Here’s another rare occasion where I will touch lightly on the politics of our world. This blog entry was inspired by an opinion piece in my school publication, the Michigan Daily, about the Occupy movement being labeled as socialist, a notion that is slightly disturbing to me. I had to think about why, because I wasn’t sure.
What kind of perception does socialism has in our world these days? It’s certainly been linked to Marxism and Communism, and we do know get a pretty bad rap. Nobody wants to be disdained by the so-called society. Is socialism wrong?
Suppose you have complete faith in capitalism and you say yes. You aren’t wrong.
Suppose you have complete faith in socialism and you say capitalism is wrong. You could probably blend in with the Occupy movement, which is apparently socialist.
It irks me that if one is unhappy with the 1% possessing 25% of the wealth, one may be called a socialist. I’m all for egalitarianism. Does that really make me a socialist? Or an anarchist for that matter?
Wiktionary defines socialism as ‘Any of various economic and political philosophies that support social equality, collective decision-making, distribution of income based on contribution and public ownership of productive capital and natural resources, as advocated by socialists.’
How about anarchism? ‘Anarchism is a political philosophy which considers the state undesirable, unnecessary and harmful, and instead promotes a stateless society, or anarchy.’
Hah. Maybe the words socialism and anarchism have been used out of context of its usual definition. Maybe.
The truth is… We can interpret this movement – or anything, really – anyway we want. We really are entitled to our own minds and thoughts. We all have different opinions and ideas. I believe in equality and sustainability. I work for the greater good. If by working to create a socially equitable and environmentally sustainable world mean I am a socialist, then I guess I’ll take the label. Does the label need to have a negative connotation? No. Of course not.
But why does it have one?
What are we in pursuit of? Money? Power? Prestige?
What we should be in pursuit of is perhaps the better question.