Tuesday, May 17, 2011

We Can Make a Difference

by Connie Entrekin,
President, Steelworkers Organization of Active Retirees (SOAR)

Recent events have demonstrated that an informed electorate can make a difference. Retirees all across the country attended town hall meetings held by their legislators to let them know exactly what they thought of the Ryan budget plan. Educated and armed with the facts, activists showed up to demonstrate their displeasure with the Republican - led budget that recently passed in the House of Representatives and changed the course of the debate.

This grassroots activism once again established that working class Americans will not stand pat and allow the corporate elite and their elected lackey’s to run roughshod over what is good for all Americans. You made your voices heard! The leaders of the far right and minions of the rich backed-out from their draconian approach to destroy Medicare in a half-baked scheme to balance the budget.  

SOAR members joined with the Alliance for Retired Americans in over 20 “Don’t Make Us Work until We Die” events. These grassroot actions stressed that cutting entitlement benefits would require people to keep working far past when they should be able to retiree with dignity. These events also demonstrated to our elected officials that we are paying very close attention to their activities.

We must keep the pressure on!  We must continue to express our concerns about the budget process.  We must get a commitment from our legislators to oppose any attempt to weaken or dismantle Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security.

The question we all must ask ourselves is one that many activists have asked themselves throughout the ages - "If not us, who; If not now, when?"


Jim Bains said...

In the Sixties my mother founded the Alabama chapter of the Grey Panthers, a group of militant retirees. I think it may be my turn today to follow her example.

garyro said...

the best activism an individual can do is to make sure folks in household and neighbors are registered to vote and get all to the polls on voting day. Our foes do this and we need remind our folks to do this as well. Last election, many of ours stayed home and that is fact in Missouri.