PRINCIPLES OF PARTICIPATION
GREEN PARTY OF MISSISSIPPI
The Green Party of Mississippi was started to pursue goals embodied in Ten Key Values. We usually think of those in terms of political or social goals. However, if we think of them as what we would like to achieve within the group, they might read like this:
Grassroots Democracy means we make time for all to express knowledge, opinions, and questions for discussion by the group upon which there is a decision to vote or consent.
Social Justice and Equal Opportunity means that no one in the group dominates over others and no one is at a disadvantage within the group for any reason. Leaders lead by example and by drawing out the wishes of all members of the group. We must consciously confront in ourselves any barriers to this.
Ecological Wisdom means that we use all resources of the group as wisely as we can.
Non-violence means that we act respectfully and peacefully toward each other at all times. Questioning an idea is not the same as attacking the holder of the idea. Violence in tone or words demeans others and easily leads to further disrespectful behavior. We forgive each other for our shortcomings and mistakes.
Decentralization means that we all benefit from what we do as a group – no one rips off anyone else or brings down external consequences on any member of the group.
Community-Based Economics and Economic Justice means that we encourage everyone to participate in all decisions, pay fairly for any work that we contract out, work cooperatively in all ways as much as possible, and help each other as we are able as individuals and as a group.
Feminism and Gender Equity means that we assure that human values such as equity between the sexes, interpersonal responsibility, and honesty are developed with moral conscience. The process that determines our decisions and actions is just as important as achieving the outcomes we want.
Respect for Diversity means that we don’t all have to think the same, fill the same roles, or have the same dedication to each activity, but we do need to understand where we each are coming from in order to maintain group cohesion.
Personal and Global Responsibility means that we encourage individuals to act to improve their personal well-being, to help one another as needed, and to analyze how best to contribute to harmonious group functioning at all levels. It is the responsibility of each member to speak up when necessary to ensure that no one is victimized by another.
Future Focus and Sustainability means that we know that survival of the group and achievement of its purposes cannot happen unless we each work continually to improve our own behaviors and attitudes and reduce any negatives, as difficult as that may sometimes be.
The core of the Ten Key Values can be summed up by: “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.” While we may be able to improve the wording of the statements above, we pledge ourselves to keep the core value in the forefront of our thinking and acting.
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