Harnessing democracy, not tearing it down

January 8, 2021
by Joanne Carter, Executive Director

Our work at RESULTS is about harnessing democracy – building relationships with the people elected to represent us, and moving them into action. But this week we saw an attempt to tear that democracy down.

Wednesday’s attack was fueled by white supremacy, and incited by the dangerous words of the President and others who refused to accept the results of the election – one in which a record 160 million Americans voted amid a deadly pandemic.

Racism, anti-Semitism, and xenophobia were at the center of the insurrection, with confederate flags and symbols of hate worn and carried through the Capitol. And we see the racism and hypocrisy of impunity for a violent white mob, when peaceful Black Lives Matter protesters this summer were shamefully met with tear gas and massive force only a few miles away.

For many RESULTS volunteers, the Capitol is not just a distant landmark, but one that matters personally as well as politically. It’s where RESULTS advocates have shared their own stories, met with members of Congress across the political spectrum, built relationships with congressional staff, and moved policymakers into action. It’s where they’ve used the levers of democracy for good.

With democracy under threat, RESULTS will build an even bigger movement working with lawmakers to end poverty and oppression in all its forms. We’ve already laid plans for our biggest ever coordinated advocacy campaign to set the agenda with Congress and Administration, and we won’t slow down. As hundreds of millions of people continue to face the consequences of the pandemic, poverty, inequality, and structural racism, there is far too much at stake.

Right now we mourn the tragedy this week and everything that led to it. But we’re going to respond to it with our biggest vision, the power of our voices, and the relationships we build to shape the decisions of our elected officials. We will do what RESULTS grassroots advocates have always done: harness the power of democracy to move us closer to the end of poverty.

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