As wonderful and idealistic as our younger generation is, it does not vote in large enough numbers. If young people voted at the same rates as older people, they could transform this country.
DNC in the summer of 1960.
From her book The Moral Basis of Democracy [1940/2016]:
“Therefore, as their elders leave the stage, it remains for youth to find a way to face the domestic situation, to meet the conditions which confront their country in its relationship with the other countries of the world” (p. 43).
The democratic theory of government and of life in a democracy opposes one-man rule, and holds to the belief that the individual controls his government through active participation in the process of political democratic government, but bows to the ill of the majority, free expressed” (italics mine) (p.7).
Hillary Clinton won the election by 2,864,974 votes. A handful of Electoral College members voted against the popular vote to put a man, wholly unqualified, into the presidency.
“…it remains for youth to find a way to face” this assault on the majoritive. If you register and VOTE, you will give the democratic process back to the American people.
Please. Vote. And find five friends to register. We need you. This country needs you.
NOVEMBER 3, 2020
“The Americans are very impressionable people; they see what they want to see. I have a lot of respect for them. I am not upset at all that I ended up on this list. If they want to see the devil, let them see him.”
Russian Oligarch Yevgeny V. Prigozhin, one of 13 Russians indicted by a federal grand jury on Friday, February 16th, 2018, for interfering in the American election.
“Facebook, Twitter and Google have all identified the Internet Research Agency as a prime source of provocative posts on divisive American issues, including race, religion, gun laws and gay rights, particularly during the 2016 presidential election. Facebook found, for example, that the agency had posted 80,000 pieces of content that reached more than 126 million Americans.” [NYTimes]
Imagine a world where democracy lives up to its lofty promise… where problems are solved by debate and compromise rather than vitriol and internet trolls. A nice thought isn’t it?” asks Brian Klaas. As a scholar of democracy and authoritarianism, he’s seen fear-and-division politics rising across the world, but says we’re more powerful than we think in reversing this trend. Beyond the uncomfortable stats of our civic shortcomings; he shares moments with those he’s met risking their freedom and their lives for a democratic choice; and offers five concrete ways we can start changing what we don’t like.
Thoughts from Brian Klaas:
Democracies around the world are dying. Remember: Being a citizen is a full time job.
People who say, “my vote doesn’t matter”? Wrong.
Politicians pander to those who vote. (Who votes in majority? Older white males.)
Democracies are dying. One man in Russia who was being followed by the secret police told Klaas, “You don’t know how lucky you are.”
“There are these two young fish swimming along and they happen to meet an older fish swimming the other way, who nods at them and says “Morning, boys. How’s the water?” And the two young fish swim on for a bit, and then eventually one of them looks over at the other and goes “What the hell is water?”
-David Foster Wallace
We need to remember how powerful we are.
Of the people.
By the people.
For the people.
Ongoing paradox: People are unhappy with the system, but not many do much to understand it…or do anything.
In the midterm election in 2014, 36% of registered voters voted. 64/100 didn’t bother.
In the 2016 presidential election? 60% voted. And the current president was voted in by 30% of the US population. Apathy voted a candidate into the Oval Office.
80,000 people tipped the election…enough to fit into a football stadium.
We get the candidates we deserve.
P A R T I C I P A T I O N
Our collective power to save democracy:
Vote in every election…local and national, because the local candidates become national candidates.
Before the election talk to 10 people before voting.
Be the boss to your politicians; they work for us. Whether they agree with you or not, tell them how you feel.
Reach out to someone who believes completely differently from what you believe. And listen.
Run for office or organize a new political group.
Actions become ripples and those ripples become tsunamis.
Think about it. If women waited for an invitation, we still wouldn’t have the right to vote.
2018 is ours. And the youth? They are activating.
︶⁀°• •° ⁀︶
Go see it. It will give you hope. (Stay until the very final credit rolls.) ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆
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.’