The end of democracy seems to be drawing frighteningly near, when mainstream papers like Philip Elliott’s Oct 8th article in Time Magazine says “This is when the finale of Christopher Nolan’s Dark Knight series becomes prophecy: streets packed with an uprising and violence.”
Calm down everyone. It’s going to be a Democratic landslide and here’s a why.
Voter demographics are shifting in favor of a landslide defeat of Trump and the Republican senate. They know this and they are panicking too.
The dawn sky is dark orange with the smoke here in Northern California, the light a frightening apricot gold. It feels like the imminent climax of the pandemic/political/climate apocalypse and the ruins of the paradise I thought I lived in, bringing intensity to the search for what to DO.
Electing a new president seems like the obvious starting point, but how? I want to do something more than give money to the begging emails flooding my account.
This evening, I think I found it, finally: Phone banking.
Don’t hang up yet! I know, I’m with you — scary, exhausting, transactional…
Before each election, the massive Voter Information Guide booklet thuds through my door, and I make an honest effort to read it.
But by the time I get the candidates for county sheriff, municipal transit, schools, mosquito abatement, and fire protection boards, I’m done, bogged down by happy-clappy buzzword-ridden campaign statements that make it impossible to figure out differences between candidates I’ve never heard of.
That sort of disengagement makes relatively easy to get elected to down-ticket offices — which can make it easy for people with an agenda to get into those obscure offices and enact their agenda in…
Are you working to improve your activism by acquiring core skills such as public speaking, canvassing, and writing quote-worthy letters to decision-makers? If not, it’s time to ask why.
Progressive activists like myself can fall into the “fixed mindset” trap: We feel inadequate and struggle with all the actions we should do, becoming overwhelmed with the work it may take to make a real difference.
It’s tempting to tell others what you are definitely going to do, that you are not going to give up… but then you do quietly give up, as your everyday life takes back over. …
“Pull yerself together and get on with it!” is Britain’s answer to psychotherapy. It’s a standing joke between me and my sister in Yorkshire whenever we get wobbly with fear, anxiety and overwhelm. Stuck in place with what to do to prevent say, Brexit. (I’m so proud of Diana — she tried very, very hard and, nope, Brexited.) And now I’m feeling frozen with what to do to about climate change, about how to make America civil, compassionate and COVID free again. From C to shining C. (Couldn’t resist. Forgive me.)
There is a better way to get unstuck and…
I often associate curiosity with children and the repetitive “Why” game. As a kid, I’d see if I could get in more than three “Why”s before my dad caught on. He’s a particle physicist and would give lengthy, sincere answers based on first principles. We try it with him even now, at 85 with a mind still sharp as a steel trap.
But playing the “Why” game can also be a useful approach to understanding and building connections with friends and family who have very different political viewpoints.
Francesca Gio writes in the Harvard Business Review:
“In my research I…
A gentle knock on my classroom door at the end of the first ‘smoke day’ in California. My mother-in-law’s house is burning in Paradise. The kids cooped up all day with glue and scissors and cardboard, the smell of poster paint and hot child breath still lingering in the room. I’m beyond done for the day.
The mother of one of the few black students in my science class wants to talk to me. Is now a convenient time? I hesitate. I know that letting stuff fester is rarely good so I say yes.
Her daughter, Keisha, sits reluctantly. She…
Sue is a science teacher and a Teacher of the Year from a top performing district in California. She runs the Take Action Science blog since 2007.