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Taking Direct Action

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Non-violent Direct Action tactics have been used by people across the world to address a social issue or injustice committed by a business interest or government institution. Direct Action tactics include strikes, demonstrations, sit-ins or other public forms of non-violent protest.  Putting one’s own body in the way can be an intimidating proposal, but with training and education, citizens can be extremely effective. When Rosa Parks defiantly disobeyed Alabama law and took a seat in the front of that Montgomery bus, she made a choice to stand up for her rights despite the risk. When government takes away the voice and power of the citizenry, the citizenry has the moral authority to confidently assert themselves in righteous defiance.

The environmental movement has used non-violent direct action in a variety of ways. A well-known example is the citizens who took direct action to prevent loggers from cutting down redwood trees in northern California by living in these trees for a period of time.  The publicity from efforts like this can help to spur debate about better ways to address important social issues like the protection of our land, air, and water. 

It is critically important that we are prepared to take action.  People who engage in nonviolent direct action must be educated in its strategies and must be aware of the challenges that may arise. Companies and governments have a variety of options to use against citizens who stand up to them and we must know how to respond. It is imperative that you have training to guide you through the process. It is also essential to establish a coordinated plan for direct action as well as a code of conduct among participants in order to ensure it is effective.

All direct action strategies rest on the same premise; the government has failed to listen to the people has instead favored the interests of power and money. We the people have a right to say no to projects put forth on our behalf, paid for by the people and approved against the will of the people. If you have a deep passion for social and environmental justice and wish to take a stand on this issue, then we encourage you to join us at Direct Action training this Saturday from 10:00am to 4:00pm at the Medford Friends Meeting House at 14 Union Street in Medford, NJ.

Register online today. 


For more information contact Lena Smith at Food & Water Watch New Jersey at lsmith@fwwatch.org or call 732-839-0878

The Pinelands Preservation Alliance is a sponsor of this training.

 

2 responses to “Taking Direct Action”

  1. Patricia Hilliard says:

    I’m up north here trying to save parks, but when I was younger, I used to camp in the Pine Barrens. I’m glad to see you are all putting up a fight! Keep up the good work!!

  2. bill wolfe says:

    Nice post!

    I agree – and there also are ways to take direct action that are not public events.

    Chris Hedges has argued that the collapse of democratic government – what Princeton political theorist Sheldon Wolin called “inverted totalitarianism” – has left people with just one option: rebellion and civil disobedience.

    I am inspired by the words of Mario Savio:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PhFvZRT7Ds0

    More recently, Tim DeChistopher is a voice I follow:

    http://www.wolfenotes.com/2016/01/climate-disobedience/

    Wolfe

    Wolfe

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