Seriously, doesn’t she?
But oh, even with mouse cats, I’m just so heartsick about the gay marriage bans that passed last night. I know you know about them, but Feministing has a good post that delves into it all, as well as the anti-choice initiatives around the country (which all failed!). Gay couples can’t adopt or foster children in Arkansas—wow. And you fucking wonder why people hate the south? On the other hand, California is full of homophobes too, it turns out! What the hell was going on with California yesterday? They hated the gays, were smart about choice, approved a measure to stop sickening confinement on factory farms, and were stupid about drug policy reform (man, prop. 5 was so great!). California continues to be the most complex and bizarre state I can stand (unlike states I fucking hate, Arkansas, I speak of thee).
And, per last nights’s posts, Arizona did indeed end up going to McCain, and Omaha too. But you tried hard, Arizona and Conor, and that’s worth something, for sure.
Two more things:
-Back to my little local election for Town Board: Brittany wrote a wonderful email summing up the whole thing, I’ll leave you with it:
Thank you so much for all of your support!
The preliminary election results are in — we got a total of about 150 votes so far, without absentee or affidavits (of which they are many!) being counted. Jeff Logan is slightly ahead, but both candidates have 400+ votes. It’s too close to call right now but I don’t think anyone ever imagined that 1,200 write-ins would be cast in a local race, not to mention the many write-ins cast in other races, as well. We had an incredible election day with record-breaking turn out, a true example of what our democracy can be.
This is a HUGE victory! We ran a fun, pink and incredibly brief campaign with an incredible team and a ton of support! If someone told me we could get 150 write-ins on a tight budget over a week and a half, I would’ve told them they were crazy (and I did!). It’s clear that anything is possible!
Now almost everyone in our community knows how to write-in a vote. This is an amazing improvement, since people understand they are no longer bound by the candidates who are on the ballot. So many of us have been touting the advantages of write-ins for a long time; it’s wonderful to finally see this type of voting in action. It is especially exciting to see new voters not only participating in a historic presidential election but also learning to cast a write-in ballot from the very beginning. People know that there ARE more choices and they don’t have to support the status quo, since it rarely supports them.
We made both Democrats WORK. Far too often, people don’t run for office. They ease into it with minimal effort and take your vote for granted. Fingers will be pointed and spoilers will be named, but the reality is that it doesn’t take much to upset the grip they have on power. People are tired of looking the other way in the face of their maniacal ambition and we will keep reminding them that nothing is certain. No more!
We highlighted a number of important issues, including the backwards democracy we have in our community. We talked about issues important to renters, students, young people, and those who are frequently voiceless. While the other candidates ran on single-issues (Logan on what amounted to his residency and heritage and Hughes on Crossroads), we forced them to address some of the issues that are important to US. Bob Hughes standing outside the student union building with a sign reading “Bar Closing” is a victory in itself. I don’t mind having my platform being co-opted, as long as it’s being addressed. We are more than the one or two issues they tell us we have to care about and we will demand that they answer to OUR concerns, instead of just telling us what’s important.
We exposed (yet again) the inefficiencies of our electoral process and will continue fighting for reforms in our local and county elections. They tried to silence us, tried to adapt the law to suit their interests and tried to deny the impact of active and committed citizens calling for change. We were able to ensure that everyone eligible to vote did so, even if it was by affidavit ballot. We armed out volunteers with the most important weapon, the law, which was always on our side. We will continue to follow up on this and demand more accountability, better training of our election inspectors and clearer guidelines for our elections. Formal letters to the Ulster County Board of Elections are already being drafted and we will never stop demanding the type of elections we are entitled to.
I want to thank everyone and I look forward to continuing as partners as we demand fairness, accountability and change in our community. I wish well to both Bob Hughes and Jeff Logan; they are both good people who are clearly invested in New Paltz. And, whoever ultimately wins will have his work cut out for him. We’ll be watching (and kicking and screaming!).