Flowers for Tipper Campaign Is A Resounding Success!
Kay Gardner, Chris McCullough, Barbara Russell, Janet Hessert, and Mel Kelley
To all who participated in the Flowers Project and J20 Protest:
Today, we want to thank you for your tremendous help in making the Flowers for Tipper campaign a resounding success. People from all over the country showed their spirit by showering the Gore residence with literally hundreds upon hundreds of flower arrangements and cards, full of words of support and encouragement.
Upon returning from a brief trip to Aspen, the Gores were met at the gate with several dozen arrangements which were left outside. Upon entering the Naval Observatory, they were again met with dozens of arrangements which had been brought indoors. But the full impact of this effort was not realized until the Gores left the Naval Observatory for the last time and drove to their home in Arlington, where the bulk of the hundreds of arrangements had been moved and carefully arranged inside. Some described the appearance of the room, adorned with thousands of flowers, as a "shrine". The cards and personal notes from people all over the country had been removed and placed in a large crystal bowl. It was only then that the Gores realized what had happened - that this had been an outpouring of love and support from people from sea to shining sea. We are told that the entire family was moved beyond words.
We take some comfort in knowing that as they sat there in a cold and dismal January rain, watching the Coronation, their hearts were warmed by the people of this great nation who stood beside them in spirit, and stand beside them still.
We take no comfort in what reporter Marc Fisher submitted to the Washington Post, written after one of his colleagues, a Ms. Frazier, had initially requested an interview regarding the protests from a member of our Egroups. At the last minute, Ms. Frazier stated that no interview would be necessary, that "the concept of the story had changed." The Post then published the following erroneous account about this grassroots effort and about the protests in general:
Inaugural Events Washed Over by Feelings of Unease
By Marc Fisher
Saturday, January 20, 2001 ; Page B01
Damp: A sodden pile of about two dozen bouquets of flowers dumped outside the vice president's mansion are the only sign of a fizzled protest called Flowers for Tipper. The idea was for Americans who wanted her to be first lady to shower Mrs. Gore with support as she departs what shouting crowds last month kept calling "Dick Cheney's house." In the end, hardly anyone cared enough to send their very best.
Dampest: On this cold, cold, wet day, it was too wet to go out and too cold to play the exciting Sixties Nostalgia Game, so the protesters sat in the house and did nothing at all. Not even the Cat in the Hat, Jesse Jackson, who always knew a lot of good tricks, came out to play. Maybe he heard the Fish say: "He should not be here. He should not be about. He should not be here when your mother is out."
Our outrage at this deliberate distortion and falsification is replaced only by fervent resolve and determination that this is what we face for the next four years unless we unite and move forward with a solid agenda to get our message out to a media and the nation as a whole. It is important to remember that this HIGHLY successful project of sending flowers was implemented and organized by only five people, none who had ever met before, none with previous experience in mounting such an effort; and only via use of the Internet, websites and email.
If five women, using only their passion and the resources of the Internet can mount such an effort, what then could we, as a whole, do? To see that the right-leaning media feels the need to so distort the facts tells me that they know, as we do, that there IS power left in the voice of the people; there IS power left in our base, and they will use any means possible to "dampen" it.
We urge everyone to use whatever means at their disposal to spread the truth about this effort, and about the J20 protests in general, to those in the media and those in power. Their goal is to diminish and distort. We simply cannot let it go unanswered.
Kay Gardner, Chris McCullough, Barbara Russell, Janet Hessert, Mel Kelley
Co-Chairs, Flowers for Tipper campaign