Mike’s Soapbox: Let’s Talk.
My name is Mike, I’m an intern at Grassroots HQ, and I’ve got something to say.
I believe that you don’t have to have a famous last name. You don’t have to have an oversized wallet. All you need to have is determination and a goal.
In 2001, a Seattle oddball named Grant Cogswell set out to accomplish his goal of being elected to city council, and as Grassroots shows, he very nearly made it. There are plenty of others in the U.S. who set out to accomplish the same objective: To make a direct difference in something they strongly believe in.
With the hard battle lines drawn between Democrats and Republicans, moderate people these days are becoming dangerously self-conscious about expressing their political opinions. As the rhetoric gets more rabid, the moderates become quieter and the angry TV presenters, radio shock jocks and polemicists gain the attention of the nation.
We here at Grassroots believe that it’s time to start bringing the two parties together in dialogue. We want to do our part to enable our society to re-knit itself, socially and politically. We believe that no one label encompasses an entire person, and that people on both sides have more in common than the media wants us to think.
The fear needs to end and a new generation needs to embrace a more united reality. The figureheads and corporations that run the country – the ones that dismiss ¾ of the nation’s citizens as being one-dimensional, uninformed, knee-jerk reactionaries – are wrong. We are all more human and more intelligent than they think. We all have as much of a voice as they do, and frankly, it would be refreshing to hear something new.
The unemployment level is agonizing: Everyone is affected regardless of age, gender, and ethnicity. College grads are venturing into the world and immediately being struck with the harsh reality of the job market (believe me… I know all about this).
However, instead of sitting at home eating Ramen and shouting at the television, why not help your America by making a difference. Cogswell showed us that you can, and you should.
As the campaign around Grassroots embarks on its journey, bringing the film ever closer to a theatre near you, we are doing our part to welcome and promote new voices of change. On this site, over the course of the next six months, I will be profiling and discussing the path that people are taking to celebrate the message of action that Grassroots embodies.
If you or if someone you know would like to share their own journey towards civic action, please contact me, and I would be delighted to share that experience with our readers.
by Mike Nelson
‘Do or do not, there is no try.’