In September 2020, I came across an Instagram post that was very intriguing. My friend, Leah, posted a photo of her and a couple of friends writing postcards for voters. Since she didn’t tag Blue Wave on Instagram (BW didn’t have an account back then), I dug a bit deeper and found myself on the website ordering postcards. I also wondered why the organization wasn't on Instagram…but that’s a discussion for later.
I received my first kit of 200 cards on the day that RBG passed away. I was empowered. I mourned her loss that evening, but started vigorously writing postcards to voters the following day. I found myself down a (very meaningful) rabbit hole rather suddenly. I couldn't stop writing postcards, mostly because I couldn’t stop buying them. Stamps became an issue. At 35 cents a pop, it all added up very quickly. But I felt compelled to continue because I was not only supporting the postal service during an unprecedented time in history where it was being threatened by Trump and his cronies, but I was also fighting for humanity to be restored in the White House as well. I was fighting for my children’s future; for our country’s legacy.
Writing postcards gave me an outlet for my fury over the last four years. I felt that this was the best way for me to make a difference and do something good for my family and fellow citizens. The pandemic coupled with the Black Lives Matter movement during the summer of 2020 made me realize that the US is no better than any other country. We are a disorganized, entitled, and whiny lot. It was very embarrassing, more so than when Trump was elected back in 2016.
Trump’s regime cemented and glorified the pervasive racism that dwells in all our institutions. It brought out the worst in people, showing their true colors. How did we get here? I choose to believe that the pandemic and Trump’s presidency happened concurrently to give us a jolt; to awaken us to the core and shake us into consciousness. For so long, too many of us have been asleep at the wheel. We’ve resorted to a natural complacency, and it’s trickling down to future generations.
At the same time I began my postcard journey, I decided it was time to raise my voice on social platforms. Posting about politics and civil rights on social media is taboo for many people, but I needed to stop being silent. I no longer cared about what other people thought of my beliefs. I posted about the Blue Wave Postcard Movement in my Facebook mom groups in an attempt to gather writers and stamp fund donors. I posted on my personal feed frequently, made phone calls, wrote emails, and sent text messages. I did everything I could to raise money and awareness for Blue Wave’s campaigns. I was inundated with people who wanted to write but who didn’t have funds to pay for stamps.
I contacted Ning, the founder of BWPM, and requested stamp assistance. She was surprised by how many boxes I was able to order (in the amount of time we had to get the cards out), and I assured her that I had a crew of at least 20 writers I had gathered through my Facebook mom groups who were energized and ready to write. (I’m officially beholden to the power of social media). I also started a fundraising campaign to supplement what I received from Blue Wave’s stamp reserve. As of this writing, roughly 31,000 postcards have come through my home…and this doesn’t include the orders that I coordinate as a pickup location for writers not within my crew. There was a point where I had boxes on top of boxes on top of boxes of postcards that I was charged with counting, kitting, and leaving out for my writers. My in-laws were visiting at the time, so I put them and my preschool-aged children to work. It’s never too early or too late to participate in activism.
As all of this was happening, I offered my marketing firm’s services pro bono to Blue Wave (the Instagram situation was really bothering me). By December 2020, I became part of BWPM’s core team as the Director of Communications. I love what I do “in the real world,” but being a part of this team has reinvigorated me beyond measure. I’m more driven and focused on how I want to live my life - with purpose and real meaning. If I can do my part in leaving behind a legacy that ensures my children will fight for causes (and people) they believe in, I will rest easy.
-Sani, Communications Director [bio]
“The opposite of hate is not love, it’s indifference; the opposite of art is not ugliness, it’s indifference; the opposite of faith is not heresy, it’s indifference” ~Elie Wisel