Activist of the Month - Sept '04
Activist of the Month Septemeber, 2004
Please join me in congratulating Dan McGuire, Jacqueline Passey, Eric Hartford, Bob Lowe, Emily Sandblade, and Ethan Pooley. These fine activists have been named September Activist of the Month for their outreach efforts at the Seattle Hempfest. Their endeavor informed many hundreds of liberty lovers about the Free State Project. Thank you all for your initiative and hard work. You are stellar examples for the rest of us.
Following is Dan McGuire's Hempfest account:
It was a lot of work, but we handed out close to 1000 flyers at the Seattle Hempfest last weekend. Many thanks to those porcupines who came to help: Eric Hartford, Bob Lowe, Jacqueline Passey and Emily Sandblade. A number of LP members were also there handing out our literature (and theirs), notably Don, Ruth and Scott. Finally, very special thanks to Ethan Pooley who put some late nights working on our signs and banner. The banner, with its bright orange background of fall leaves, really stood out and got us noticed.
This was an interesting experience for me, as I had never worked a crowd like that before. Especially for live-and-let-live types like us, it feels awkward to make that first step and impose on someone who didn't seek contact. However, politics is something that can't be done in a vacuum. We need other people, not just for our membership, but to believe in the principles of liberty and to vote and act accordingly.
Hempfest provided an opportunity to meet a LOT of people. There were many times when the flow in front of our booth was so heavy that by the time I had handed out a flyer and separated the next one from the top of the stack, ten people had gone by. We learned how to get flyers into people's hands. You need eye contact, a smile and to extend the flyer towards them at right moment. Scott and Eric had success using a leading statement, like "Are you in favor of legalization?", but I just liked a simple, "How are you?"
It's nice having a variety of literature to hand out. Besides our own tri-fold and two-sided full page drug legalization flyer, we also had some business cards, stickers (popular with high schoolers), the smallest political quiz, a clever bright green marijuana-related handout that Jacqueline made and a variety of other LP literature. Bright colors are good and small sizes are good. They cost less to produce and people are more likely to accept them.
There were a few special moments. Like the time someone refused to take a flyer, then four steps later turned around and said, "Oh are you libertarians? I'll take one."