Hearts and Minds

by stonesphinxes

I spent a great many years in Southern California, where rivers of bumper-to-bumper traffic begin at 6am and continue until roughly 7pm.  A trip through Los Angeles could take two hours or maybe twelve hours, and one’s daily commute requires a Tibetan-monk level zen acceptance of fate, or the navigational zeal of a Conquistador charting back waters where they’re sure the fountain of youth resides.

I once was trapped in a clog long enough for me to start and finish a short novel, due to a suicidally-inclined but indecisive individual on a highway overpass.  There was no way off the road unless one had a military issue Humvee that could handle a 40* incline, and the roughly several-thousand people at a dead stop were not pleased, to say the least.

A number of them thoughtfully offered to shoot the jumper, as it was clear they wanted to die, and it would save everyone the waiting.  Other circumstances not withstanding, there’s an argument that intentionally blocking California traffic is an obvious provocation to homicide.  No one who commutes in LA would vote to convict, I’m sure.

These dunderheads should take a lesson. 

The way to win people to your side and bring attention to your cause is NOT to conduct activities that will make them froth at the mouth with rage.

Also, you know what you’re doing by blocking the freeway?  Preventing the lower-class people (lots of women and minorities in there) who work hourly jobs from getting the hours they need to survive.  If hourly people aren’t there, they don’t get paid and may lose their jobs entirely.

So in short:

1. Don’t generate outraged indignation at yourself

2. Don’t fuck your constituency