Above: Democratic presidential candidate Marianne Williamson addresses the media in Conway.
By Rosemary Wolfe, Susan Hutchinson and Bob Gatty
Author, lecturer and activist Marianne Williamson brought her campaign for the Democratic presidential nomination to Horry County July 25 and 26, stressing that America needs a government dedicated to meeting the real needs of the people, rather than responding to the “corrupt influences” she said currently prevail.
Williamson addressed the North Strand Dems and the Westside Democrats July 25, then visited the Waccamaw Youth Center in Conway and met with the media near Conway’s “Peace Pole” along the Waccamaw River July 26.
The visit to the youth center helped to illustrate some of the major concerns Williamson hopes to address as president. “It was both inspiring and heartbreaking,” she said, “to see the kind of people who do this excellent work. But it is so under-funded. Our government should be in the forefront of taking care of our children.”
“I saw the most moving testimony of what human beings are doing to repair lives,” she said of her visit to the youth center. “There are millions of at-risk children in America. These children have not failed society. Society has failed these children.”
Declared Williamson, “I want a government that actually helps people, particularly our children.”
Williamson said she sees a “country in crisis,” and that she is running for president to “prosecute the case of the system that led to Donald Trump.”
“It’s time for the people to step up,” she said.
Williamson described herself as “an enthusiastic capitalist, but a capitalist with a conscience,” adding that she believes it is possible for America to “reclaim its moral core.”
Those comments are in tune with a core message expressed on her campaign website, which says there is a “groundswell of people” who seek a “higher wisdom,” who are concerned about the country’s direction, “the assaults on our democratic foundations, and the erosion of human values.”
At North Strand Dems
Williamson stressed the importance of “facing threats to our democracy” and getting back to the principles of the Declaration of Independence.
For 40 years, she said, there have been accumulated layers of erosion of democracy seen in short-term profits that have “corrupted” the government.
“We need to get rid of the political, economic, and social input that gave rise to the situation today,” she said, asserting that America needs a President who has a vision for the future, moral certitude, and programs that improve large groups of people.
Her remarks focused on healthcare, raising the minimum wage, and improving education on all levels. She also noted that “our security agenda is based on war, not peace building agencies.”
Williamson promotes the concept of the Politics of Love, which she says the current government does not embrace. The Trump administration does not stand up for American workers, nor does it fight against injustice, she declared.
At Westside Democrats
Williamson quoted passages from the Declaration of Independence and said America needs to “reclaim the rambunctiousness of the American Revolution.”
She described corporations as the new American overlords who only care about profits and not people. Her platform includes improving education as well as helping children deal with mental health issues.
She stated that there are children in America who are so traumatized by gun violence that they suffer worse PTSD than combat veterans.
Williamson criticized the Republican-led state of South Carolina with its billion-dollar surplus and refusal to use the money to improve the educational system and create better opportunities for minority and poor children.
She said the military budget is out of control and questioned why the U.S. Air Force needs 100 B-51 stealth bombers, which can carry nuclear bombs as well as conventional ones.
Regarding President Trump, Williamson said he is “an opportunistic infection that invaded a weakened societal immune system.” She said people who didn’t vote in 2016 as a silent protest of the candidate selection, or just thought “what’s the point”, helped get Trump elected.
She added that she is undecided on impeachment and said it was made clear this week that Trump can’t be defeated through our normal legislative policies and practices.
If elected president in 2020, Williamson said she will create a Department of Peace and a Department of Children and Youth and will prioritize climate change, saving children, making reparations for slavery and replacing the current war economy with a peace economy.
An author, lecturer, and activist, Williamson is best known for co-founding Project Angel Food which provides food to the homebound with AIDS and other illnesses, and Peace Alliance, which supports peace-building projects.
Harris Rep Speaks
Westside Democrats also heard from Emily Bateman, Horry County organizer for Kamala Harris’ presidential campaign, who reiterated Harris’ campaign talking points, especially noting that the senator is an advocate for working Americans.
She reminded everyone of the phone bank activities at the HCDP office Tuesday evening and in Myrtle Beach Wednesday evening.
Bateman and her local team will host debate watching parties throughout the county next week. For information on events or to volunteer with the local Harris campaign, contact Emily Bateman at 717-585-7329 or email email@example.com.
Note: HCDP does not endorse any Democratic candidates for office until after the primary election.