Ellicott City & Western Howard County Democratic Club Meeting Minutes
May 1, 2018 Glory Days, Ellicott City
31 in attendance
- President Report
Sue Geckle called the meeting to order @ 7:35 p.m.
A journal with no name was left behind at Centennial after the last meeting
Al Liebeskind’s son died this morning, 35 years old. Sue brought a card for everyone to sign and she’ll get it to the family.
Sue asked everyone to please sign in.
First time attendees and candidates introduced themselves:
- Eileen Zeller, Clarksville 9A
- Debbie Lattimer, from Moms Demand Action
- Anne Dodd Judge of the Orphan’s Court is here. She thanked everyone for our endorsement – I’m a novice to Facebook and not allowed to “Like” other pages.
- Steve Bolen is running for 9A, thank you for the endorsement
- Natalie Ziegler, delegate 9A, thank you for the endorsement
- Courtney Watson in 9B, thank you for the endorsement
- China Williams, council district 5 thank you for the endorsement
- A few candidates for Central Committee: Tim Lattimer, Sean Ford, Safa Hira, Rich Corkran, Margaret Weinstein, Sue Geckle
March minutes are on the website. Sue motioned to approve, Bryan Coster seconded, all in favor, none against.
- Treasurer’s Report
199 members as of the April endorsement meeting with 191 eligible to vote; 155 voted. As of now we have 202 members
We started March 6th, $3577.73, income dues $1930, $44 out of the tip jar, expenses were light $70 for printing ballots, Linden Hall $105 for one of the forums. We got charged for the alcove and the lady waived the $165, so it was only $105. We secured Centennial HS for free. R. Corkran purchased a bouquet of flowers as a thank you to the administration.
Current account $5,376.73
Last year we gave $40 to Carroll County Central Committee, with approval Rich would like to give them $40 again for an ad. This will help the 9A folks. Group wants to buy a half page ad for $85. Authorized up to $200 for a full page ad.
June meeting will be at Glory Days; the summer picnic is on Sunday, July 15th at Alpha Ridge Park. 4pm – 7pm. We don’t meet in August, so we can volunteer at the Democratic booth at the Howard County Fairgrounds, most likely Tuesday, August 7.
Coming up in June will be our elections. Sue asked for volunteers to form the nominating committee. If interested let Sue know.
Marylanders to Prevent Gun Violence – Liz Banach
To kick off the conversation, Carole Fisher read a letter to the editor about gun violence, that she wrote in 1999
Liz thanked us for the bus to the March to Our Lives and thanked Carole Fisher for being a bus captain
The group has been around since 1980s
She showed portraits of people affected by gun violence
It has been responsible for many legislatives wins, including 2013 and today’s permit to purchase license
This session – unprecedented wins, biggest since 2013
- Bump stock ban starts October 1, 2018
- Funding bills for urban areas to interrupt violence
- Peter’s Bill, aka Red Flag Bill – take guns away from the suicidal
It lost one proposed bill based on the legal transfer of guns.
Behindthestatistics.org – Big stories make up only 2% of these deaths, i.e. Columbia Mall shooting. This highlights where the problems really exist but putting money in communities that really need it.
Works with Ceasefire Baltimore. The city went 11 days without a murder during one of the ceasefires. Done peace walks and now planning a blood drive over Mother’s Day weekend. There were 299 shot and killed last year in the city; goal is to address number of lives lost last year.
Victims of gun violence are more than the murdered, it’s the entire community.
Parkland Pledge – get involved via Facebook page; fundraise; host a house party; email list
Background checks tied to fingerprints work whereas simple background checks don’t work. (County Executive Kittleman voted against; Gail Bates does not favor fun control)
Moms Demand Action – Nicole Berger
National organization started the day after the Sandy Hook shooting via Facebook
It’s become part of largest gun violence prevention organization – under “Every Town for Gun Safety”
Grass roots organizations - advocates for stronger gun law and saving lives.
Work with state legislature as a bunch of parents, grandparents, teachers, veterans, etc.
96 people per day die from gun violence in America
Over 50 people per day die by gun suicide
We look at all forms of gun violence (school shootings are a small percentage)
Trying to change the culture and the conversation as people become complacent and accustomed to the way we’re living
- Passed Protect Maryland Survivors law - keep guns out of hand of convicted domestic abusers. Vanessa Atteberry was champion of the bill. Similar law existed but wasn’t enforced.
- Extreme Risk Protective Order
- Bump Stock Ban
The group goes in at the state level – organize and attend events
Goal is to raise awareness about the problem of gun violence in our community – common sense gun reform
“Wear Orange Day” is June 2 – our largest public awareness campaign
It does federal work, as well, i.e. support federal bump stock ban, close the boyfriend loophole, enact a federal red flag law
New program – “Get Candidates on the Record” to counter the NRA’s approval rating. Name candidates as gun sense candidates
Awareness campaign – Be SMART – a resource to the community. MDA leader can present a 30 min presentation. Want to get out to western HoCo with the presentation.
May 11 – 13 – Ceasefire weekend in Baltimore
MAD – May 12 – Mother’s Dream Quilt project for both quilters and non-quilters to make a memory quilt
June 2, 11:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m. – Wear Orange Day – for gun violence awareness. Event details TBD but will be family-fun, including speakers and entertainment, as well as a call for action. Orange to reflect what hunters wear to avoid being shot. Wear it June 1 – 3 in honor of teenage girl murdered by another teen in 2013. Event started in 2015. HoCo may make a proclamation. Asking for HoCo business to light up orange that weekend, as well as the George Howard bldg.
Anne Dodd with the Orphan’s Court mentioned the loophole in the law about guns being willed without proper legal transfer.
Courtney Watson talked about a Washington, D.C. political consultant who said the messaging about guns will drop off and the focus will no longer be on it in November during the election.
We are working to develop coordinated messaging, i.e., education, student resource officers and gun control.
Meeting adjourned at 9:00 p.m.
Respectfully submitted by Karin Emery and Lisa Coster