Democracy activism begins at home…but doesn’t end there


Following the various elections in 2016…

I’m not going to go into a detailed analysis of the US elections because I’m not qualified to do so. But the reactions in the feeds below speak volumes.

and via my friend Anke,

I just hope there are organisations in the US who are logging every single attack that’s reported.

Over here, Conservative commentator Tim Montgomerie wrote this:

…trying to distance the official ‘Brexit’ campaign from Trump, with liberal commentator Mehdi Hassan responding in agreement below

…but then Nigel on the radio today came up with this:

I have no words.

But for those of you in shock at recent events, have a look at this Twitter stream.

Those speaking out against the hate we/they have to live through? That’s what it feels like. “Welcome”.

“And the response in the UK?”

Tabloid land on the right is a mix of welcoming it to ‘Weren’t you all shocked!” by the result. The liberal-left ones talk of dark times ahead. Understandable given the anecdotal evidence above.

You’ve got the awkward political responses from Government ministers given their previous comments criticising the president-elect during the campaign, but it was German Chancellor Angela Merkel who was praised for her response, re-enforcing what she believed were shared values.

“What can we do in response given that we are here??”

I’ve titled this piece “Democracy begins at home…but doesn’t end there” as a take on the saying “Charity begins at home” and “Think global, act local”. I’ve also been inviting people to consider the one behavioural change or one small one off action they will take as a result of the sense of shock they feel. I’m already talking to people about scheduling some local democracy workshops in and around Cambridge as mentioned in my previous blogpost.

At the same time, I’m continuing with filming the various council meetings happening in and around Cambridge – supported by the Federation of Cambridge Residents’ Associations and many of you who have been kind enough to donate to help cover my costs. I’ve filmed seven meetings in the past 10 days. Democracy never sleeps. As when Norway responded to a tragic shooting of young political activists, the response from Kens Stoltenberg, their Prime Minister was:

“Our response is more democracy, more openness, and more humanity.”

Something for us to consider?

My music group has launched a musical response – see below

See also The People Are Sound Facebook Group

If you want something very small to do in response, My suggestion is to start off with finding out who your local MP and local councillors are via . You may want to:

  • send them an email introducing yourself
  • ask them about an issue in your local area that you think something could be done about
  • ask them how to get involved on a particular issue or activity locally
  • ask them their opinion on a specific issue
  • share the above link with friends/relatives/acquaintances and invite them to do similar.

Also, keep an eye on The Democracy Club & their work on improving elections. Also note this link via Dr Karolina Pomorska, a research fellow at Cambridge University.

It may not change the world, but it may be a small step in reconnecting more of us to decisions that we can influence.