SELF ACTUALIZATION IN THE COMMUNITY WHERE YOU LIVE
write your own laws, build your own support networks with people you can look in the eye.
Declare that you are the author of your own authority, and enact agreements around your community of common unity.
In Mendocino County, we passed a first of its kind ever Community Bill of Rights in Nov. 2014. I had worked with the Council of Environmental Legal Defense Fund and Democracy School to help get this passed. This new law gave Nature rights of standing in court, (following Ecuador’s lead), this is huge to protect our rivers, trees, etc. We also put laws into place that preemptively bans fracking and gave priority standing in the County to Community Bill of Rights over State and Federal Laws. Thus, our Board of Supes must, by law now, follow local Community laws before all others. Unfortunately, getting Mendonesians to agree on anything is like herding cats, but the law is still there and a very solid, legal template should other muni’s and counties wish to follow. I’m most proud of this work.
Only when we take back the authors of our own authorities, by empowering ourselves once again, can we make the changes we must to activate the new visions of much better ways, IMHO.
(starts at 7:00) rip Abby and Breaking the Set
“The sacred rights of mankind, are not to be rummaged for among old parchments or musty records. They are written, as with a sunbeam, in the whole volume of human nature, by the hand of divinity itself, and can never be erased or obscured by mortal power.” ~ Alexander Hamilton
Mendocino County, Ca Makes History
by Jamie Lee
Mendocino County, in the pristine northern lands of California, where the magnificent ancient coastal Redwood trees meet the inland California Oaks, has voted itself into the constitution writing (righting) business.
Yesterday, by a significant margin, they became the first county in California, and only the second county in the country to pass into law a very powerful local ordinance that declares local self-governing rights in their communities over state and federal jurisdiction. Over 67% of the votes cast were in favor of the measure.
The ordinance provides for waters free from toxic trespass; preemptively bans all fracking activities countywide with heavy fines and penalties for violation of the ordinance; and establishes a Community Bill of Rights to, for, and by the residents of Mendocino County while checking corporate powers as well.
In addition, the newly created law gives the Rights of Nature to exist and flourish without toxic trespass whereas previously Nature had no standing in the court of law.
Here is some of the powerful language in the proposed ordinance which you can read (source):
“Right to community self-government.
All residents of Mendocino County possess the right to a form of governance where they live which recognizes that all power is inherent in the people and all free governments are founded on the people’s consent.
Use of Mendocino County government by the sovereign people to make law and policy shall not be deemed by any authority to eliminate or reduce that self-governing authority. Rights as self-executing, fundamental and unalienable.
All rights delineated and secured by this ordinance are inherent, fundamental and unalienable; and shall be self-executing and enforceable against both private and public actors.”
The people of Mendocino County have made history once again after being the first county in the nation to ban Genetically Modified Organisms (GMO’s) in 2004. Now these Mendonesians of premier wine making, medical marijuana growing and self-declared independence are continuing to assert and reclaim their inherent rights to decide for themselves what the laws will be in their communities and their county.
What may seem radical to many is only following in declarations and rights acknowledged to, by, and for them by the California State and U.S. Constitution’s as well as the Declaration of Independence:
Declaration of Independence, July 4, 1776:
That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government.
Article 1 of the California State Constitution of 1849:
Sec. 1. All men are by nature free and independent, and have certain inalienable rights, among which are those of enjoying and defending life and liberty, acquiring, possessing, and protecting property: and pursuing and obtaining safety and happiness.
Sec. 2. All political power is inherent in the people. Government is instituted for the protection, security, and benefit of the people; and they have the right to alter or reform the same, whenever the public good may require it.
Across the nation a truly grass-roots movement of taken back power by, and for the people at the local levels has begun in earnest.
Abby Martin of RT Int’l TV speaks with Jamie Lee, a farmer and activist, who helped craft a first of its kind fracking ban in Mendocino County, California that gives nature legal rights.
Is it Legal?
Many in Mendocino County are asking about the legality of writing their own laws preempting the power of state and federal law over their county. One answer is provided by the founder of the Community Environmental Legal Defense Fund (CELDF), Thomas Linzey :
The law is not currently on your side. Over the past century, both corporations and state government have restricted the authority of municipal corporations so that the people of the municipality have very few rights at all. Your right to govern your own county has been canceled out by the “rights” of corporations, and the authority of the State to preempt your lawmaking.
Measure S is about changing that. It is about changing the law by challenging the law. Openly, frontally, and directly. The current system of law does not allow you to say “no” to fracking within the County. You therefore have a choice – you can either accept that current status of the law, or you can work to change it. Measure S is about asserting your right – as residents of the County – to change how the municipal system operates.
Measure S is about challenging what the law “is” and adopting a new system of law which enables you to control what happens in the County.
(CELDF), along with Global Exchange of San Francisco, have been instrumental in providing assistance and guidance across the country to help we the people take back our rights and reclaim our power to decide for ourselves what laws we wish in our communities. For over 14 years they have been active in helping communities pass local ordinances across the nation. Currently there are over 8 states and some 800 communities who have recently passed local ordinances yet it has not been easy.
In 2008 and again in 2010, Spokane, Washington tried to pass local ordinances banning corporate power in their city and protection of their waterways but failed by a few percentage votes while being heavily outspent by outside corporate interests. They plan to try again in the next election cycle.
In 2008, the City of Mt. Shasta organized and began the process of empowering themselves when they learned that the corporate/state power company for Northern California, Pacific Gas and Electric, was actively spraying the skies above them with toxic chemicals through Geo-engineering.
PG &E cloud seeding, where the energy giant launches a cannon of silver iodide into passing storm clouds, forces the unnatural release of rain in one location to increase hydroelectric power for increased company profits from their dams.
Additionally, Mt. Shasta City citizens attempted to ban water withdrawal from the local aquifers by corporate water bottlers, who were taking water at will from local tributaries. The community wanted to stop these unwanted practices which posed serious environmental damage to their very pristine ecosystem at the base of Mt. Shasta.
Measure A had nearly the entire community support and was likely to pass until forces unseen got involved and due to “clerical error” removed Measure A from the ballot just two weeks before elections.
What is highly suspicious about the “clerical error” was the same city voter registrar who helped the citizens of Mt. Shasta write the legalese language to the measure was also the same person who declared the measure invalid. You can read more about this act of subversion here.
“We will take America back, Sheriff by Sheriff, County by County, State by State.” -Sheriff Richard Mack
“We are the watch keepers of Mendocino County” Sheriff Tom Allman, Mendocino County