Archive - Sep 5, 2007

A weird confluence of ripples of hope

It is not uncommon for certain Connecticut politicians to boast of being bipartisan. Yet too often they use this as a justification for ill thought out policies. Because of this, bipartisanism has a pretty bad name around these parts and I’ve been on mailing lists where people are encouraged not to link to conservatives.

Yet recently, because of my interest in the Avery Doninger case, I’ve found myself in strange company. You see, there are a lot of good conservatives who are fierce defenders of our constitutional rights.

Recently, Greg from Rhymes with Right and I exchanged emails and links. Greg lists himself as a ‘Proud member of The Conservative Blog Network’ and has a ‘Blogs for Bush Blogroll’ and a ‘GOP Bloggers Blogroll’. In an email, he describes himself as a GOP precinct chair who is married to a Democrat. While we may differ on parties and politicians that we support, we both have a commitment to using our freedom of speech to help our country be what we believe it should be.

Judy Aron of Consent Of The Governed left a comment on Greg’s blog saying, “Schools regulating what you can say and do off campus or on the Internet? Well, looks to me as another really good reason to homeschool.” She quotes Ronald Reagan on her website and includes the John Birch Society in her list of “Other Websites of Interest”. There may be a lot of things we disagree on, but her comment, “As far as I am concerned we are in this together fighting abuse of authority,” sums up the sort of bipartisanship that I am glad to be part of.

Perhaps the most interesting connection I’ve through this, however is with Leslie Graves, a libertarian from Wisconsin. Her blog, State Sunshine and Open Records has provided great coverage of the Doninger case and has named Andy Thibault of Cool Justice the Sunshine Troublemaker of the Week for his work in uncovering information related to the Doninger case. She also has WikiFOIA, a valuable site to help “people understand and use the Freedom of Information Act at the state and local level”.

This morning, I visited her website and found that one of the next candidates for Troublemaker of the Week is Charlie Grapski. Charlie is an old friend of mine, who has been battling corruption in Alachua for several years now. For more about Charlie, read this post.

All of this takes me back to the Doninger case. In one email, Lauren Doninger wrote, "I realize that the affront to Avery's civil liberties was miniscule". Compared to the affront to Charlie’s civil liberties, it is miniscule. I responded to Lauren with a quote that ties it all together, and why I am glad to link to conservatives and libertarians that are “fighting abuse of authority”.

"Each time a man stands up for an ideal, or acts to improve the lot of others, or strikes out against injustice, he sends forth a tiny ripple of hope, and crossing each other from a million different centers of energy and daring, those ripples build a current that can sweep down the mightiest walls of oppression and resistance."

- Robert F. Kennedy

Board of Education Elections Matter

This evening, there is a “back to school” fundraiser for the West Hartford, CT Democratic Board of Education candidates.

When is the last time you helped with a Board of Education campaign, or attended a Board of Education meeting in your area? Unless you are very involved politically, or live in an area where the Board of Education is arguing whether science can be taught in school, the odds are, you haven’t paid a lot of attention to what is going on in your Board of Education.

Yet Board of Education Elections can matter a lot. On the simplest level it is a great way for people to get involved with their communities and with politics. People often start off on Boards of Education before moving on to higher offices.