November 4, 2004

From the heart of CODEPINK

"When I despair, I remember that all through history the way of truth and love has always won.  There have been tyrants and murderers and for a time they seem invincible but in the end, they always fall - think of it, ALWAYS."
- Gandhi  

Dear Friends,

We rolled up our sleeves, squared our shoulders and worked furiously to defeat the neo-conservative agenda. As citizens of empire, we took responsibility: we marched, we laughed, we sang, we cried, we shouted, we voted and motivated others to vote because we believed that our nation needed more compassionate leadership to achieve a safer and more just world.

No matter what loss we might be feeling at the moment, we can┬╣t lose sight of what we┬╣ve achieved individually and together. The success of the conservatives is not our failure. It┬╣s a setback, to be sure, but even if the results had been different, many of the issues we have confronted so boldly would be there to challenge us, even under a less conservative administration. So as we pick ourselves up and dust off to continue the struggle we need to remember to look around to see what, in this short time, we have built within ourselves and our communities with so much conviction and courage. Our numbers have swelled, as have our alliances. We have created new strategies and pushed ourselves to heights we never thought we could reach. We actively engaged, always hoping that the change we desired was around the corner.  As long as we still breathe, there is always reason to hope.  

Right now the prospect of the next four years might feel like a tough challenge - and no doubt it will be. But it┬╣s always been tough and yet we┬╣ve kept at it.  Except now we┬╣re smarter and probably a little more desperate.  On November 2 we saw our nation take a huge stumble. On November 3rd, we vow to move forward and remember that we have built a greater capacity with which to go forward.   

No doubt we are feeling baffled, frustrated, disgusted, sad, and angry. Rather than conceding, let┬╣s do what we do best - gather together in vigils, in community circles, and in town halls to share our stories, grief, and action plans for creating the safer and more just world we so want for those who  come after us. What was it our Mothers told us - always leave a place better than you found it?

Back to the present... Over the last weeks, many of us heard about or directly witnessed serious problems, including voter suppression and fraud, and poor management of our election system. We stepped up to help maximize participation and to protect the vote. We joined with the many others to expose the problems and to advocate for reforms. And we continue to demand that ALL the votes be counted. 

And concerning Iraq, our work to end the violence  there continues, as do our efforts to support the troops, especially by calling for their immediate withdrawal.  And we will keep up the pressure aimed at reforming the media that has been so detrimental to our democracy. 

Dear friends: Keep checking in, keep giving us feedback, and most of all keep the faith.  We will keep the website updated with news and inspiration.

In continued solidarity,  
Andrea, Bonnie, Carol, Chris, Claire, Colleen, Dana, Gael, Jodie, Lora, Medea, Nancy, Tiffany