Occupy Detroit Voices

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Guardian Angels For Activists

We become so consumed by our passion fighting for causes bigger than ourselves. We see that “ME” fits within the “WE” conversation. Sometimes we sacrifice a part of ourselves in that fight. We forget to take care of ourselves or put ourselves on the line for a cause we believe in. We consider civil disobedience as a statement of the passion we hope others will understand. We ask for judges and juries at our trials to find verdict by their conscious, and see the greater picture that the disobedience was aimed at. The laws which protect the people don’t always work, it takes people getting involved and showing how the letter of the law is weak and does not give us justice by following it literally.

Skilled communication regarding our feelings can be a tough thing to offer. How do we discuss our moral compass and realize someone listening is likely looking to knock it. Critique can be constructive and offer new perspectives that deepen or alter our beliefs and how they are expressed. It requires having a safe space for those conversations - one where critiques are solution-based and not ripping down the character of those involved. While we strive for peace the currents of unrest are where we grow the most. We have to become comfortable with a certain amount of unrest and realize it as the growth we claim to desire. Communities build character of those who enter them and remain through the unrest and growth.

I’m thankful for diving into Occupy Detroit when I saw it come along. The currents of change have been flaming rampantly all around the world. In truth it has been happening for centuries and my eyes and mind simply did not see for half my life. I desire seeing the community of growth continue through the Occupy Detroit Movement leading to organizations. I’ll acknowledge there haven’t been meetings to continue movement building and I wish to resurrect that spirit. I want to talk about decolonization as a movement direction. Discussions about not only abolishing the systemic destruction of the middle class, but to work on a change in our value system. We need to embrace our commons - the air, land, water that we are all stewards to protect and use to the betterment of all. The conversations aren’t about price tags, they are about needs and resources - bringing them together to acknowledge the value of people equally is essential. Each of us needs a chance to succeed and the systems in our US American culture are poisoning anything and everything that is truly of value to people, in effect sacrificing people for profit.

Things have to change. I’m committed to being a catalyst through my life’s work in effecting change. I will work inside and outside the system, because confronting things from one direction is like speaking TO the problem but not WITH it. Life is a conversation that is not one-sided. Portions of the conversations in our lives have different dialects and sometimes even foreign language. Our minds have to comprehend the facets around our beliefs, acknowledging what we don’t know but that it exists. We have to discuss our weaknesses and address concerns with an interest in strengthening rather than continued weakness.

We’re going to bring Occupy Detroit movement building back together this year - 2014. We’re going to Occupy Detroit in a systemic approach, because its more about the systems of oppression affecting the people’s actions than the people or the place itself. I hope to meet my locals reading this message. We may sit on different sides of common conversations. We have to bring outlying concepts into conversation, and it takes inclusion with a lot of patience & listening. Lets talk about real world changes and how to influence change in our systems. Not everything fits - especially when we talk of empowering our people and changing existing value systems.

—- Stephen Boyle - community member in Detroit
Occupy Detroit 
Free Detroit No Consent 
March Against Monsanto Detroit 
Detroit Coalition Against Tar Sands 
Occupy Detroit Transit 
Abolitionist Movement of Today 
North End Woodward Community Coalition
and many more… 

ally to indigenous Detroiters of all colors & creeds 
ally to Environmental Justice in Detroit 
ally to Food Justice in Detroit 
ally to Transportation Justice in Detroit