Working towards peace and sustainability

The Current Moment—Addressing the Challenges

The state of our body politic is distressed, at best, and it’s enough to turn many off from any sort of participation. This is a trap and represents a grave danger, as our engagement is needed now, more than ever.

Each day the news virtually assaults us. We have government of, by and for the billionaires, headed up by a prevaricating, narcissist autocrat who is stacking the courts, constantly attacking the free press and dismantling every program actually worthy of our tax dollars. The outrages are so constant as to leave many numb, and therein lies the danger. 

Many progressives are hanging their hopes on the Mueller probe, but this is risky at best. We, at Peaceworks, support following the investigation through, fully pursuing all wrongdoing done by or during the campaign, as well as any obstruction of justice since. But, however this turns out, it will not solve our problems. First of all, it is unclear that Trump would be either charged or impeached. But, even if he was forced from office, we would still have an extremist in the White House and literally dozens of battles on our hands, fighting a retrograde agenda.

Among our many battles are:

● Ending climate change denial and the rollback of the modest progress that had been made.

● Stopping the many other attacks on clean air, clean water, workplace safety, consumer protection and more.

● Rolling back the massive increase in military spending, as well as addressing destabilizing foreign policy directions, including the abandonment of the Iran Nuclear Deal.

● Addressing the attacks on Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid, SNAP and other critical programs, along with challenging massive handouts to the wealthy.

● Dealing with the hateful, divisive attacks that are creating an atmosphere of fear and loathing.

As disturbing as it is to have an overt racist, xenophobic misogynist in the highest office in the land, it is even more troubling to us to know that at least one-third of our fellow citizens support this pseudo-populist hate monger.

We urgently need to figure out how to best apply the brakes to the Trump juggernaut and, to woo those who’ve been drawn in by his anti-establishment rhetoric, by offering a true progressive populist agenda that actually would bring social and economic justice as well as environmental sanity and peace.

There is no simple answer to our dilemma. But please consider:

● We need everyone eligible to be informed and voting. While Peaceworks does not endorse, support or oppose candidates, we recognize the importance of electoral activism.

● We need, as individuals, to re-engage. There is essential work to be done on critical issues. We need to be effective, vocal advocates addressing these issues.

● We need you to get involved—with Peaceworks, we would hope—or with whatever progressive groups you feel most drawn to.

● Our organizations must collaborate and support each other. Our approach needs to be intersectional. That’s why we’ve been working as an active part of the Solidarity Network.

● While we must take a stand against all we disagree with, it is at least as important that we articulate positive solutions to climate change, militarism, injustice, etc. As Naomi Klein informs us, “No Is Not Enough.” We must inspire a broad swath of our fellow citizens with a solution-driven agenda that offers up hope.

● Most of all, at this critical juncture, we must turn to each other for mutual support, stay hopeful, build community, and recognize the necessity of this work. We’re in it for the long-haul and hope you are too.