#DearElizabethWarren: Watch this
During Occupy Wall Street I learned that a few dedicated activists could truly shake the halls of power. The rub, though, is that their authenticity and passion must be on display in a way that can spread through social media.
The new voices that arose during those days taught me how powerful it could be to have a simple cell phone camera pointed at the right person at the right time. Institutions, the mainstream media and masses of money were no longer required to shake our democratic discourse to the core.
It was in this context that I decided to join Ready for Warren, the independent grassroots effort to draft Elizabeth Warren to run for president. This also informed the primary way I’ve taken part — by way of act.tv/dearliz.
This February, act.tv and Ready for Warren teamed up to launch a video campaign called #DearElizabethWarren entailing individuals appealing directly to Elizabeth Warren by speaking into a camera and explaining why they need her to run for president.
People made videos alone on their cell phones or webcams, together at ‘video parties’, and at all sorts of other events. The results have been amazing.
When we hit the milestone of over 50 participants (including Mark Ruffalo, thanks to Art Not War and Run Warren Run) we made the highlight video above. With the caveat that I couldn’t be more biased, I think it turned out awesome to say the least! This was reflected with some great media coverage coming from People Magazine, Al Jazeera America, the Julianna Forlano Show and more.
There is important context here, too. On pages 212–13 of Elizabeth Warren’s book, A Fighting Chance, Warren describes a powerful encounter with a woman struggling so hard that she was nearly out of hope, but who pleaded with her to stand, fight, and run for the Senate. The woman’s story was so impactful, Elizabeth Warren felt she couldn’t just walk away. She looked the woman in the eye, said “Yes, I’ll fight”, and with that she committed to run.
Of course we can’t all have one-on-ones with Elizabeth Warren. But through the power of digital video and social media, all of us can bring our case right to her. That is a game-changing reality, not only for Warren, not only for draft efforts, but for our politics at large.