Many fellow citizens have expressed deep concerns, like, “Should I take our country seriously? Or languish in feelings of defeat for the almost 250-year-old American Experiment?” Last night, I met “Ash Bay.” Hear the story of an everyday American that decided to do something small and do it with “all-in” effort.
The town board asked Ash Bay (not their real name) to be on the ballot for the position of precinct committeeman in her town. Ash declined because she was in the middle of settling her recently deceased mother’s estate, plus her older teens in the house needed direction.
Ash was asked again to run for office because that position was unopposed. The deadline had passed for signatures to be on the ballot. Would she agree to run as a write-in candidate? Most of us would think, “Yeah, small chance people would write my name in. I don’t have a thousand friends or name recognition. Besides, I have family responsibilities.” Not Ash. Her mother’s estate affairs had settled quickly. She reconsidered and developed a strategy. Challenge accepted.
Mind you, a write-in campaign is never easy, even if you are a well-known news figure in the community or a former office holder. And, get this. Ash went door-to-door, introducing herself to her precinct. She had a lot of flyers printed with the correct spelling of her name. (She told me hers was “an easy to remember name.” You be the judge). Face-to-face, handshakes, conversations, door knocking, talking to a precinct full of neighbors. Ash was all-in. Believe it or not, she won as a write-in candidate to represent her precinct in her town. The town board elected her as secretary. Now, that’s how it’s done.
Several of you have written wonderful suggestions that included meeting as our forefathers had done in local establishments, reworking ideas for a new government of, by, and for the People. Notice the word “local.” Start local, our participants say. There are boards, township positions, and even stuffing envelopes or going door-to-door as I did for a favored candidate.
There’s more. If running for office is not for you, sign up today to be an election judge, a poll watcher, or any of the various jobs associated with election day. Don’t want to be known by city officials? How about driving a neighbor to the polls? Or offering to babysit so a neighbor can stand in line without young children clinging to her? Take a fellow employee with you to vote on your lunch hour.
We are not beyond our resources. There is no need to sing a requiem for our country. We can’t do everything, but each of us can do something.
Be like Ash. Reconsider. Do what you can do.
This is Common Sense Civics and Citizenship. 🇺🇸