Civic action- Activism

“But the dynamics of citizen direct action were already having an effect” ( Smith, 2012, p. 27)– in reference to the civil rights movement.

“So intense was the public interest in the environment and so fierce the political pressure from grassroots America that Nixon, who was far from a tree-hugging environmentalist, felt compelled to declare his fealty to environmental protection…” (Smith, 2012, pg. 31).

Finally:

“In those early years of environmental enthusiasm, quite a lot was achieved.  The results were visible.  … The public thought the job was done.  Voter interest subsided, and as it subsided, so did government action” (Smith, 2012, p. 32).

Why did I share these quotes from a book I’m currently reading (Smith, Hedrick (2012).  Who stole the American dream. New York, NY: Random House Trade Paperbacks)?    Because I want people to remember that in the past, when people worked together through grassroots movements, which began small, but grew, things did change.  Change doesn’t happen from hoping, or wishing, it happens because people get together, take action, and make their opinions obvious to the elected officials.

Whether it’s Term Limits for U.S. Congress or some other issue you feel passionate about — for change to happen you have to make yourself heard. (Feel free to leave a comment on an issue you feel passionate about and are ready to take real action for.)  You have to make yourself REAL to those who are making the big decisions.  We are many.  They are a few.  If we actually exercise  our strength in numbers– things can be altered.    That’s not naive optimism- history has proven otherwise.

Let’s make our voices heard again- let’s re-engage.

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North Carolina State Lead: James Davies

http://termlimitsforuscongress.com/

https://www.facebook.com/TermLimitsforUSCongress

https://www.facebook.com/pages/Term-Limits-for-US-Congress-North-Carolina/1428069334076570

Thoughts on Term Limits for U.S. Congress

As the day of petitioning edges closer, I am very curious to your thoughts about Term Limits for U.S. Congress.  I have met some people who are completely on board, but then I come across one or two who are adamantly against it and a few more who just aren’t sure.

Admittedly no idea is perfect– but I am very interested in reading about how others think about the issue.  Please take a moment to comment and share your opinions, thoughts, or questions.  It’s important that we are open to having quality dialogue about issues affecting our country.

As I’ve said before this is not about a particular political party– but about whether it is a good idea to institute a 12 year limit on members of Congress.

Finally– to help activate a discussion about the issue, please take a moment to share a link to this blog or re-blog a post, or tell your friends about what is going on.  Even if they don’t agree, it’s important to raise awareness of what is going on.

We can’t be afraid to have political conversations– if they don’t happen it’s like saying you don’t care about how your life is influenced by a strong and very large government– and you are willingly giving up all your rights and freedoms.  Conversation is one of our most powerful tools.

http://termlimitsforuscongress.com/

https://www.facebook.com/TermLimitsforUSCongress

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Orange County North Carolina

Finally got a facebook page just to organize Orange County, North Carolina.  If you are not in that area- please check out the main pages so you can find your state and/or county leads.

Main Pages:
http://termlimitsforuscongress.com/

https://www.facebook.com/TermLimitsforUSCongress

Orange County, NC:

https://www.facebook.com/pages/Term-Limits-for-US-Congress-North-Carolina-Orange-County/283254878501863

 

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20 Days

If Term Limits for U.S. Congress is something you are behind and support– there are only 20 days left before petitioning begins and there are still a few states that need leaders, many counties that need leaders, and lots of room for as many petitioners all of the U.S. that we can get.

Please take a moment to read up on Term Limits–

http://termlimitsforuscongress.com/

https://www.facebook.com/TermLimitsforUSCongress

and decide if this you are willing to join our movement.  For any movement to be successful people need to actually be willing to offer up some time and do their part of activism.  I know come May 26th- I’ll be hitting the streets to collect signatures, and I hope that you’ll be joining me and countless others.

 

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What about voting?

So far— there are 2 arguments that seem to come up against instituting term limits for congress.

1) It takes time to learn the job.

2) That’s what voting is for.

——-

So let me address these….

First, Term Limits is advocating for a 12 year limit.  Are you trying to say that it takes more than 12 years before a Congressional member learns how to do their job?  If that is the case, we have a whole other problem.  At most, teachers hit their best potential between 3 and 5 years… but after 12 you start to burn out a bit… generally.  I know some of you will say– teaching is nothing like being a Senator.  But, seriously, our Congress members don’t just wake up and go from flipping burgers to filling the seats of Congress.  They have years of background in business or politics.  It makes no sense to say that it should take them more than a few years to master their job duties.

 

Second,  if voting worked- things wouldn’t be working as they are, which is that they aren’t working. People are on extreme ends these days- unwilling to come to the middle, unwilling to work together.

Currently most people who bother to vote, vote on name recognition and media exposure (which is related to money).  If people are only voting on name recognition, then the longer a politician is in office, it goes to assume that their name will be more recognizable, which has nothing to do with the kind of  job they did.

If the people are voting based on media exposure, then those politicians being funded by the wealthy, corporations, and lobbyists are getting the vote, but they aren’t actually working for the voters.  It takes years for those relationships to form.  Therefore, the goal is that by limiting their time in office, we are breaking and weakening that relationship.

This is not to say everyone is voting based on media exposure and name recognition, but that the majority of people who even bother to vote, are voting that way.

 

Hopefully this helps explain some of these concerns.  Please check out Term Limits for U.S. Congress.

https://www.facebook.com/TermLimitsforUSCongress

http://termlimitsforuscongress.com/

If you are in NC and want to get involved– leave me a comment.  If you are in another state and want to get involved- go to the facebook page and from there you can find your state page.

