I promised myself on my birthday that I would do more to make sure my neighbors (here in NJ and in the USA) can be safe, loved and warm. Here’s how I’m trying to do that in 2018.
1. I have switched my political affiliation, again. Again-again? I really didn’t want to, because I belonged to a third party and I believe we really need some more third parties involved. However, in New Jersey you cannot vote in primaries unless you are one of the Big Two, so I filled out a form and picked a side. Don’t hate the player, hate the game.
We can’t do this online in NJ because the state requires an actual signature.
2. I am continuing to use Resistbot to contact my representatives. Here in NJ, I am represented by two Democratic senators — the vocal Cory Booker and the … problematic … Bob Menendez. We’re usually on the same side of things. My representative is Don Norcross, whom I didn’t vote for (he was a complete lock so I tossed my vote toward a third-party candidate), but who is doing a bang-up job. I make sure my notes to them are thankful but not fawning.
I love Resistbot because I can craft faxes to my reps while on the shuttle to/from work every day. It’s a good use of time that I’d spend gazing out the window. AND, I bought a stack of postcards (with a patriotic theme, because I still do love this country) and some postcard stamps so I can go old-school.
3. I subscribed to the Action Checklist for Americans of Conscience. It’s a weekly email by Jennifer Hoffman, and it gives a concise summary of actions that can be taken against legislative efforts that (usually) are against my safe, loved, and warm platform. What’s best is what’s NOT in the checklist:
- No partisan b.s., name-calling, or insults.
- No exclamation marks or yelling.
- No vilifying.
- No conspiracy theories.
- No scary hype.
Because after a year of watching sane people scream for 400+ days straight without catching a breath, I welcome the levelheadedness of this list.
4. I want to attend some city council meetings this year. I haven’t yet, but I think if I’m going to be louder about my opinions, I should at least know how my local government works. Knowing who my councilpeople are and how they behave will make me a more informed voter. I’ll let you know how this goes.
In light of the above, I didn’t go to the Philadelphia Women’s March on Saturday. I had a great time last year, but honestly? I didn’t feel like going alone, and I didn’t have the energy to either organize my own group of people or try to invite myself into other groups. I’m proud of and thankful for everyone who did go out there.
Last year’s march taught me that I needed to become involved. This year I AM more involved.
Safe, loved, and warm!