Community action in the Age of Trump

by Patty Templeton

Maybe, you think that voting is BS. That it doesn’t matter. That your voice isn’t heard. Maybe you feel like politics are vast and you don’t even know where to start, so why bother? Well, quiet the nihilism. Cultural anthropologist Margaret Mead would battle your ass and say, “Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has.”

There’s a group of citizens in Durango who want to change the world. They want to create action, education, and empathy, one person at a time. You can be a part of the change you want to see in the world.

Our 1st 100 Days is supported by locals dedicated to building active participation in American democracy. It is steered by an informal, volunteer board built from representatives of social, environmental, and economic justice organizations.

Friday, Jan. 13, marks the Our 1st 100 Days kick-off event. The Afrobeatniks and Carute Roma will play a free show with a cash bar at the Strater Theatre from 7 – 10 p.m. Other upcoming events include an Inauguration Day protest on Jan. 20 and Respond: A Day of Free Classes on Jan. 21. Topics will include understanding white privilege, climate change, immigration policy, and collective growth.

Organizer Dan Olson said that the Our 1st 100 Days project is focused on “ connecting folks to issues that they’re interested in learning more about. Helping folks get educated on the issues. Getting them a taste of taking political action on issues they care about. And also building community through having time to celebrate and engage in social time.”

If you think this is another group telling you what to do with your life, you’re dead wrong. “The idea behind this is not to create a new group,” Olson said. “It is to create a platform of visibility to the many efforts that are ongoing.”

Politics can be overwhelming. Think of Our 1st 100 Days as friendly volunteers who want to help you find your footing. A goal of theirs is to have “folks who are not just passionate about issues, but informed, and who understand the elements of taking action. Whether that is forwarding an agenda or protecting policies that [you] value,” Olson said. “It is easy to click ‘like’ on Facebook. It’s another thing to get involved in local, regional, state, and national politics. We’re hoping to build up folks who feel not just passionate but capable of getting involved.”

For more information, go to Our 1st 100 Days’ website – www.our1st100days.us/.

If you have events you want to see reflected on the Our 1st 100 Days calendar, email [email protected].

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