True story. When I was a kid, I didn’t have any black magic markers. I had a box full of orange and yellow and green, but no black. Why? Because my parents used them all for protest signs.
At that time, they were very involved in local politics fighting corruption and environmental issues. Before that, my dad had rallied against the Vietnam War and for civil rights. By the time I was six, I knew how to collect petitions to organize a third party run for local office. My dad would position me outside of supermarkets, and I would thrust a clip board into the faces of shoppers.
After my folks became more religious during the Reagan era, they switched teams. Now, they put those protest skills to work for the Pro-Life movement. In their 80s, they still attend the March for Life.
So, I like activism. Like Hannah Arendt and Aristotle, I think that we are political animals, who come alive when participating in communal decision making. Sometimes, I get irritated when it’s done badly; I think that the Women’s Marches have been major missed opportunities to do something real. But there’s no question that activism is on the rise. I’m overjoyed over that students are walking out of schools to protest the lack of meaningful gun control.
The trick with activism is not to be too democratic; there needs to be some proper leadership. There has to be a concrete goal, but one that is a notch too high, so there is room for compromise. There has to be a group with the movement that knows how to use the media.
But change is happening pretty quickly, so there have definitely been more successes, than failures. In the midst of this Trump fiasco, there have been these little triumphs.