Del. Ken Plum: ‘What Can I Do?’ Workshop Slated for March 11

by Del. Ken Plum February 23, 2017 at 10:15 am 16 Comments

Del. Ken Plum/File photoThis is a commentary from Del. Ken Plum (D-Fairfax), who represents Reston in Virginia’s House of Delegates. It does not reflect the opinion of Reston Now.

In a previous column, I addressed in part the question I get from more and more constituents about what they can do to be more active in public service. Their concern, of course, comes from the outcome of the presidential election and the unbelievable events that have occurred since that time.

Adding to that December column, in which I highly recommended membership in the American Civil Liberties Union and the Southern Poverty Law Center and involvement in the gubernatorial election of 2017 in Virginia, I have decided to further facilitate individuals seeking to find a place in which they could become involved in civic affairs.

I am sponsoring an event at Langston Hughes Middle School on Saturday, March 11, from 9:30 a.m.-noon. “What Can I Do? A Civic Engagement Workshop” is designed to bring people who want to be more active in their community and in civic matters at all levels of government together with individuals and organizations that can provide opportunities, direction and assistance in becoming an activist, advocate and participant in their community.

There will be no formal program or speeches. Rather, representatives of at least 15 different organizations who are known for their civic involvement will be there to answer questions and give advice on how persons can get involved. It will not be necessary for participants to attend the entire time. No registration is required. Attendees can “shop” from among the organizations represented to explore their interests and get to know the representatives who themselves are already actively involved in the community.

Issues and interest areas to be represented include voting, redistricting, elections, immigration, political campaigning, women’s rights, poverty, gun violence prevention and others. Groups from both political parties have been invited, as the event is nonpartisan. Participants include the AAUW, Centreville Immigration Forum, Community Matters, Cornerstones, Emerge Virginia, Equality Virginia, Giving Circle of HOPE, Herndon Reston Indivisible, League of Conservation Voters, League of Women Voters of the Fairfax Area, Moms Demand Action, NAACP of Fairfax County, NARAL Pro-Choice Virginia, Reston-Dulles Section of National Council of Negro Women, New Virginia Majority, OneVirginia2021, Reston Environmental Action and SALT.

I share the concern and fears expressed by many people about the future direction of our country. I am greatly disturbed about the negative impact that evolving events are having on my neighbors, our children and grandchildren; our form of government; and the culture of inclusiveness we have spent centuries building. It is time for the people to take back their government with a strong and informed voice.

To the extent to which the workshop contributes to empowering more people to become involved in their government, I feel it will be a success. Plan to participate and invite your neighbors and friends to come as well.

  • drb

    Will groups like Concerned Women for America and the Federalist Society and American Center for Law and Justice be at this event?

    • I expect those organizations are MORE interested in community INactivism, gerrymandering and voting -restrictions.

      • The Constitutionalist

        Well, whatever those groups are doing is certainly making a bigger impact than whatever groups you endorse.

        Just take a step back and witness the change that’s happening before your very eyes.

        • don’t worry – concerned citizens are VERY interested in the ‘change’ that’s happening before our very eyes… why do you think there’s so much interest in activism again?

          • The Constitutionalist

            I’m glad they’re interested, and believe me, I’m not worried. Look at how the world’s views are changing. This isn’t a phenomenon unique to the States.

            Activism is wonderful. It allows activists to do what they do best: Not working, not paying taxes, not contributing charitably, and not actually making a change, while at the same time making it difficult for people do to the opposite.

          • LOL, good stenography.

          • The Constitutionalist

            Thanks, it’s a comment section, after all. Stenography is easy to read. It’s also how people talk.

  • The Constitutionalist

    Great effort at putting together a non-partisan group.

    We don’t need more people involved in our government. We need less government.

    You liberals aren’t concerned with the direction our country is going, you’re to blame.

  • Meggers

    In other words Ken Plum is hosting workshops to teach people how to resist the new administration every step of the way. To rail against the real positive change that is occuring in this Country. The change America voted for. This useless protest driven, ‘shadow government’ group gathering, wrapped in a neat little package of what you have the nerve to call civil service, sickens me. Actually spend you time doing some real good for Reston and the Country, or it is time for you, and your old establishment ideas to retire, Delagate KenPlum.You do not represent this constituent!

  • “Unbelievable events” ?

    What irks me about politics in general is that when you commit to cause A you also have to commit in lockstep to causes B, C, D etc (i think we are going beyond the 26 letter of the alphabet).

    I was against the war to begin with and now the chickens are coming home to roost. Trump “i inherited a mess”. Sabrina de sousa. Kiriakou. Shaker ameer and many others. Refugee bans also under obama. The global economy undermining US fiscal policy for 8 years+. Hillary blunders etc. No way i could have endorsed this with another vote for the DNC.

    CNN and other media outlets have now begun deploying revolutionary tactics, i read this stuff every day.

    I for one will not participate in the devils workshop. Sorry Ken, i know you re a good guy but your party is destroying America.

  • Unbelievable

    How much tax payer money does Ken give RestonNow to get his hate speech published every week?

    • Meggers


  • Angry Angler

    Ken is out of touch with the problems facing our community. He is worried about inclusion at any cost even though our local parks and water ways are being littered with dead bodies by MS-13.

  • 30yearsinreston

    A Dem Tea bag party

  • Rational Reston

    Delegate Ken Plum poses the question: “What can I do?”

    Answer: Retire and let a free thinker with a positive message take over.

  • Lisa Walker

    What is wrong with you people? If you don’t like what Ken Plum is doing don’t go. There is no need to be hateful and abusive.
    Everyone has a cause. Please go and work on yours. We will take care of our selves. Hopefully we will meet somewhere in the middle.


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