Tuesday, December 01, 2009

More on The Battle in Seattle

To push back a little on Erik's view of the Battle in Seattle, I'm posting the video from GRITtv's discussion yesterday. Don't get me wrong; I think Erik has a lot of valid points (Ann Friedman made some similar ones in this excellent post from the other day at the Prospect).

I think in general that it's often wrong to classify progressivism (and feminism, and many other things) as movements. They're belief systems, often stagnant ones. By comparison, the Obama campaign WAS a movement--a moment where hundreds of thousands of people came together to fight for one objective, even if lots of us did it with clear-eyed knowledge that a year out we'd be disappointed and arguing with the president we gave so much of our time and effort to elect.

We do need movements, though. We need those moments where we can come together and accomplish something, like in Seattle--and we need to extend those beyond moments. How do we turn those moments into sustained pressure? I like what I've seen from the National Equality March, and the fight in Maine (even though it too lost). But I want more. Anyway, I digress.

People asked what the organizers of Seattle would say if they were asked: well, it was only ten years ago. They're still around, and a bunch of them were on GRIT yesterday. You want to know what they think? Here's video.