Agenda for Monthly Progressive Business Meeting
24 Mill St., Newark, OH
- Introduction (10 Mins. 7:00-7:10)
- Fair Districts = Fair Elections (10 Mins. 7:10-7:20)
- Reforming the party (30 Mins. 7:20-7:50)
- Democracy Day Recap/Future (10 Mins. 7:50-8:00)
- Summer of Labor (30 Mins. 8:00-8:30)
- Growing our membership and inspiring activism (20 Mins. 8:30-8:50)
- Miscellaneous (10 Mins. 8:50-9:00)
- Adjourn (9:00)
Review of Progressive Meeting
- We discussed and made final plans for the then-upcoming first annual “Democracy Day” event. Noted that it would feature a celebration of the oldest person’s birthday, the “corporate person”.
- The Fair Districts = Fair Elections initiative was discussed, noting that 305,000 valid signatures are needed, with 44 counties needing to represent 5% of the share. Apparently, Franklin and Licking Counties have passed the threshold and are pursuing a signature buffer. There are reportedly other states pushing similar initiatives, including Michigan, Pennsylvania, and North Carolina.
- Extending from the highlights of the aforementioned gerrymandering reform effort was a further discussion on the Congressional district as it currently exists. There was a great deal of frustration with a perception that the Party (more on the state and national levels) has almost completely given up on winning the 12th Congressional District and others like it. The feeling is that the argument of “gerrymandered districts” is used as an excuse for the party to not try to win. In truth, it was agreed that we absolutely can not sit around and wait for “Fair Districts” to succeed and be implemented (in 2022 at the earliest) before we fight for this district by standing up for working people.
- Among the discussed reforms needed within the Democratic Party at every level – as we have addressed many times – is to cease shutting people out and stop appearing to play favorites.
- It was noted that we may be losing a lot of working class voters with the “resist” message. Not that it isn’t important to combat fascism and other rightwing views, but many view the message of “resist” as obnoxious and somewhat elitist. People want more than a message of opposition. They want specifics.
- Some examples of local problems that we can take a position to combat against: a disturbing number of the Newark School District depends on food assistance because of deep poverty, children are neglected because of broken families, and many families are broken because of terrible economic policies.
- We discussed that part of how we win is by acknowledging that a lot of Trump voters have been hurting in very real ways for a long time, feeling what has been negatively impacting our collective family, and the right has seized their frustrations and misdirected those emotions via the politics of division. Part of the pain experienced by the Trump base can be seen with outsourcing and automation, for instance, Tesla is reportedly building automated factories out West and corporate boards are regularly talking about automation. In summary, we have to acknowledge where we failed to sway the winnable Trump voters.
- Senator Brown’s then-apparent opposition to Medicare-for-All was contemplated after one of our members had had a chance to discuss the issue with him in person.
- We talked a bit about linking the Democracy Day event with the Summer of Labor series. Our desire is to reach out to local labor unions and see if they would be interested in helping to coordinate a Summer of Labor Series of events starting next summer and if they would like to help host a Labor/Working Class-themed Harvest event in October of this year (maybe even annually) complete with family-oriented entertainment such as bobbing for apples (there were other suggestions, but the exciting speed with which the ideas were bouncing off of everyone was difficult to keep sufficient notes). The hope is that the cost of all of this would be spread out amongst us. Other discussion on the Summer of Labor Series touched on: connecting unions with the notion that it benefits the family, encouraging people to start a union, address current trends on the fight for labor rights, possibly include a Q&A panel event to cap off September of each year or maybe even to cap off each month. (idea is still in development), possibly see if Farmer’s Market will permit us to be there.
- In talking about other likeminded groups, we talked about how Indivisible 12 East needs clerical volunteers.