I'm disheartened to see that the latest poll shows Yes On 8 way ahead of No On 8. That poll was commissioned by the Knights of Columbus, who've donated heavily to the Yes On 8 campaign, and I have no idea whether it's a legitimate poll; but I was already worried by the very close numbers from the previous two (more clearly legitimate) polls.
So I've decided it's time for me to take action. And in case you're feeling similarly, here's some info on how you can help.
Y'all already know that you can donate money. But there are other things you can do as well. In particular, you can volunteer--and if you're willing to make phone calls, you don't even have to live in California.
There are various things you can do as a volunteer (including vitally important Get Out the Vote work on election day), but in this entry I'm going to focus on two things: making phone calls and providing administrative support.
If you're comfortable calling people and talking to them about political issues, then sign up to call voters. The No On 8 campaign provides a detailed script. A couple of people who don't normally like doing this kind of thing have told me that it was a lot easier and more comfortable than they expected.
I'm told that going to a phone bank also makes it easier--you're in a room with a bunch of other people doing the same thing. There are phone banks all over California; in some places (like the South Bay), there are even phone banks in outlying cities on different evenings (as well as at the field office itself), so you may not have to travel far at all.
However, what if you can't easily get to a phone bank? What if, say, you live in some other state? Or you'd rather work from home?
You can sign up online to phone from home, from anywhere in the US. (I assume that the system doesn't work outside the US, though; sorry to those of you living elsewhere.)
To participate from home, you'll need a computer with broadband Internet access (not dialup Internet). I'm not clear on other details. If you're interested, go sign up and I'm sure they'll answer any questions.
If you're like me in that the thought of calling up a stranger to talk about politics (even with a script) makes you want to run and hide under the bed, and if you live in California, there's another way you can help: with administrative tasks at a local field office. (Sadly, this aspect isn't something you can do from out of state.)
So if you, like me, have been sitting around thinking "Oh, I can't cope with calling people, woe is me, I can't do anything to help other than sending money," now is the time to stop thinking that and take action.
I didn't call all the field offices--only the San José and San Francisco ones. But I betcha your local field office has similar needs. Call them and find out.
If your closest field office is San José or San Francisco, read on.
They need general administration help--handing out packets to callers, tracking numbers of calls, etc. They need this kind of help mostly in the evenings, from 5 to 9 p.m.
If possible, sign up ahead of time by calling their main number: 408-453-4592. But if you aren't sure of your schedule ahead of time, you can just show up.
They're located at 43 East Gish, near 1st St., in San José, right near the airport; they're on the second floor of the Democratic Party building.
I can't go tonight or tomorrow night, but I'm thinking I'll probably head down there regularly starting Friday. If anyone in Mountain View wants a ride, lemme know.
In addition to general administrative stuff and phone-bankers, they need data entry people. They handle the data entry for the South Bay office as well.
They do data entry training every day at 10 a.m., 2 p.m., and 6 p.m. I think you can just show up to those sessions without advance notice, but if you want to make sure, call their main number: 415-252-8132.
They're located at 2278 Market, at Noe, near Castro, in the old Tower Records building.
This administrative stuff is stuff that any of us (in California) can do, without having to make phone calls to strangers. No more excuses for me--I'm gonna go volunteer. Hope y'all will too, if you can.
And spread the word. I imagine that other No On 8 field offices need help as well; if you aren't near San Francisco or San José, please visit the list of field offices and call your local office to see how you can help.
There are offices in Berkeley, Oakland, Santa Cruz, and Santa Rosa, as well as a bunch of places in SoCal and a few in the Central Valley and coast.