On the front lines of history
Bernie Sanders rally, June 2, 2016, Chico State
I’m a Navy vet. This is the first time in my life that I’ve voted, and I’m 59 years old. And I just believe it’s a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for the country. My parents had JFK, their parents had FDR and now we have Bernie. I’m just out here doing everything I can to make sure he wins. We’re from Bellingham, Wash. We went to Oregon and we canvassed for two weeks, and then we’re down here from June 1-7.
-Jim Peterson, Bellingham, Wash., with his Bernie Sanders Acura, featuring the signatures of more than 10,000 Bernie Supporters
I’d like it to be Bernie and Elizabeth Warren, to tell you the truth. I just started listening to Bernie and my biggest thing is I kind of think he is an atheist, and it’s important to me to keep religion out of politics.
-Sophie Rodriguez, security, Redding
We need to revitalize our soil. We need to stop chemically treating our soil, because it’s killing the bees. And without bees, we won’t be able to have fruits, vegetables. Do you like strawberries? I love strawberries. Well, I am a “Zombee” coming back from the dead to try and warn people about the chemicals that we’re using in soil. If you keep putting chemicals in soil, you’re going to destroy and decimate our planet.
-Holly Cat, performance artist, Berry Creek
We’re just going around selling our paper; it’s called Socialist Appeal. And, basically just talking about our perspective for the U.S. elections and what it represents in terms of Bernie Sanders’ campaign and the mass discontent that’s awakened. I think that what we see as his most positive attributes are actually maybe not his attributes; it’s more the attributes of the support that he’s garnered. I think what he’s been discussing in terms of wealth inequality, in terms of the lack of social mobility for working people in the United States, that the American Dream is effectively dead for most people.
-Jacob Thorpe (at right), Marxist Student Association, Chico (with Sam Cremo, Chico)
[Bernie Sanders is] the only candidate that is being represented by the people. His average contribution is only $27, unlike Hillary, who is supported by the super PACs, and Donald Trump, [who] is supported by himself. I’m also here for my nieces and nephews, for the future kids and for the environment. I have the “Fuck Trump” sign because he’s racist, and he’s not even a politician.
-Antonio Hernandez, field worker, Gridley
Bernie has always been there for veterans. There’s no equivocating, no excuses. He’s always been there for us. He cares about us and I know he would never send us into war if we really didn’t have to go to war. Especially not for profit. I’m sick of cronyism and corruption and I want my democracy back.
-Chad Peery, retired, Chico
I wanted to see what kind of excitement there was here in Chico. I’ve been to over 10 Bernie rallies, and just came from one in Modesto. He is an authentic candidate, bottom line. He wants to help the middle class and the working poor a lot more than the other candidates. What we’ve got for choices now is unacceptable.
-Galen Swain, Organizing for Action, Bay Area
It’s a moment in history. This is our revolution. This is our way to make a difference. I think this is our savior—Bernie Sanders. I think the movement is getting so much spark from people who never felt like they had a voice. I’ve never seen my friends, my peers be more active and more involved in the political race. And I think the media likes to cut us out, but we’re here to make a stand. It’s time to make a change.
-Jazmin Harrington, student, Chico
I’m just excited that a presidential candidate from my political party is here in my town. Him being here is huge. Every time a political candidate comes here, they connect with the voters and bring new ideas. And they send the message that Chico is important in this state. It’s a BFD, especially in Democratic politics, because it’s usually Republicans who spend a lot of time here. I think the message Bernie Sanders is carrying is very important. I appreciate what he’s done during his campaign—for the things I care about, for the future of my son and this country.
-Randall Stone (with son Rhys), city councilman, Chico
There are so many young people here, and [it’s great] to feel the vibe and the connection between people. I’m hoping that we can fix this economy, we can fix this mass destruction that we’re doing to this planet with capitalism and greed. I’m stoked beyond words. I never have [been to a rally]; this is my first one. I believe that Bernie Sanders, with his voting history, will do exactly what he says he’s going to do. And yes, I’m very hopeful.
-Ty Ford, public relations, Redding
We are here to support Bernie Sanders because we are hoping for a better tomorrow. I appreciate who he is and that he has been the same person ever since he got into politics and I want a bright future for my son and he is the candidate that can do it.
-Kelly Sutton, cashier, Chico (with son Oliver)
I think Bernie is a very important man in the history of the United States. I think that there are very few people in the 20th century who can sit all the way up there. I think Bernie in this century is going to be one of the top five or 10 [people] to come around. Hopefully his message will come around. I think that he is going to change politics; I know [he’s] shifted it a heck of a lot to the left this last year. I am extremely happy about that because it got to the point where truth and facts were considered liberal, and that should be our starting point.
-Greg Gibson, traveling political activist
I am so excited. Beyond excited. I couldn’t sleep for the last couple nights. I have been a volunteer since Iowa—on the Text for Bernie team. This election is a big election and he brings to light all the things that need to change in this country.
-Lisa Andreatta, Text for Bernie, Redding
I’ve been following him for over a year now. The social programs that he is talking about, the tuition-free college; it’s more than a worthy investment. He is not about to bow down to fracking. He understands that the growing of marijuana is a medicinal grow and not a recreational grow, and it’s very important. My sister who lives in Springfield, Mo., told me about Bernie last spring. I did some research about not just what he stands for now but [also] what he stood for continuously for the past 40-plus years.
-Ian Hilton, cook, Chico
Honestly, before this, I’ve never been into politics. But once I started reading about Bernie Sanders, I started noticing that he is for the people, and he is not like any other politician of my time. He’s really motivated to help people.
-April Lower, nurse, Chico
I want to vote for the greater good, instead of having to vote for the lesser of two evils for president. The lesser of two evils being Trump and Hillary.
-Jim McClain, graphic designer/printer, Chico