We're mad about the Arpaio pardon, and we're outraged but energized by Charlottesville. Ordinary people of every color, religion, and background are speaking out about the need to embrace diversity, counter white nationalism and stand firm in defense of civil rights for all. We are convinced that we are the vast majority of Americans. And we are tired of making the case.
What if we didn't need to convince our elected officials of why they needed to stand up for all of us- what if they already got it, and were already there with us? State by state, district by district, we would like to get beyond the tiresome business of asking politicians to take positions on Confederate statues. We're tired of watching state legislatures pander to bigots by banning transgender students' use of bathrooms, or banning Mexican-American studies. Did you know the Virginia state legislature even tried to ban high schools from teaching Toni Morrison's Beloved? We pay taxes. Let's get these extremists out and get some people in who actually want to work for us.
We know the odds are against us. Our candidates don't have the money, the connections, the big-name party endorsements that their challengers have. So they need us.
We are starting in Virginia because we believe this year's state elections will be a bellweather for the nation. We need to prove that when we turn up, our candidates can win.
We're focusing on six outstanding individuals running for state legislature in Virginia. They have all made public commitments stand up for the principles of the Diversity Declaration, and are matching their actions to their words. They are Hala Ayala, John Bell, Jennifer Carroll Foy, Elizabeth Guzman, Danica Roem and Kathy Tran. They are experienced. They are highly qualified. They care about the issues that affect most Virginians' daily lives. And they will be the base for a different kind of network in state politics, one that opens doors for more and more people outside the 'old boys' network in future.
We believe there are many more Diversity Champions out there, but let's prove our point with these six. Help us help them win their seats, and begin a movement in state legislatures across the country. Our events page will tell you more about opportunities to get involved. Any small action you can take will make a difference. And just think how good you will feel about winning back some of these seats in November!