours. Public protest and picketers often get lost in the media shuffle as people don’t even know what the protest is about and who is picketing.

Mr. White went on to describe that, in an established democracy such as America, the only true and lasting protest is to exercise one’s right to vote. Ironically, as the Occupy Wall Street movement was winding down and losing momentum, it became apparent that many of the protesters weren’t even registered to vote.

The best way to change our system is to work through our system. The tried and true path to change involves contacting congressmen and senators, organizing precincts, and getting the vote out. If you doubt this works, you need look no further than our recent contentious presidential election. After the final votes were counted and verified, the most powerful person in the world turned over the reins to someone he may not have respected or even liked, but they both respect America and what it stands for more than their individual causes.

While America remains the greatest land on earth and the last best hope for democracy around the world, it is still flawed and can be improved because we remain a government of the people, by the people, and for the people; but if you are going to get active and seek change, be sure to follow the wisdom born from Mr. White’s revelations. Get organized, get connected, and get out the vote.

As you go through your day today, be thankful for our system as you strive to make it better.

Today’s the day!
Jim Stovall is the president of Narrative Television Network, as well as a published author of many books including The Ultimate Gift. He is also a columnist and motivational speaker. He may be reached by email at Jim@JimStovall.com; on Facebook at www.facebook.com/jimstovallauthor; or follow Jim on Twitter @StovallAuthor.

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