I’m sitting in a tent last night having a college bull session with three twenty year olds about the existence of God and the meaning of life, vampire B-movies, and UFOs. That’s how the ended.
Martina Crouch, Todd Sanders, and Amber “I’m from Minnesota.” These are the people that are leading us into a future of transforming the way we operate as a society.
They don’t see themselves that way, and they were quick to explain they’re not that, when I acknowledged them as leaders.
“I’m just a kid,” said Martina.
Like Todd and Amber, she’s not just a kid. She’s a quadruplet from Danbury, a student at Yale and a child of a Nigerian immigrant mother, with maturity and developed thought beyond most of us. All three are extraordinary human beings.
Todd (typing on his iPhone) asks, “What are some new chants we can use? I talked to a guy today who suggested being more confrontational to get more attention.”
Martina replies, “We want a creative, not destructive dialogue.”
Amber (glued to her laptop streaming news of other demonstrations around the planet), speaks up.
“10,000 people demonstrated in Brazil today, and every public park in Milan was occupied. The March to Washington is 220 miles…17 days,” she says. “What are we doing about therapy? The occupiers need it. They’re freaking out on Wall Street and there’s only one counselor.
Martina says, “This tent is going to be used for that. We talked about it today. Yoga too.”
A thousand Americans gathered on the New Haven Green on Saturday.
No, lets call them people, because unless you’ve got your denial dialed up to ten, it’s easy to see that this conversation is way bigger than America, multi-national corporate greed and bailouts.
All kinds of people are here. Martina said she’d never seen so many different people in one place. Kind of a microcosm of what’s happening “out there.”
During a march around the green, hand-painted signs saying “We’re The 99%,” “Corporations Are Not People,” and “Politicians Should Wear Uniforms Like NASCAR Drivers So We Can Tell Who Their Corporate Sponsors Are” can be seen everywhere.
There’s chanting, cars honking, people smiling, waving and whistling, then a rally with announcements about a March to Washington in April and how to cooperate and communicate with the police.
Small potatoes compared with earlier demonstrations supporting Black Panthers or denouncing presidents on this town square…on the surface at least.
Under the surface, a transformational moment in the history of who and what we are, and how we serve, as individuals and as a civilization.
That’s how Occupy New Haven started.