Lynne Iser has plans to get arrested next month, and she wants hundreds of other elders by her side when she does.
“I grew up in the 60s. Back then we had a great deal of pride in America. Of course there were plenty of big problems — Civil rights, the Vietnam War — but it still felt like we had a democracy.” A Philadelphia area activist, Lynne is helping to coordinate a group called Elders Standing for Democracy Spring. “It doesn’t feel like that anymore,” she told me over the phone.
Lynne is hardly alone. Academics recently found empirical evidence that governance in the U.S. more closely resembles an oligarchy than a democracy, and majorities of Republicans, Democrats and Independents report in poll after poll that they want our leaders to overhaul the way we fund campaigns, and they want it now. In the middle of the most cash-drenched election cycle in American history, Congress has responded to that incredible consensus of public opinion with ... nothing.
That’s why Lynne, and thousands of others, are planning to join Democracy Spring, a 10-day march and series of mass sit-ins at the US capitol this April, demanding action on the twin crises plaguing American democracy: the flood of Big Money drowning out the voices of most of us in our government, and the surge in attacks on voting rights in States across the country.