In San Francisco, a few dozen people in tony and touristy Union Square used signs to spread an anti-consumerism message. One, 9-year-old Jacob Hamilton, held a sign that read, "What is in your bag that's more important than my education?"I doubt that the San Francisco Bay Area is representative of the US as a whole, but we can dream, can't we?
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