Preaching to the Choir

Why we need demonstrations
By Lara Karuna

I often hear people say that demonstrations simply “preach to the choir.” Why waste time winning over those that you’ve already won, right? But, I’ve never thought that preaching was bad. In my gospel choir, I think a little preaching might have inspired us. I think we would have sung better, in turn inspiring those that came to listen, who just maybe, would have taken their own slice of inspiration home with them.

Demonstrations send our message of discontent and outrage, not only to Americans, but to the global community. This is important because the world agrees with us and needs to see the millions dissenting. It also unifies and energizes us, therefore, unifying and energizing our movement. But, if you believe that reality is a subjective construct based on our shared experiences, then demonstrations serve another function, arguably the most important one.

Demonstrations help build a new cultural paradigm.

Culture doesn’t just change because of fashion, or what’s on the radio. Culture changes because of what we think. So much of our communication is non-verbal. We call it body language, but more than anything, we are responding to the energy of each other’s thoughts. Animals seem to communicate like this, and I think we once depended on this “sixth sense” just as heavily as our eyes and ears.

With the advent of modern science, and lives filled with sensory overload, we have marginalized this sense. It now remains in the background, manifesting itself in the uncanny way we “feel” someone staring at our backs, or the inexplicable chill you get as you pass by some unassuming stranger, sensing his underlying menace. Despite all the modern trappings of rationality, we still catch each other’s thoughts, unknowingly responding to them.

Demonstrations send not only a tangible message, but an intangible one. Unifying our thoughts, we send them out like a beacon for the world to feel, reacting to it by inexplicably moving in the same direction.

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