"In the midst of the meltdown, people throughout the U.S. were joining with their neighbors to weather the economic crisis. Last winter, more than 50 Common Security Clubs formed in communities around the country: a mini-movement of people coming together in religious congregations, community centers, and union halls to help each other understand and cope with the the collapsing economy. The clubs soon moved past the goal of simply weathering the crisis and began to work toward reforms—both nationally and in their communities—that would prevent a repeat of the devastation."I hope that such groups can move beyond trying to reform the system to designing a sustainable, people oriented system.
We’ve lived so long under the spell of hierarchy—from god-kings to feudal lords to party bosses—that only recently have we awakened to see not only that “regular” citizens have the capacity for self-governance, but that without their engagement our huge global crises cannot be addressed. The changes needed for human society simply to survive, let alone thrive, are so profound that the only way we will move toward them is if we ourselves, regular citizens, feel meaningful ownership of solutions through direct engagement. Our problems are too big, interrelated, and pervasive to yield to directives from on high.
—Frances Moore Lappé, excerpt from Time for Progressives to Grow Up