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The initiative vote, while on the 3:00 briefing agenda, was not on the 6:00 agenda. Civically engaged persons who carefully study the agenda to see if issues they wish to be present for and/or speak to are up for discussion would not have known this issue was up last night. It was added a very short time before the meeting began ("at the last minute" according to the woman who laid out the speaker sign-up sheets outside the chamber). Mysteriously (or perhaps not), those who were in favor of the initiative and were out in force speaking with fear and intolerance about undocumented immigrants were notified on January 3 this would be discussed at the 6:00 meeting. Hmmm
Thank you, Taylor, for pointing out the many absurdities here. I’ve read several comments from people who say, hey, this isn’t really a big deal…why the big reaction? I appreciate your illuminating the answer to that question. Women’s rights work is never done…didn’t I hear that somewhere? A long and laborious history of tirelessly chipping away at injustices is to be celebrated. At the same time, we must realize that there will continue to be pushback in all rights work, and be mentally and organizationally ready to combat it. And that begins with understanding the nature of oppressive systems.
I like your invitation to go to depth in analyzing this initiative. As it strikes me, the Community Bill of Rights brings us closer to a body of law which reflects the reality I want to be a part of - closer to democracy: that is, people as community taking responsibility for their own decision-making about matters which affect them. No one would willingly give up that prerogative unless they were so deeply discouraged about their lack of power that they had given up the fight -- especially knowing that it is the way we protect our children and grandchildren’s future. Yet slowly and insidiously, powers have been transferred from individuals and communities to large outside corporate entities, whose reason for existence is to make profit - not protect, not steward, not sustain life. I don’t trust the profit motive to watch out for my well-being or the natural and/or economic health of Spokane. Call me crazy.I want jurisprudence that is based upon the clear recognition that we are utterly dependent upon the natural world, rather than viewing nature as property to be exploited, as it is currently. In other words, I want jurisprudence based in REALITY. We need a different approach besides the regulatory model which finds us, 41 years after the Clean Water Act, with recommendations severely limiting the number of fish we eat from a river once teeming with salmon, because the fish that are left are contaminated with poisons. Boy, I wouldn’t look forward to explaining that a generation or two down the road. Or now.
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