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Occupy – knowledge is power

proximity – becka viau – 2011 – Halifax

Written by Becka Viau

There is a global movement happening.

In P.E.I. we are isolated from the mass protests happening around the world, however we are connected to the information being presented from all sides via the internet. Yes, it is true that our understanding of the “Occupy” conflict between governments and the people is distanced and abstracted through media and the arts, however as a citizen in a capitalist society I feel it is my responsibility to gather knowledge, distanced or direct, about the crisis in order to empower my own decisions, opinions and conversations about it.

Without seeking out the various perspectives accessible thanks to global networks my understanding of the “Occupy” phenomenon would be formed only by the dominant representations and the opinions surrounding them.

I am currently enrolled in a Masters degree at NSCAD Univeristy and I am constantly shocked by the naivety found within the educated  university community. If the people who are enrolled  in becoming the next generation of educated citizens are oblivious to the underlying situation, and judge the Occupy Halifax protesters as “Utopians”, “hippies” or “professional protesters” I truly believe the crisis is much closer to home than we think. Knowledge is the under belly of this cause, without knowledge not only would this conflict have never started but our situation will continue to remain status quo.

How many times have I been discouraged by the system I was born into? How many times have I questioned the distribution of wealth, food, and power?How many times have I felt so uninformed about the functioning of the system I live that I just continue to ignore its inadequacies?

I am not saying this because I am directly involved in any of the protests. Nor am I writing this to preach for one side of this conflict or another.

I am however writing this, and sharing this Vimeo channel, http://vimeo.com/channels/251589 to stand up and say educate yourself, ingest the information that is out there and create your own opinion. For knowledge is power, and it is the public opinion of the distanced citizens that will decide if anything is to change. Public opinion is important, so empower your voice with knowledge and let your opinion be heard.

 

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