Thursday, December 22, 2016

Knock Knock, version 2

Knock Knock
Hello? How can I help you?
Well, I understand that you are having a party, and one of the bands you have playing is one of my favorites! I was wondering if I could join the party.
Did you bring anything for the potluck?
Well, no, I'm between jobs right now so money is tight. But I can grab something if it's required.
Sigh, no, technically it's not required, but it's only common courtesy. You should know that, you're an adult.
Right, thanks. I'll see what I can get.
Knock Knock
Hello? Oh, it's you again.
Hi there, yes, I found something I could afford from the store down the street. It's not much but I hope it helps. Oh, I love that song that's playing.
Yeah, it's an old tune but sometimes we like to play it just for the nostalgia. The more modern music doesn't quite have the bite.
And there's nothing like the classics. Can I come in?
Sure, I guess. Just, please take your shoes off, and you'll need to sign this form to say that nothing you hear or see can leave the house.
I don't understand, I thought you wanted more people. This is a really nice house, btw.
Yeah, it's been in the family for a long time. Needs some work, but we never seem to have enough help to get that work done.
I have a whole bunch of friends that I could call.
The house is pretty full already.
But I don't see very many people, where is everyone?
Oh, everyone is in their group space. Each room of the house is for different kinds of music. People usually just go into one of the rooms and stay there unless they need to go to the kitchen or dining room.
That's no fun, why not play different music in a central place so people can get to know each other while they enjoy different kinds of music?
Oh, you know, tradition. It's how we've always done it, and nobody really wants to change.
I know my friends love all kinds of music, they'd love to go from room to room getting to know people and ...
Yeah, that's kind of discouraged. It's distracting. And people here are used to their favorite music.
Oh, come on, it will be fun! Lots of people moving from room to room, talking, singing, dancing. I remember hearing stories about this house in previous times being like that, my Dad said it was a whole lot of fun to be here!
Where did you put your shoes again?
Why, do you want me to leave?
Well, no, but I wouldn't want you to lose anything...

Knock Knock, version 1

"Knock knock"
Hi, welcome! Are you here for the party?
Yeah, I heard about the party from a friend. What's going on?
Well, we want to get people together to talk about how to solve this problem.
What problem? Is it my problem? Do I have a stake in this?
Of course, come on in, let's talk about it. Did you bring anything for the potluck?
Oh, now you're telling me that I had to bring something for the potluck to be allowed in?
No, I just asked if you had brought anything. It's not required, it's just something we do so we can share the load because everyone gets hungry while they talk.
Oh, ok. So am I allowed in?
Of course! Come on in. What is your top issue?
Oh, well, I don't think my issue is your top issue is your top issue, so I don't think I should come in yet. I want to stand out here for a while and listen. Can you set up some microphones and speakers for everyone outside so we can all hear and participate without coming in the house?
"Baby, it's cold outside." Come on in.
You know that's a rape song, right? I don't think I can come in because now I'm afraid for my safety in your house.
Look, it is cold outside, it is raining, in fact there's a big storm coming and I would like to invite you to come inside so you can be sheltered from the storm and so we can talk and work on these problems together.
You don't look like me.
Why does that matter?
Well, because you don't look like me I don't think we can communicate because I don't think your experiences match mine.
You're probably right, but that just means we can tell each other stories and get to know each other better.
But I don't think my stories will be respected because my shoes are wet and that looks like new carpet.
We can wash the carpet. It's more important for you to come in from the rain. Please come inside.
I can't, you're standing in the doorway.
Ok, I'm now giving you whatever room you need to come inside.
But I don't know that I'm actually welcome.
Would you just come inside already?!
Now you're being aggressive, and I don't like that. I don't think I'm actually welcome. And I can still see you, and you don't look like me.
Do you want to join this conversation so we can work on solving these problems?
I see a green field next door. Maybe I can set up a tent and listen to the speakers that you are going to set up and talk into the microphone that you are going to set up for me.
We have plenty of room inside the house, and everyone is welcome.
I don't believe you. I haven't been invited before. At least I don't think that invitation was for me, you spelled my name wrong.
... Look, I have people who are waiting for me to rejoin the conversation. I'll just leave the door open and you can come in if you want to. I'll be in the other room.
I can still hear you. I think you're talking about me now. I don't like that.

Wednesday, December 07, 2016

Washington State Progressive Caucus, it's time for me to return.


It is my intention to run for Chair of the Washington State Progressive Caucus at the January reorganization meeting.  If you have seen my posts and plans for the state party, the community inclusion effort includes introducing an amendment to the State Party Bylaws that formally codifies the existence of the Constituency Caucuses, and identifies in language the reason they exist, which is building bridges to all of our communities around the state and organizing local caucus structures in the Congressional Districts, Counties and Legislative Districts over the next few years as part of an overall Community Inclusion strategy.  It's long past time to do this, and I'd like to build on the efforts that the current Board has already started that I heard about at the September WSDCC meeting.

For anyone who does not know me, I was born in Seattle, raised in Kent, spent 6 years in the US Navy, owned a small business in Everett in the 1990's, work for Nordstrom now, and I've been involved in the Democratic Party since 2003.  I've been on the Executive Board of the 46th LD since 2005 as an At Large member, KCDCC Rep and Chair.  I was one of the primary organizers for Bernie Sanders in 2015-2016, including being a National Delegate to the 2016 National Democratic Convention.  I am currently on the Washington State Democratic Central Committee from King County, elected this past Sunday.

I am one of the founders of this Progressive Caucus in Washington State, and was Chair in 2007-2008 until I stepped back to focus on being Chair of the 46th, 1st Vice Chair of King County and Chair of the Washington State Democratic Chairs Organization in 2011.  I stepped back in 2012, but returned to help Bernie get 74% in our state and 46% nationally.  I am currently involved in national organizing efforts to encourage and train progressive activists on how to be effective agents of change in their local and state party organizations so that we can promote our values and push our policy objectives into law.

My top issues are Single Payer Health Care, Climate Change Action and Economic Opportunity for All.  I have been writing, blogging, organizing and planning for 12 years.  I have a degree in Business Systems Analysis, and I want to put those skills to work building the strongest Democratic Party that this state and this country has ever known.  I ask for your vote.