We do too, and we are not alone.
If you felt that change needed to happen in America during the 2016 elections, no mater who you voted for, well, change did happen.
I remember the day after the election, in shock, sadness, and complete disbelief, I went to a local cafe for breakfast before work. It was popular local kosher eatery, a place so close to my house I could walk, and someplace I felt completely at home, and I needed a big plate of comfort food, saturated in grief. I was sat at a side booth, next to a window. In the booth ahead of me, were two older white males. They were talking about the election results, and boasting about "their" win, and how things were going to be different now. Then, how Killerary was defeated, and how American was once again headed in the right direction. They also talked about how, now, we can begin to undo all the "liberal B.S." that started before Obama, and was propagated by all the liberal media and anti-free speech people.
Remember reading these on November 8th, 2016?
It felt like doomesday.
I could barely order my breakfast, through choking back tears. I actually felt unsafe in my booth, a lesbian, dining alone, in what I felt in that moment was "their" restaurant. Yes, free speech is for everyone, and they are allowed theirs. I guess I did live in a liberal bubble, because I expected my hometown diner to be commiserating with me, the waitresses to be in as much shock as I was, and the other diners, my neighbors, to be there seeking solace with each other, as if a world war had just been started and we all needed to be close to each other. I did not feel safe.
I thought, if they think this is a "win", and I feel like the world is over, maybe it is.
A few months later was the first Women's March. And I was once again feeling like I was going to be around "my people". This time, I was right.
As the emcee of the San Diego Women's March in 2017, I thought I was speaking to the several thousand that were in front of the steps. As far as I could see there was a wall of people, male, female, non-binary, younger, older, infants, gruff looking biker dudes were holding hands and marching with women and other men, not giving one rats tooty about what people thought, and united in the thought that not just women were in danger with this change in America, but the rights of every American, heck, every HUMAN in the world. Some say there were over 100,000 in attendance that day in San Diego, but ours was small in comparison to Washington D.C., and other cities across the nation, across many nations across the world.
I remember being in awe that so many would come out and get crammed into a tiny space (the Women's March organizers did a WONDERFUL job organizing that HERstoic event, and no one knew the response was going to be so massive), and I saw their faces looking up and around, waiting to find out what we did next. I wanted to know what we did next too. I said, "Turn to the person standing next to you, and tell them why you are marching here today", I waited a moment, then continued, "Now make a mental note of what you just heard, whether or not you know the person standing next to you, know that you have just heard the voice of another person standing up for Democracy and Human Rights! Now carry that with you as you march together here today, and together, plan your own next steps to make a difference in your world".
That's all I could do. I didn't know next steps either. Was I supposed to run for office or something? I'm afraid my personality, though outwardly large and proud, is much to inwardly sensitive for that type of job. I was an social activist, and LGBTQIA activist, a proud member of NOW, and a marketing professional by trade. What felt like a hundred years earlier, I was also a professional musician, where much of my marketing skills were honed over the years, getting bands and tours off the ground, financed and "seen". So what the heck could I do to "be the change" myself?
(I had no idea I was talking to 100,000 people, all I could see was a wall of eager faces.)
Sunday morning after the march, I awoke early, before daylight as I recall. I lay there thinking about what I had said and heard the day before. How was I going to take my own advice? What impact could I make that would be sustainable to me and my family, to my heart, and to really be of use? I thought about how it would have been wonderful to have marched all those 100,000 people into a park where they could sign up to volunteer for community building groups, ACLU, NOW, Planned Parenthood, Habitat for Humanity, Neighborhood Watch, any and everything that could help our community feel like they were together, and not isolated, and not drowning in grief and negativity, but instead collectively working together, each doing their own little part of a large puzzle of rebuilding trust with your neighbor, and actually communicating with them. Then I thought about logistics, and how we would have to have known the crowds were going to be that large, and thought about the organization it would take to get all those organizations together with the short notice (respectively) we had to put this national movement together. And then I thought about how there needed to be a way to keep people milling about this newly imagined festival of post march community involvement, a stage, not with speakers necessarily, but a band playing songs that would inspire people to keep that feeling they had long enough to be active in the post march sign up fest.
And then I knew what to do. "I could be that band". Poof.
Within three hours, and a frenzy of Facebook messaging, texting, and a few emails, The Resizters were born. I had musical friends from all over the style spectrum, but what I needed were the ego-less ones. The ones who could shred on their respective instruments, but were they type of humans that would join a band playing covers for no money, play at events for no money, and stay passionate about Being The Change. Some I had played with in bands before, and some had never been in a band before at all. And when we got together for the first rehearsal in my living room (just down the street from that delish kosher deli), the first thing we discussed before playing was, why do you want to be here?
Straight, gay, fathers, mothers, sisters, and orphans, everyday folk, all with day jobs, responsibilities, and time restraints. That was us.
This is us.
We have since been the band on the steps of the San Diego County Administration Building playing the 2018 Women's March (just as I had imagined), the band playing on the stage outside the Democratic National Convention in San Diego, the band playing the ACLU member drive, the band playing the San Diego NOW annual fundraiser, the band playing at Indivisible Fallbrook's fund raiser to "Flip the 50th", the band playing the 2018 San Diego March for Science, as well as the band that has played several private events that support Democracy and Human Rights, for those events we require the host contribute a minimum of $1500 to either the ACLU, SPLC, Planned Parenthood, or NOW.
