Canvassing, House Parties, Phone Banking. It’s time to get out of our comfort zones and seek the change we want and to move toward a just transition in NM. Retake has five excellent candidates, all challengers, all underdogs, all in need of one thing: YOU.
Thoughts on Civic Dialog: Today’s post focuses on the need for all of us to get far more active over the next weeks. This weekend alone, there is a Somos rally on Friday, canvassing and calling for five Retake supported candidates, and the NM launch of a nationwide campaign of civil disobedience and direct action. That is an awful lot for Fri-Mon. But before I describe those events, I have to comment on the character of civic dialog evolving in relation to the Dist. 46 primary campaign.
Yesterday I posted that Retake had decided to support Andrea Romero. In the body of the post was a summary of observations, facts, and claims that had been reported in prior posts and that were largely derived either from a review of NMlegis.gov voting records or from the larger print media. The response from most supporters was very positive: e.g. “Thank you for your continuing balanced citizen journalism.”
Two-thirds of the comments on yesterday’s post were from Trujillo supporters, with some commenting multiple times. Most were respectful and introduced other interpretations or versions of the facts. As usual, no matter how critical, all of these comments were approved. In 18 months, until yesterday I had never prevented a comment from being posted. However, yesterday two commenters presented such tortured versions of reality that I decided not to publish them, not because they were critical, but because they lacked any substance or evidence to support claims that were not going to advance a civil dialogue.
If people want to claim that we are descending into “mob rule” or conducting a “witch hunt” when we are reporting on the claims made by now 3-4 women, claims that other women have corroborated, I don’t think any response will make a difference for those people.
What is most interesting to me is that the same people who are criticizing reports of harassment and who say we are rushing to judgment are the same people who are asserting, utterly absent any evidence whatsoever, that the harassment claims are part of some “establishment” conspiracy. No evidence, but in one comment after another this conspiracy is presented as fact, an assumption not to be questioned.
The willingness to accept as fact a conspiracy without any evidence is different than believing multiple women making claims of harassment. In the latter there are written claims, supported by written corroboration. From what I can tell, Trujillo supporters are relying on an utterly unsubstantiated conspiracy theory. I suppose the conclusion to draw is that if you have absolutely no evidence of conspiracy, just present it as fact and insist it’s true. That may be enough for some, but hopefully most will see this a transparent effort to devalue the claims of a growing number of women. #MeToo.
Time to get out of your comfort zones, off of your couches
and into the streets.
No it’s not another march, but it is a time for you to talk with your neighbors
about the importance of the June election and it is time to do something other than feel bad about our political reality. It is time to change it.
For 18 months, Retake has been engaging and educating a growing NM constituency. But that is only half of our organizational slogan. Engaging and educating is utterly useless if we do not achieve the second two components of our slogan: organize and activate. Without organizing and activating, education just leaves people sitting at home furious. And it is pretty clear that letters, emails, petitions, calls, and even massive marches are falling on deaf ears. But, we can act locally and at the state level where our voices still matter and our elected officials are not 2,000 miles away in a calcified Congress. So if you want to do something with your stress and anger, it is time to get out of your comfort zones and take to the streets and talk with registered Democrats and show up at the Roundhouse on Monday, May 14 to join the kickoff of the National Poor People’s Campaign.
Right now there are five races in NM where your direct involvement could decide each race. In November 2016, 450 of you showed up in the snow to our first gathering, asking “What can we do?” Well, over the next three weeks there is plenty to do, and without question the single most important thing you can do is to canvass. And before you say: ‘I’ll march and I’ll march, but I just don’t like canvassing,” I have two questions: How much do you enjoy being pissed off about injustice and feeling completely disempowered? And how much has changed as a result of our marches?
Leah had never canvassed before, but she took a risk, she got out of her comfort zone last week and here is what she had to say:
“I spent several hours today canvassing for Janene [Yazzie] in Cerillos. It was inspiring to hear how many people felt energized to vote for her and spread the word once they understood the importance of this election and what Janene’s platform is all about. I would be happy to volunteer to organize canvassers from Santa Fe for the next two weekends.”
And before you say to yourself, “Does canvassing really matter?” more from Leah:
“People are ready for change! Canvassing made me realize that our efforts are crucial because most people initially had no idea what the PRC is or does. Neither did I, before I started getting the Retake Our Democracy newsletter.”
