As Real Change goes to press on Election Day, the streets of Seattle are filled with happy people. CNN’s electoral map indicates that McCain needs to take all of his safe and leaning states, all of the “too close to call” states, and draw 26 additional electoral college votes from those leaning toward Obama to hit his 270. It’s never over until it’s over, but basically, it’s over. We’re in a new political era, and grassroots organizing has never been more important.
There are those who say that Obama has, during the long, hard, run, revealed himself as just another bought off middle-of-the-roader who doesn’t really represent change. What part of “electable” do they not understand? This is a time for hope, not cynicism. The seeds of change have rarely seen more fertile ground. The rest is up to us.
History is clear. Politicians don’t drive social change movements. Social change movements drive politicians. When enough people face enough systemic pressure, and the possibility for real change is credible, enormous shifts in political reality become possible.
Most of the time, the message from inside the DC beltway is “can’t change, don’t try.” When a Presidential candidate says change is possible, but only when an organized grassroots seizes the day and makes the demand, a rare truth is being spoken.
This is an extraordinary moment, and it won’t last. Those of us who care about social and economic justice need to organize like our lives, our planet, and our democracy, depend on it. They do.
Real Change strengthens and supports the work of Seattle’s progressive community and defends the interests of those who have the least. We have set an aggressive goal of raising $180,000 in reader donations by January. This is about a third more than we raised during last year’s drive. We can enter 2009 weak, or we can enter 2009 strong. We’re doing the work, but the rest is up to you.
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