This article discussed the concept of community control and various aspects of it. Terms associated with community control are explained, and real life examples are provided in order to better grasp the meaning of this concept. The author of the article suggests that while community control is an attainable target, certain efforts need to be made in order to maintain it effectively.
Theme 1: One of the requirements needed for any community to attain community control is self reliance. Self reliance means ability to function based on internal resources and be able to supply the community with all the necessary things without referring to external providers. However, the author suggests that centralized government with its bureaucracy is coercing its way of life on the citizens.
Theme 2: Another theme touched by the author is personal power. He suggests that the process of community empowerment derives its momentum from power of individuals as well as their synergy that arises from the fact that they are striving for the common objective. Personal empowerment is crucial part of the community empowerment; it starts with self knowledge and self realization. Personal power that is driven towards the common goal attracts others and create leadership needed in order to initiate changes within the community, changes that will be supported by other community members.
Theme 3: The author develops a system of community relationships that calls for relying on community members in everything; he suggests that power previously held by professionals and bureaucrats alike should be taken inside the community and that community members should fight for their powers. He explains that by becoming self reliant and efficiently functioning unit, any community can become a center for local coordination that will make other communities to follow its example.
Critical thinking: While the author is making some good points in this article, it does seem that he is somewhat supportive of anarchy or something that very closely reminds of anarchy. If the community is to assume the powers previously held by government, who will be taking care of such global issues as national defense and various services that could only be provided b professionals?
Moreover, what will be the legal status of such self reliant communities? It seems to me that the whole idea should be reviewed carefully and that it could only be implemented in rather limited scope, not the way the author initially proposed it.
1. “Attaining Community Control” article.