A group of citizens concerned about fracking spent the summer drumming up support for more local control. This was an effort of grassroots activists who weren’t paid a dime and who gathered signatures on their own time. We went door to door in the time that was left over after work, family and other obligations were taken care of. We ended up with hundreds of signatures.
Earlier this month we took the signatures to the trustees, along with a nonbinding resolution expressing our concerns about fracking and our disapproval of Columbus for usurping the sovereignty of local communities. The key word is “nonbinding.” It was a purely symbolic resolution, and it was presented as such. Nothing in it required any action, conflicted with the state or put the trustees in legal jeopardy with the oil and gas industry. We emphasized that this was about being representatives: literally representing the views of many of their constituents, even if they themselves disagreed with the sentiments.
One of their refrains over the past few months has been that they would love to help, but their hands are tied. This nonbinding resolution gave them the chance to do something with their hands untied, even if it was just a purely symbolic gesture.
What a bunch of chickenasses. I think my favorite part of the recording, besides where the board is all WE WILL ARREST YOU FOR ANNOYING US WITH YOUR BEING RIGHT, is how people keep repeating, “our hands are tied.”
Because, um, no they’re not. We do ourselves no favors when we pretend that what we’re doing is not what we’re doing, when we take away our own power under the guise of letting ourselves off the hook. Because it’s one thing to make what you consider a legitimate choice, out of expediency or financial concern, and another to kid yourself and everyone around you about what you are and what you want.
Lying about powerlessness is the thing that drives me craziest. Your hands aren’t tied. You may not have anything you want to do or anything that’s easy to do or anything that won’t bring ten tons of hell down on your head, but your hands aren’t tied. There’s a vast difference between that and this.