Guardian har en utomordentligt intressant artikel om hur alla europeer kan hjälpa John Kerry besegra George Bush i årets amerikansk presidentval. Som Guardian påpekar, årets val kommer att direkt beröra oss alla i världen, så vi måste alla göra allt vi någonsin kan för att besegra de allt mer radikala neokonservativa.
Och intressant nog så har vi betydligt fler möjligheter än vi någonsin skulle kunna tro.
Det finns absolut ingen som helst ursäkt att inte ställa upp och hjälpa USAs svarta – och oss själva. Det republikanska partiet gör allt det någonsin kan för att hindra de svarta i nyckelstaterna från att rösta, som de gjorde i Florida för fyra år sedan.
På 1960-talet började den nya tyska generationen fråga sina föräldrar, men varför släppte ni fram Hitler? De fick inga svar, bara axelryckningar. “Vi visste inte, vi vågade inte, vi kunde inte”. Skall vi i dagens generation ge samma svar till våra barn?
American law forbids foreigners from giving money to affect the outcome of a federal election – except that, on closer inspection, it doesn’t. You’re banned from donating to the campaigns themselves, or to many of the independent campaigning groups that fight explicitly on behalf of one candidate. So you need to identify officially non-partisan groups whose activities, none the less, have the practical effect of helping one candidate over the other. “Perhaps the most important way foreigners could help John Kerry would be to help out those organisations which have, as part of their mission, fostering African-American voter turnout,” says Nathaniel Persily, a Pennsylvania university expert on election law. “It’s quite clear that if there was 100% African-American turnout in Ohio, Pennsylvania and Florida, John Kerry would win this election running away.” The National Association for the Advancement of Colored People is the most obvious choice here – an influential, well-organised, non-partisan body whose get-out-the-vote activities are extremely likely to end up helping the Democrats.
Vi kan också skriva direkt till amerikanska väljare.
The most powerful transatlantic connection is a personal one, so we have designed a system to match individual Guardian readers with individual voters in Clark County, in the crucial swing state of Ohio. To join in, visit www.guardian.co.uk/clarkcounty and enter your email address. You’ll receive, by email, the name and postal address of a Clark County voter. We have included only those voters who chose to list themselves as unaffiliated, instead of as Republican or Democrat: that is no guarantee that they are persuadable, of course, but it does increase the chances. The data on which our system is based is publicly available, but we have designed it to give out each address only once, so there is no danger of recipients getting deluged.
In formulating your letter, you will need to introduce yourself: no individual Clark County voter will have any reason to be expecting your communication. And in choosing your arguments, keep in mind the real risk of alienating your reader by coming across as interfering or offensive. You might want to handwrite your letter, for additional impact, and we strongly recommend including your own name and address – it lends far more credibility to your views, and you might get a reply.
Finally, post your letter soon. Letters sent by regular airmail from the UK to the US usually take five days to reach their recipient, and there is little time to waste. Postage costs 43p for a postcard, 47p for a letter weighing 10g or less, and 68p for a letter weighing up to 20g. You don’t have to visit a post office, but Royal Mail recommends writing “Par Avion – By Airmail” on the front of the envelope, and your return address on the back.