A Speech From The Minneapolis #MarchAgainstCorruption
A small, but tasteful, spread of activists gathered in Minneapolis, MN at The People’s Plaza on November 1st, 2014 to expose and march against corruption. The action kicked off with a rally that featured speakers who had spoken from several differing perspectives. The following is the written version of a speech from that action which was delivered by activist Osha Karow:
Three years ago students, workers, and elders from all walks of life came together to unite on the bricks of this plaza to demand an end to the corruption within our democracy and to speak up for all oppressed people.
We held this space in an attempt to demand transparency and accountability from those who were elected to represent the people. We were met with oppression. We were met with unconstitutional attacks that limited our right to peacefully act out against the system we were working to change.
Today, the struggle against those that act against the corporate elite and corrupt politicians continues. We must realize that our battle cannot be won within the confines of these institutions that were built to serve the people.
We must abandon our hopes of reformation within our government because it is clear that the inept politicians will not instill the changes that are truly needed to end corruption or restore humanity back into our society.
We must realize that those in positions of power do not understand the actual needs of those that they represent or govern. Politicians are confounded with political fundraising and corporate lobbying while the corporate elite are steadily focused upon the exploitation of the earth’s resources and rising profits above all else. Nonetheless, the goal of the people is to survive.
The corrupting influence of money and special interests in governance and public policy-making has destroyed our democracy. Our representatives have surrendered their conscience and judgment to corruption. As a result, we are imprisoned and indebted while our environment and food supply are poisoned as our traditional notions of justice and morality are perverted and lost.
In the words of Adolf Hitler – “The best way to take control over a people and control them utterly is to take a little of their freedom at a time, to erode rights by a thousand tiny and almost imperceptible reductions. In this way, the people will not see those rights and freedoms being removed until past the point at which these changes cannot be reversed.”
It is up to us to fight back against oppression and corruption – and win. While we join countless individuals today throughout the world, we must take a moment to realize that we are a part of a revolution unlike any other in the history of our earth. Today, we are globally connected. Today we stand in solidarity with global citizens and their struggles against their own corrupt systems. Today we recognize that all systems are authoritarian in nature and that all methods of governance and commerce are outdated and oppressive.
We live in a world of plenty with resources and technologies that could benefit all. We live in a world that is waking up. We must allow ourselves to be a part of this great paradigm shift. When we become a part of this shift we will realize that together, united, we are powerful. When we understand how powerful we are as individuals and collectives, we will then understand the lack of power and authority that our systems possess and recognize them for what those systems truly are – failed attempts to control human desire and prosperity – and we will endure.
The path that we must go down is uncharted. There are no simple fixes or answers as to how we can save humanity, there is only inspiration, motivation, and human innovation. It is with an open-mind and opened eyes that we will discover all of the problems that have been caused by elitist greed and systematic corruption – and it is only with a communal mindset that we can be inspired to create the solutions necessary to overcome all obstacles. We must put aside our borders, ethnicities, gender identities, religions, personal philosophies and our own personal ideals in order to stand up as one. We must fight for all life upon this planet, as we cannot be free as individuals until all individuals have been liberated from their shackles.
The solutions we need to instill within our global society are endless, but we will not recognize them until all people are educated and inspired to act out for others as we find ourselves doing today. We must connect with our neighbors, and we must allow ourselves to be guided by love and compassion for our brothers and sisters. Today we march. Tomorrow, we march – and as we march we must connect with one another to find out what we must march toward and what we must march against.
So I ask each of you to connect with somebody new today and build an understanding to the issues that affect them most. I ask that you reach out and support new collectives that are focused upon building a newer, incorruptible society, and I ask that you become the change that you would like to see in the world – today and each day after – for the change we need today will differ with the passing of time, but revolutionary global solidarity is forever.
To end, with a fitting quote, we must remember these words:
“Ever tried? Ever failed? No matter. Try Again. Fail again. Fail better.”
-Samuel Beckett, Irish Playwright & Revolutionary
The Minneapolis March Against Corruption took place during the grassroots March Against Corruption global week of action from November 1st-8th, 2014. The Minneapolis actions during this week included this action on the 1st along with the #NotYourMascot action on the 2nd, and the Million Mask March action on the 5th.