Why Occupy Carbondale?

Note: The following is not an official statement of the General Assembly of Occupy Carbondale. It is simply a reflection piece that was written during the effort to start the occupation.

As the spirit of Occupy Wall Street spreads across America and the world, we who are among the 99% of people at the “bottom” of the economic and political power structure in this country have decided to bring this movement to our town. We call Occupy Wall Street a demonstration rather than a protest because the New York City General Assembly is demonstrating a popular example of what a genuinely democratic decision-making process looks like. Through this process, they have released their first official statement and are currently developing a proposed list of Demands for Congress.

Occupy Carbondale is a local manifestation of this national and global spirit of freedom and direct democracy.

In our pursuit of wealth and our lack of participation in our own democracy, we have allowed transnational corporations and other private interests to corrupt and overtake our democratic process. We are the 99% who were promised the American Dream in exchange for our hard work and our support of a system controlled by the 1% above us. But our loyalty and dedication was betrayed as economic elites and our supposed representatives worked hand in hand to sell our financial security, our personal freedoms, our political power, and our future to the highest bidder.

The time has come for us to resist the alliance of Big Corporations and Big Government. The time has come for us to resist the erosion of our freedoms and corruption of our democracy. The time has come for us to reclaim our freedom and our democracy by gathering together in public places to hold General Assemblies and talk to our fellow community members and fellow Americans about the solutions to our many economic, political, and ecological problems. The time has come for us to Occupy Carbondale, acting nonviolently and cooperatively to create better lives for ourselves and a better future for everyone.