My legislator, Senator Michael Dembrow, is a wonderful liberal legislator. When I go to a Salem lobby day, I often find he wrote the legislation I was going to lobby him about. Or if he didn't write it, at least he sponsored it! I end up congratulating him for doing the right thing!
I’ve heard this story of liberal people lobbying like minded legislators many times. Urban legislature tend to be liberal, rural legislature tend to be conservative. Senator Dembrow has said to me something like, 'do you have friends and family in rural Oregon? If so, talk to them, because it’s those rural legislators that need to know more about this bill.'
Outside of contacting our rural cousins and friends, or moving to a beautiful rural setting, what can we do about the rural-urban divide? I try to remember we aren’t all urbanites. We do have small UU congregations all over Oregon in rural areas. And we have rural members of our urban congregations.
This action of the week is especially for our congregations in Grants Pass, Roseburg, Astoria, McMinnville, Klamath Falls, Hood River, Newport, Florence, Bend, and Coos Bay. It's also for UU’s who live in the country but attend a congregation in Ashland, Eugene, Corvallis, Salem or Oregon City. That is quite a few people!
The Action of the Week: attend the Rural Organizing Project’s2018 Rural Caucus & Strategy Session in the Dalles over the Friday through Sunday May 18-20th week-end. Sign up here,and mark your calendars.
Here is an agenda of what is happening at the gathering:
You can support rural UUs by attending the Friday events and participate in the NORCOR Rally and dinner.
Here is a little bit about The Rural Organizing Project (ROP). It’s a statewide organization of locally-based groups that work to create communities accountable to a standard of human dignity: the belief in the equal worth of all people, the need for equal access to justice, and the right to self-determination.
Their three guiding principles are a lot like our seven principles:
ROP was started in 1992 in response to the Oregon Citizens Alliance’s terrible Abnormal Behaviors Initiative, which targeted gay and lesbian Oregonians for legalized second-class citizenship. Oregonians in small towns across the state mobilized, many for the first time. ROP stepped into this organizing opportunity to fill a niche the radical right was trying to claim. You can read more on their great website .
Create a more just Oregon and support the Rural Organizing Project.
In Love and Faith,
Rev. Katie Larsell
May 12, Saturday -- Lummi Totem Pole Journey, Ecotruct blg, Portland, More Details Here
May 15, Monday -- Poor People's Campaign, First Action Day, Salem SIgn Up Here
Sept 15, Saturday -- Oregon Unitarian Universalist Voices for Justice Annual Social Justice Conference. Mark your Calendar