We all get them. Hardly a day goes by when my email isn’t flooded with petitions for me to sign…often duplicates. Then there’s Facebook. I’ve signed petitions about taxes. I’ve signed them about Social Security and Medicare. I’ve signed them about healthcare. I’ve signed petitions asking the President to get us out of war. I’ve signed them about the environment. If there’s an issue, odds are, I’ve signed a petition.
Even while signing, I always had a sneaking suspicion that it was meaningless, that I was sending it into a vacuum. Snopes pretty much backs me up. Most petitions lack real purpose. They are a great way to make people think they are making a difference, but in reality, they end up in the wrong hands.
The White House is trying to do something about that. That’s right, the same President who doesn’t care about his base is giving voice to his base by offering a real venue to post real petitions to be directed to people who can actually affect change.
Beginning soon, Whitehouse.gov will have a page dedicated to the wants of We the People. Pretty good for a President who has supposedly forgotten about his base, right? On that page, we will be able to start petitions, real petitions, that with enough signatures, will end up on the desk of real decision makers.
Will this be the answer to our prayers? Can we stay on our sofas and change the world? No! We still need to get out there. We still need to call our elected officials. We still need to write them, personally. We even need to take our causes to the streets. There is no substitute for real activism, but the White House is stepping in the right direction.