Vicki and I bopped up to Safe Harbor Family Church in Jackson Sunday because @CSElive followed me on Twitter during the SB2681 madness a couple of weeks ago and let me know they were coming to Mississippi this week for an action. I wanted to talk to them in person and see how they conduct a political action before I decided whether or not to go all in with them. I’ll tell you, they impressed us both.
Their training session was professional. Their strategy and their methods are sound. They respect that they are working with people, and they are very up front about the fact that everyone has to decide for themselves whether or not to engage in political action. Vicki and I have decided to give them as much social media support as we can muster, and our personal endorsements.
Here’s the short version of what their WE DO campaign is about. They talk to same sex couples who are interested in working for full equality. They give them the training and support they need to go and apply for a marriage license. They help bring supporters out. They work with clergy, the authorities, and the media to make sure it’s a respectful, peaceful, and positive event. These are not protests.
They offer training and all kinds of other support to people who want to come out and stand with the couple. Everyone goes to the courthouse together. Supporters wait outside while the couple goes in, talks to the clerk, and gets denied. When the couple comes out, the first faces they see are the faces of the family, friends, acquaintances, and total strangers who took time out of their days to show up.
Y’all know how I feel about both political action and Nonviolence. This is nonviolent political action at its very best. If you want to do something with your social media to help real people achieve full equality, you could do much worse than blogging about this, sharing them on Facebook, and Tweeting with them. Especially if you live in the south, you should follow them and check their schedule regularly. You might find an opportunity to meet them and get involved locally.
3/24: WE DO Campaign training, Millsaps College, Jackson;
3/25: Jackson WE DO action, 9:30 – 11:30 a.m.;
3/25: Public lecture on LGBT rights at Milsaps College, 7 p.m.;
3/26: Rally for LGBT rights in downtown Jackson led by groups from across Mississippi at noon;
3/26: Family Dinner (community organizing event) Hattiesburg from 7 – 9 p.m.
This is what they did in Mississippi last summer:
Just so those of you who collaborate closely with me know (speaking only for myself), I’m all in. I’ve given these good folks my physical address and phone number. They have a blank check to send me every piece of communication they produce and tag me on any social media any time they want.
If you’ve followed me from the very beginning, you’ve seen me turn these three blogs and all the other social media channels they’re connected to into a single amplifier on at least four occasions. You’ve seen what a week of planning and tweeting about a conversation on feminism and activism got us over the weekend, and that discussion hasn’t ended yet. I don’t have anything like that in the works at moment, but if I see an opportunity to help The Campaign for Southern Equality by doing it for them, Diana and I will be having a conversation about it. That’s how strongly I feel.
If you’re collaborating with me on other things, and this isn’t your cup of tea, no worries. I’m still in the entertainment and networking business. Everyone has to make their own decisions about things like this. But I’ve made mine, and I’m writing more about this. If you want to work with me on it, let me know, and I’ll be happy to figure out something useful for us to do together.
Note – Wrote this hastily, so I didn’t really do the campaign justice. There will be more when I have time to put it together. If you want to help with the action itself, follow them on Facebook and Twitter and share whatever they post during and immediately after the action on Tuesday. This is not all they do; they also have a legal team.
image credit: I swiped it from a Facebook profile during the legislative craziness. No idea who produced it. I assume that an image like that is public domain, because the only reason to create it to have it shared. I’ll be happy to credit it, if I ever find out who authored it.