Congresswoman Barbara Lee’s HR 6556 is supposed to be introduced this week and every 99er is praying that it will not be swept aside again. Republicans released a document last week purporting that they intend to cut $100 million from the budget this year. Frankly I do not see how the unemployment extension can possibly be passed in the face of these budget cuts.
Some people seem to think that I am seeking recognition and fame. Anyone who has followed my work has to know that this assertion is repugnant to the message I have been putting forth. One thing that has bothered me all my life is the fact that our founding fathers are identified with a specific elitist group; George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, John Hamilton, Benjamin Franklin, and John Hancock to name a few. Although these gentlemen were unquestionably ardent patriots who financed and in some cases fought for the establishment of our country, it was the common man and woman who sacrificed their all so that we might enjoy the fruits of freedom and liberty.
When I think back to the Revolutionary War I see the common man with blood soaked rags wrapped around his freezing feet, malnourished and fighting with heart and soul for what he believed in; and the common woman, tending to the sick and wounded for months on end, in conditions that we today would not last a week. These are our founding fathers and mothers. It is they who made the greatest and sometimes the ultimate sacrifice. And it is they who are the first forgotten.
It was the practice in this county from its beginning up until the 20th century to bury the common soldiers in a common unmarked grave, while officers were afforded individual marked plots. Since our beginning it has in reality been a struggle for social equality, but without resorting to altering our form of government we have made giant leaps in ending slavery, women’s sufferage, and state sanctioned racism.
My point here is that we are all in this together and we can and must achieve our goal without allowing our Constitution and Republic to be destroyed in the process. I have always emphasized on the rights and responsibilities of the individual as I believe that our individuality is our greatest strength. Naturally it takes longer for individuals to come to a consensus and act than it does for a people to simply follow the leader. But if we achieve as individuals we will know exactly what we have gained and how we did it, making future attempts to steal it back away from hard to impossible.
Even if HR 6556 passes it is only a reprieve. We must not use the resource to sit back and take a 14 week vacation, but rather we must use it to further strengthen ourselves in preparation for the battles that lie ahead. All should note that this is not the first time we have been told that legislation for Tier 5 was going to be introduced.
I do not know if it will pass or not, my stance is I’ll see it when I believe it. But if by some miracle it should pass, I do not think that we should squander the opportunity it represents. We have to remember that even if the bill does get introduced, it still has to be passed by those same Republicans vowing to cut $100 million from this year’s budget. In reality, total passage of the bill would seem unlikely.
I believe we are going to have to raise a whole lot more hell before the new Republicans recognize us as a problem that must be solved; not by choice, but by necessity. This being said, if the bill is introduced this week we must make every effort to have our voices heard in every venue available to us. I think it might be wise to target John Boehner for a saturation of emails and phone calls. If we can match the number of resumes we sent to Jesse Jackson, Jr. it might at least let Boehner understand that we know that he is the one that is stopping any chance of relief for us.
God pray this whole thing just doesn’t fizzle like it did the last time, but if it does we are going to have to start getting serious in reference to the Easter Project. Many commentators on Saturday accused From the Trenches World Report of doing nothing more than putting other 99er advocates down.
To these commentators I say, do you and those you support have any intent in participating in the Easter Project if the 99ers are still being totally ignored when April 24th rolls around? Do you have what it takes to take such a project to the streets? Will Gregg Rosen bear one of the crosses? In the name of everything that is holy we must unite to see the Easter Project realized, if HR 6556 fizzles again.