If you’re an American (and even if you’re not) you probably have lots of opinions right now. I won’t beat you over the head with mine, this isn’t that kind of blog, but I did want to tell you that I CALLED THE GOVERNMENT. I hate calling people. I order pizzas online so I don’t feel like I’m bothering the workers. Contacting our senators and representatives and telling them how to vote about things is completely within our rights, after all they do technically work for us. I’ve signed a bazillion petitions and sent all sorts of emails, but I keep reading that it’s more effective to call their offices directly, so tonight I gave it a shot.
The format for defeating the Calling-the-Government panic attack:
- THE CONGRESSPERSON IS NOT GOING TO PICK UP THE PHONE. They have staff for that. You’ll be speaking to an underling (or an answering machine) who will just log your opinion and tell their boss about it later. That’s not so scary, right?
- Familiarize yourself with how this works so there aren’t so many unknowns to cause you anxiety. Google and YouTube have an abundance of material.
- If you want to talk to an actual person, watch this video to get an idea of what the process is like. The woman who answered asked him for some information but as I understand it they don’t usually ask a lot of questions and if they do you can tell them you don’t need a response if you don’t want to give it to them. I think they do need your zipcode though, just so they know you’re in their district.
- If talking to humans isn’t your thing, plan to call outside of business hours so you can leave a message. Watch this video, she’ll show you exactly how easy it is and even has a little sample script in the description.
- Write out your script so you’re not stumbling over yourself. No need to rant, just a couple lines. “Hello, my name is Awkward Globetrotter and I am a voter in zipcode 12345. I’m calling to speak against the unlawful imprisonment of aardvarks. Aardvarks are beautiful creatures that should roam free. Thank you.”
- Find your representatives on the aptly named www.WhoIsMyRepresentative.com. Click on their names to see their contact information and leave each one up as you go so you don’t forget whose office you’re talking to mid-message.
- CALL! The first time I tried it I found out that apparently Marco Rubio doesn’t believe in voicemail, as the line rang for 2 solid minutes before going to a busy signal. I did manage to leave a message for Bill Nelson though. Name, zipcode, issue, that quick. Took all of 30 seconds.
Now get out there and make yourself heard!
Aardvark photo from FuzFeed.
(Did you know aardvarks live in Africa? I didn’t. I assumed anything that ridiculous must be from Australia. The more you know.)