Read About Other Readings

Here's what people are saying about their own Voice the Constitution.

Tattered Cover, Highlands Ranch, Colorado
The Tattered Cover advertised our reading in their newsletter. Twenty Seven people showed up for the reading. We were on store-wide public address and ten people read. This was the first reading where I had to do a bit of a sales job to get people to read. In the small towns, I'm guessing everyone felt that they knew each other. At least they'd seen each other at the Gas-n-Go.

In the big city of Highlands Ranch, no one had had any experience of each other and so there was a little work (not a lot) to loosen everyone up. Some of the people were from a high school history class and they had some great thoughts on the reading.

At this reading, one listener asked how we deal with judges making law. I gave him my standard response about the government being balanced and how the other two branches temper the courts.

As usual, it wasn't until later that I remembered that what we (and the founders) call "Common Law" was all made by judges in Europe. Next time someone asks about that, I'll be ready.

Gilpin County Library, Gilpin County, Colorado
There was a nice crowd at this one including a few local politicians. About ten people read and there was discussion afterwards. There were a number of good comments and questions. I only remember that I answered a few of the questions as though I knew what I was talking about... I didn't.

I resolved at this one to do some serious reading. The latest audio Constitution benefited from that reading.

Blue Owl Books, Nederland, Colorado
Our first reading, we had nine readers. Our second, one person showed up and we cobbled together five readers. For our third reading we had no idea what would happen. By 7:00, five people had shown up and by giving everyone another fidfteen minutes, we ended up with twelve people in attendance. Nine of them read and the discussion lasted about thirty minutes.

At this point we decided to try to get the readings into other venues.

Blue Owl Books, Nederland, Colorado
For our second reading a reporter with the Nederland Gazette would be attending. We expected about eight people but it was snowing and sleeting outside. We couldn't imagine that a little snow and ice would keep away these mountain folk, but something did. The reporter showed up but no one else.

We decided we should do it anyway. We talked Kim and Mike (the folks who run Blue Owl Books) into joining us and we made up a group of five. The reporter wanted to read the first amendment, so that's how we divided the cards. Each reading was a little long. We would probably not read if we only had four since fifteen minutes is a long haul for a non-professional. Nonetheless, it was as inspiring as the first time. We ended up in the Ned Gazette and on YouTube.

Blue Owl Books, Nederland, CO
This was our first attempt at a public reading of the U.S. Constitution. We tacked up flyers all over this little mountain town and had no idea how many would show up. At 6:50 only one person had shown. We were a little nervous and then suddenly, six others showed up in the space of a few minutes. At 7:00, we passed out the cards and began. We found that one of our local papers was represented and the reporter would be one of our readers.

Julian explained the instructions about holding up your hand when you got to an amended part and read the first set of cards to make sure everyone understood how it would work. After a nervous beginning, it quickly became very comfortable. There were very few problems. People rarely stumbled even over the more archaic phrases. When there was a delay, Julian would drop a bit of trivia into the gap and the reader would continue.

We were surprised to find that the whole reading took less than an hour. When the last amendment was read, there was a reverent silence that we had not expected. It was like the end of a moving sermon. Julian went to the lectern and asked if anyone had heard anything they hadn't expected. Everyone wanted to talk and the discussion lasted for about thirty minutes.

We knew some of the attendees were active in the Democratic Party and with Amnesty International. As people were leaving one of the readers handed Julian his card. He was literally a card carrying conservative. That was a moment of inspiration. Our discussion had been about our Constitution. We could not tell, from that discusson, who was liberal and who was conservative - the constitution was not political. We vowed to structure future readings in the same way in order to assure the same harmonious concurence between ideologies.