Cathy Steverson and Michelle Wiggins
When I approached Michelle (Right) to ask her about her feelings as a new member of SCDP she quickly grabbed her friend Cathy (Left) almost as if she needed her for protection. I soon found out why.
"Being new members everybody has been pulling at us! They've made phone calls, sent letters and emailed us. It's as if they are trying to make us take sides." Michelle said. Cathy noted the disorder in the organization. "I see a lot of confusion. People don't seem to know what they are doing. There's a lot of infighting. We're all democrats we should be working together," she said.
When I sat down to talk with Ron you could tell he was a no-nonsense kind of guy. When I asked him how we could improve the Party he had no problem coming up with an answer.
"My family lives near Tipton. That's republican country," he said. "The Party has never done a good job of reaching out to the county democrats. We democrats are out there alone. Everything is about Memphis. This is the Shelby County Democratic Party, isn't it?"
Ron finished by pointed out several key issues the Party would have to address right away. "We need to raise funds, redo the by-laws, upgrade our website and bring order to the fringe groups. If we can do that the Party will be ok."
If there was an award for passion, Mr. London would win hands down.
"We've got to stop all this craziness. That's why I went with Van. I'm tired of all this fighting," he said. "We need someone who's going to get up there and focus more on the community needs." "How are you going to help people if you don't know what they need?" He finished with, "We need young people. We need to try new things and work to bring more young people in."
I met Ann's son Zac at the SCDP Convention and was immediately impressed with him. He was a pleasant person who had a sincere concern about the Party. After spending a little time with Ann I now know why Zac is such a special young man.
Ann said, "I want Van to be our Obama for Tennessee. He is progressive and I know he'll be a great chairman." She went on to point out the importance of ending the factions and friction in the Party. "We have some people there who just want to cause trouble. There are so many issues we need to be addressing. We need activist doing it for the right reason, not the wrong reason."