It has been a year since #Rootstrikers launched at the National Conference on Media Reform in Boston, MA. Invoking Thoreau — “For every thousand hacking at the branches of evil, there is one who is striking at the root.” — I challenged those reformers to join us in this more fundamental fight. And in the almost 100 talks since, I have worked as hard as I can to get everyone I can to see the corrupting influence of money in politics, and how that corrupting root feeds practically every other problem in America today.
I am a #Rootstriker. Teaching this is my job.
Today, we launch a new site to recruit more such #Rootstrikers — more souls devoted to teaching this message to everyone who will listen.
Click here to visit our new site and explore our new tools to help this movement grow.
If there are a “thousand hacking” for every “one striking,” then there are at least 300,000 #Rootstrikers in America today. We want to recruit them all, and help them spread this message of reform.
I’m not just talking about people who are willing to receive our emails or follow our Tweets. Or even people willing to donate money to fund our work. Those people are important too. We can’t exist without their feedback. Our servers go dark without their financial support.
But in addition to them, we also need citizen teachers: 300,000 who will work with us to teach something about this corruption and the crisis it is building. These teachers will draw upon their own experience. They will build upon the teaching of others. And they will make it their cause — as much as they can — to spread this message and the understanding it takes. Not full time. Not even all the time. But enough to get enough of the rest of America to understand what’s at stake, and build the will — finally — to do something about it.
The new Rootstrikers website will make it easier than ever to join and recruit others to this campaign. We already have more than 35 cities with #Rootstrikers Meetups, almost a thousand who have pledged to “do whatever it takes” to end the “corrupting influence of money in politics,” and a growing library of videos by ordinary people spreading the message, and urging others to join this campaign.
In the weeks ahead, we will make the materials to spread this message even more accessible, and invite you to post your own to our growing library of resources. There’s a way to tell this story so that farmers get it. And bankers. And office workers. And retired folks. And students. And police officers. And soldiers. And mothers. But the way to connect these different souls is for different people to try. That’s the project we launch today: The effort to translate this understanding into the stories that matter to every group in America, so that enough will join us to make this change happen.
As we begin this next phase, we will keep you in the loop. You will hear from me about our strategy for lasting reform, but you will also hear more from others about how we’re deploying it. We have a tiny staff — our new online director, Neal Bastek, comes to us with several years of experience advocating for a free and democratic Internet, and our campaign director, Szelena Gray, who has spent many years in social rights activism — but to strengthen and expand this campaign at the grassroots, we also need you.
So here’s the ask today:
Check out our new website;
Think about whether you could be one of the 300k and join if you can; and
Spread this call to others who you think could also join this movement for reform: share on Facebook, tweet it, email a friend.
Thank you again for your help so far. And thank you for your help to come.