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Racism and the Collapsing Society, Barbara Love and Tim Jackins, June 7, 2020

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Continuing to Move Forward in This Time of Collapse

We are in a period where our societies are no longer able to sustain themselves, with larger and larger numbers of people across the world suffering and being pushed into poverty. Political leaders have demonstrated their inability to address the root causes of this collapse. The shallow pretense of legitimacy and reasonableness has crumbled. Many of the vicious and unethical actions that have kept our societies in place are exposed. We are seeing more and more desperate attempts to keep societies operating a little longer. This requires more and more open appeals to the irrationalities and oppressions that have been used to install and maintain the societies.

All of us who have grown up in these societies have the opportunity to challenge the distress recordings installed on us by these societies. To do so brings up many old feelings, which we must both discharge and challenge so that they will not determine our behavior in this new situation.

We have all had experience with both discharging our distresses and with challenging the restrictions they put on us in the present. In a period of great change like this one, we can have good and needed effects when we move to think and take action in spite of the pull of our distresses. This is a time when each of us gets to see how much good effect we can have on the direction the world is heading. This is a time when we get to use the intelligence we have recovered through RC and discharge to help guide the development of the current situation and to encourage others to think and act as well, in spite of all their undischarged feelings and confusions. We can help organizations function more thoughtfully and rationally.

I think there is also a role you can take on of supporting and protecting good leadership in other organizations, both from attacks from within the organization and from outside. We understand the nature of attacks and the divisiveness of them well, and the need for leaders to not have to handle attacks alone.

Can we each decide to actively move forward not only against our own distresses but against the distresses installed in our institutions?

What steps can we take now which will help us become more aware of both our inhibiting distresses and where we have been denied real information about our world?

Are there groups that you are part of where you might share some of the tools that we find so helpful in building consensus such as exchanged listening, think and listen, speaking order, everyone speaking once before others speak twice?

The Situation in the United States

In the US, there is more and more irrationality showing more and more openly as we approach the November elections. The fears and hostilities of people are being openly and purposefully manipulated, in order to scare and divide people. It is difficult to predict how irrational the situation will become and what some scared and desperate groups will feel compelled to try, encouraged and manipulated by those trying to maintain power.

While both of the major parties in the US are committed to prolonging the existence of our exploitive economic system, there are significant differences between their positions and in the extent to which they use racism and other oppressions to motivate their supporters. There are also clear differences between the perspectives of candidates at all levels of elected offices. There are significant choices to be made in the coming election and these can be the first steps toward bigger and longer-range changes in the future.

What can we decide to do in this developing situation? We can decide not to hang back and watch what happens. We can decide to step out into interactions with other people in any of a thousand ways, each way allowing us to provide thought, caring, possibilities, and rationality.

We can do this now and we can prepare to do this if the irrationality grows to the point of trying to take over our political life. We can do useful things that our fears have stopped us from doing before now. This is an excellent opportunity to overcome the illusions of limitations caused by past, undischarged hurts.

What actions have you supported, but have not yet felt you could be part of?  Why not try now? What would you like to be able to do and how could you start or prepare yourself? What actions would let you feel the distresses that have stopped you or slowed you down until now, so that you could discharge them, understand them more clearly, and have your choices and actions be less affected by them?

Could you take action publicly if you thought it best to do so? Do you know how to take actions safely and with others?

There are many groups outside of RC that are already discussing this situation, what is possible to have happen, and what effective responses could be. People are discussing these issues and you could join a discussion group, to push yourself and your discharging, to learn more, and to learn to add your thoughts to the discussion. Some groups are offering training in non-violent actions and civil disobedience. Some groups are trying to figure out how to stop intimidation of voters at their polling stations. You could take these trainings and understand some of the actions that may occur and decide if you think the actions are useful and if they are something you will take part in. A list of some such groups and training recommended by some RCers is below.

What do you think would be useful in this developing situation and what can we prepare ourselves to do to be part of moving our societies forward, away from their oppressive past?

The first steps you take could be aimed at promoting and protecting the democratic process that people are entitled to in the upcoming election.

Large steps will continue to be needed no matter what happens in this election. This includes the possible need to have millions of people in the streets to oppose a refusal to relinquish power in spite of election results, as has been spoken of by the current president.

Tim Jackins

Some websites recommended by RCers that include training opportunities:  

Choose Democracy
The Frontline
Hold the Line
Transition Integrity Project
Count on Us
Civil Liberties Defense Center


Last modified: 2020-10-30 18:56:31+00