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Liking versus Action

So, as May 26 approaches– the number of people “liking” the idea of Term Limits for U.S. Congress is growing… but the number of people agreeing to actually participate is barely increasing at a crawl.

This message went out from the NC leads-

“A message from Kelly Rae and James.
Hello North Carolina.
So we are sitting here looking at the Term Limits for US Congress North Carolina Facebook page and wondering how is it that we have over 800 likes but only 6 people who have volunteered to be County leads when we have 100 counties to fill, not including all of the petitioners that we need going forward.
Have we just not reached the right people? Are people just too busy? Are people afraid to take on one more thing. Are people just afraid? Do people not know how important they truly are?
Please let me be clear when we started here in NC we had no Idea what to do! We knew what the Goal was and is, Term Limits for US Congress but we did not have a clear path to run on. So we took a leap of faith and dove in. Why because we believe Congress should have Term Limits and it seems you do as well.
What is it North Carolina that is preventing you from diving in? Now let me be crystal clear…. The American People Will Impose Term Limits on US Congress and we need all of you to get behind this and step up into a County Lead position or as a petitioner. We need you. We will be here to support and guide. We promise. This is a TEAM effort. A lot of people doing a little bit…. So what do you say North Carolina…
As always…. Thank you for the support you have shown here on Facebook. Please Share this message with all of your friends and family and feel free to comment!!!”

https://www.facebook.com/TermLimitsforUSCongress

http://termlimitsforuscongress.com/

People need to realize that if everyone who agrees with the idea, or even 20% of the people decide to actively participate in accomplishing the goal– we can make a real impact.  When I was in undergraduate school in Massachusetts (small state college, not in Boston) there was a small issue on campus … a lot of people were grumbling… so finally we did a little something.  We gathered together with signs and made our opinion public.  It only took a few people to openly object before a meeting was called and an agreement was struck.  We held our signs, us 20-30 people, saying “Sympathy is no substitute for action”— over 10 years later, and I still have that sign.  Why?  Because it is as true then and now- Sympathy is no substitute for action.  We need action- support is good- but action will make all the difference.

 

 

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Thoughts? Questions?

If you support the idea of Term Limits for U.S. Congress or don’t– I’d love to see some comments with your reasons.  If you have any questions about what we are trying to accomplish and why– please feel more than free to ask.  

There are a few weeks left before we’ll be hitting the ground gathering signatures– so now is a great time to ask away.

 There are always doubts when it comes to trying to make a big change like this… so no thought or question is too silly or unworthy of sharing.

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Citizen Re-engagement

“It will take a political metamorphosis, a populist renaissance, in America to reverse the political and economic tides… to make our country strong and whole again.  The Toynbeean challenge we face requires a response from all of us, a rebirth of civic activism from average people at the grass roots as well as from America’s political and economic leaders.  Millions of Americans will have to come off the sidelines and reengage in direct citizen action in order to reestablish “government of the people by the people, for the people” and to achieve a genuine people’s agenda in Washington” (Smith, xxv).

If we want change- we need to believe that we have the power to make that change happen.  Together we can let those at the top feel our strength and our power.

Term Limits for U.S. Congress might be that grass roots movement that can start to make the changes we need.  It’s nonpartisan- it’s about who has power and who should have power.

Please help us, join the cause.

http://termlimitsforuscongress.com/

https://www.facebook.com/TermLimitsforUSCongress

 

I’m nervous about my part.  I wonder if I’ll be able to do enough– yet, that isn’t going to stop me from trying.  It’s time to stop complaining and start doing something about.    Every little bit helps.

 

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Reference

Smith, Hedrick (2013).  Who stole the American dream. New York, NY: Random House Trade Paperbacks.

 

Share

For those of you who have started following this blog- thank you.

For those of you who have stumbled across it- I truly hope you will take the time to go to the main pages for “Term Limits for U.S. Congress”

http://termlimitsforuscongress.com/

https://www.facebook.com/TermLimitsforUSCongress

This is for real.  We all need to work together to make this happen.  Find out who is organizing in your area- so at least you’ll know who to contact when it comes time to sign the petition.  If we the people work together– we can take back our government from the greedy and corrupt.

Please share this information about this grassroots movement to all your friends, family, and co-workers.  We need to spread the word.

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Blowin’ in the Wind

It’s been clear for a while now, that the United States is in need of a real change– From the Occupy Movement to the growing Tea Party and Libertarian Party– people across the country are frustrated.  Election after election though– and nothing seems to actually be getting better.  Why?

One of the big reasons that is discussed is the money in politics.  We hear about corporations and lobbyists controlling our government- buying our (the people’s) representatives.  So– what can we do about when we clearly don’t have the funds to “buy” them back.

Well, one thing we can do is use article 5 to induce the state leaders to call a convention and ratify our constitution to impose term limits on the U.S. Congress.  How does this take power away from lobbyists?   —  “It takes years for lobbyists to earn the trust of Congressional members.”  By limiting the time they can serve- it makes it much more difficult for them to find the worth in being “bought” and it makes it much less worthwhile of an investment for the corporations and lobbyists.

So– Now is the time.  Check us out on facebook-

https://www.facebook.com/TermLimitsforUSCongress

Join up with your state or local area to help out.  If we can all come together on this nonpartisan issue- we might have a real chance to make a huge difference in how our overall government runs.

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