The "Bank Transfer Day" campaign hit Facebook this weekend, urging consumers to transfer their bank accounts from big banks to credit unions by November 5. The campaign targets banks which took federal handouts especially, and then raised fees.
The campaign was not started by the "Occupy Wall Street" movement, but it shares common goals: return power to the people and remove it from the corporations. It is good to see people from the left and the right uniting to speak out for "government of the people, by the people and for the people" again.
This campaign was started by 27-year-old Kristen Christian, an art gallery owner in Los Angeles. According to Time, she chose November 5 because of its association with Guy Fawkes, who tried to blow up the House of Lords in London in 1605. Despite that association, Christian insists she is not advocating anarchy. She merely wants to shift the power away from the big corporations to smaller institutions that people know and trust.
"It's like, if you don't like Walmart's practices, shopping at a local grocery store instead," she said.
At the time the Time article was written, there were about 14,000 people who had committed to the action on the Facebook page. At the time of this article, there are 22,195.
Not enough people may take this action to really change the way the banks do business because of the actual monetary impact, but this, along with the many "Occupy Wall Street" type events going on around the country, will bring even more attention to the mood of the people and the need for change, and that is the way social change occurs. Civil Rights began with sit-down protests. Women got the right to vote through marches and non-violent protests. Any action that shines light on injustice is a righteous action.
Even those people who do not actually move their accounts can offer support and approval to those who do. It is time to show that when it comes to the economy, Americans will not just passively take what is handed to them.