Welcome to my website where you can find more on my recent book, The Democracy Amendments, an archive of my periodic Vermont Public Radio commentaries, opinion pieces, plus brief details and links to democracy building events I support as an activist, and a gallery of photos drawn from activities I’ve enjoyed. Thanks for visiting.
MY COMMENTS WHILE BEING ARRESTED AT THE U.S. CAPITOL
April 12th, 2016
Good Day My Friends:
My name is Rick Hubbard, and I come to you, our Congress, from the Green Mountain State of Vermont, on behalf of millions of like-minded American citizens, to exercise our first amendment right to peaceably assemble and to petition our Government to redress our grievances.
You are not properly representing our interests. You have become systemically corrupted due to the way we structure and finance our political process. We no longer have a fair process to allow citizens to select you, our representatives. Together with others in our 3 branches of government, you regularly distort outcomes of law, regulation and policy to serve your interests as politicians, your political party, and a tiny percentage of the wealthiest amongst us who fund your elections.
Simply put, this is improper representation, the very issue we founded our country to remedy.
As We the People stated in our Declaration of Independence: “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.–That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, –That whenever any form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it.”
We would never seek to abolish our beloved United States. But alter it? Yes! It is our constant intention that it should be a government of, by, and for the people, broadly in service to our needs, not just to benefit you, your political party, and your wealthy campaign benefactors.
We have come and asked you to redress this grievance many times before: in the 1970s, and you did nothing; in the 1980s, and you did nothing; and in the 1990s, and you did nothing.
In 2000 Doris Haddock came. This 90year old New Hampshire activist, also known as Granny D, walked across our entire country gathering tens of thousands of signatures from all manner of American citizens, which she then delivered to you, asking that our democracy be restored. A few months later she returned with others, and spoke many of the same words I now repeat, and you arrested her for doing so, and you did nothing of consequence.
Now, sixteen years later, your improper representation has become even worse. Public polls show this grievance ranks near the very top in importance for citizens, yet you seldom speak of it, and when you periodically survey your constituents, you seldom even include it among the concerns you ask us to give you our opinions about.
In response to your continued inaction and disregard, thousands of us gathered April 2nd in Philadelphia, where the founders of our country first met. Many of us then walked some 140 miles to our capitol to once again ask you to redress our grievances. But this time we come in greater numbers, prepared to non-violently engage in respectful civil disobedience, willing to be arrested in large numbers because our grievance is fundamental to why we founded our country, and because you have still done nothing effective to restore a fair political system to us, and to properly represent our interests. And we will be followed and supported by even more thousands of citizens, because our cause is just, and because you continue to do nothing of consequence.
Continue to do nothing, and we will continue to come, and come, and come until we have finally achieved our goal. But should you wish to help, there are actions you can take immediately. You can enact the Government by the People Act, the Fair Elections Now Act, The Voting Rights Advancement Act of 2015, the Voter Empowerment Act of 2016, and the Democracy for All Amendment.
I’m now 74 and would love to see progress before I die. So Senators and Representatives, let’s get on with it.
Thank you very much.