Updated: Aug 31, 2020
We want McMinnville to be a fair and just place to live where everyone has equal rights and equal bargaining power. We ask that members of this group and popular assembly share these common values and goals (as listed):
- Every individual has the right to liberty and freedom.
- We believe that racism, classism, sexism, homophobia, and any prejudice towards others due to who they are, where they are from, or what language they speak, establishes hierarchies that take liberty away from people. These hierarchies prevent people from having equal bargaining power in our community.
- We believe that systems of government that rely on politically-empowered individuals always support these hierarchies.
- We believe that our world is in crisis due to climate change of our own doing.
- We believe that people can make decisions that best reflect the needs and interests of their community with the use of awareness, education, communication, patience and deliberate action when given the space to do so.
- We have the right to make decisions for ourselves and our communities and we are well-suited for the task. We do not need others to do this for us.
- We recognize that current forms of democracy in McMinnville favor those with money and privilege and leave out the voices of those who don't speak English, do not have a house to live in, work for a boss, are disabled, aren't male, are not white, and so on.
- We believe all voices must be heard and everyone must have a seat at our table.
- We demand workplaces that are run by, and meet the needs of those who work in them. We demand a government that we are invited to participate in. We demand local, fair and cooperative economies. We demand public ownership of common areas and public housing. We demand community-based financial institutions that are not-for-profit. We demand ecologically-responsible infrastructure. We demand education systems that allow critical thinking and engagement in community to flourish. We demand health and food systems that free people from inseparable fears of sickness and poverty. We demand the abolishment of the police and the prison industrial complex, and with it the decriminalization of race, gender/identity, homelessness and disability. We demand restorative, not retributive justice for our community members. We demand communities that transcend petty national boundaries and welcome all who seek to join them.
- Ultimately, we demand liberty and freedom from all systems of dominance and oppression.
- We believe that our path to democracy will be as unique as our community and will be something that we create with intention and care.
1. Commitment to a mission that recognizes the importance of equal bargaining power for all members of the community, and strives to include as many community members as possible in city government and civil society.
2. Work to elect delegates to McMinnville City Council to directly carry out the will of the people of McMinnville, as expressed directly by vote in a voluntary popular assembly. Every member of the McMinnville community should have the freedom to participate in direct democracy, while remaining committed to freedom and liberty for all members of the community. We will transform McMinnville government so it serves the people.
3. We commit to building alternative power while transforming old institutions. We will participate in direct action in the form of strikes, protests and demonstrations. We will share our values and goals through art and propaganda. We will educate ourselves and our community about identifying forms of oppression that affect the people of McMinnville and study the varied means and methods our ancestors fought, and our global neighbors continue to fight these forms of oppression. We will engage in mutual aid, building systems of non-exploitative support to rival the economic systems that beat us down. We will organize towards safer communities and community defense, seeking to fight back against institutions of policing and prison that do more harm than good.
4. Adequately represent our community by prioritizing the voices of BIPOC (Black, Indigenous, and people of color) community members, women, queer persons, undocumented persons, disabled persons, students, laborers and the houseless and underhoused in complete recognition of the necessity of these voices in identifying and addressing the structural barriers to the equal and just democratic processes we seek.
5. Our group will operate organically, yet as a democracy. Constitutional frameworks will be developed and constantly monitored to ensure that any willing participant in our democratic project has their voice protected.
6. We will act in a mature, patient and reasonable fashion.
7. We will seek to learn from each other and share ideas.
8. We will recognize that every participant in these discussions has something unique to bring to the table.
9. We will be kind to each other and be willing to forgive each other for mistakes, using mistakes as a tool for accountability, restorative justice, better communication and deeper understanding of one another.
10. We will commit to serious organization, look for and identify leadership, establish plans and brainstorm logistics while being wary of falling into the trap of hierarchy.
11. Lastly, we welcome any and all voices. We recognize that we all have something to contribute and that while our complicated lives and demands may place limits on participation, we are nonetheless all stakeholders in this community project. We will all feel free to contribute what we can, when we can.