This year I’ve been the most politically active I’ve ever been. That’s because a man started a movement – a political revolution – that has resonated with me down to my core. His name is Bernie Sanders, and he is one of the most inspiring and genuine people I have ever come to know of. He is not only politically aligned with me as a progressive, but he deeply cares about the future of all of us and the planet. He is not corrupted by big money and special interests. He has been fighting his entire life for the greater good and has consistently been on the right side of history. His aim is to bring people together, not to divide them up.
He’s consumed me. Our campaign has consumed me. I’ve contributed financially 75 times, almost $2,000 in total. I’ve phone banked people all across the nation to talk to them about Bernie and his ideas. I’ve gone door to door in San Luis Obispo to make sure people know how and where to vote for Bernie. I have a yard sign in the front, I wear his shirt, and I have bumper stickers on my car, bike, and laptop. I post about him on social media almost daily and read all of his emails.
When I heard he was coming to speak in Santa Maria, I jumped on the opportunity. I waited for over three hours in the hot sun for him to arrive. Safe to say I was feeling the sunburn! He spoke for about an hour – his usual stump speech about income inequality, race and gender issues, making college tuition free, universal healthcare, and providing a path to citizenship for illegal immigrants. I found myself finishing his sentences for him and knowing what was coming next, but I loved every bit of it. For the first time in my life, I was moved by someone speaking to me from a podium. I was so impressed and inspired by the vigor in his voice, the power of his ideas, and the momentum of the movement he sparked.
But what was the most impactful for me was how he talked about the future – how he knows that it is going to be brighter and more just for all of us and not just a few. At the rally standing right in front of me, there was a middle aged latino father with his daughter. I snapped this photograph of them:
Bernie Sanders and our movement gives me hope for this young girl – that she will have more opportunity than her father did. That she will be able to go to college if she works hard in school. That she will be able to go to the doctor when she is sick. That she will inherit a planet that is healthy and in harmony with humans. That she will be treated equally as a human being. That she too will have a future to believe in. I can’t wait to see where our revolution goes next. So here’s to the future, one vote at a time! #FeelTheBern