Saturday, July 19, 2008

All roads lead to ... Seneca Falls - at least this weekend

Today I had the privilege - and fun - of addressing a group of Senator Clinton's supporters at an event organized by Seneca 160 and co-sponsors. People arrived early for a breakfast event, and we heard from the Mayor Diana Smith, Seneca Falls' first woman mayor. She gave a wonderful address, demonstrating many of the same qualities that make Senator Clinton such an effective politician: intelligence, humor, confidence without arrogance, rapport with the audience. Next up was Christine Moulton, executive director of The National Women's Hall of Fame.
She spoke eloquently about the mission of The National Women's Hall of Fame and made a great case for supporting that organization.

Finally, the patient and fun crowd listened to some remarks I had prepared (I will try to summarize this in a later post) and then we shifted to questions-and-answers. We did not have much time - many events going on in Seneca Falls today and tomorrow in commemoration of the 160th anniversary of the First Women's Rights Convention held there in 1848 - but I particularly enjoyed the questions asked about the purpose of The Denver Group, because that gave me a chance to discuss the difference between a symbolic roll call vote and and an actual nominee election, where the superdelegates take responsibility for deciding the candidate who they believe more likely to win in November. Furthermore, I was able to to explain that whoever the superdelegate bloc ended up going for, the DNC could do a lot to restore its credibility with rank and file Democrats if the Party were seen to be conducting a fair, open, and authentically democratic process.

People lingered after the main event, and I was absolutely moved not only by the enthusiastic support in the room for Senator Clinton's political future but also for the activities of The Denver Group. Many people were kind enough to give me their cards with offers of help and requests for more information. One woman had come with one The Denver Group's ads printed out and she plans to pepper Seneca Falls with copies.

I will add more to this preliminary update soon. In the meantime, it seems fitting to conclude with two of my favorite Elizabeth Cady Stanton quotations. Read these and see if they do not make you want to donate to retire the debt, The Denver Group, or - if you are feeling able and generous - both.
The best protection any woman can have... is courage.
The more complete the despotism, the more smoothly all things move on the surface.
Congratulations on a successful event and my thanks to Seneca 160 for inviting me to speak.


Anonymous Mirlo said...

What an encouraging report, Heidi. It is wonderful to be able to explain to people face to face and have such a positive feed back. Thank you fordoing all this!
It's what we can hold against corruption, rigging, power grabbing. Woman can and will make a difference in this men's world.

July 19, 2008 at 2:25 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thank you for coming and being so open with your time and help. It was a great pleasure meeting you and having you ans. some of my questions. Good luck and thanks again.Jane-pa pumapac

July 19, 2008 at 2:47 PM  
Anonymous Agust said...

You are just fabulous! You ladies have fun tonight, and walk in front of the men.

July 19, 2008 at 3:04 PM  
Anonymous DWPforHILL said...

Thank you for sharing news with those of us who could not be in Seneca this weekend!

July 19, 2008 at 3:20 PM  
Anonymous GaGirl said...

Heidi, I believe that we can say these words of you also,

"...intelligence, humor, confidence without arrogance, rapport with the audience..."

Thank you for your efforts and thank you for inspiring all of us to join you.

July 19, 2008 at 3:45 PM  
Anonymous ann said...

Thanks Heidi -- I wish I'd been there

July 19, 2008 at 6:51 PM  
Anonymous Sarah said...

Heidi- Thank you so much for speaking at the event honoring Hillary's candidacy. The event was truly inspiring for young women such as myself who have been so empowered by Hillary's candidacy and so energized into action by the course of events this primary season. From myself and all of the other Seneca 160 participants and organizers, thank you so so much for all of your time and support of the Seneca 160 events!!!!

August 3, 2008 at 11:30 AM  

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