This from an email acquaintance; it rings true to me:
If any of you have been following the news about last night's election, then you know that Cora Howe in East Nashville was one of the last polling precincts to close last night (at 12:45am) & that we have the dubious honor of being the place where the last official voter in Davidson County voted, our machine operator, Bill Flum.
I'm writing because, in spite of the long lines and the rain, I experienced there an extraordinary demonstration of community harmony that reaffirmed my belief that people are basically good and will do the right thing in the face of adversity. I will never again talk blithely about the "apathy of the American voter" because these people showed me that they take democracy seriously.
Many people stayed in line for over four hours, with the last people staying in line for over five, to make their voices heard. And what's amazing about it is that they did it with such good spirits. ... And amazingly, several people had made such strong connections with each other (and with us the poll workers) that after waiting for over five hours, they stayed to watch until the last voter voted and then sang "God Bless America". This was well after midnight.
I was proud of East Nashville last night and humbled because those of us who call ourselves community leaders often have a jaded view of the people we are supposed to be helping and we get tired because it often seems like things never change. But seeing the spirit of those ordinary working folks, I know that I have to keep working to make sure that the people's voices are always heard.
There's a force in peoples' sometimes naive belief in voting. Both right and left trifle with it at their peril.
This San Francisco purveyor of graffiti has it right. When times are bleak -- when country and planet sink under the barely restrained sway of greed, raw power, and fear -- it's time to restate what matters.
I write here to preserve and kindle hope for a national and global turn toward multi-racial, economically egalitarian, gender non-constricting, woman affirming, and peace choosing democracy that preserves the habitability of earth for all. There's a big order -- but what else is there to do but struggle for this? Not much.
Topics range from the minuscule to the transcendent to the global, from dire to delightful. I am not an optimist, but I refuse to allow myself to wallow within the easy bias that everything is going to always be awful. Good also happens; love lives too.
I've been yammering here about activism, politics, history, racism and other occasional horrors and pleasures since 2005. I intend to continue as long as the opportunity exists. In this time, that means activism and chronicling resistance. Perhaps it always has, one way and another.
I'm a progressive political activist who runs trails and climbs mountains whenever any are available. I've had the privilege to work for justice in Central America (Nicaragua and El Salvador), in South Africa, in the fields of California with the United Farmworkers Union, and in the cities and schools of my own country. I'm a Christian of the Episcopalian flavor; we think and argue a lot. For work, I've done a bit of it all: run an old fashioned switch-board; remodeled buildings and poured concrete; edited and published periodicals, reports and books; and organized for electoral campaigns. Will work for justice.