It’s easy for Libertarians to get used to being ignored. Sometimes it feels like everywhere we go, people are more concerned with which American Idol contestant was eliminated the night before than they are with the loss of their liberties. As much as this should encourage us to work harder, it’s not at all uncommon for hopelessness to set in or to see philosophical libertarians return to one of the two major parties where they can get some attention. Thankfully, if our experience last weekend at the Downers Grove Heritage Festival is any indication, that’s finally beginning to change.
From June 26-28, a handful of volunteers staffed a booth next to the Downers Grove Township Democrats to help spread the message of liberty. Thankfully, we didn’t have any real problems with the neighbors, but the real highlight of the weekend was the steady flow of visitors to our booth. People seem to be coming out of the woodwork to express an interest in the Libertarian Party (or just a frustration with the two-party system). In previous years, it has been difficult to obtain even a handful of names, but in three days, the DuPage Libertarians received 30 new names, increasing our contacts by fifty percent. This brings us to an increase of over 1000% since the beginning of the year. While we still have a long way to go, this should give all of us great motivation to redouble our efforts to get the message out.
As encouraging as it is to see people coming to the Libertarian Party, the unfortunate reality is that many of these same people expressed that they were not even aware that there was a DuPage County affiliate of the Libertarian Party. While we may often feel that we’re already working hard enough, we should never stop looking for better and more effective ways to reach our fellow citizens. If you have an idea, don’t keep it to yourself. Reach out to the leadership and ask how you can bring it about. Post Libertarian-themed updates to your social networking sites. Run for office as a Libertarian candidate. The opportunities for involvement are limited only by your imagination.
As a way to increase the coordination and organization of the DuPage Libertarians, we have created the position of Township Chair for those who would like to help build up the Libertarian Party in their respective areas. The duties of this office can be as involved as you make it, but at a minimum, we are looking for people who can keep track of local events (festivals, parades, etc) and function as a primary point of contact for other Libertarians in their township. Interested parties can join us at our monthly meetings or contact any of the leadership to express an interest.
Chair, DuPage Libertarians