Synthesis/Regeneration 13   (Spring 1997)

Seeing Green

by Don Fitz, Gateway Green Alliance

The production of Synthesis/Regeneration is becoming a truly collaborative effort, extending far beyond Gateway Greens in St. Louis. Holle Brian of Minneapolis lends her talent in designing the cover for this issue. We continue to be grateful for the labors of Gene Rodriguez in Boulder and Jodean Marks in Washington DC, who pour over the final version of articles. We wish to thank Mike Feinstein in Los Angeles for putting us in contact with several of the international authors of this issue. And, of course, Howie Hawkins has been hard at work soliciting contributions for our ongoing dialogue on progressive politics.

If you have not seen S/R 12, you should get a copy in order to appreciate the roundtable which continues in S/R 13. It may not be obvious how closely this political forum relates to international articles. Those who are heavily absorbed in disputes within their own parties often perceive them in terms of the personalities involved. It may not be apparent that political differences and conflicts are an inherent part of any serious political party. Hopefully, the discussion and debates among other Greens will help those in the US appreciate the universal need to come to grips with conflict.

Greens are acutely aware that how groups deal with disagreements when they are small foretells how they will cope with disputes if they become large enough to govern. In 1997, one of the greatest tasks for US Greens is learning how to unite in one strong party without sweeping differences under the rug. If they prove unable to do so, then competing Green factions may well prevent each other from obtaining thresholds needed for ballot status.

Perhaps the ability or inability of Greens to unite while preserving a variety of points of view indicates whether or not they actually have the maturity to be elected to national political office. If Greens were to govern, they would find themselves in the role of urging those in the middle east, Yugoslavia and Ireland to cope with differences without violence. People in all of these regions have seen their family and friends killed by those with whom Greens would be urging cooperation. If Greens are not able to cope with differences with other Greens, which are minor by comparison, then, on what basis do they claim to be qualified to assume a political role of mediating global conflicts?

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