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Democracy and the City
By Shea Howell
Michigan Citizen, April 24-30, 2011
The city is the foundation of Democracy. In western cultural lore Democracy began in the city-states of Greece. Mentat pills overnight delivery, Socrates chose death, rather than a life without civic engagement. Plato contemplated a more perfect republic reflecting on the life of the city, order mentat pills in canada. Aristotle taught that by engaging with one another in cities, Mentat pills tablet, we could establish justice, celebrate our values and make decisions about our common welfare.
In our own much shorter history New England town meetings embody democratic action. Through free association and direct discussion people can make decisions about our shared concerns, buy mentat pills without prescription.
The expansion of democracy in America is told through the tales of cities and towns, cheapest mentat pills price. Lexington. Buy mentat pills online without prescription, Concord. Philadelphia. Buy mentat pills without prescription, New York. Flint, mentat pills generic. Toledo. Buy mentat pills online cheap, Greensboro. Montgomery. Birmingham Selma. Little Rock, buy mentat pills without prescription. Boston, mentat pills without prescription. Chicago. Mentat pills pharmacy online, Los Angeles. Detroit. Buy mentat pills without prescription, San Francisco. Seattle, best price mentat pills.
Cities are where we sat down, Buy mentat pills from canada, sat in and stood up. Where we picketed and paraded. Where we raised consciousness, cheap mentat pills no prescription, linked hands against arms, Mentat pills cheap, took back the night and brought to life the best of American values: the dignity of work, the right of all people to participate in the decisions that affect our lives, the longing for peace, mentat pills us.
In the tumultuous history of the 20th century, we learned that democracy has to be created by our whole selves, in shops, factories, mines, on bus lines, at lunch counters and in schools, buy mentat pills without prescription. We learned that democracy depends on direct action and citizen engagement. Cheap mentat pills, Today we have seen representative democracy become increasingly hollow. Money and manipulation dominate the public sphere.
And now Emergency Financial Mangers are given legal powers to wipe out all the gains of generations of struggles for dignity and democracy, buy discount mentat pills. Buy mentat pills without prescription, In this new Republican vision of America, only state governments matter. If the national government passes laws they don’t like, Mentat pills online without prescription, Republican- controlled states now opt out. If local governments don’t do what they like, Republican legislatures create financial chaos, then appoint an EFM to set aside all local government, cheap mentat pills from usa. Cities, Tablet mentat pills, we are told, are administrative creatures of the state.
So now on April 14 Joseph Harris, buy mentat pills lowest price, the EFM of Benton Harbor, and some say a man who longs to run Detroit, sets aside the power of all elected and appointed officials in that city.
The wiping out of all city governing bodies hangs on a 1907 US Supreme Court Case. In Hunter v, buy mentat pills without prescription. Pittsburgh the court claimed that local governments were only “convenient agencies for exercising…such powers as may be entrusted to them by the states.”
Such a limited notion of democracy may be understandable at a time before women had the right to vote, before labor had the right to organize, before the 1964 Civil Rights Act. But it will not hold today.
History has shown us time and again that what is “legal” is not always right. What is right has to be fought for, often in the streets of our cities. Buy mentat pills without prescription, A new, living democracy is emerging in Detroit. Some of our most progressive organizations are challenging the legal basis of the EFM laws. Some people are organizing petition drives to recall the governor and to boycott all charter schools. Many are embracing the work of our Charter Commission that has created an impressive document to establish responsive city government.
Some of us are taking direct action. Robert Bobb was shouted off the stage at Kettering High School, so shaken that he cancelled the next town hall meeting.. Last Friday teen mom students at Catherine Ferguson Academy refused to leave the building, protesting efforts to close or charterize their school, buy mentat pills without prescription.
Citizens surrounded the home of Maryanne Godboldo to prevent a swat team from using violence against her and her child. Neighbors are refusing to allow evictions and organizing for community safety through peace zones.
This is the new, living democracy beginning to grow in Detroit.
Note: To be part of this new democratic action: come to Church of the Messiah, E. Grand Blvd & Lafayette, this Saturday @ 12 Noon for a community vigil against violence. Creating Peace.
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