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Minnesota and Wisconsin lovin’ at the ACLU

June 15th, 2008     by Jessica Yee     Comments

So now that I’ve crossed the border back to my friendly, eccentric home in Kensington Market, Toronto (although not for long) I’m having some pensive reflections on the awesomeness that is the ACLU Minnesota and Wisconsin that I had the honour of discovering at this year’s membership conference.

A 24-hour bus ride to and from Washington D.C. and shared hostel saw both our groups intermingling and activisting to the max. Most of us didn’t know each other and I can safely say now that in just four days we’ve not only learned a lot, but been sincerely inspired and greatly moved by each other’s presence and being.

I heard tales of prejudice, realities of oppression, and musings of forward-thinking by these brilliantly tuned-in young people. Interesting nights out coupled with ridiculously fun “truth-telling” games were the recipe for some of the best activist times had by all.

I want to thank all the participants for their honesty, candor, and all-around amazing selves that definitely made this trip an adventure I’ll never forget. We write off the US too often in Canada for the backwards policies that obstruct their international image and forget about how much good work is going on there by determined people like these who are refusing to give up and fighting back for what they believe is right.

More partnerships can be made across our borders and we’d be crazy not to remember that the extreme U.S. right-wingers have a direct affect on Canada (ahem, Bill C484, no-fly list anyone??) This is a great example of how we can get together and make change happen, even if it’s just amongst ourselves.

It’s important to recognize when cool young people you’ve just met are inspiring you, that’s definitely news I want to hear more often.

Anyone do that to you lately?

The “best group” as named by attendees of the 2008 ACLU membership conference!

Tags: activist report, shameless behaviour

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