Sunday, April 15, 2007

GNC Forum Managers speak up

This is the full text of a message sent to the Green National Committee by the Forum Managers. The Forum Managers are James deBoer, Jane Hunter and Deanna Taylor.

Dear NC:

The Forum Managers would like to remind everyone that we are all colleagues working towards common goals. When posting comments and remarks on certain topics and issues, please be aware of how your posts are worded. It is suggested that delegates refrain from using "value-laden" language - that is , language that could be perceived as questioning ones ethical and moral values.

For example, "Delegate xyz has made a recommendation that is antithetical to all green values" insinuates that the person who made the recommendation does not live green values. Contrast that with "The recommendation that Delegate xyz made needs more clarity" or "I'm confused on how this recommendaton correlates to green values," which directly addresses the recommendation and not the person.

Please also be aware of the amount of posts you submit per day, being sure to allow other delegates the chance to contribute to the online discussions.

Thank you!

GPUS Forum Managers

I'm not saying that I agree 100%. Some things ~are~ antithetical to green values, and pointing out that the *proposal* is antithetical to green values is not the same as saying "You're not a green." But there are certainly too many times when I have read things like "Anyone who can't see that is no Green".

To be the anti-party, we must behave like one. Focus on the Ten Key Values, the sorts of issues and themes that attracted Nader to us and visa-versa, and find ways to reach out to non-voters, or more importantly, the recent non-voter. Folks who voted in the Republican primary in 2000 and never again. That is a *McCain when he was a reformer* voter. Find voters who voted for Perot, and not again since. Find the left-behind, those who are sick and tired of politics-as-usual, and that is a base we can build from.

And we must find ways to reach the working class. Bingo halls are often populated by working class folks. How about wearing a shirt that says "Stop the War" and a local web address on it? Don't you think that might bring in some working class folks? How about doing the same at minor league ball games where tickets are $10 on the middle level? How about wearing it to Wal-Mart, a flea market, while yard selling, while eating at Waffle House?

Likewise, what if it said "Termina la Guerra" (not sure on the spelling) and a webaddress, with text in Spanish? Then, visit the shopping centers, apartment complexes, mobile home parks and stores where Spanish speaking folks live or shop and reach out with brochures or something else if you don't speak Spanish. Just hand someone the brochure and say "Gracias. No hablo Espanol." and they will likely take it and say "Gracias" back.

The point is, this is our Green Party, and it will become what we want it to be based on what we do on the ground. Too much of what goes on nationally happens online, and all too frequently by people like me, who should better be using their time doing actual community work.

Sometimes I wonder if states and locals take their angriest, most self-centered and uncooperative people and put them on national committees to keep them from fucking things up on the local or state scene.
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