Now that the debates are over, all that is left in this election cycle is Election Day itself, taking place on November 8th. While I think that everyone who is able should get out and vote, I know that many of us are not exactly overjoyed at either party’s candidate for president. Because we know that electoral politics not the most likely key to black liberation, here are some ways that you can resist and lobby the next administration, whether it is Republican or Democrat.
1. Join A Political or Organizing Group
Becoming involved in politics is hard. It is not always clear how to promote change on your own. That is why it is a great idea to get involved in a group that is dedicated to influencing local or national politics. Whatever your cause, there is sure to be a group out there with people who are knowledgeable about the best ways to advocate for it. For example, you could join a political party, work for a campaign, or start a political organizing group.
2. Call, Email, or Tweet Your Representative or Senator
There is no reason that our elected representatives should be unaware of our issue positions because there are so many ways to contact them! Look up your local and state representatives’ websites and social media accounts and get their contact information. If there is an issue you are particularly passionate about, tell your friends to contact them too. Members of Congress especially want their own constituents to be happy, since you determine whether or not they will be re-elected.
3. Protest (Online or In Person—Whatever You’re able to Do!)
Raise your voice! Take your friends or fellow organizers and protest injustice in the world. Take caution, however: protesting can be risky especially if the police become involved. Check out these tips and precautions before putting your body on the line for your politics. Also, if your are physically (emotionally or financially) unable to protest consider mounting an online campaign with a petition or a website.
4. Stay Informed
Being informed about politics is crucial to understanding what is going on. Regularly read diverse (and factual) sources of information for your news in order to deepen your understanding from multiple perspectives. Additionally, be sure to learn and know your history: what is going on today can often be explained by what happened in the past.
5. Share Information
It is important to speak up and speak out if you witness or are aware of an injustice. Be sure to tell other people what you know so that everyone can call out bad behavior if necessary. Write to your local newspaper or favorite online publication, Tweet, or post on Facebook; do whatever you can to shed light on whatever you think people should know. Democracy is primarily about freedom of speech so make sure you use it!
Once again, it is certainly possible that speaking up and out could be dangerous, so be sure to consider and take precautions beforehand. Think about how what you say could impact your job, your friends or family, or the person or organization you are discussing.
Photo: Wiki Commons