I woke up in the wee hours of the morning on Inauguration Day in 2009 and prepared to battle the crowds and bitterly cold weather as I made my down to the US Capitol for the ceremony. I didn’t care that it was still dark out when I started out the door or that I could barely feel my toes because I was so excited about all that Barack Obama represented.
At the time, I was the head of Virginia’s chapter of Working Families Win (a project sponsored by Americans for Democratic Action) and I had put in countless hours working to support Obama and other progressive candidates/issues. So needless to say, I felt as though at least a small part (and I stress small) of the day was a celebration of all the work I had done.
Over the next few years, I would continue working hard for progressive causes. I got to know a lot of activists throughout the Commonwealth of Virginia, for instance, when I traveled the state working for WFW and later being the New Media Director for a candidate running for statewide office. I also had the honor of briefly serving as Communications Director for the Fairfax County Young Democrats and Vice-Chair of the Springfield District Democratic Committee before I moved up to Rochester, NY to become the lead organizer for a non-profit voter education group up there.
The entire experience was very rewarding, but I eventually became less and less involved in politics when I moved back to the DC area. As many of you know, for instance, even my blogging has changed its focus as I’ve been writing about baseball and hockey over at Grandstand Perspective (and before that Ballpark Banter). I’ve never stopped caring about progressive causes and tried to stay in touch with friends from my political days; it’s simply that my focus had changed.
With that being said, the last few weeks have made it clear that there’s still a lot of work to do. Despite Democrats winning the White House and gaining seats in both the House and Senate, for example, the Republicans have still threatened any sort of progress on crucial economic and social issues. When you combine that with the important elections that we have right here in Virginia, you cannot deny the importance of what happens over the next year.
So as we’re celebrating the honor of Martin Luther King Day and Obama’s second inauguration today, I have decided to re-invigorate my political activism. While my current job outside of politics means I won’t be spending 24/7 working towards change like I was four years ago, I simply cannot remain on the sidelines anymore.
It’s in that spirit that I will be out knocking on doors and making phone calls for the various candidates here in Virginia as well as actively commenting here and across the political blogsphere (especially at my new political blog). I look forward to adding what I can to the discussion and hearing what everyone has to say in response.