There are things we can do and I invite others to share your suggestions, actions and thoughts with us. As Elisabeth says, it is time to use our voices.
Using our voices
by Elisabeth Mitchell, Seattle, Washington
I woke up yesterday morning and read that the President of the United States had said more explicitly than ever before that he will not accept a loss in the November election, nor peacefully transfer power. Still in my pajamas, and with deep concern about our democracy, flawed as it is, I searched for this site:
and wrote to each Republican and Independent Senator currently in office.
My message was some form of this:
URGENT: The future of our democracy
Dear Senator _____,
I urge you to stand up and speak out against President’s Trump’s recent undemocratic response to being asked if he would transfer power peacefully in the coming election were he to lose:
“Well, we’re going to have to see what happens.” Trump said. “You know that I’ve been complaining very strongly about the ballots and the ballots are a disaster.” He went on to say: “Get rid of the ballots and you’ll have a very — we’ll have a very peaceful — there won’t be a transfer frankly, there’ll be a continuation.”
Please use your powerful voice in support of democracy, rule of law, and the American values of kindness, compromise, and unity, particularly during the Covid-19 pandemic. The future of our democracy is at stake and you as a Republican can speak up for America and its citizens.
Many Senator’s sites require you to categorize your missive by topic. None had the category, “Concern for the future of our democracy.” Only a few had the category, “Elections,” and even fewer, “Ethics,” so I varied the topic depending on the senator, generally alternating between “Homeland Security” and “Crime.” In only one case, the website of Senator John Barrasso of Wyoming, was I able to click on the topic of “President.”
Typically, Senators do not respond to emails and letters from citizens outside of their state. I am not sure that staff even read them. Why do this then? It took perhaps 45 minutes of my time. On the off chance that staffers do read them, I wanted to spend this time. I believe not only in democracy, the rule of law, professional and public service, but also in the written word, in thoughtfulness, reason, and in appealing to my own and other people’s better nature. We never know how deeply we might touch someone else with our words and actions.
Even if no one reads the emails, it’s still important for me to use my voice. It helps me gain equilibrium and spurs me on to use my voice in other ways. All of our voices are required to speak up in any way we believe is right for us. As understandable as being weary and bogged down is, more needs to be done to strengthen, improve, and enrich our democracy for the future. Onward!