When you think ‘relationship,’ my guess is that your #1 association is a romantic one. The truth, however, is that you have all kinds of relationships – those with people, objects, and even ideas. Often in this blog I focus on romantic relationships because romantic relationships can be such a struggle. Today, though, we are going to focus on something else.
Last week I attended a community mental health meeting in which one of the leaders asked the audience to contact their local congressmen and senators to fight for mental health dollars in the state of California. Today, as it is President’s Day, I got to thinking more generally about what our relationship is like with our president and our elected officials, overall. I reflected on the call that was made to us last week in that meeting to use our beliefs and our pens to write to those in power and stand up for what we believe in.
That said, what is your relationship with your elected officials? When was the last time you wrote a letter to an elected official and fought for something you care about? Maybe I should take a step and ask: Have you ever written to an elected official?
I will tell the truth and admit that I have not. It’s a little embarrassing because I do follow current events closely and vote in every election. How, then, have I lost touch with one of the most important ways to engage in political activism? I, like many others, get so caught up in the day to day humdrum that this concept slips my mind.
I believe holidays are important because they often remind us of things we take for granted, and President’s Day is a great example. Think about an issue that you care about and make a pact this year to write one – just one – letter to an elected official this year. This activism and assertion of what you want and need will improve your relationship with your elected officials and serve as an important reminder that your thoughts count, too!