Saturday, October 03, 2009

More Wendell Potters To Be Found

As I watched the footage of civil disobedience at the Aetna headquarters in New York City this week, something occurred to me that I forget to add in my previous post.

An effective movement requires a few modes of demonstration.

You need friendly picketers who can be approached by the curious, who are ready to distribute a leaflet explaining concisely why they are there.

You need civil disobedience, the folks willing to publically gum up the works because of a moral quandary that cannot be ignored. Like those folks at Aetna.

You need humor, too. Satire is a splendid, non-threatening, socially accessible form of political commentary. Look at the popularity of Stephen Colbert. I am, for one, a big fan of the Billionaires For Wealthcare.

Finally, there needs to be outreach to those who are employed by the health care system. Wendell Potter served CIGNA and Humana for twenty years, and was led by his conscience to blow the whistle on the industry's objectives and practices.

So besides the merry pranksters, the receptive faces on picket lines, and the demonstrators conducting civil disobedience, there should be a contingent appealing directly to the cogs in the machine, inviting them warmly to follow Potter's example and join a movement for true reform.

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