This is a solution proposed by C.T. Butler, the co-author of On Conflict and Consensus. What he says is that the democratic body of the GA should be able to give a temperature check as to whether a block is valid or not. This does not mean the GA agrees with the block necessarily, but it at least validates that the reason stated is an applicable moral, ethical, or safety concern, in the context of the group as a whole, rather than a personal concern or a block issued out of some other motive.
This would give the General Assembly, the group whose combined efforts represent the movement as a whole, the ability to also say whether a block is valid or not. This will foster an environment that will function the way it was intended to, by requiring that all valid blocks articulate a moral, ethical, or safety concern, i.e., it must be explicitly stated how the proposal in question does harm to individuals within the movement or the movement as a whole. Otherwise the block may be challenged through the following process:
1. A Point of Process may be called upon a block that sounds invalid. A block that is contested by a Point of Process should be re-stated, and time given compassionately to the individual to speak to their block as clearly as possible.
2. For any block that has been contested by a Point of Process, do a temperature check to get feedback from the meeting body. If 75% of the meeting assembly does not believe that the articulated reason matches the form of a moral, ethical, or safety concern for the movement, that block is not considered a valid block.
This is not intended to divine truth, or arbitrate opinions. All that this is intended to do is require that the grave seriousness of which blocking is supposed to warn is being addressed in the process, as opposed to providing the blocker the ability to voice a strident ‘no’ with a chance to speak their mind, or an opportunity to offer an earmark of a friendly amendment without which they will stand in the way of the process. So long as the concern voiced behind a block fits the frame of a moral, ethical, or safety concern, regardless of whether this is a popular position amongst the group as a whole.
As a ‘sunset clause,’ this proposal clause will expire one week after the passage by the General Assembly of a Community Agreement, as this will itself arbitrate whether a block is based on the shared values of a community as a whole.
– Sean M.