Yes, the sign used the word “free” and I flinched as I read it.
You see, I’m not going to try to convince you that there isn’t value in fighting for change, or even demonstrating for change. I’m not going to try to convince you that there isn’t growing inequity between the very rich and the very poor. And although the middle class has been hurt – badly – by the current economy, I strongly believe in free speech.
Yes I used the word “free.”
In the interest of exercising my own right to free speech, I challenge the occupiers with the sign asking for freedom to define exactly what they are asking for. We are certainly are free to protest, and to write whatever we want on our signs. We are free to wear what we please. We are free to choose what to study, what work to pursue, where to live, and how to spend our time. We are free to vote and yes, we elected the politicians we are so unhappy with.
While “freedom” is clear in protests for civil rights, I believe financial success is something to be earned rather than handed out. But if we want change, we need to be clear about exactly what we want. So tell me please, what are we fighting for?