I want to write a slightly different post today.

I talk a lot about the power of our voices and the ways in which, when we are centered, we can take more meaningful action.

One of the questions I often wonder about and find myself in conversation about is how our voice can be used to effect change. I believe that everything we say—and do—matters and has an impact. I believe that smiling at a child makes a difference, that writing a poem makes a difference.

But today I want to write about a particular form of impact and action.

Like many of you, I’ve been deeply concerned about the direction our country is going in. Almost every day there is something really upsetting and alarming.

Sometimes I have felt that I don’t really have the language to express my concern over the alarming things that are happening: hate speech, children in cages, a President who is colluding with Russia, members of the Senate who want to push through a Supreme Court Nominee who thinks its okay for the President to potentially pardon himself (!!) and who mistreats (again!) women.

And to be honest with you, over the past few years, I’ve largely stopped reading the news because I feel that my energy can best be used in other ways.

But in the next six weeks, we have an opportunity to take some clear action of another kind. I believe that the single best way to create some of the changes I want to see in this country is to flip the house and senate. For almost every issue that I care about, this election is of great importance.

This isn’t about partisan politics, and I do want to be able to have a community that allows for differences of opinion and position.  But I also feel that this is a time I need to speak about and talk about what matters to me.

So I am using my voice today to ask you to think about what you can do in the next six weeks to try to help change the balance of power in Washington and flip the house and senate.  I believe that if we talk about what we can do and if we do it together, it can be not just a chore but actually community building and fun. 

Taking or not taking political action doesn’t make someone a good person or not—this isn’t about judging anyone in any way!

But it is about making it more likely that there may be some checks on the threats to democracy and civil and sustainable society that so many of us have been so alarmed by.

It’s also about feeling better: It feels much to do something active instead of to feel powerless because, after all, we’re not powerless.

I’ll share with you some of the things I’m planning to do:

1) I am going to continue to call all the senators undecided about the Kavanaugh confirmation. If you’d like to do that, here’s a site with some numbers https://www.facebook.com/events/2133706160174331/

2) I’m going to canvass in swing states near me (NH and ME). Here’s a site that can help you do that, if you would like to: https://swingleft.org/

3) My husband and I are going to give money to candidates in tight swing elections. We talked about what felt comfortable and then decided to double that. : https://swingleft.org/

What are you thinking about? What are you talking about? What are you going to do?

Two years ago, I was very worried that Trump was going to win. I’d been canvassing in New Hampshire and the conversations I was having didn’t make me confident that the race was in the bag. After the election, I wished I had done more.

Talk to your friends. Be in touch with me.

And keep on being your beautiful, wonderful selves.

I know many of you have a lot on your plate and I know that you will do what you can do, but it’s more likely that we’ll each do a bit more if we encourage one another and make a clear plan.

with much love,

PS: see this letter by buddhist teachers encouraging others to get out and vote

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