May 2017 GCDP Chair Message

“Time has come today
Young hearts can go their way
Can’t put it off another day
And I don’t care what the others say
‘Cause they say we don’t listen anyway . . .

Time has come today, Hey!
The rules have changed today, Hey! . . .

Now the time has come, Time!
There are things to realize, Time!
Time has come today, Time!
Time has come today, Time!”
(The Chambers Brothers, 1968)

Since November 9, we have eagerly, sometimes anxiously, awaited the next campaign season . . . and now, it is here. At last, we can focus our untempered energy and outrage on beginning the reversal of political outcomes that have not reflected our values of justice, fairness, inclusion, equality, accountability, opportunity, stewardship, respect, and caring.

With races in South Carolina’s 5th Congressional District and Georgia’s 6th Congressional District, we have very real, immediate opportunities to strengthen a legislative wall that can directly deflect the pernicious vagaries of Donald Trump’s administration. Democratic Party victories in Archie Parnell’s and Jon Ossoff’s campaigns will send a shudder through the country’s political foundations (and probably inspire a splutter of mean-spirited, but ultimately meaningless, tweets and tantrums from the White House). Even though we cannot vote for either of these two candidates, we can, and must, do our part to clear and forge their paths to victory on June 20. The GCDP will be setting up phone banks and possibly canvass events in order to facilitate local participation – watch for information coming soon, and plan to volunteer at least an hour or two at some point during the next five weeks. Resistance has many facets . . . responsive representation is an effective – democratic – tool for achieving progress.

We also have two critical local races on which to focus this summer and fall: Greenville City Councilwoman Lillian Brock Flemming’s reelection bid for her District 2 seat and Russell Stall’s race for the Greenville City Council At-Large Member seat currently held by Democrat Gaye Sprague. Quite often, locally enacted policies, regulations, and laws impact our daily quality of life to a greater degree than national policies and laws do. Keeping those seats in Democratic hands will ensure a more responsive balance between business and neighborhood and individual and community interests in our county’s largest municipality. It will also maintain a firm foundation on which to create political change throughout the rest of Greenville County in the foreseeable future. Even if you do not live within Greenville City limits, your support will be critical to these campaigns. Please say “yes” when you are asked to contribute time and/or money. Every contribution will make a difference.

Longstanding rules that were created to ensure accountability and fairness at all levels of community and politics are being changed on an almost daily basis. If you want to have a say in the specifics and consequences of those changes, commit to actively participating in the campaigning part of the political process to elect leaders who represent our values TODAY! The GCDP commits to being your conduit.

Kate Franch
GCDP Chair