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How To Become an Activist

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Want to work for civil liberties? Here's how.
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Here's How:

  1. Figure out what you're most passionate about. Are you interested in civil liberties in general, or is there a specific civil liberties related issue--such as free speech, abortion, gun rights--that interests you?
  2. Get educated. Read up on your American history, and develop a functional understanding of how the government works.
  3. Develop sound arguments to back up your positions. Two highly effective ways to do this: Familiarize yourself with arguments used by people with whom you agree, and familiarize yourself with arguments used by people with whom you disagree.
  4. Stay current. Visit this site regularly, and find other blogs that focus on your topic.
  5. Join a group. Activists don't work well alone; your best bet is to join a group that focuses on your concern. Attend local chapter meetings. If there is no local chapter, consider starting one. Networking with other activists will educate you, provide you with a support network, and help you focus your energies on productive activism strategies.

Tips:

  1. Be practical. Don't get so caught up in your hope for radical, sweeping reforms that you lose sight of real opportunities to make incremental progress.
  2. Don't hate people you disagree with. If you forget how to communicate with people on the other side of the issue, you lose your ability to bring others around to your way of thinking.
  3. Don't lose hope. You will almost certainly experience depressing setbacks, but activist movements take time. Women's suffrage was advocated in the United States as far back as the 18th century, and only became a reality in 1920.
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