My Federal Priorities


I’m still exhausted. I slept well last night, finally, but I didn’t actually get to bed until close to 2 a.m., because my sleep schedule has been really wonky for weeks.

I’m hoping that we have a nice, quiet couple of months where government just does a lot of sensible things that make people’s lives better. My own immediate federal priorities would be:

  • pandemic (still an immediate crisis)
  • protect voting rights (otherwise everything they do will be rolled back in four years)
  • climate change (also a pretty immediate crisis)
  • education (the actual silver bullet for long-term societal change

If that happens, maybe I can get myself back to sleeping normally.

Biden is mobilizing the Defense Production Act today to ramp up pandemic response, and while this should have happened LAST MARCH, I am glad it’s happening now.

I’m feeling…weirdly guilty. There are community projects that I worked on last year, but I feel like I should’ve done more for — Oak Park Mutual Aid, my own SLF. I did my duty on the library board, at least, and I think overall, I probably did as much for the community as I had the energy and capacity to do. But I’m sad I couldn’t do more.

I admit, I’m not eager to start actively campaigning for school board, because it’s going to involve a lot of difficult conversations with unhappy people. I’m pretty clear on where I stand on most general issues, and I can hopefully speak clearly to those.

On the specifics — it’s harder, because one thing I learned on library board is that I just didn’t know enough before getting into the room and reading the reports that gave me the data and the perspectives of the people who had been actually doing the job.

I’ve been meaning to write a post, something like 5 Things I Learned While Governing, but that’s feeling intimidating and hard too. Maybe I’m just tired. (If there are any electeds reading this who want to chime in, I’d love to hear what the top things are that *you* learned while governing, so I can steal them for my piece.)

Well. I have a meeting in half an hour, and another this afternoon; my day is otherwise unscheduled. I failed to do anything other than my teaching yesterday — I spent the rest of the day in bed, watching the inauguration, scanning Facebook, reading fluffy books. I’m cranky with lack of accomplishment, EVEN THOUGH I think it’s totally reasonable not to accomplish much yesterday. I contain cranky multitudes.

Today, I’m going to mostly try to get through some urgent work-related e-mail, and hopefully that will settle me enough that I can start circling back around to some of these larger community concerns, trying to figure out how I want to talk about them.

I took a photo of a flower this morning, and that made me feel better, so I think checking through lots of little tasks is probably the way to go today. Amaryllis Doublet, for your pleasure.