At the October Kitsap County Republican meeting the energy manifested itself in a series of passionate statements by the board members present, who all voiced their frustration with D.C., Olympia, and their local overwhelmingly Democratic 'overlords'. When the floor was open for comments, there was a vocal chorus of desire and drive for involvement, in one case invoking tears from a woman so deeply struck with the erosion of her liberties. There was a charge in the room, an energy that if bottled would surely burn brightly...
However, there seems to be a piece of the puzzle missing, as I see it time and again across this nation... the passion is there, the voices in the crowd are there... but the leadership... the leadership is in disarray. More time was spent by the board members trying to understand the election structure of a subcommittee than discussion of actual business - how to motivate the 40+ foot soldiers who gave up their Monday night to join in the conservative movement. Many left after assuring the board that the meeting was a waste of their time and they would not return... it is very sad that the board may not have gotten the message.
To the leadership of the Kitsap GOP, and to those of you reading this who may not feel like you have been given direction in this movement, there are a number of things you can do.
- Blog, Tweet, Facebook, Myspace... There are outlets allowing you to develop your political voice. Readers offer great constructive criticism, and also usually have great things to say in their own blogs/tweets.
- Talk to your neighbors. It seems like Republicans and conservatives have been shamed into silence... to openly admit that you are a republican is somehow "taboo", especially amongst young individuals... Embrace your core conservative and libertarian values... Life, Liberty, Pursuit of Happiness... and talk to you neighbors about them.
- Find a candidate or campaign you can embrace and support. Work call centers on their behalf, canvass neighborhoods and talk to the voters... Become a foot soldier. Host "coffee's" or "teas" to openly discuss the campaign and invite the candidate to speak to individuals... start a grassroots movement and recruit more foot soldiers.
- Educate yourself about the issues. This is most important, especially when faced with opposition illogic.
I will be taking this list of tasks to the Kitsap County GOP in hopes that they can begin to organize an effective groundswell ahead of 2010. Right now there is much to be done.
For the rest of my readers, if you are finding the same disarray, let me know about it, and let your leadership know that the short list above is a great way to direct individuals who have a burning to get involved. A willing volunteer is worth their weight in gold... DO NOT LET THEM GO AWAY EMPTY HANDED!
And remember - A good manager never forgets to thank and praise co-workers and the foot soldiers. Rewarding good behavior usually leads to repeat actions and increased productivity.