We press play. Not pause.February 19, 2017
Grassroots meetings and rallies are organizing around the country…community by community…like this one on the San Juan Islands today [2.19.17]. Washington State Senator Kevin Ranker spoke to citizens who want to know what to do now. Who are ready for action and remain hopeful in these days of ‘45’. We want to protect and encourage human rights, not party rights. We are hopeful, and want to take action.
So many people showed up at this meeting today that to comply with fire safety rules, chairs were set up on stage to get folks out of the aisles.
This talk was focused on now. What can we do now.
‘We have to talk about liberating minds as well as liberating society.’ -Angela Davis
The focus of the talk was to keep our country’s core values strong, and to always lead first with love, kindness, and respect.
And we must listen to those who are hurting the most. Yes, our rural citizens need jobs, and all people must be given the right to vote – – these are big issues. Sometimes these larger issues seem overwhelming and impossible when we are daily barraged with backward and hurtful mandates this administration continues to release. Senator Ranker believes the power lies with the states and the people within our states. “States matter.” We must sign up and lobby for what we believe, and most importantly, we get people to vote; even in the context of re-districting and gerrymandering, help people vote. Looking at specific numbers, ‘45’ did not win by a large margin in any demographic. However, many people chose not to vote this election for various reasons. This meeting today was not about why, but what. What can we do now.
Senator Rankor offers three suggestions:
- One Term. We cannot allow eight years of hate. One term. One.
- Educate. Educate ourselves and others on the issues.
- Sign up.
Yes, our rural neighbors need jobs, and many voted for ‘45’ who felt he would get their jobs back in coal and manufacturing. These jobs have been dissipating since the ‘70’s and they’re not coming back – – technology has surpassed the need. Yet, there are industries that are growing, for example, the green industry. These families need opportunities for education. What can we do in our communities to help them? I encourage you to watch three brief reports offered from Frontline on PBS, released this week, that help explain the rural plight. Here are the links.
Our collective hearts break thinking of the disappointment, the discouragement and despair when promises made during the campaign will not be kept – – when jobs do not return.
Choose the organizations to support that align with your beliefs and interests. And educate yourself and families. Go to https://www.indivisibleguide.com and learn how to organize action locally. Read books at your local libraries and book stores, like Paulo Freire’s, Pedagogy of the Oppressed, and Radicals, by Saul Alinsky. Sign up to make phone calls, right from your own homes, or local venues. Talk to people. Face-to-face. Listen. And write letters to Washington DC. Elected officials, according to Senator Rankin, read the hand-written ones.
Most importantly. We must stay strong. When we feel fatigued and overwhelmed, lean on each other in our groups for support and strength. And take time with each other, regardless of political perspective.
And you know what else we can do? Run for a political office, or local school board, or PTA. Lend our our voices, and always, always, our hearts.
I am inspired by this movement across our country. You care. I care. We care.
We can do this.
#freepressDecember 11, 2016
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It begins, with us.August 24, 2016
Revolution…not evolution.March 12, 2016
New York Times:
‘Revolutions are typically bottom-up, not top-down, events. Mr. Sanders’s campaign is powered by $30 contributions and an army of young volunteers, but there are not enough elected office holders in Congress or in statehouses to carry out his revolution through new laws or policies. And that’s the big difference between running an inspiring campaign and actually governing.
The mistake is thinking that we get behind a progressive candidate for president, and that will solve all our problems.
Mr. Sanders’s own political career illustrates what can happen when a revolutionary has no ground troops. For 25 years in Congress, Mr. Sanders has held fast to his progressive message and principles. But he hasn’t gotten many big things done. As an uncompromising political independent, his outsider status has largely prevented him from attracting the support that would be needed among Democrats to turn into law his liberal ideals on health care, on college education and on fighting poverty and climate change.
One need only look to the legislative setbacks for President Obama to see what happens when transformative ideas hit an intransigent Congress.
As a result, Mr. Obama has presided over the biggest loss of congressional Democrats in modern political history — 13 Senate seats and 69 House seats. Republicans now hold 31 governorships, many more than when Mr. Obama took office. State legislatures, too, have had a surge in Republican control.
The Democratic Party recognizes the problem, but whether it can alter the trend is another matter. Raul Alvillar, the national political director for the Democratic National Committee, says the party has demographics on its side, as a wave of young people reach voting age, and the party, through a series of training initiatives, is trying to inspire them to run for local office.
Ilya Sheyman, the executive director of MoveOn.org, a political advocacy and action group that has endorsed Mr. Sanders, views his candidacy as “a reaction to the Tea Party standing in the way of everything the president wants to do, and a coming of age of a new wave of voters.” He is confident that movements like Occupy Wall Street, the Fight for $15 minimum-wage campaign, and Black Lives Matter will eventually propel young progressives into elective office. He credits Occupy Wall Street with putting the issue of wealth inequality into public discourse, and “now I think what we’re seeing is the electoralization of these issues.”
Mr. Sanders’s supporters say his election will inspire more such candidacies, giving him the congressional backup he needs. But given Democrats’ problems on the state and local level, that could take years — and that’s evolution, not revolution.’