Retake Our Democracy: Statement of Purpose

Retake Our Democracy is a volunteer-based organization committed to making your personal and collective activism easier and more effective.

To subscribe to our blog, click here and click the “subscribe” button on the right of the page. To subscribe to our Statewide Rapid Response Network, click here. More information about our assumptions, beliefs, goals and strategies and about the role of the blog and Network are provided below.

Our Assumptions & Beliefs

Retake Our Democracy believes that a true democracy of “we the people” has never existed, and neither has “the land of the free.” Yet, democracy as an aspiration and as a goal is held dearly by millions of people across the globe, and so, we incorporate democracy in our title and seek to make it a reality instead of an aspiration.

We believe that creating a truly participatory and inclusive democracy is an achievable and noble goal. To that end, Retake Our Democracy seeks to achieve social, economic, racial, and climate justice in Santa Fe, across New Mexico, and across the nation by organizing and supporting a range of political and social actions and by forming alliances with other activist organizations to build the power necessary to achieve equity and justice.

We believe that the concentration of wealth and power in America suppresses most all efforts to effect justice locally and at state and national levels. This concentration of power:

  • Controls the media and hence the circumscribes the kinds of ideas that are considered legitimate;
  • Controls our elections with the infusion of money from corporations and the wealthy and through a range of voter suppression efforts that discourage or prevent voter engagement from communities of color and from the poor;
  • Controls the legislative process by influencing, even controlling who is able to be elected and then through well-funded lobbying efforts, lobbying that reflects the interest of the wealthy and corporations;

Only by engaging, educating, organizing and activating people who seek justice can we ever overcome these undemocratic forces.

Our Goals & Strategies

Our goal is to build power in local communities and to organize statewide to ultimately create greater social, racial, environmental and economic justice at local, state and national levels.  We engage, educate, organize and activate people through training, actions, town halls, and educational events.

We also produce a blog with information, resources, tools and upcoming events and a weekly radio show on KSFR.  We believe that lasting social change is borne out of local activism, and to that end we are committed to support organizations already engaged in social justice work and following their lead.

Retake’s unique contribution is to organize the skills, expertise, and financial resources of its members to support and advance the goals of frontline activist organizations, and to make sustained activism at local and state, and levels easier and more effective for all members of the community.

Our Strategies include:

  • Legislative advocacy expressed through our researching and identifying priority legislation and providing supporters information about those bills and alerting them as to how and when, from home or at the Roundhouse, they can best raise their voices in support of the bills that are most meaningful to them;
  • Election strategy expressed primarily by educating our supporters on the issues and candidates who support our priorities and values and then by encouraging our supporters to contribute time and resources to those candidates;
  • Sustained direct action. We have a statewide rapid response network that is used to support both our legislative and election strategy as well as an increasing number of escalating opportunities for direction action and non-violent civil disobedience. During legislative sessions, alerts are sent daily on priority bills being heard soon, alerts that include legislator contact information and speaking points on the bills. During election campaign season, we offer information about candidates and their positions on issues. Throughout the year we send alerts about important regulatory hearings, direct actions (rallies, protests, civil disobedience).

Unifying all these strategies is an ongoing effort to build power among people and communities that have been historically underrepresented so that we can more effectively advocate for change and promote justice and equity.

To subscribe to our blog, click here and click the “subscribe” button on the right of the page. To subscribe to our Statewide Rapid Response Network, click here.

We can do this if we do it together.