January is one of the toughest months of the year — and not just because the weather can be cold, gray and treacherous. What makes it tough are the resolutions. “Spend more time with family.” “Cut back on calories.” “Finish the bathroom renovation.” Fortunately, you can make resolutions anytime. Many people who helped with the recent election told me their resolution to get involved — even if it was simply by voting in the mid-terms — was triggered by something other than a date on the calendar.
For some, the decision came after the Electoral College produced a presidential campaign result that didn’t reflect the popular vote. Others stepped forward when the Affordable Care Act came under attack. For some it was the stories (or personal experience) of increased voter suppression, workplace discrimination, or anti-Semitic and racial slurs. Gun violence, state budget woes, refugee horror stories, threatened relaxation of clean air and auto emission standards, lobbyists appointed to lead federal agencies, and the #MeToo movement got people involved.