On March 5, 2015 at 7 p.m., come out to Arena Stage to join a community discussion on where the DC statehood movement has been, where it is currently, and where it is going. The engaging evening will provide a basis of understanding, a platform for the neighborhood to share ideas as to what should be done, and even make commitment to be a part of the solution.

The free event will be hosted by ANC 6D04 Commissioner Rachel Reilly Carroll, The Southwester Editor-in-Chief Shannon Vaughn, and Neighbors United for D.C. Statehood Co-founder Josh Burch.

“Taxation without representation,” while a funny slogan, is not a reason for us to rest on our laurels. We live in the shadows of the U.S. Capitol, yet we are denied representation in it. Year after year congressional meddling continues into local District affairs. Equal representation through statehood for the District remains the only legislative option that protects the District against congressional meddling while ensuring permanent equal representation in Congress.

Citizens of the District contribute over $20 billion annually to the federal budget, yet do not have any input into how that money is spent. With a population of 660,000 people – more than the populations of Vermont and Wyoming – we are denied full and equal representation in Congress. We live under a system of taxation without representation even though our nation was founded in direct opposition to that.

Statehood is the only way to make us full and equal citizens of the United States and we, the citizens of the District, need to be more engaged and better organized in our pursuit of full equality in the American union.

While the prospects for statehood legislation are at present dim, there is plenty of organizing, educating, and advocating that we all can take part in as we build a movement for change.

The success of the statehood movement lies in the heads and hearts of the citizens of the District and now is the time to give five minutes or five hours a month to pushing the cause forward…but the first step is to attend March 5 at 7 p.m. See you there!

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