Just what is ABATE?
By Fast Fred
ABATE is a grassroots organization. Senator Albert Beveridge of Indiana coined the word “grassroots” in 1912 during a speech at the Bull Moose Convention. Beveridge suggested his grassroots party was "… grown from the soil of the people's hard necessities.“ Grassroots advocacy is a distinctive approach to public participation in which everyday people help shape public policy and perception rather than paid professionals.
“The purpose of ABATE of South Carolina is to form a not-for-profit association at the State level to protect the rights and liberties of motorcyclists, and promote motorcycle awareness and voluntary motorcycle rider training.”
~ABATE of SC Constitution
Grassroots advocacy is effective when many individual members of an organization, such as ABATE, write letters and place phone calls to government officials to express similar sentiments. These government officials may be elected legislators or even appointed members of agencies.
Constituents' priorities and views are important to legislators. Constituents vote and either help re-elect legislators to another term in office, or help elect others to take their places. Your participation is essential to ABATE’s success; you will be amazed at what you can accomplish with just several of hours of grassroots advocacy per year. Grassroots action can be exciting and fun; the only limiting factor is the imaginations of those involved. One recent example of mixing fun with grassroots action is a scavenger hunt organized by ABATE of SC:
Statehouse Scavenger Hunt 2
1) Collect a business card from your senator while you are sharing your views on pending legislation. Don't forget to leave letters supporting your views.
2) Collect a business card from your representative while you are sharing your views on pending legislation. Don't forget to leave letters supporting your views.
3) Collect a business card from the Chair of the Senate Transportation Committee while you visit to show support for S 1027. Don't forget to leave a letter supporting S 1027; you may view ABATE of SC's recent press release for ideas.
Bonus) Collect a letter of reply from a legislator replying to your letter supporting S 1027.
Remit the first three items for this year’s legislative warrior patch; add a copy of the bonus letter for an additional patch from last year. Be sure to include your name and complete mailing address along with your items and mail to:
ABATE Legislative Patch
PO Box 62708
North Charleston SC 29419
You may find a wealth of useful information at for lobbying at the SC Statehouse.
View photos and read about the first scavenger hunt.