Civic Diary 6/18/2016

(This column is posted at and Steve’s Tumblr)

Pretty ugly week, so let’s jump into my civic diary here.

The shooting at Pulse is horrible and heartwrenching.  It’s also an example of why you have to follow not just issues, but how people react to issues- the assumptions, the erroneous reporting, the political grandstanding from previously LGBT-hostile politicians, etc.  Horribly, the blood wasn’t dry before the bullshit started.

At the same time, you have to stand back and see what really happened – a troubled man (I will not call him insane, he clearly was sane enough) that got his hands onto powerful weaponry and committed a massacre.  Seeing everything from family homophobia, to access to guns, to how we seem to seriously miss the potential for violence.

Needless to say, I do support gun regulation, and know what I’m calling my representatives on.  However I also want more studies of gun violence and other violence, and plan to support that.  Violence is a health issue and one we should be studied.

It kind of feels weird to talk about anything after that.  But that’s the point.

I have a political meeting next Sunday, which should be interesting – and I hope it’s not cancelled.  I don’t suspect it will be.  This is where I take a look into getting involved in GOTV efforts, which seems to be a good starter focus for being more civicly engaged.

I’m finishing up that book on political engagement and dialogue, “The Little Book Of Revolution.”  It’s still something I’ll have to reread, but it is giving me ideas – and it does remind me that dialogue is important as a big part of the book is engagement and discussion.  Note the discussion part – most political “discussion” is yelling at people.  The author of this book talks respect and engagement.

So that’s about it for me so far.  May next week allow me to share more pithy advice and so forth, and may we have less to mourn.

– Steve