A PROMISE KEPT: by Timothy Riley
This is my thank you note, more a love letter really, to all who braved the elements, to all who suffered the occasional abuse from the self loathing ignoramuses, to all who gave of their time, talent and treasure to secure the recall of this most disgraceful man.
This is a story that I have waited many months to relate all the time never doubting that this day would come:
I was at the Capitol doing my daily rounds the night the right wing extremists put the lie to their assertion that depriving public sector workers of fifty years of collective bargaining rights was an integral budgetary item. I was amongst the first couple hundred in the building who stood outside the Senate chambers raising our voices in protest as the extremists passed their bill in violation of the open meetings law and in the absence of the brave 14.
Suddenly, we were joined by thousands, many of whom forced their way in through the second story portico, through the windows and doors with drums beating, horns blaring and voices raised in a most joyful noise of protest. An historic scene, one that might truly and favorably compare to the storming of the Bastille. That protest continued with unabated passion into the early morning hours.
I returned to the Capitol the next day to continue my due diligence. As I approached the building there was a young mother in front of me accompanied by three young children – I would surmise between the ages of 6 to 8. The children saw another young woman in front of them and immediately called out her name they then ran to her and enfolded her in a collective embrace. As I walked by I noticed tears in her eyes as the children looked up at her with puzzlement and concern. She looked down at them and said, “this is a bad day for teachers kids.”
I could not help but turn to her and I said, “please do not despair, this battle has not yet begun and this man will pay for what he has done.” She looked up at me and with tears now running down her cheeks she simply asked, “do you promise?” I responded without hesitation, “I promise you.”
So this is, again, my thank you, nay my love letter, to all who have brought us to the eve of this historic day. To the many people I am now honored to call my friends. To the thousands of others I will never know who I can proudly call my Brothers and Sisters in this struggle. All of us and each of us have kept a promise to ourselves and to that teacher I spoke with so many months ago.
The battle has now been joined. This despicable man will be but the third Governor recalled in the history of our Republic. Our task continues, we must now see that he is ultimately removed from office. For now I will take brief pleasure and respite in a promise kept.