At the May 1 meeting of the Democratic Party of Carroll County (DPCC) we took time to hear from everyone who attended. After we heard reports from our Committee Chairs and announcements we broke up into 4 small groups. We asked everyone to respond to one or two questions individually. The questions were: 1) Why are you here? and 2) What should the Carroll County Democratic Party be focusing on right now?
The DPCC is grass-roots up. We attempted to get everyone's comments noted. Here are the thoughts that emerged from our small group sessions during our last Carroll County Democratic Party meeting, in no particular order and uncensored:
--We need someone to run for Bob Ballinger's position.
--We need to meet with interested folks . . . in homes, etc.
--The immigrant community is untapped.
--It's important to be an active citizen. Democrats have been complacent. New to political activity, it's time to be heard.
--Trump scares me. Haven't been active politically but now seeing the need to make changes. Bringing the skills I already have to my work with the party keeps me in my comfort zone while also being able to help. It's important to let people know you are a Democrat.
--The issue right now is, are we a Democracy or not. Very concerned about the Citizen's United Supreme Court decision, which allows big business to use their money to influence politics. It's big business vs. the People. Want people to understand what's going on, the collusion between the Koch Brothers and white nationalists.
--Distinct despair with the last election. Elected officials are not representative of us. Not inclined toward the Democratic party. Not exactly sure of the differences. They both ask for money. Need to move beyond the money and get clear about who we are and what we want. Would like to see candidates who stand up for higher principles. Tired of ideology trumping reality.
--I have always voted Democratic but haven't been active. Hate that Trump sits in same chair as Kennedy.
--Heard someone say they are mad at the Democratic party about the last election. We need to get our voices to the election. We need to help people hear our voices and know what we are about. Help convey the message to elected officials. In Trump culture seems there is no standing up for one’s values. Want less corrupt politicians.
--In my work I think about the Constitution all the time. Constantly aware of the Constitution.
– We need to remember: “When they came for the Jews I didn't speak up because I am not one. When they came for the Gays I didn't speak up because I am not one. When they came for the Immigrants, I didn't speak up because I am not one. When they came for me there was no one left to speak for me.”
--We need to find the progressives in all areas of the County. There are progressive people living in all the precincts in this County.
--To be representing minorities, working people, good people. Wanted my voice to be heard.
--Women's issues. Very concerned with the possibility of a constitutional amendment to change the 1st amendment.
--Republicans are not representing my values. Want Trump out. Want more balance in govern.
--Social Justice. Civil Rights. Pacifism. Raise educational levels. Get more Hispanics involved in government process. Better health care: Single Payer.
--In 1990's was a progressive Democrat in Marion county. The Democratic Committee was elected by 1 person from each township. It's too easy to sit back and let others take the reins. We need to be involving more young people. Get 18 year-olds registered and voting.
--Need to move the pendulum back to the left after big swing to the right. Maybe need to keep it from swinging so far.
--Concerned with dictatorial consolidation in government.
--Concerned with the environmental crisis.
Let's all work together to address these issues and others as they emerge. The filing period for candidates for the 2018 elections is this Fall. Please come to our next meeting on June 5th in Green Forest at Cattleman’s Restaurant and add your voice and enthusiasm to the work. Everyone is welcome.
Is Our Government a Corporation?
Marcie Brewster, Executive Vice-Chairman
Do we even need government? Do we need political parties? Republicans and Democrats alike are reeling from the victory of Donald Trump. Democrats are galvanized and reorganizing the party they had become complacent about. Republicans are on the defense as the party is besieged by the Corporate wing that believes private corporations are the only government we need.
Here in Carroll County last fall's election directly led to a complete overhaul of the local Democratic County Committee. New officers have been elected. The bad news is that the new group of officers knows very little about how to run a Democratic Party county committee. The good news is that they are highly energized to learn both how it's been done and how to bring change as the party moves forward. The talent and dedication of the new Executive Committee is both broad and deep.
The first official event was the 1st Amendment Parade in Eureka Springs last week. This parade was the first of its kind and was a ton of fun. We marched, sang and proclaimed the "Party of the People." More new members signed up at a booth in the Basin Park. We are also participating with the King's River Watershed Partnership in the river cleanup and will be at the Agri-Days in Green Forest, both in early June.
The new Executive Committee met this week at Charles Templeton's home and planned 5 meetings for the County Committee for this year. The first one is coming right up on May 1st in Berryville. Meetings are also planned for Green Forest and Eureka Springs. By the way, the "Committee" means everyone who has joined the party. If you are a member you are part of the Committee. Put those meetings on your calendar.
We believe in good governance by the people and for the people. We want to hear from you. Let's renew the Democratic Party of Carroll County as an important and vibrant voice in Arkansas.
April 20, 2017