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1/ Proud to announce that I'm joining a team of progressive #EastBoston residents seeking election to our local Democratic ward committee. It's a wicked local #bospoli story, but I think what we're doing here really matters--and that you should try it too.

Yes, you.

2/ Ward committees are as local as local politics get. They are (or at least can be) the foundation of party organizing, and the aspirational face of a community. They're the closest thing to Jeffersonian democracy most of us will ever see. (Photo credit: @SecretaryofMass)
3/ And they're fun! This guy gets it
4/ Unfortunately, ward committees also a great way to practice oppressive machine politics--power for its own sake, rather than for the people--of the kind that totally dominated #bospoli until very recently. Eastie has been especially susceptible to this.
5/ I was at the first East Boston ward committee meeting after local progressive hero @LydiaMEdwards was sworn in as our city councilor. When choosing our convention delegates, the woman who had just won the people's vote was completely shut out... relegated to an alternate spot.
6/ Nothing against the current ward committee personally, but they are collectively holding on to the #EastBoston of decades past. And politically--well, frankly, if being a Republican were a viable option for in Massachusetts some would be better suited to the GOP ward committee
7/ For perspective, one #EastBoston Democratic ward committee member had to resign in 2016 when everyone couldn't help but notice that he was openly supporting Trump. Many others have expressed traditionally conservative views on immigration, racial justice, etc.

8/ I have never been shy about criticizing @MassDems from the left. It can be a maddeningly centrist party, especially for such a famously blue state. But if you don't like your local politics, you can start fixing them on your own block. That's why we're doing this.
9/ We have an exciting slate of local activists & community leaders of every background and description, with a wide range of collective talent and experience. It's a small commitment, really just a few hours a year, to be sure that our community is properly represented.
10/ #EastBoston has always been a natural hothouse for political leaders. It's kind of inevitable for an insular community cut off from the rest of the city by water, both because we tend to stick together & because the government is keeps trying to use us as a dumping ground.
11/ Generations of Eastie residents have kept the airport in check through nothing more than sheer persistance. We have no better model than the late Mary Ellen Welch, a 1-woman testament to the power of individual resistance @ the local level

12/ More recently, everyone on this slate supported @NoEastieCasino. (I was proud to serve as volunteer counsel.) This self-funded grassroots movement took on one of the world's most predatory industries and won a historic electoral victory against a multi-million dollar campaign
13/ But here's the thing about serving on a ward committee: you don't have to (or want to) be a political leader. I love the office I go to every day, and the work I do in it. I'm not looking for a new one. But I want to be sure that the right people have a chance if they want it
14/ So here's something you can do, right now: look up your local committee and put their next meeting in your calendar. Don't like what you see? Work for something better.

Even a small commitment to neighborhood politics can change your community, your state, and your country
BTW, here's what the "first they laugh at you" stage of the apocryphal Ghandi quote looks like in action

(Correction: "alternate" may not be the word for it. I'm still learning all of this, but the message the committee was sending her didn't require much political context.)
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