Our February 2017 general membership meeting is Thursday, February 2, 2017 at the Givens Community Center, 1026 Sidney Rd, Port Orchard 98366. Our social time begins at 6:30 p.m., with the meeting called to order at 7 p.m. We will be forming into committee groups and creating plans for the upcoming year.
Our Pierce Vice Chair Cecilia Hardy resigned recently—we are sad to see her go and we wish her well. The Executive Board appointed Rick Offner as Interim Vice Chair and elections for this position will be held during our March meeting.
Bylaws Chair George Robison has submitted a draft proposal for bylaws changes, and you can view these by clicking here. You can find them alternately by navigating to “Meetings” and then to “Meeting Minutes”. We will vote on these proposed changes during our March meeting.
We hope to see you at our February meeting, and bring a friend!
During the Washington State Democrats Central Committee meeting held at the Red Lion Hotel in Olympia on January 28th, 2017, new party officers were elected. Congratulations to all!
Chair: Tina Podlodowski
Vice Chair: Joe Pakootas
Secretary: Rob Dolan
Treasurer: Habib Habib
Friday, January 27-Saturday, January 28, 2017
Washington State Democrats Central Committee State Meeting
Red Lion Hotel Olympia, 2300 Evergreen Park Drive, Olympia 98502
Election of State Chair
Monday, January 30, 2017 · 7 PM
Kitsap County Democrats
Eagle’s Nest, 1195 Fairgrounds Rd NW, Bremerton 98311
Kitsap Delegation will speak on the Election of the State Party Chair
Democrats from our 26th Legislative District are helping to support the Womxn’s March on Seattle set for January 21. The Seattle march is in support of efforts planned across the nation to support the Women’s March on Washington on the same day. For evolving information covering this event, see these links:
- Seattle March web site: https://womxnsmarchseattle.wordpress.com/
- Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/events/905054526294975/
To increase our 26th Legislative District participation in the Seattle March, please gather at the Gig Harbor Park-n-Ride on Kimball and self-organize carpools to the event.
Participants should plan to gather at the Park-n-Ride at 7:30 a.m.–this should allow sufficient time to assemble into carpools and depart at 8:00 a.m.
Marchers are to gather at 10:00 a.m. at Judkins Park (2150 South Norman St., Seattle 98144 – north of I-90 between Rainer Ave. S and Martin Luther King, Jr. Way S.). Arrive at 10:00 a.m. to identify groups you might want to join for the march. The rally speeches begin at 10:30 a.m. and the march will begin at 11:00 a.m. The march is 3.6 miles, set to end at the Seattle Center, 400 Broad St.
Please invite sympathetic friends who might not receive the 26th Legislative District Democrats emails. If you’re going, please register on the Seattle March website to help them with their logistics.
Watch for additional emails for any new march details that might assist in our carpool planning. To get on the 26th LD Democrats email list please write email@example.com.
On this day when we commemorate the life of Martin Luther King Jr., I wanted to share links to the photographs that State Chair Jaxon Ravens spoke about during his visit to the 26th LD earlier this month.
Jaxon has every right to be proud of his father, Bob Fitch, and I think he knows how lucky he is to be his son. I could not help but note how amazing it was that we had both arrived at this same place, the Democratic Party, yet had taken such different routes to get here.
In the spring of 1968, I was six years old, living on the base at the Great Lakes Naval Training Center. My father was an enlisted man supporting six children, and assigned to training new sailors. After almost twenty years in the service, he finally had an assignment that did not take him out to sea away from his family for months at a time. I attended school outside the gates of the base in the racially mixed city of North Chicago.
I was already an avid reader, and I spent hours studying the encyclopedias that my father had purchased from a shipmate who sold them door-to-door to make extra money. (This was very common, as my father sold vacuum cleaners in his spare time.) I eagerly devoured the sections on U.S. Presidents and the 50 states. I also remember how I looked forward to Fridays when our class would share My Weekly Reader, which was my main source for news of the world around me.
After Dr, King’s death, I copied my young black friends my cutting out his picture and gluing it to the front of my construction paper folder that held my week’s work. I recall my father coming home that afternoon in his clean white uniform, sitting at the dining room table. When he noticed my folder, he became enraged, and demanded to know why I would decorate my folder with a picture of this “nigger.” My answer that “everybody else was doing it,” was not good enough, so I lied and told him that my teacher, Mrs. Morrison, “made” us do it. He stormed over to the phone hanging on the wall, preparing to call the school to raise hell. When I stopped him, and admitted that it was my own decision, he quickly retrieved his leather belt and administered a brutal dose of punishment. When he was done, and I was still wailing, he told me to go to school on Monday and tell the class during Show-and-Tell that he was the man who had killed Martin Luther King, and that he was proud of it. I remember being confused, and believing that he, indeed, could have been the killer, given his hatred for Dr.King. At this point, my mother finally intervened and was able to calm my father, and I was sent to bed without supper. Hours later, my mother snuck some food to me in my room as I sat alone in my room, still crying. While she gently rubbed the red marks on my body left by the belt, she told me that my father beat me because I lied to him, and not because of the folder. But even at six, I knew better, and he confirmed my feelings by referring to me as “mama’s little nigger lover” for many days afterwards.
My point in relating this painful story is that, especially on this day, we should honor all of those who suffered and sacrificed for the civil rights movement by continuing the struggle. Although race relations are still an issue today, we have come so very far from 1968. Yet now, with Donald Trump preparing to take office, we must hold tight to our ideals of equality and justice in America. Democrats must work even harder to keep moving forward with civil rights, and stand up for our Muslim and immigrant neighbors as this four year term of uncertainty begins. We must, at the same time, realize that Trump supporters today are not necessarily bad people, but merely a product of our times, the same way my father was in 1968.
My second point is much simpler: please be kind to each other. We are all fragile creatures, us human beings, and we need to be handled with care. Unless you know a person intimately, you may never know the secret pain or shame that they carry, so let’s treat each other gently. Please take the time to listen to others, and show respect for their feelings, even when we disagree.
Inside of me, that 6-year-old boy still remains. He still longs for approval and validation of his beliefs, likely explaining my great reverence for men like Hugh McMillan, George Robison and Larry Seaquist. And, finally, if the six-year-old kid inside of you needs a hug from time to time, I want you to know that I’m here for you.
John Kelly, Chair
26th LD Democrats