Re-elect Mayor Gayle McLaughlin Re-elect Mayor Gayle McLaughlin

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Richmond, CA 94805

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What's at Stake in Richmond Campaigns
Message from Mayor McLaughlin
November 2, 2012

Dear friends,

We are in the last days of the 2012 electoral season.

Here are some of my thoughts:

The amount of money being spent on our local elections this year is truly obscene. Chevron has spent over 1.2 million dollars to defeat the progressive direction of Richmond.   Big soda corporations are spending 2.5 million dollars to defeat Measure N, the Soda Tax which is geared toward steering our young people into healthier lifestyles.

Almost 4 million dollars have been thrown at our city NOT for productive programs, but for corporate campaign advertising!! Advertising that seeks to saturate people with messages of no substance and lots of lies and distortions. Advertising that goes by the belief that if something is big enough and said enough times (regardless of the lies and distortion) people will pay attention and adhere to the message (regardless of its lack of substance and lies and distortions).

Chevron and Big Soda want us to reach the point of surrender, but I think we will say by way of our votes on Tuesday: Enough is enough! I do not think that the Richmond community has "surrender" in our vocabulary. We are a tough and strong community and we are unwilling to go backward.

To preserve our positive gains, we must and will show we are unwilling to let candidates hand-picked by Chevron (Nat Bates, Gary Bell, and Bea Roberson) take the reins of this city.  We have seen the horrendous hostility displayed at city council meetings by a couple of our councilmembers, one being Nat Bates, who attempt to polarize our community by race over and over again.   The movement for racial justice has included in the past, and will include in the future, people of all races standing together. It is a complete set-back in time to reject those who understand that racism is affront to all thinking and feeling humanity, regardless of one's race. All the great civil rights leaders have welcomed people of all races to show solidarity with the heroic struggle of people of color. We need to recognize that we are in a struggle for a better humanity, a better community, a better Richmond - and we need everyone possible to join together to build such a society free of racism, sexism, homophobia, ageism, prejudice toward those living with disabilities, economic and environmental injustice, and health disparity.  Yes, this is a big task, but we must continue to take positive steps along this journey.

We must be unwilling to let Big Soda tell us that the future of our Richmond youth plays second-fiddle to their big profits. The youth of today are the first generation in history slated to die earlier than their parents. Is this the kind of historic trend we want to display? Richmond will certainly be on the cutting edge of this trend, unless we change course to a new trend. With the Soda Tax, we can begin to turn the corner to a new historic direction - one that prioritizes healthy living by limiting our sugary beverages.

We have witnessed the harm that big corporations have brought to Richmond by way of Chevron's massive refinery fire on August 6. We have witnessed the impact of Big Soda on our youth by way of the epidemic of diabetes, heart disease and obesity in our community. And we are witnessing the all-out attack on our democracy as big corporations attempt to buy this election. But we are beyond their reach. Corporations have a role in private enterprise - that role is to make money for their stockholders. Through their ever-growing intrusion on our electoral arena, they are displaying an historic "conflict of interest." Corporations are not people and they must not be allowed to control our democracy that was born of, by and for the people! 

For a safe, healthy and democratic Richmond:

Vote Marilyn Langlois, Eduardo Martinez and Tom Butt for City Council

Vote YES on Measure N, the Soda Tax and 

Vote Yes on Advisory Measure O to put the money into healthy programs and sport fields.

Vote YES on P - calling for a constitutional amendment saying corporations are not entitled to the rights of real people.

Thank you to the countless people working on these campaigns. Along with our wonderful candidates, it is the tireless efforts of Richmond grassroots organizers and volunteers that are making the difference. We are a growing movement in Richmond thanks to the day-in/day-out work of many, showing that people are the makers of change, not corporations!

If you agree with this message, please know your help is needed to keep us going in the same positive, progressive direction. Please give some of your time on Election Day and experience the joy of reaching out with a healthy and positive message to other members of the community. Please call the Richmond Progressive Alliance at (510) 412-2260 to volunteer some of your time and energy.  Every volunteer hour counts!

And please foward this email to others to get the word out.  This is our city, our democracy, and our destiny...let's keep buildling a better Richmond for all!

Yours truly,

Gayle McLaughlin
Mayor, City of Richmond

Contact Information:

Gayle McLaughlin for Mayor 2010
PO Box 5284
Richmond CA 94805
Phone: (510) 237-1456
317 11th Street (must access 11th Street from Nevin)

PO Box 5284,  Richmond, CA 94805
(510) 237-1456   •
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