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Kevin Zeese
Kevin Zeese
Kevin Zeese is a political and environmental rights activist, active in drug policy and electoral reform issues.
Overcoming injustice together
A new US movement seeks to unite citizens in overcoming corruption, war, and social injustice.
Last Modified: 25 Jun 2011 08:34
The October 2011 Movement pledges that if any US troops remain in Afghanistan on October 6, 2011, a huge rally will be held in Freedom Plaza in Washington, DC [GALLO/GETTY]

Inspired by the courageous, nonviolent uprisings in Tunisia, Egypt, Bahrain, Yemen, Greece, Spain and elsewhere, people in the United States have come together to form the October 2011 Movement. This fusion of peace, social justice, environmental, student, and immigrant rights organisations is in solidarity with all who seek a peaceful, just, and sustainable future and stands ready to engage in its own campaign of nonviolent resistance - beginning in Washington, DC, this October. We recognise that your revolution is our revolution, that the US empire prevents you from achieving self-determination and economic justice, and that only together can we achieve our shared goals. 

October marks the beginning of the 11th year of the US invasion and destruction of Afghanistan. It marks the beginning of yet another federal budget that delivers unlimited funds for war and corporate interests while putting in place an austerity budget for services that meet human and environmental needs. But this October will mark the beginning of something else in the United States - a moment when we will unite to demand an end to a system that puts profits and warfare over the welfare of people and the environment.

The response to our call, which just a few weeks old, has been tremendous. Already, more than one thousand people have pledged to join this resistance action in Freedom Square and that number is growing rapidly. Leading figures from a wide range of communities have stepped up to join the call. Among them are noted African-American scholar and activist Cornel West; Farm Labor Organising Committee (FLOC ) President Baldemar Velasquez; Pulitzer Prize-winning war correspondent and author Chris Hedges; single-payer health-care advocates Drs David Himmelstein and Steffie Woolhandler; noted environmentalists Derrick Jensen and Harvey Wasserman; and anti-war leader, Colonel Ann Wright (retired), along with numerous other prominent peace activists. You can see more of the people who signed up by visiting our website.

History is knocking on the door of the United States and its people are ready. As the crises in our communities and around the world grow, so must our response. We can no longer abide the outrageous and growing wealth inequality in this country. We cannot accept a government "of, by and for" the corporations. We cannot remain silent while our leaders continue to exploit and slaughter people in distant lands or while millions of us have no access to health care. A majority of Americans want the wars to end. We want investment in jobs, education, and environmental protection. We want banks to invest for our future, not for their executives' pocketbooks. We want laws that are just, lawmakers who obey them, and the power to hold them accountable when they do not. For that, we need a judiciary biased toward justice, not the partisan powers and big business interests they serve.

In the United States, the people have little voice in the process of governance, as elected officials and institutions have been corrupted by concentrated corporate interests that have bought and paid for them. The people have no control over their own lives and the direction of their own communities. The brave who speak out for justice are often ignored, harassed, or imprisoned. Unified resistance has become the essential avenue for change.

Our time has come. We pledge to stand together in nonviolent resistance to corporate greed, government corruption, violence and injustice. We must follow our brave brothers and sisters of the Arab Spring and developing European Summer into an Autumn of an American awakening. With our bodies united in resistance and our voices coalesced into one sustained cry for justice, we can and must stop the machine and create a new world. 

It is very difficult for us to get honest information about democracy movements around the world from the US corporate-controlled media. Please visit our website at www.october2011.org and keep us informed of your actions. We have called our action "Stop the Machine! Create a New World!" Together we will end concentrated corporatism and create a peaceful, just, and sustainable future that respects all of humanity and the planet.

Environmental campaigner and political activist Kevin Zeese wrote this piece on behalf of the October2011.org movement, a coalition of individuals and organisations seeking to end corporatism and militarism in the United States.

The views expressed in this article are the author's own and do not necessarily reflect Al Jazeera's editorial policy.

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