Welcome to the first of a continuing series of short articles from the Bucks County Chapter of the League of Women Voters (LWVBC). The Bucks County Herald, in the interest of public service, has agreed to provide space in the Herald for the local branch of the LWV to share with Bucks County residents important information to assist them in helping to preserve our democracy.
Our citizenry is currently deeply divided on many issues, so the encouragement of voting and the protection of our voting system is especially critical at this time. The intent of these articles is to provide you with the information you need to take appropriate actions and to encourage you to join us. Our democracy will endure only if we citizens are informed and active.
The League of Women Voters is a nonpartisan, grass-roots organization of volunteers committed to empowering voters and defending democracy. The league was founded in 1920, the year that the 19th amendment, which gave women the vote, was ratified. Its purpose was to give newly enfranchised women sufficient information to vote with confidence. While it was originally a women’s organization, created by suffragists, it was opened to men in 1974.
The league operates at the national, the state, and the local level. The national league (LWVUS) advocates for national issues such as representative government, social policies, and natural resources. The state league (LWVPA) advocates for state-wide issues such as fair voter redistricting. The Bucks County league (LWVBC) registers and informs voters, provides speaker programs on election issues and League positions, sponsors candidate and issue forums, and publishes a voters’ guide and a directory of elected officials.
Discourse and listening to other points of view is what makes democracy work. Civic engagement by a mix of Democrats, Republicans and Independents (or liberals, moderates, progressives, etc.) encourages advocacy of policies that support and defend our democracy. While the league as an organization is nonpartisan, that is, it neither supports nor opposes any political party or candidate, the individual members (excluding board members) are encouraged to be politically active. You have a place in the league if you value democracy; if you believe that everyone should have a voice.
For more information about the League of Women Voters, go to lwv.org