Our Set List Expands Every Week, click here for examples: LINK
That is how we make our little difference, by supporting the great organizations that work so hard to do their part. It's easy and fun for us, plus we are honored to play inspiring "protest" music from artists as far back as Woody Gutherie, Nina Simone, Creedence Clearwater Revival, John Mayer, The Beatles, The Staple Singers, Marvin Gaye, Green Day, and a special crowd favorite, Rage Against The Machine.
All of these artists wrote this music when they were inspired to, Be The Change also. They saw wrongs that needed to be righted, and decided to be the voices of those that had no voice.
We salute them when we play their music. And we have begun writing our own music also. There is so much to say, and so much to do.
I hope we are out of a job in 2020.
We plan on dropping our mics the day of the election in 2020. Let us pray we are able to.
It is then that we know we would have done something to set America back on track. Not that we stop being the change, but knowing we made a dent in the massive pile of things that needed to get done to create that change. Of course, that day can only come if we have a new administration, one that respects Democracy and Human Rights, one that sees the world through the eyes of compassion, and restoration, and one that sees that America as not a dictatorship, and finally, we will see that the people really have spoken.
Again, I hope we are out of a job in 2020.
We would like to take our project to D.C., to be the band supporting the next progressive, or Democratic, or generally sane candidate for POTUS, Congress, Senate, Governor, and other more local events that require travel, a budget to get to, stay at and perform for these events.
To do that, we need a presentable "package".
* We need to get into the recording studio and record professional examples of what we do, so decision makers at these events feel comfortable having us, though they may not have seen us yet.
Once made, the recordings will be compiled into a Press Package, that will hopefully include some national press, and sent to those campaigns that support Democracy and Human Rights across the US.
We want to be the band playing at the fundraisers for the next Democratic/Progressive/Generally Sane candidate for President of the United States of America, and we want to perform at her or his Inauguration Ball.
* We need to complete a mini documentary already in the storyboard stages of production that will highlight who the band is, our personality and our drive to make a difference by what we do. This is a Video Marketing Tool (VMT), that will feature footage and photos of marches across the nation, all provided by fans of the band, and behind the scenes footage of us preparing for a show, rehearsing, arriving at the airport, and interviews with the diverse people in this project. It may also include supporters of the band, such as Executive Producers, politicians and others that have seen us, or had us at their events.
We hang up our mics, because we have done what we have set out to do, made an example for our children, supported our children, and contributed the legacy of other Be The Chang-ers across this nation.
What we need, and what you can do.
We try not to charge to perform, because we don't do this for a profit, though our band members are spread out from Arizona to Murrieta, CA..
We need to raise the money needed to get into the recording studio, and put together the press package.
To not spread the costs of production to the events we support, we are offering up these positions in our project to raise funds.
Senior Executive Producer
This position is the "Head Honcho" of what we are trying to do. A true believer in the causes we support, and a believer in the vision of The Resizters to bring the music that has inspired others to stand up and fight for our nation throughout history to current day events around the USA. It's a big title, and a big job. Can you see the big picture? Want to know that you made a HUGE difference it making that picture a reality? Then this job is for you.
"Benefits of Bragging":
* A LIVE RESIZTER PERFORMANCE AT YOUR EVENT. Up to three hours of music power at your beck and call!
* Listed as Senior Executive Producer on any digital or hard copy of the recordings we make in the studio.
* Listed as Senior Executive Producer on the opening titles of the mini documentary.
* Featured interview inside the mini documentary (If desired).
* Listed on our website and social media channels as Senior Executive Producer of the recorded music and mini documentary.
* A shout out on our Facebook and Twitter pages announcing you as the Senior Executive Producer, with tags to your own page(s), or those of your businesses or other supported causes.
Non tax exempt donation required - $2000
As an Executive Producer of this project, you are a beacon of light in the darkness, and a trailblazer for making things happen.
With so many marches, protests, and rallys scheduled across the USA, and more in the making for 2018 and beyond, one is not expected to attend all of them. This would be your way of sending The Resizters to represent you there, which in turn, is your participation in the hard work and planning that goes into creating all of those events.
"Benefits of Bragging":
* Listed as Executive Producer on the opening titles of the mini documentary.
* Featured interview inside the mini documentary (If desired).
* Listed on our website and social media channels as Executive Producer of the mini documentary.
Non tax exempt donation required - $1200
At the Producer level you too are making change happen by supporting all of the production costs involved in the back end of the glory. A producer is a tireless support entity, ensuring all the I's and T's are correct, in the right place, and everything is on schedule. Without you, things get off track quickly.
"Benefits of Bragging":
* Listed as "Produced by" on the closing titles of the mini documentary.
* Sound clip interview inside the mini documentary (no visual shot).
Non tax exempt donation required - $500
Still believe in the cause? Want to be a part of something creative, but on a Resizter budget? You can be a Consultant on the project, get listed on our web site, and get first invites to any public shows we do locally in San Diego. Receive a hand raising shout out form us on stage, and know you helped other organizations across the USA be stronger, more productive and successful. Consultant donations over $100 will also receive top billing in bold on the web page dedicated to these projects.
Non tax exempt donation required - $25-$100
Thank you for being a part of this, understanding our vision, and Being The Change!
We look forward to seeing you in the next march or rally, and especially look forward to seeing you AT THE POLLS IN 2018!
Yours in Resiztance,
Founder, The Resizters
Protest Cover Band
- Judy Stojsavljevic
- Poppy Fitch
- Valerie Hardie
- Bob Nelson
- Judy Stojsavljevic
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