In only the second week of the new year, I feel reassured at the organization I’ve seen, individuals doing their part to protect our rights, fight for the weakest among us, and continue working for progress: a few stories on the national news about ordinary citizens lobbying their legislators; more than a few Facebook groups getting things done; and personal friends who are attending the meetings, signing up for work, and supporting causes using their talents and skills. Love love love, and thank you thank you thank you. You know who you are.
It’s now been two months since the election. If you’re still sitting on the sidelines, stunned and shocked and praying it’s all a bad dream, please instead find a local group that’s organizing, and get thee to a meeting. And bring a friend. Some organizing can be done virtually, yes, but there’s a unique charge you’ll get from being in the physical company of many other people who feel the same way and are ready to do something about it.
As Rebecca Solnit wrote in Hope In The Dark: “Hope is an embrace of the unknown and the unknowable, an alternative to the certainty of both optimists and pessimists. Optimists think it will all be fine without our involvement; pessimists take the opposite position; both excuse themselves from acting.” Be hopeful! Act!
Since the election, I’ve noticed that some groups prefer to work semi-anonymously, even when the work seems like pretty ordinary citizen engagement. In that spirit, the safest thing to do would be to not share anything that isn’t available from an open, public source. That might mean that this sort-of-daily update becomes less frequent as we (all, hopefully) buckle down and focus on our own engagement. As usual, I’ll figure it out as we go along.
In the meantime, if you need any help finding your place on this big tug-of-war rope, let me know. For those of you news-and-twitter-savvy folks, there is a cool companion guide to Indivisible called Indivertible, and this one is about individual citizens helping TV news get back on track with reporting… news. Actual news. The first 18 pages had some good info and almost too many inside jokes for me to get through it, but Chapter 4 (the rest of the doc) was meaty.