I asked a few times now on my One Witch's Wonderland Facebook page how many people knew what the Green Party was or what they stood for, but didn't get many responses. With the exception of my OWW Partner, no one had even heard of the Green Party, let alone knew what they were about.
This says to me, that those of us who identify as "Green" aren't doing enough. And since spreading word is what I do best, I see that as a challenge. Surely I'm not going to educate the entire country, but there's no reason I can't educate those in my own town - time to print some flyers. But I also have a blog, and two Facebook pages! So I guess that means it's time to introduce all of you to the Green Party!
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Introduction to The Green Party
What is the Green Party?
The Green Party is the ONLY political party committed to environmentalism, non-violence, social justice and grassroots organizing. It's also the only political party which is working without the support of ANY corporate donors, choosing instead to be supported fully by donations from members and private citizens.
When was the Green Party formed?
Although unorganized groups began working for Green causes on a political front decades eariler, the Green Party officially came together in 1984. First as the "Green Committees of Correspondence," which would later take the current title of "Green Party USA/The Green Party." Today it has the honor of being the oldest, continuously active Green organization in America.
What does the Green Party Stand for?
Our political system has an innumerable number of causes which any party needs to hold official stances on. It would be impossible for me to include them all here. That said, each party has their "top issues" and the Green Party is no different. The following is taken directly from the Green Party website's Values page and explains their "TEN KEY VALUES."
1. Grassroots Democracy
Every human being deserves a say in the decisions that affect their lives; no one should be subject to the will of another. Therefore we will work to increase public participation at every level of government and to ensure that our public representatives are fully accountable to the people who elect them. We will also work to create new types of political organizations that expand the process of participatory democracy by directly including citizens in the decision-making process.
2. Social Justice
All persons should have the rights and opportunity to benefit equally from the resources afforded us by society and the environment. We must consciously confront in ourselves, our organizations, and society at large, barriers such as racism and class oppression, sexism and heterosexism, ageism and disability, which act to deny fair treatment and equal justice under the law.
3. Ecological Wisdom
Human societies must operate with the understanding that we are part of nature, not separate from nature. We must maintain an ecological balance and live within the ecological and resource limits of our communities and our planet. We support a sustainable society that utilizes resources in such a way that future generations will benefit and not suffer from the practices of our generation. To this end we must have agricultural practices that replenish the soil; move to an energy efficient economy; and live in ways that respect the integrity of natural systems.
It is essential that we develop effective alternatives to our current patterns of violence at all levels, from the family and the streets, to nations and the world. We will work to demilitarize our society and eliminate weapons of mass destruction, without being naive about the intentions of other governments. We recognize the need for self-defense and the defense of others who are in helpless situations. We promote nonviolent methods to oppose practices and policies with which we disagree, and will guide our actions toward lasting personal, community and global peace.
Centralization of wealth and power contributes to social and economic injustice, environmental destruction, and militarization. Therefore, we support a restructuring of social, political and economic institutions away from a system that is controlled by and mostly benefits the powerful few, to a democratic, less bureaucratic system. Decision-making should, as much as possible, remain at the individual and local level, while assuring that civil rights are protected for all citizens.
We recognize it is essential to create a vibrant and sustainable economic system, one that can create jobs and provide a decent standard of living, for all people, while maintaining a healthy ecological balance. A successful economic system will offer meaningful work with dignity, while paying a "living wage" which reflects the real value of a person's work. Local communities must look to economic development that assures protection of the environment and workers' rights, broad citizen participation in planning, and enhancement of our "quality of life". We support independently owned and operated companies which are socially responsible, as well as co-operatives and public enterprises that spread out resources and control to more people through democratic participation.
We have inherited a social system based on male domination of politics and economics. We call for the replacement of the cultural ethics of domination and control, with more cooperative ways of interacting which respect differences of opinion and gender. Human values such as equity between the -sexes, interpersonal responsibility, and honesty must be developed with moral conscience. We should remember that the process that determines our decisions and actions is just as important as achieving the outcome we want.
8. Respect for Diversity
We believe it is important to value cultural, ethnic, racial, sexual, religious and spiritual diversity, and to promote the development of respectful relationships across these lines. We believe the many diverse elements of society should be reflected in our organizations and decision-making bodies, and we support the leadership of people who have been traditionally closed out of leadership roles. We acknowledge and encourage respect for other life forms and the preservation of biodiversity.
9. Personal Responsibility
We encourage individuals to act to improve their personal well being and, at the same time, to enhance ecological balance and social harmony. We seek to join with people and organizations around the world to foster peace, economic justice, and the health of the planet.
10. Future Focus / Sustainability
Our actions and policies should be motivated by long-term goals. We seek to protect valuable natural resources, safely disposing of or "unmaking" all waste we create, while developing a sustainable economics that does not depend on continual expansion for survival. We must counter-balance the drive for short-term profits by assuring that economic development, new technologies, and fiscal policies are responsible to future generations who will inherit the results of our actions. Our overall goal is not merely to survive, but to share lives that are truly worth living. We believe the quality of our individual lives is enriched by the quality of all of our lives. We encourage everyone to see the dignity and intrinsic worth in all of life, and to take the time to understand and appreciate themselves, their community and the magnificent beauty of this world.
How is the Green Party affecting YOUR state?
It's not possible to list all the activities which all the Green Party members in each and every state are doing or have done. However, most states have established their own Green Party website's and facebook pages which is meant to keep citizens involved and informed.
If you are interested in seeking our local Green Politicians, movements or opportunities the National Green Party has a full listing of contact information for each state as well as overviews on all major issues:
Find the State Listings HERE