Can you help make these happen?
The movement’s growing and more and more people are getting involved. Here are 5 things you might be able do to help make the movement grow further.
1. A web-page to show all events being organised in Romania and Internationally
People are now organising events all across the country and around the world for a Global Day of Action and Celebration for Romania and Rosia Montana on Sunday, September 8th. To help people see how they can take part or to share information on events they’re organising, can a web-page be put up on the Save Rosia Montana web-site (www.rosiamontana.org) or elsewhere that allows people to easily see and follow what’s happening in their cities, to add information on events, and to connect / link with events pages on Facebook?
2. A web-page to gather all good quality articles in national and international media and links to radio and tv programmes / video postings
There’s a lot of great information and coverage in the news of the demonstrations and what’s happening across Romania – and its support internationally. While people are posting this on the internet many people (including supporters around the world) are asking for an ‘easy to find’ page in English (and one in Romanian) where they can see all the different news postings gathered). This could also be put up on www.rosiamontana or anywhere it’s easily accessible.
3. Make visible clear scientific, environmental, social, cultural and political arguments for why we oppose this project and want something better for the country
Many people across the country support the project or are undecided – and for good reasons! We can’t just condemn anyone who has a different point of view or doesn’t agree with us, and we don’t need to. What’s great about this movement is that we’re being the change we want to see for the country. If we want government and people to listen to each other and have better governance and respect for dignity and for each other, let’s ourselves be a model of that in the way we’re organising and working for change in the country. Many people support the project for the obvious reality that we have a major problem in Rosia Montana and rural areas across the country of poverty, lack of good jobs, and lack of investment in infrastructure. They think the project may help with that. I don’t agree that the project will do this, but I do agree on the need for improving jobs, quality of living, infrastructure and opportunities – in rural areas and across Romania. Since I’m writing this on a computer and use a mobile phone and keys to my house, you can also imagine that I – at least in some way – support mining. What I don’t support though is the impressive bad practice of this company, or the often dishonest and corrupt ways the project has been developed over the past ten+ years, and I don’t agree with the unacceptable levels of complicity and bad governance we’ve seen from our political class in relation to the project. We need and can have: good governance; economic development done in ways that support and sustain environmental sustainability; and use of our national resources to create jobs, opportunities, investment and infrastructure for Romania – not just for the profit of a few stakeholders abroad. We can also have discussions, even if we radically and passionately disagree with each other, in ways that are respectful, and help build a real culture of civic dignity, democracy and mutual respect and solidarity in this country. If we have good scientific, environmental, social, cultural, political and other analysis and arguments for why this project should be opposed (and I’ve seen some wonderful ones) can we collect them together in an easy to use ‘guide’ to Rosia Montana, that can be shared widely in Romanian, Hungarian, English and other languages, that can be used for advocacy, lobbying and informing media and decision makers, and that can also be discussed with people who are undecided or even supporting the project. And: let’s make sure it has quick, one page ‘fact sheets’ and is done in an attractive way, so that people see clear arguments and facts. Let’s also make sure it’s rigorously accurate and correct!
4. Take the time to really talk to people and recruit people for September 8
The energy and excitement in the movement are growing all across Romania and around the world. More and more people are becoming involved. It’s important that we take the time to really talk with people – with friends, with colleagues, neighbours, people who oppose the project and people who support the project – and with respect, imagination, creativity and inspiration, invite and encourage them to take part. Especially: recruit and inspire people to join the Global Day of Action and Solidarity for Rosia Montana on September 8th. Let’s get 100.000 plus people in the streets all across Romania! Does it seem ambitious? Impossible? It’s not! If we all organise, if we speak with friends, if we turn this into an amazing, democratic movement and celebration – for dignity, for good governance, for civic participation, and for the environment – we can make it happen.
5. To make that happen, we need to go into the streets…and beyond!
Getting out into the streets is a vital part of this movement. It’s also an amazing and exciting part! Many people have been saying that they’re taking part in ‘demonstrations’ for the first time – and they’re loving it! The demonstrations have been places of unity, creativity, celebration and inspiration. People feel that they’re finally standing up for something that matters to them – and seeing thousands more doing the same! There have been discussions, songs, and amazing solidarity. This is only going to grow – all across the country. To make it grow though, we need to also be creative in other actions we can add to these. One of our main goals should be to invite all the people of Romania to take part – and to do that in a way that reaches out to them, respects them, and makes them feel excited and positive about participation. This could include:
Organising concerts – in the streets, in cafes, pubs, with friends – between now and Sunday and using music and song to inspire and encourage people;
Go to highschools and engage students! “Schools back” and elementary and highschool students are going back to school. Let’s energise every school in this country to be a ‘site’ of mobilisation, dialogue, inspiration and engagement, and get students discussing what’s happening – and being a driving force of the energy and preparations for Sunday! Children and youth are part of the future of Romania! Let’s really reach out and get them involved.
Organise workshops, ‘discussion cafes’, panels, and ‘civic forums’ to reach out to people more broadly and create space for discussion, questions, sharing different opinions. At its heart, a lot of what’s happening now is people across the country standing up for and demanding better governance – and doing that through active citizenship and participation. So let’s go one step further. Let’s put into practice good governance and democracy by creating citizens forums and democratic spaces for dialogue and discussion across the country, and let’s turn these spaces into experiences of empowerment and building respect, dignity and solidarity.
Recognise how important you are! Right now you might be taking part in actions and events across the country, thinking about taking part, or annoyed and upset about what you’re seeing on the streets! We can have a range of different thoughts and opinions about what’s happening. Whatever you’re thinking though: know that you’re important and your thoughts and actions are important. Whatever your opinion, we have a responsibility (and a right) to inform ourselves about what’s happening – and we can also help other people to be informed as well. Getting involved or not getting involved is also ‘voting’ for what you want in Romania. And, if you are getting involved: can you talk with your parents, your family, your children, your friends, colleagues, neighbours and others to encourage them to get involved as well? Imagine if, instead of just going to the demonstrations, we all think of 5, 6, 10 other people we want to get to come along as well. We’ll reach 100.000 plus people in no time, and you’ll have helped make it happen!
And there’s a lot more! You can use poetry, letters to the editor, standing in your city, town or village with a sign informing people about September 8th, going into cafés and getting into discussions there, reaching out to unions and syndicates, pensioners associations, and much, much more! Key: Facebook helps, but if we want to really involve people, we need to talk face to face.
Most important of all, remember that this is a celebration. This is about people participating, celebrating what we want to see in the country, standing up for the environment, living solidarity, and refusing to be complacent, cynical or disempowered any longer. These are 5 quick ideas. Maybe you have a dozen more. Be creative. Be inspired, and most of all: believe in yourself and that yes, now, in this moment, you can make a difference.
Two important things to remember:
- The RMGC / Gabriel Resources project will not succeed, because people will not let it succeed.
- Your action, your choice, your involvement matters
And a few quotes to inspire you:
“I am neither an optimist nor a pessimist, but I have hope – born of the choices I make and the actions I take.” KFBJ
“Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it’s the only thing that ever has.” Margaret Mead
“Caminante, no hay camino. Se hace camino al andar.” “Traveller there is no road. The road is made as one walks” Antonio Machado
“Be the change you wish to see in the world.” Gandhi