"What is HeadCount doing now that the election's over?" That's a question I get asked almost every day. I've got a ton of answers, but if I had to sum it up, I'd say, "We're gonna make $!#@ happen."
When Marc Brownstein and I launched HeadCount in early 2004, it was a time when many people felt their values weren't being reflected by our government and their voices weren't being heard. So we did something about it and pulled together a grassroots network of artists and volunteers who registered more than 160,000 voters.
Mission accomplished? Umm, no.
It's not just about voting for candidates we each believe in. It's about what the candidates do once we put them in office. As a community, we have a unique opportunity to influence this. The people in power recognize that musicians and their fans helped get them elected. Heck, the Grateful Dead even got invited to the White House! So we can now help dictate the political agenda - if we stay organized.
That's where HeadCount comes in. Our mandate is to make it fun and effective to participate in democracy. We're doing this through a campaign called "What's Your Issue?"
We'd like you to pick from this list of six issues and tell us which one you care about most.
Food and Farm Policy
Gulf Coast Recovery
Health Care Reform
Sustainability and Conservation
PICK AN ISSUE
Just by picking your issue, you'll get access to our free downloads page and be entered into a drawing for VIP Tickets to San Francisco's Outside Lands festival (with Dave Matthews Band, Pearl Jam and the Beastie Boys) plus a pair of plane tickets to anywhere in the country on Southwest Airlines.
We'll then keep you updated on the issue you chose. Nothing too heavy - just one short email every six weeks with a rundown of recent developments. With not much effort on your part, you'll end up pretty well informed on the issue you care about most. Next year we'll also let you know how your Congressional reps voted on that issue, so you can go back to the polls armed with knowledge and the power to hold them accountable.
So please pick your issue now.
If you want to go a step further, we invite you to contribute to or comment on the HeadCount blog, or check out the new www.HeadCount.org and the pages we've devoted to each issue. Each has headlines updated daily, artist interviews, and a "Take Action" area that makes it easy to email your Congressional reps or volunteer for a local organization.
HeadCount works with 80 bands. They all have passionate fans with strong and diverse political convictions. We know you are out there. Let's come together, make our voice heard, and make $!#@ happen.