Some of you may know about Jen Hoffman's checklist. It is a true labor of love which she has been producing weekly since the election. She balances actions with a positive message of love and support. Every week she celebrates our successes and cheers us up. Our own Pam P. discovered Jen's list fairly recently and was touched by the April 1st newsletter. She asked Jen if we could reprint her words on our own blog to spread the ideas and help us all remember we are on this journey together. Jen responded with a "please share". If you aren't familiar yet with her wonderful weekly missive I suggest checking it out. You can sign up to have it delivered to your inbox here on her website.
In case you do not receive Jen Hoffman's Weekly Americans of Conscience newsletter, today's letter will lift your heart:
Americans of Conscience Checklist
Week of April 1, 2018, Jen Hofmann
For all appearances, it would look like we can't win this. We're up against practically unlimited corporate and lobby money. We're up against a team of well-connected people with motives for profit and power. We're up against misogyny, racism, intolerance, fear, and base meanness. Slowly, we watch the pillars of democracy erode.
Spoiler alert: This is supposed to look impossible.
A song from David Wilcox plays on a loop in my mind almost daily, “There is evil cast around us, but it's love that wrote the play.”
I love this, because it gives me perspective. And as a writer, I know that the appearance of hopelessness is a vital to a compelling plot. In a play, the outrageous evildoer sets up the necessary tension for the heroes and heroines to reach within themselves to bring about a positive resolution. In other words, the appearance of impossibility is essential for us--you and me. We are on a hero's journey.
But here's the thing: we have in our quiver a tool that none in power do—and never will: love. We're passionate about equality and justice and fairness for everyone. We care about our neighbors, no matter our differences. We believe in decency, cooperation, and kindness. We share a love for this beautiful planet, our common home, and all its inhabitants.
So although it may look daunting out there, our hearts are equipped with something so much more powerful than greed. We have love. And love, as we know, can accomplish all things. Even with unlikely odds.
If your spirit is flagging, take heart. Each of us carries love within--the most powerful source of perseverance. Keep remembering that it's supposed to look impossible, but that doesn't mean it actually is impossible. If we stick together, keep speaking up for one another, and focus our energies on living our values, this drama will end in justice and healing.
On March 3,2018 many Olympia Indivisible members joined the Thurston community and rallied to elect Paul Picket as a board member of the Thurston Conservation District (TCD). Although Paul won by and 8 to 1 margin, the two bad actors on the board, Eric Johnson Richard Mankamyer are contesting the election.
At the March 27, 2018 TCD board meeting Richard Mankamyer cited several election discrepancies, such as bias in the article of The Olympian “ Thurston Conservation District under investigation as election approaches “,difficulty with online voting, the fact that a bus dropped off some voters, and accused the staff of recruiting candidates. The formal process to dispute the election has begun.
As stated in the Olympian article: “These two gentlemen are determined to take over the district and basically hire all their good-old-boy buddies and then funnel all the money that goes to the district to themselves and their buddies”
November 30, 2018 the State Conservation District (SCC) started an investigation into Eric Johnson and Richard Mankamyer’s behavior. I attended the 3/27/18 TCD meeting and was shocked at the abuse towards female staff and the level of administrative incompetence exhibited by board members Eric Johnson and Richard Mankamyer.There has been no improvement in the bad behavior despite being under investigation since November 30,2018, repeated warnings from the State Conservation District and a formal action plan outlining the changes needed.
April 30, 2018 the investigation closes. You can make a difference by sending an email to the SCC oversight staff Mark Clark and Ron Shultz:
Mark Clark, SCC Executive Director firstname.lastname@example.org
Ron Shultz, SCC Investigation Lead email@example.com
Sarah Moorehead, Executive Director of TCD firstname.lastname@example.org
Subject: TCD Supervisor Misconduct
Hello, my name is ___________, and I am a member of Olympia Indivisible.
As a citizen of Thurston County I recommend you proceed with the removal of Eric Johnson and Richard Mankamyer from the Thurston Conservation District(TCD) Board of Supervisors for the following reasons: