Our organizing fellows are hard at work building neighborhood and campus teams across the country. As the spring organizing fellowship continues, we’ll hear from a few of the organizers about their experiences.
People always ask me: “Why are you so involved?” “How did you get to be an organizing fellow?” People like to take guesses: “Oh, you’re a law student!” or “You wanna do something ‘political,’ right?” Nope.
Here’s the thing—I grew up blessed in my family and my opportunities. There was never any huge, heartbreaking tragedy; everything was always fixable.
But there’s a lot of world outside of that bubble, and I was always watching it.
I listened to my mother, a social worker, tell my father stories of the inner-city families she worked with. I watched three grandparents die of cancer, and witnessed the emotional and financial burden those left behind had to carry. I loved mi padrino—a proud, Catholic, gay, Cuban man—and mourned when he too was lost to cancer. I sat in silence with my classmates when 20 minutes away the towers fell on 9/11 and we all felt the new tension in the air.
This is why I am involved. I chose to stand with President Obama, a man who shares my values and sees the need for change where I see the need for change.
As to how I got involved—well, that was a happy accident. I just came in to volunteer and to make some friends. But before I could think twice, I was calling county commissioners, organizing phone banks, and registering people to vote throughout the community.
Stay tuned for more from Mayet and other organizing fellows this spring.