Stick that on the back of your car!

It occurred to me the other day that I haven’t provided any inspiring Bumper Stickers for a while. As it turned out, I found myself reading an article by Henry Giroux (a professor in the English and Cultural Studies Department at McMaster University in Canada) with a slew of thoughts that begged for reduction to bumper sticker length. The title, “Donald Trump and the Plague of Atomization in a Neoliberal Age,” gives a pretty good sense of what he’s on about. I had been doing some reading about “atomization” and its connection to human rights, and Giroux’s piece was tremendously helpful. He does a great job of  explaining how we as a people have been “atomized”–separated from each other by a growing individualism that encourages us to focus on ourselves and seriously threatens our ability to empathize with each other. He includes some thoughts on how media and entertainment (the whole fascinating, mesmerizing digital world, actually) have provided the “bread and circuses” of our time, distracting us from the destructive acts of those who seek to control our political systems and threaten to replace our democracy with an authoritarian regime that substitutes cold hearted, laissez-faire, self-interested capitalism for the empathy and  “reciprocal altruism” (as Richard Leakey called it) many of us have long believed in. (You can find the whole article here: http://billmoyers.com/story/donald-trump-plague-atomization-neoliberal-age/)

Okay, on to the Bumper Stickers:

B.S. #18: ATOMIZATION = EPIDEMIC LONELINESS 

B.S. #19: POLITICS HAS TAKEN AN EXIT FROM ETHICS 

B.S. #20: NEOLIBERALISM CAUSES IMMORAL POLITICAL ZOMBIES

B.S. #21: ATOMIZATION IS THE SCOURGE OF DEMOCRACY

B.S. #22: EMBRACE EMPATHY

B.S. #23: FIGHT FOR THE SOUL OF DEMOCRACY

B.S. #24: WAKE UP AND WORK TOGETHER

But Giroux doesn’t just depress us and depart. He offers words of encouragement (in his scholarly way):–):

“…any viable notion of collective resistance must take matters of consciousness, identity, desire and persuasion seriously, so as to speak to the underlying conditions of atomization that depoliticize and paralyze people within orbits of self-interest, greed, resentment, misdirected anger and spiraling violence.”

Here’s some inspiration from The Youngbloods in “Let’s Get Together”:

C’mon people now,
Smile on your brother
Ev’rybody get together
Try and love one another right now
Pace.
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