Mobilizing and organizing are mutual elements, neither works alone. Mobilizing creates feet in the street and lobbying campaigns, while organizing expands the base. Organizing establishes the structure for increasing political influence. We need to both walk and chew gum now, the 45 administration being a prime example of a failing state.
This isn’t to argue that everyone should be simultaneously doing both at once. A wise organization will take its membership and affiliates where it finds them, and utilize their talents along a spectrum of mobilization and organizational needs. Case in point, Mobilizing created the Women’s March on Washington, and several participants interviewed mentioned their intention of returning home to run for public offices. This is helpful, what’s not helpful is:
Carping. I’ve heard a bit of this lately, and it comes in a variety of forms. One such form is represented by the ideological purists whose standards are so personal and stringent that they all but preclude support for candidates who aren’t also candidates for social, economic, and political sainthood. Some of the individuals who were inspired to run for office will have to deal with these purists, and one can only hope the experience isn’t rough enough to discourage them.
Another format for carping is indulged in by those who disparage whatever form of activism isn’t in their own play book. Again, this violates the precept that it’s always best to take people as you find them. For example, it really doesn’t do to disparage the activities of those who aren’t interested, or qualified, to run for offices as “click- avism.” Nor does it do to carp at those who are, and have been toiling away at local political tasks without much encouragement for years. It’s all hands on deck time.