So, what happens to the truth sandwich when our side is in power? Who’s the villain; what values do we express? What happens to the narrative “we deserve better”? We still want our freedom to choose, our right to vote, and our ability to make a living wage.
First and foremost, do not go to sleep. Stay woke. Despite the rhetoric, being awake is a good thing. Here are a few more tips:
Hang on tight to the narrative. Demand our lawmakers take action. When they do, celebrate by telling our story of how the law makes people’s lives better. The enemy will be aggressively attacking and distracting the public to keep people from feeling good about lawmaking in Lansing.
Be brutally honest. Nothing is forever. State House terms are 2 years. Democrats have a slim majority, and it took 40 years to get here. It’s critical for us to protect our power. Right now, MIGOP is waging war for 2024 to grab control. Remind voters that for 40 years MIGOP gave away our future to greedy rich oligarchs, like the DeVos family and Koch brothers; all in the name of free markets where corporations are free from government regulations and taxes.
Keep using Race-Class-Narrative (RCN). Values, Villain, Vision. Celebrate the wins and tell a personal story about why the legislation makes a difference in your life. Use value words like freedom, protection, opportunity, community. Call out the villain who holds us back, distracts us, and fuels hate. Share your hope and vision of the future; clean air, safe water, reliable healthcare, and the ability to save for retirement. To learn more about how to frame your narrative check out these resources: https://www.wemakethefutureaction.us/resources
As leaders in Lansing prioritize their work, they need the power of “we” to speak up for the policies we expect to be enacted. Whether it is a post on social media, a call to their office, or a letter to the editor of your local newspaper, everything we do matters. In Michigan, we know that when we organize, we win.
Voters-Not-Politicians organized us to rid gerrymandering in map making, and we won.
Promote-The-Vote organized us to expand voting rights, and we won.
Reproductive Freedom organized us to establish an individual right to reproductive freedom, and we won.
We are the architects of Michigan’s future when we come together. Pay attention. The MIGOP are barbarians at the gate of democracy, and we must not be distracted by school board fights, attacks on marginalized groups, or bans on books. It’s in our hands. Protecting our power means creating the narrative, calling out villains, and messaging for our future.