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Stop the Shaming: My Unsolicited Advice to Clinton Backers

Arsenia Reilly-Collins Aug 1, 2016

Here is some unsolicited advice to people who want folks to vote for Hillary Clinton. Instead of shaming someone into voting for Hillary, I suggest having a conversation like this:

"Hi. How are things going for you with the economy?" And they maybe they respond with something like "my rent has gone up and I haven't gotten a raise. If I ask for a raise, I'm afraid that I'm going to be fired." Or "I am in massive student loan debt." "I can't drink the water because it's brown from fracking". "There is no good schools for my kids." "I can't afford daycare for my son." "I am pregnant and I don't think I can afford another kid." "My husband is going to jail for possession of drugs." "My brother just got back from Afghanistan and he can't get a job so he lives with us."

And after listening you say something like, "Yeah, shit sucks right now. It's bullshit that we have to live like this. It's not humane. It's wrong. We shouldn't stand for this crap." And then listen some more and then say something like, "Do you know that if trump is elected that he — (maybe something like "has a huge probability of nominating a Supreme Court justice who can impact the women's right to choose, workers right to have a voice in their workplace?" (A response to their issues)

And they might say, "yeah but I have a hard time trusting Hillary. She lies all the time" and maybe you say, "you're right. She's a liar. That's why when she's elected, we can't give up. We have to organize and be in the streets. We have to be pushing for human rights and social rights. Voting is harm reduction. It is not going to solve our woes. I'm really scared about trump getting elected and here's why —- . Can we count on you to support us? We would love if you joined us at some events. We will have childcare and food. We are even paying people to canvas the neighborhoods in swing states like yours (or if they are in New York or other blue states say "will you come with us to Pennsylvania or Ohio or Florida?")And we will continue pushing after the election and we are not going to believe a politician's promises. We are going to push them on our issues. We are building a movement and this is a step in that direction. The election is not the end-game."

And if they say that they need time to think about it or they are unsure that I suggest saying, "okay, yeah I hear you. I'll come back and check in with on (specific date) In the meantime, if you have any questions or you need any support, you can reach me at ***** "

Arsenia Reilly-Collins is a NYC-based union organizer, a member of the education, mass campaigns and cultural committees of Gabriela and serves on the board of the Cooperative Economic Alliance of New York City.

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