Posted with the permission of the author:
Dear Representative MacArthur,
Your insistence that there are “paid protesters” at work, in front of your offices or wherever they may be, is absurd. At best, paid protesters are an urban legend. At worst, they’re a red herring. You should be embarrassed to say such a thing with no evidence to back yourself up. If you believe it to be true, well, you’re gullible. If you know it to be false, but say it anyway, you’re a liar. So I’m very curious, which is it? Are you gullible, or a liar? It doesn’t look too good for you either way.
Here’s the thing: since November 2016, I have attended a dozen protests. I was part of the Women’s March. I protested the Pinelands Pipeline. I have rallied for the ACA. I have protested the travel ban and all its awful results. I have rallied to improve access to healthcare for veterans. I have helped create a network in Burlington County of 700 people who protest with me, who make phone calls and write postcards and letters and show up at your office, even when you don’t. Our numbers grow literally every day. We are your constituents, and we are watching you closely.
Not one of us has gotten a penny for what we do. Of the 16,000 of us statewide, not one of us has been paid to protest. I challenge you, Representative MacArthur, to conclusively prove otherwise, and if you can’t, you better be ready to retract your accusation and apologize. Personally, I’m a couple hundred dollars in the hole, trying to fight the rancid stream of injustice and inequality spewing forth from Washington D.C.
We aren’t the new “tea party”. We don’t have a proper name yet. Some call us the Movement, some the Resistance, some Indivisible. Either way, the fact remains that we are not motivated by money or religion, but by compassion and respect for diversity. We are motivated internally, not externally. We are stepping up and taking on leadership roles in our communities that have lain fallow for too long. We were asleep. This is what we look like when we rise.
Co-Chair, Action Together Burlington County