This could be a traditional picnic, checkered blankets and woven baskets in a park. Or it may be a hushed meeting in a church basement or secret bunker. Perhaps messages written in code, passed from hand to hand in a crowded public square. Or exchanged via an online message board, the old-fashioned kind with threaded comments.
This picnic is a response to an emergency. This emergency could be a long-mounting threat to our ability to survive on this planet. Or the chronic, daily emergency caused by inequitable distributions of power and privilege. Or the urgency of a political moment that threatens active repression of dissent.
The picnic’s purpose might be to nurture one another, to gather in community and share strategies for self-care. Or it may be to instigate resistance. Or to methodically design strategies that identify acupuncture points—the most efficient and impactful actions for leveraging change throughout the system.
What matters most about this picnic is that it is intergenerational. Young people have come seeking wisdom and insight from elders. But they have also come prepared to share knowledge and experiences of their own.
What tools will you offer the youth and your peers for responding to this moment of emergency? Maybe it’s a workshop template, or maybe it’s a plate of cookies. A poster design, or a poem. A policy paper, or a list of top ten tips for how to talk to people in power. A word of advice jotted on a napkin, or a step-by-step tutorial.
The emergency is complex, multi-dimensional, and urgent, so the potential tools for addressing it are necessarily many.
What will you bring to the picnic?
This effort’s name is a tribute in memory of our friend Kevin Pierce, and was adapted (with permission from his surviving partner Annie Morse) from his original Emergency Picnic (@EmergencyPicnic). We dedicate our Emergency Picnic to him.