Allow me to introduce you to Spencer Bowers, a young democrat in Tennessee who is guest blogging today and is a political science major attending UTM.
I’m Spencer Bowers
I’m a Democrat and I live in West Tennessee.
As the president of the College Democrats at the University of Tennessee, Martin I have noticed a trend that is of great concern. I feel the need to express it before further damage is done to our party and the future of Democrats in this state. This is my attempt to do just that.
Democrats represent all ages, colors, religious creeds, those no creed and sexual orientation. Historically, however, the party pays little attention to those labels, choosing instead to focus on matters such as healthcare, jobs, equal rights and the environment. Yet, with these formidable issues to confront, we are burdened with a generation gap that threatens the progress of our party’s future in the State of Tennessee.
Too often older and younger Democrats would rather push one another aside than work to find common ground. Some elders of the party feel we lack experience, knowledge and appreciation of early campaign approaches such as rallies and parades. Conversely, some young Democrats feel that older party members’ campaign methods ignore recent success stories, such as the grass roots campaigning that helped push President Obama to victory in 2008.
This chasm between young democrats and party elders is impeding progress.
There is priceless information to be learned about Tennessee’s election process and politics from our elders. Young Democrats must be willing to listen and give those lessons serious consideration. If we fail to do so, we are doing every Tennessee Democrat an injustice.
The same can be said for the elders in our party. Young Democrats have inspiring ideas about the future. We understand and appreciate the technology that drove the 2008 races to victory such as social media and voter databases. We also understand that fieldwork and a grassroots approach is the way of the future. It has been proven too many times.
Young Democrats are asking for a chance to prove that the fieldwork and grassroots approach that vaulted the president to victory can work here in Tennessee. But we cannot do it without the support of all the Democrats. It would benefit everyone to acknowledge our differences, bridge the gap and move forward together.
Young Democrats, middle-aged Democrats, and elder Democrats all bring tremendous tools to the table. We bring ideas that will win future state elections. Door by door, call by call, rally by rally, we must do it together for the future of our great state.
Bowers is the president of the College Democrats at University of Tennessee at Martin. The organization will be holding a Meet and Greet on Thursday night, Feb. 21st, at 6 p.m. at the Looking Glass Coffee and Curiosities at 215 No. Lindell in Martin.