Engaged Again!

-Maria Acosta-

During the last year as I have gone to meetings across Central Texas, I described myself as a regular voter, but not as a politically active person until late 2008.  This has been an extraordinary year.  I personally have done things I never dreamt I would do when I was younger.  I will be 45 this year.  Two of our children are in college and one is a sophomore in high school.  The last two decades have flown by.

I purchased my first computer in 1994 when I was expecting my third child.  I was a stay-at-home mom, at that time, living in upstate New York.  I remember when we first powered the computer up.  I literally wondered out loud, “What the heck are we going to do with a computer?”  Well, one morning after I sent my daughter to school, I noticed Brian Lamb on C-SPAN asking for folks to fax comments and questions to him regarding the downsizing of the military that was going on in those days.  I had an opinion about it because I was a Navy Wife.  Then I realized that I not only had an opinion, but I also now had a fax machine in that computer over there in the corner!  I went to work to quickly figure out how to use it, and low and behold Brian Lamb read my comments on air within 15 minutes.  I was hooked!

Nineteen ninety-four was also the early Clinton years.  I had essentially been raised during the Reagan years and even though my parents were not politically active or Republicans, this new President from Arkansas really concerned me.  I watched the news and felt isolated and helpless.  Again, the computer in the corner was the answer.  I began publishing a little newsletter that I called “Meeting of Minds” in March of 1994.  I copied the issues at the Office Max down the road and stapled and addressed each one myself.  I quickly gained 100 subscribers due to word of mouth.  I charged $6 a year and produced 6 issues a year.  It was not a money-making venture obviously, but it helped me connect with folks across the country who I never would have met otherwise.  I published “Meeting of Minds” for two years and then between 1996 and 2009 I became busy with life and raising my family. 

But here I am again, and here I am with you.  Many of us have very similar stories.  We weren’t necessarily politically active, but we have always been doing our part in one way or another.  Now we are in the age of social media, and we have all new tools to make sure that our views are heard.  Thank you to all you bloggers, faxers, phone callers and emailers.  We have found each other through Meetup, Twitter, Facebook and friends who just couldn’t be quiet. Smile I find it interesting how everything I have done in my life seems to be for a reason now.  I’m pretty sure that we are all seeing how everything in our lives has added up to this moment.  And it sure is nice to be here with all of you!


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