I’ve been all fired up this week for a variety of reasons, but I’ve decided to put my annoyance to good use. So, post-election, in the newly Republican-lead state of Ohio, here’s what I’m going to do:
- Know who my representatives are. Can’t keep up with what’s going to affect me if I don’t even know who represents me. I used my good gas to drive to the poll and vote for you, I should know what you’re up to in office.
- Know what bills are introduced that affect the things I’m passionate about. The Congressional and state websites have a wealth of information about bills, including plain people language about what the bill does. Since I can read, it’s my duty to stay on top of, and support or oppose legislation that will directly and indirectly affect those areas.
- Know what deadlines are important. When do candidates declare they are running for office? Primary deadlines? Filing deadlines? Voter registration or change deadlines? All important pieces of information that affects the process.
- Get involved at the neighborhood and community level. Time to research what community programs are out there and what contribution I can make to increase their reach and strength. I’m sure they won’t turn away one more mind to work out issues in the neighborhood.
- Educate my kids and adults interested in learning what I discover. I refuse to send Derek to the polls in four years voting based on his feelings instead of on results. You don’t have to like the man or woman who is moving and shaking on your behalf, but they should earn your respect based on their work.
- Collaborate with others to create or enhance an existing civics course for young people. I’m 35 and can barely remember taking a civics class (that doesn’t include the little segment in American History that I somehow managed to skip in high school along with Physics). I mean a hands-on class that engages the people in it and empowers them to stand up and do something about what they see.
- Share the knowledge. What is the point in compiling a major database of information without extending it to others? And maybe some people who didn’t vote won’t have the excuse NOT to vote because they don’t know the issues or candidates.