It is truly exciting to see the progress being made in different states when it comes to positive legislation being passed that gives parents greater control over educational choices for their children and gives taxpayers greater opportunity to support education they feel best serves their communities.
But many people don’t understand the significant impact they can have if they will get personally involved. Let me tell you a couple true stories.
In Virginia, the battle over school choice has been going on for years. Nothing happens fast in Virginia politics. A friend decided to get involved. He began to speak out whenever possible and to connect with legislators who were interested in promoting school choice legislation. He visited with them, learned their interests and the challenges to bills being proposed, and he shared his ideas with them.
In 2012, the first pro-school choice legislation passed in Virginia. The problem was that it was a very watered down bill with many practical challenges for implementation. My friend continued to talk to legislators and their assistants and in the 2013 session, significant improvements were passed on the original bill. A leading aide to the Senator who introduced the changes recently told my friend, “I listened to your concerns about the original bill and the proposed changes that would help it, wrote them down and passed them on to the Senator, who presented them, thus modifying the law.”
I also know an individual who took action when word came that strong legislative actions being made by the Alabama House and Senate (2013) were stopped by court action and the bills were not allowed to move on to the governor for his signature. A similar court action had stopped a bill in Colorado a year earlier, but had just been overruled by the Colorado Supreme Court. The individual got the idea to send emails of encouragement to every conservative member of the Alabama House and Senate and shared the Colorado precedent with them. Within a week, the Alabama Higher Courts had addressed the matter and the governor signed the legislation into law!
The point being made here is that we live in a country where citizens can have significant influence on legislation – if they will take action. Let me encourage you to get involved. Educate yourself on critical matters. Get to know the legislators in your state who share your values and are willing to help make them the law. Seek God’s wisdom and work to honor Him for the good of all. You can do it!
By Melvin Adams, President & COO of RENEWANATION
This article originally appeared in The RENEWANATION Review, Volume 5 Issue 1. If you would like to become a member and receive a print edition of the magazine, please click here. If you would like to learn about other ways you can get involved, please click here.