I've been attending the Netroots Nation Convention in Las Vegas this week. Over 2000 people are here, organized, mobilized and energized, ready to make positive Change for America. Attendees are from all walks of life, supporting a variety of causes and sharing their concerns, goals and dreams for tomorrow. It has been an exciting week, with 70 panels, 30 training sessions from NN's Campaign Academy, a screening series, several caucuses and tons of parties and events.
Several well known speakers, democratic Senators and Representatives are participating on the panels, including Nancy Pelosi, Harry Reed, Al Franken and Raul Grijalva, just to name a few. Panel topics range from the economy, the environment, elections, health care, education and Immigration Reform. We've even had panels on the Gulf Oil Spill and How to Change the World - rocking on social networks.
It is amazing - the number of tech savvy young people here. I would say a good 50% of the attendees are under 25. Most carry their laptops or i-pads on their hips dressed in casual clothes looking like they just came from an MTV Rock the Vote rally. Unlike the Tea Parties, the attendees are a sea of color, all ages, energized and ready for positive change. They are not filled with hate or anger nor are they carrying hate-spewing signs. Instead they are chatting, texting, mobilizing and unifying to hear each other and join/support each others' causes.
Besides the panels, we held several caucuses including: Parents, Bloggers United, Women, American Indian, Latino, African American, Environmental, Israel-Palestine, AAPI, LGBT, Education, Youth, Women, Labor, by state, Immigration, People of Faith, OpenLeft. Each group spoke of their concerns, issues, and overall, how to unite with other progressives in supporting each others' causes.
From all of the Panels, Screenings, Caucuses and other events, each attendee was free to select which session they wanted to attend. I, of course, selected many of the Immigration events. Within the next couple of days, I will write about a few of the events I attended. I won’t be writing about the Big Time, Headline NN events or people that you’ve been reading about in the mainstream media. Instead, I will be writing about the quieter, smaller events that impressed me the most.