When my brother and I were kids, we used to stage elaborate battles with toy robots, what were evidently supposed to be WWII plastic soldiers, cowboys, super racist Indians, Barbies, Mr. Potato Heads, just heads of various accidentally-on-purpose decapitated toys, cars, trucks and (when all else failed) mud, rocks, sticks and the occasional goat. Often, these wars would disintegrate rapidly into name calling and throwing of all of the above (minus the goat – the goat hurled herself) at the other person until Josh (who was more often than not on the receiving end of the toy hurricane) would run off sniffling and bawling, “I’m telling MOMMY!” In our universe, the Rev was the ultimate weapon – the PRIME Optimus Prime, and my brother was one to go nuclear after just one direct hit. It should be noted, however, that often said hit was directly to the crotch.
This morning, as I was trying to figure out what to do in the wake of the recent election to try to keep at least a baseline of viable social services, education and art available to people who are needy – I thought about those battles. It always worked out that the loser would (behind the Rev’s back, where it was safe) threaten to “get a bunch more guys and come back and WIN.” And, as I remembered that, I realized that’s exactly what we’re going to have to do. We’re going to have to get all the guys and hold on tight for as long as we can.
You see, it doesn’t matter who you voted for or whether or not you even voted to begin with. If you claim to value education, social services, justice, freedom of faith, freedom of choice, freedom to speak your mind, the arts, libraries, the environment, civil liberties for everyone – and any ONE of these areas is enough – then you need to dedicate your time to helping organizations that provide or protect these things. Trump has already said he’ll cut all of these on several occasions, and MORE IMPORTANTLY has the backing of the House and the Senate — which actually gives him the power to do so. If you have ever benefitted from any public service that will be cut – including public education, you need to step forward now and get to work to protect it for others. If you refuse to pay with your dollars, you’ll have to pay with your time. Even if, like me, you voted the other way, you still have to help or risk the dire consequences of knowing that you’re a total hypocrite.
Here’s the ask:
Pick a charity. Any charity. Pick the one where your heart is. Then give them 2 hours per week of your time or at least 8 hours a month. Work for several organizations, if you choose. It doesn’t matter. Just do the work. Here’s the reward: you save the world, and I will dedicate this blog to you guys and to sharing my experiences as a volunteer with you. You’ll have a forum to talk about what you’re doing, to encourage each other, and a place to direct others to learn about how they too can SAVE AMERICA. Also, if you give me an address, I’ll send you an awesome fun pack courtesy of RCS every month filled with encouragement and probably also stickers. Because stickers are amazing at motivation. And I like stickers. Some of them might say “Vagina.”
A little math
Let’s think about the 200,000 + people who now feel like their vote to protect these services didn’t count due to the Electoral College. If each of those people contributed just 2 hrs/week to the organizations they tried to protect, that equals 400,000 man hours/week or the equivalent of 10,000 full time positions or a yearly savings (assuming all of those 10,000 positions were paid at minimum wage) a savings of about 154,000,000/year. And don’t say that this is taking jobs away from people who need them. The cuts will do that on their own, leaving the agencies woefully understaffed with no way to make it up. Now, imagine if everyone who voted gave the 2 hours/week. That’s where the saving the world part comes in. Do you think you can do it? Because I think you can. The least we can do is try – but it’s also the very best we can do.
I love you. Get to work. Go to www.volunteermatch.org and find a project.
(Don’t forget your rubbers and bail money).