May 14, 2014

The New Face of Social Activism. ~ Stephanie Renaud

The New Face of Social Activism

The hippies used to say “Give peace a chance”.

Truth is they were—and continue to be—right. Peace is the way to go.

So many of us see the value in a peaceful world. The trouble is, “peace” can mean as many different things as there are people to interpret the word. Peace could become a movement, as formidable as Occupy and as tenacious as Idle No More, if we allowed ourselves to consider a new approach.

This is where Repeace comes in.

The three driving principles of the Repeace movement:

1. I will support businesses that focus on sustainable, local products and services, not on buying influence.

2. I will support politicians that are accountable to me, not corporations/private interests.

3. I will support countries that promote and defend Freedom of Expression. (this includes gender, sexual orientation, religious practice, among many other issues of human equity.)

These are simple principles.

The drive behind them is compassion for our fellow human, a force that can and will change the world, and the power of united people to overcome any political and financial adversity with which they are faced.

These principles are relevant to all who see the brokenness of the world; to all who long for better than the corruption of its systems of government by corporate and private financial interests.

As activists, none of us want to abandon our cause. We each feel a moral obligation to continue our mission to eradicate injustice we observe in the world. It drives us a little mad, these atrocities we see. We are driven not by a desire for fame or wealth, but by a deep spiritual imperative to snuff out greed, hate and intolerance so that the world can live as it is possible to live. This is our mission.

Repeace doesn’t ask us to abandon our passions, or to leave behind what we must do to lend our strength to a new and different cause.  What Repeace will do is unite us in our passion to create a better world.

In the world of politics and business, the pattern over the last century has been to unite many identities under bigger, single umbrellas. Coke has done it, Walmart has done it. P&G has done it.  In this model, none of the brands that they own have lost their discrete identities. They have maintained their uniqueness, but been united under the umbrella of one large corporation or political ideology. This gives these groups power in numbers.

Divided, we cannot stand against them and be victorious.

Repeace can be likened to these larger identities. Like Coca Cola has united McDonalds, KFC, and the Olympics, so too will Repeace unite activism.

Feminists, political activists, libertarians, marriage equality crusaders to name just a few—we all stand divided right now, all lending our strength to separate causes. Divided, we cannot stand.

By agreeing to the three guiding principles, a feminist becomes a Feminist Repeacer, Marriage Equality crusaders become Marriage Equality Repeacers. If the 1 percent can rule us with the dollar—and with their votes—then we can defeat them with our dollar and our votes.

Do not abandon your cause. Agree to the three principles, marry Repeace to your mission and together we can defeat the powerful entities that have us enslaved.

Each cause is unique, necessary to create the world that we all know is possible.

By uniting, we become infinitely more powerful.

United we stand. Divided we will surely fall.

This is why I Repeace.

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Apprentice Editor: Guenevere Neufeld / Editor: Catherine Monkman

Photo: Flickr / Jason Scragz

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Stephanie Renaud