Learn from working at a campaign event

October 25, 2008

I woke up at 4AM, showered, and hit the lonely road to Peccone Park at the University of Nevada, Reno. In a Californian manner, I had expected but not prepared for the intense cold before sunrise at the baseball stadium. The previous night, my team had been assigned the task of Inside Security. “Don’t fuck with me” was the motto of the day, provided by our organizer in charge. She’s my girlfriend.

From Friday night’s event training through the end of Saturday’s speech, the essence of the Obama campaign was clear. Be positive. Never convey panic to attendees. We care about free speech. If someone’s wearing a McCain-Palin button, we want them at our rally. For this scant time, Barack has the chance to ask them to take it off and replace it with an Obama-Biden button. The only reason home-made rally signs are disallowed is because Barack Obama’s message must be positive and unified. It’s not that we necessarily disagree that Sarah Palin is a tool, but we need people to focus on Barack instead of vitriol. To be able to condemn the homespun hatred encouraged by the McCain campaign’s lack of control over their supporters, Barack Obama must be able to count on his rallies serving as examples.

Treat parents with infants and ADA attendees as VIPs not just because it’s right, but because it tells the world that people who support Barack Obama support courtesy for other Americans. And because the level of security at events and the bulging crowds, the comfort level of the supporters drops sharply. It’s our job as volunteers to raise it back up. I can allege, after standing in the cold for 6 hours and assisting attendees, that Barack Obama will run this country as he does his rallies– like a well-oiled, energy-efficient machine.

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