Celebrate some. Mourn some. Keep organizing.
Some years, it’s a little harder to see the things we’re grateful for. Thanksgiving came fast after Hurricane Sandy in 2012, and even faster after the election of Donald Trump in 2016. Those years, it was harder work to dig down into gratitude. No less important, but harder.
This year, for me at least, it’s a little easier.
My recommendations for Election Day
Two years ago, about this time, I wrote you an e-mail quoting labor organizer Joe Hill, bravely facing execution on trumped-up charges a century ago: “Don’t (just) mourn. Organize.”
Wow, did you organize. A week later, we gathered thousands-strong at Congregation Beth Elohim, where #GetOrganizedBK (and its incredible set of working groups) was born. What we’ve done together over the past two years is extraordinary -- we held down our part of a national movement to build power and solidarity, to fight back against bigotry & corruption & white nationalism, and to insist that the values of equality & inclusion & compassion & justice are the only ways forward for our country.
For An On-Ramp to Democracy: Vote YES on All 3 NYC Ballot Questions
We’ve canvassed together, knocked on hundreds of thousands of doors, made phone calls, sent texts, recruited friends and families, and, ok, even chewed our fingernails bloody in our efforts to take back the House, win the New York State Senate, defeat some real villains, elect some real heroes … and get our democracy on a far better track.
Here are my recommendations for tomorrow, for state & federal races in Brooklyn, judges, the NYC ballot propositions, and even where to watch results together tomorrow night:
The most immediate place to rebuke white supremacy: at the polls
Next week at the polls, New York City residents have a genuine opportunity to strengthen our local democracy. The three ballot questions proposed by the NYC Charter Revision Commission, which will appear on the back of the ballot on Tuesday November 6th, will give us a chance to reduce the corrupting influence of big money in politics, to breathe new life in our democracy through expanded participatory budgeting and civic engagement, and to make NYC’s community boards more representative.
I’m supporting all three proposals. In this op-ed in the New York Daily News with New York Immigration Coalition Executive Director Steven Choi, I give the positive reasons for each proposal.
I’ll be honest: I’m still shattered and heartbroken. At too many moments, I find myself full of rage.
But I’m also fiercely determined -- to channel my sorrow and shock and anger into focused work over the next seven days. I hope you’ll join me.