I WILL write about #politics, #elections, #issues and support Emily’s List #feminist #candidates…and so should you!
image from: http://www.list.co.uk
Maybe you think “social media” should just be for posting pictures that are funny or cute. Maybe you don’t want to offend or alienate anyone. Maybe you’re a coward. Maybe you’re undecided. Maybe you’re ignorant and don’t know enough about anything political to write about it. Whatever your reasons or rationales, cut it out.
If you are a USA citizen or a citizen of any country that allows you to vote and you do not exercise that duty and right for EVERY election, informing yourself (which is easier to do than ever before with information EVERYWHERE) and taking a stand on candidates and issues as adults who care are motivated to do, than I want you reading this post to inspire and educate yourself.
If you’re already politically active and savvy, great: SHARE!
First of all, there is a sea of candidates out there for almost every elected post and many campaigns of mis- and dis-information attempting to muddy the waters further. What’s an interested, concerned citizen to do? Utilize the groups that vet candidates and issues FOR us, that’s what. Find a group/entity who screens, analyzes, evaluates and presents, according to YOUR values and interests, those you’d want to vote for, complete with reasons, and information about whom and what to vote against as well.
image from: http://hockeyschtick.blogspot.com
Better yet, if you’re so inclined, RUN for office. Offer yourself to serve on a Board or Commission. Join/donate to/volunteer for a local or state chapter of the League of Women Voters, the National Abortion Rights Action League (NARAL), the National Organization for Women (NOW), or whatever else strikes your fancy. Start small and keep going, because city council members, school board members, mayors, sheriffs, judges and many others in local offices later become state or federal senators, congressional representatives for the state or federal government, state governors, Supreme Court judges, presidents!
As a life-long feminist committed to environmental, social, educational and other more radical values/components that mesh with my Buddhist, nonviolent foundations, I choose appropriate news sources (mostly nonprofits to boot) to help me learn and decide.
Here are a few I use and recommend:
- Emily’s List http://www.emilyslist.org/, whose mission is: “We elect pro-choice Democratic women to office.”
- Mother Jones magazine http://www.motherjones.com/, which has been analyzing and reporting from the center of core issues, reporting what many do NOT report and reporting truthfully, paid off by NO ONE, for decades
- B*TCH Media, whose tagline is “Outsmart the Patriarchy,” which I love even though I do not like their name, and whose mission is to respond to “pop culture,” but does so much more than that http://bitchmagazine.org/
- The Daily KOS, which has a weekly open thread on ELECTIONS, and with whom I often disagree but respect http://www.dailykos.com/
- Amy Goodman, Juan Gonzales and the team at Democracy NOW!, independent, ad-free, on TV and public radio http://www.democracynow.org
- Dissident Voice, which is “a radical [online] newspaper in the struggle for peace and justice,” that sees itself as providing “hard-hitting, thought-provoking and even entertaining news and commentaries on politics and culture that can serve as ammunition in struggles for peace and social justice.” http://dissidentvoice.org/
- Upworthy.com, which is a curation site, gathering from many sources, including YOU, if you submit, to re-present “things that matter.” http://www.upworthy.com/
- The Feminist Wire, with an inspiring and laudable mission: “to provide socio-political and cultural critique of anti-feminist, racist, and imperialist politics pervasive in all forms and spaces of private and public lives of individuals globally. Of particular critical interest to us are social and political phenomena that block, negate, or limit the satisfaction of goods or ends that humans, especially the most vulnerable, minimally require for living free of structural violence. The Feminist Wire seeks to valorize and sustain pro-feminist representations and create alternative frameworks to build a just and equitable society.” http://thefeministwire.com/
image made from John F. Kennedy quote
What else can we/should we do, if you believe, as I do, that change is necessary and that many important changes do occur via our elections and efforts in those directions? Here are some ideas. Comment and add your own, please! http://www.sallyember.com/blog
- Some of you are lucky enough to have an alternative newspaper right in your area, still publishing in print and/or online (The Valley Advocate (New England, USA sites), The Bohemian (CA, USA, San Francisco Bay Area and Central Coast sites), The Boston Phoenix, Women’s Voices Magazine (many locations around the world) are some of my favorites).
Read them. Subscribe. Submit comments online. Submit “Letters to the Editor.” Tell others. Buy ad space. Distribute or allow your business to become a site for distribution.
- Donate to and support National and local Public Radio, Pacifica Radio, other alternative online or actual broadcasting entities. They are fewer and further between than ever and are always operating on shoestring budgets with many volunteers. YOU could volunteer!
- Maybe you want to get your news from a culturally, ethnically or group-specific source, like Al Jazeera, The Advocate (LGBTQIQ), Univision, The St. Louis Jewish Light, Black Press USA, or whichever you prefer.
Support them. Donate. Buy ad space. Volunteer. Comment online. Support their advertisers.
image from: http://mariamuir.com
Use my sources and ideas or get your own, but get informed and work for the candidates you support, for the issues that matter to you.
It is UNACCEPTABLE to be passive and silent, more worried more about being controversial than effecting necessary changes. Be bold! Just because you are an artistic sort doesn’t mean you get to hide!
image made from quote by Larry Neal
Get involved. March. Demonstrate. Speak. Donate. Host. Participate. Invite. Write. Solicit.
“I am only one, but I am still one. I cannot do everything, but still I can do something; and just because I cannot do everything, I will not refuse to do the something that I can do.”
– Helen Keller
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Helen Keller has been one of my idols since I was 9 and read “The Story of My Life.” I learned to fingerspell because of that book (there was a page at the back with the entire manual alphabet in English). My friends and I would fingerspell behind our upraised desktops during class for the next several years. Thanks for the reminder, Nicholas!
Best to you and I hope your LAUNCH of PEARSEUS: VIGIL is going well.
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Thank you! 🙂
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Based in Europe, I subscribe to revolting Europe, which is a good anti-government round up of what’s happening here. British magazine (on line and print), ethical consumer, has a mix of issues, obviously informing people about ‘best buys’ from the point of view of ethics, and looks at life issues internationally, particularly environmental and workers’ rights, or rather non-rights in many/most cases.
My partner and I have both been trade union delegates. Currently, I’m a director and chair of our block management company (unpaid) which at least means I get to influence our very immediate environment. In politics, we’re both members of the socialist party, aMD have offered to volunteer to help. Luckily they haven’t taken me up, as I haven’t got time right now!
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Thanks so much for reading and responding, especially for sharing other (non-USA, particularly) resources. Appreciate that a lot! I used to work with/for Unions, myself.
Keep on keepin’ on!