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ATTENTION: Documentary filmmaker Bobbi Jo Hart is looking to connect with people who have submitted their stories to We Are the 99 Percent. She would like to bring your stories to life in a new feature documentary film. You can contact her directly at firstname.lastname@example.org if you would like to know more and explore being interviewed on camera.
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I’ve been trying to reason with the machine, within my legal rights supposedly granted by them, to get one wrong line out of pages and pages of paperwork forgiven, because correcting that line would cost my family close to $12,000, and not having that (we work for a living, but simply don’t have that much in liquefiable assets), we would- children and all- be made homeless in an attempt to make the paperwork perfect, and the odds are sky high that our being homeless would then cause us to be disqualified on another line anyway.
They will split up the family across different countries if we cannot get the paperwork right, and with our current income we will not be able to afford that many different roofs, so some of us will become homeless, never mind the emotional pain of being separated from ones family, support, and best friend for life. As normal workers we just can’t afford vacation homes all over the world as the government would like us to, so we do not qualify as human enough to remain together.
This isn’t the first time the machine has done this to my family and my people under different guises. Over the last century they have tried to (and have succeeded with some family members) to gas us, freeze us to death, starve us to death, steal our land, take our country, put us in concentration camps on two continents, put us on forced reservations, and now this- forced homelessness to meet the needs of the paperwork.
My family and my people have been dehumanized by the machine over the years due to status, race, creed, and origins. I have watched as the machine has forced my neighbors into slavery in prisons because of nothing but the color of their skin.
Previously, the family members that survived have fled, hid, and lied to protect their lives. Now it’s my turn. I choose truth. I choose to turn around and stand up to the machine, knowing full well that whatever the court may be called, I am facing a death panel, the same one that has been trying to annihilate my family for a century at least. Knowing that a killer cannot be reasoned with. Knowing that a machine with no soul will never be able to recognize humanity in a person with a soul and a pulse.
I followed all of its rules like a sheep, tried following its commands, when its paperwork was messed up I took the weight of it and suffered for it. When I could have worked to free myself I did not, because its rules told me I was not allowed to work. I fairly well shot myself in the foot to blindly obey it. And now when I am bleeding and asking for one line of bandage for the wounds I have sustained obeying it, it kicks me in the shin and throws my children to the wolves. I can imagine my people went into the gas chambers in much the same way, having hope that the machine would show a soul, hope that if they just obeyed that it would be kind, but all the obeying did was end their lives.
Am I crazy to face it, or am I fed up? It threatens my husband and my children. If it were just threatening me, maybe I would do the sane thing and run like my surviving ancestors before me. But the anger and protective instinct when a murderer tries to attack my family is too much. I cannot back down. If they do not cease to light the fire in their gas chambers, I will drag them down into the flames with me. This crushing of humanity must end.
I am the 99%