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A creative blog by Lisa Schultz on The Whole 9

Lisa Schultz has spent a lifetime observing the human parade. Now at the helm of The Whole 9 and The Peace Project, she reports in on her findings and asks that you join in.

Vote as if millions of lives depend on it. They do.

Bernie. Bernie. Bernie!!!!

Shortly after Bernie announced his candidacy, several of my most politically aware friends began spreading the word and I began my Bernie 101 — little by little learning about the years of service Bernie had provided his constituency and this country.   If you’re still unfamiliar with your work, I urge you to take a look at this video chronicling many of his fearless fights for what is just and right for veterans, gays and lesbians, workers and the environment.

Since launching The Peace Project and traveling to some of the most devastated countries on this planet, my perspective has changed and I’ve realized the incredible (and negative) impact the United States and our policies — most particularly our insatiable thirst for oil and power that manifests as devastating military aggression — causes futures for millions through incalculable loss of lives, property and futures.

A few months ago, I read a story that a friend shared about an American woman who had lost her daughter to cancer. Her words and the inexplicable grief and profound loss caused me to really understand for the first time, at a visceral level, what it would feel like to lose a child and I thought “Holy Sh*t…through our indiscriminate military aggression, through campaigns like “Shock and Awe” and the Iraq War, through our support and initiation of regime changes like the one in Libya and Honduras, through humanitarian disasters like Guantanamo Bay, we cause millions of mothers, fathers, brothers, and sisters to needlessly feel this kind of grief. For our own completely selfish financial gain.

There is a major difference though that makes this loss of life that we dismiss so easily, so profound — the people that experience it typically also have to deal with the destruction of their homelands, their communities and their houses. All because our needs trump their lives.

This is the legacy of many of our politicians including Hillary Clinton, and if any of you reading this wonder why I seem to dislike her so much, you now have your answer.  I often walk a mile in other people’s shoes — people who I’ve never met and who have no voice — and when I do I feel the rage that comes from having someone carelessly kill your child, destroy your home and tear apart your community.

Having a woman president is only important to me if that woman exhibits the qualities that will keep us out of war, that will prevent the senseless killing of other women’s children and who will work tirelessly to create the same thing that mothers around the world work for every day — a world where there is more harmony, more abundance, more honesty and more love for all humanity and our environment.

The only candidate that exhibits these qualities is Mr. Bernie Sanders and I not only support him, but I do so with my heart full of love and admiration for this man who has been a tireless public servant, who has inspired millions of people across the country and around the world, to not only believe that we can have a better world, but to make it happen by working for it.

I am beyond thrilled and proud to have cast my vote early yesterday in Norwalk to my daughter’s chants of “Bernie. Bernie. Bernie!” And I am thrilled to have donated, phone-banked, canvassed, and organized events to support him. My time and money has never been so well spent.

Tomorrow California votes. I believe it is one of the most important dates in my lifetime — I wholeheartedly believe that if Bernie Sanders wins California, he will take it all the way to the White House and we will walk and work beside him in creating a nation and a world where more people have more and we have less of the one thing that we must stop — the United States’ never-ending military aggression.

When you vote tomorrow, I urge you to think carefully and vote wisely. It is not an overstatement to say that millions of people’s lives will be depending on it.

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