George Lakoff’s Letter to Students

George Lakoff’s Letter to Students

To: UC, CSU, and Community College Students

From: George Lakoff

Re: Ballot Initiative

Dear Friends:

Are you tired of repeated, outrageous increases in your tuition and fees?  Are you angry that classes you need have been canceled, programs eliminated and faculty and staff furloughed and laid off?  If you are, then please join me in stopping this craziness by putting the California Democracy Act on the ballot. If we are successful your education will be protected and common sense restored to our state government. This battle is for all of us and I am fully committed.

But I can only do this with your help!

We need to collect more than one million voter signatures by April to place The California Democracy Act on the November 2010 ballot – and then we must win voter approval – to ensure the long-term funding and survival of the University of California, the State Universities and our Community Colleges.

What does the California Democracy Act do?  The Act is just 14 words: “All legislative actions on revenue and budget must be determined by a majority vote.” It simply changes two words in the California Constitution – “two thirds” becomes “a majority” – that simple change will restore sanity and common sense to our budget process and priorities.  What could be simpler than that?

This simple change will immediately stop the small band of ultra-conservatives in Sacramento who are holding the rest of us hostage! These ideologues want to starve our government and privatize our education system. The California Democracy Act will restore the basic tenet of democracy – that the majority shall rule on matters of public good.

California’s budget crisis – and so many of our state’s systemic problems – are the result of the absurd two-thirds requirement that allows a small minority, now just 37%, to block sensible economic legislation. Their tactics create gridlock, impoverish our government, and lead to massive cuts in education, healthcare, critical infrastructure and virtually every other important public need.

California is the only state in America where one-third plus one, only 34%, runs the legislature by blocking the sensible, responsible majority at every turn.

We can change all this by enacting the California Democracy Act! Only a majority is needed. No change is more crucial.  With your help and generous support we can restore common sense to California government. The task ahead will not be easy – remember, we need to collect more than one million signatures by April – but together WE CAN DO IT!

Here’s how you can help:

1. Make an immediate and generous contribution of $35, $20, $10, or even $5. Make your check payable to “California Majority Rule PAC” and send it to California Majority Rule, 12021 Wilshire Blvd., # 542, Los Angeles, CA 90025.

2. Go to our website, register and tell us what else you can do. You can get there by going either to www.californiansfordemocracy.com or www.camajorityrule.com.

3. Help recruit volunteers for three areas: a) signature gathering, b) fundraising events and other activities, and c) the speakers’ bureau. We need organizers at every level: statewide, UC, CSU, and Community Colleges; we need organizers for faculty, students and alumni. Go to the website, click on join the campaign and sign up.

4. We need access to large email lists from students, organizations, groups and campaigns. Contact Susie at susieshannon@yahoo.com. If you belong to an organization, ask it to endorse the California Democracy Act on, then go to the website and click on “ENDORSE” to inform us.

So if you are tired of those repeated, outrageous increases in your tuition and fees and angry that classes you need have been canceled, programs eliminated and faculty and staff furloughed and laid off, then join me in this fight. Please send a check, sign a petition, help gather signatures, organize house parties, join our speakers’ bureau, or volunteer… WE CAN DO IT!

Thank you,

George Lakoff,

Goldman Distinguished Professor of Cognitive Science and Linguistics,

UC Berkeley

PS: Share this letter with fellow students, parents, alumni, faculty and staff at your school; it will help us spread the word!

CALIFORNIA MAJORITY RULE VOLUNTEER AND CONTRIBUTION FORM

__ YES! I support the effort to fix California’s broken budget process and restore majority rule.  I will help California Majority Rule by making a contribution of:

$2,500__  $1,000__  $500__    $250__   $100__ $50__ $25__  Other $___

I will also help the campaign by:

__ Hosting a fundraising house party

__ Gathering signatures

__ Writing letters to the editor

__ Speaking to community groups

__ Allowing public use of my name

__Other: __________________

The following information is required by California Election law:

________________________________________________________________

Name Work Phone Email Address

________________________________________________________________

Signature Home Phone

________________________________________________________________

Home Address City Zip

________________________________________________________________

Occupation Title Employer

________________________________________________________________

Business Address City Zip

There are no limits on personal, corporate or PAC contributions.  Contributions to “California Majority Rule PAC” are not tax deductible as charitable contributions for federal income tax purposes.

Please mail contributions to:  California Majority Rule, 12021 Wilshire Blvd., #542, Los Angeles, CA  90025

The California Democracy Act, 11/01/10