Let me emphasize, obviously the “engage” and “educate” part of what Retake does is important, it is what led to Leah taking the leap, and now because she did, people who had no idea what the PRC was got fired up because of Leah. IT WOULD NOT HAVE HAPPENED IF NOT FOR LEAH. If Yazzie wins by 20 votes, Leah will know that her work swung the race. If we get more folks out canvassing for Yazzie, for Fischmann, for McCamley, for Romero, and for Herrera, we can win these races. And that would be something to celebrate.
Before you dismiss Leah’s experience, many research studies have shown that canvassing works:
“Studies , one study after the other have shown that door-knocking does indeed work. It may not work as effectively on a voter who holds a totally different viewpoint on the issues you’re advocating, but the personalized approach is effective in convincing swing voters as well as for getting people out to vote.”
We had just 3 teams of 2 people canvassing last weekend and they hit half the houses in Yazzie’s district near Santa Fe. They will finish that work this weekend. But, as described below, there are more races to support, more justice to seek. Each of our five races could easily be decided by 100 votes. If we organize 100 canvassers to work for three beautiful weekends, we can swing each of these races. That is what canvassing can be. If you’ve never done it, give it a shot. This is why we produce this blog, to activate you. Now is the time, my friends, now.
Before We Get to the Campaigns: We Need to Stand Up for Somos
To Support Andrea Romero & Women Who Aren’t Believed
Phone Calling Dates and Times:
Sundays and Wednesdays: 5:30pm-8pm. May 13, 16, 20, 23, 27, 30, June 3
The campaign is happy to accommodate walking and calling outside of scheduled times. To volunteer, please call or text Cecile Lipworth at 505/699-2539 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Canvass for Janene Yazzie, PRC Dist. 4 in and around Santa Fe & ABQ
and for Steve Fischmann, Dist. 5 in and around ABQ
Yazzie & Fischmann Endorsed by Conservation Voters of NM. The Public Regulation Commission (PRC) keeps big public utilities like PNM and El Paso Electric in check and, with the right commissioners, can be a driving force in how New Mexico addresses climate change. When we successfully elect our two candidates for the PRC, we will have New Mexico’s first reliably pro-renewable energy majority on the commission. We began this work with your support in 2016 when we were instrumental in electing Commissioner Cynthia Hall in Albuquerque’s PRC district. Since then, she’s invigorated the PRC’s ability to thoroughly scrutinize utility rate increases and do what’s right for ratepayers.
CVNM is proud to endorse both Steve Fischmann and Janene Yazzie, and our supporters in Santa Fe and ABQ live near critical precincts in each of their districts. Read on.
Santa Fe Activity for Janene Yazzie
Opportunities to Canvass and Get Out the Vote for Janene Yazzie
Contact Paul at email@example.com. We are canvassing every Sat and Sun. We want to return to houses where no one was home, so we need you.
In Santa Fe, Two Opportunities to Meet Janene Yazzie:
Tuesday, May 22, 2018, 5-7 PM, At the Home of Marilyn and Ed Winter-Tamkin in Santa Fe. Please contact Marla Painter at 505-220-3969 to RSVP and for directions. Join us for beverages, appetizers and great conversation. Contributions will be welcomed.
Tuesday, May 24, 2018, 5-7 PM, at the Home of Shane Woolbright in Santa Fe. Please contact Marla Painter to RSVP and for directions: 505-220-3969. Beverages, appetizers and great conversation. Contributions will be welcomed.
For more information about how to support the campaign, visit janeneyazziefornm.com
Opportunities to Canvass, Call & Contribute to Steve Fischmann’s Campaign
Opportunities to Canvass, Call & Contribute to Susan Herrera
In Her Race Against Rodella in Dist. 41
Bill McCamley for State Auditor
Poor People’s Campaign Santa Fe.
Saturday, May 14, 2pm, Eastside Entrance to the Roundhouse. The launch of the Poor People’s Campaign is just around the corner. Monday, May 14 will be the first of a series of direct actions and acts of civil disobedience over a 40-day period. While petitions and social media may have their place, it is definitely time to increase pressure on our elected officials. We are losing what is left of the limited democracy that has ever existing. These are very dark and dangerous times and it is time to say ENOUGH and to say it very clearly.
On the 14th, there will be a front line team of 40 that has been trained for direct action and will be arriving at the Roundhouse together at 2pm, singing, chanting, and carrying signs. We need hundreds, no thousands, of you to greet us. There be a team of PPC leaders at the Roundhouse to get you singing and chanting before we arrive. If you want to become part of the frontline team for future events, please email firstname.lastname@example.org to get on the list for future training and to be kept informed about NM events over the next 40 days. Find out more about the campaign at https://www.poorpeoplescampaign.org