Just a Reminder that there are Still Things Worth Fighting for

Here’s a link to, imo, a pretty great speech by Wendy Davis:

I think she does a great job, and I encourage you to watch the whole thing, or at least the last half (I know, all of us have busy lives). I think the thing that this speech reminded me of especially, is how important it is to keep fighting for equality, whether in Texas, New Hampshire, Russia, or wherever.

It’s easy to give up, or at least to get complacent. The Democrats may lose the Senate. The government’s in gridlock. Progress seems agonizingly slow sometimes — one step forward, two steps sideways. We have a progressive president who authorizes drone strikes. We have two major political parties in the US, one of which is much more progressive than the other, but both of which are heavily dependent on moneyed special interests.

But we can’t give up. We can do so much, with so little. If you have time to vote, to google your candidates and get informed, to make a call or two to undecided voters in swing states, to have an honest conversation about politics with your friends — that’s what will keep us moving forward, towards, dare I say it, a better tomorrow. Or if not tomorrow, then the day after, or the day after that. It can be extremely frustrating to watch progress inch by when there are so many issues that need urgent addressing, right now, but these small changes will and do add up.

Wendy Davis may lose in November, but we will remember her filibuster. The next campaign, the next woman who runs in Texas, will feel more empowered to speak up about abortion and women’s rights. And so on and on, these small steps of social change, these small grains of progress, will combine into something truly awesome — a future where the rich don’t earn an order of magnitude or two more than the poor; a future where there IS equal pay for equal work; a future where we are taking care of our planet instead of stripping it dry. A future where we can look back on our lives and say, we helped change things for the better.

Pres. Obama said something early in his presidency. He urged all of us to be the change, with him. I value that one brief phrase more than most other things he’s done or said (ok, not more than Obamacare, but it’s up there). It was never going to be about him, about one candidate or one law making our lives better. It was about all of us, doing the hard work to transform our country and our world into a better place to live. I hope you keep these words in mind, not just this election season, but whenever social change seems impossible and progress seems fleeting. With small steps, we will get to a better place, together.

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