1st Annual Floyd’s Fish Fry & Cookout in the Books!

With the delivery of the final prize to the last raffle winner, we declare the 1st Annual Floyd’s Fish Fry & Cookout to be fully closed-out and an amazing part of GWCDP history!

You can read more about the event and watch videos of all of the speakers here.

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A Pared Down Voting Rights Bill

The following writeup came from Walter Shaub, Senior Ethics Fellow at Project On Government Oversight and former Director of the U.S. Office of Government Ethics.

The Joe Manchin voting rights bill HAS TO PASS because voting rights are under attack. For that reason, I’ll support it. But let’s be clear about the flimflam the Senate Dems behind this watered down just pulled.

They took out ALL of HR1’s ethics provisions. EVERY LAST ONE! Here are SOME of the provisions they felt were deal-breakers and had to be removed. These are provisions that the House of Representatives passed. But the Senate? No, this was a bridge too far for these Senators. Somebody should ask them why!


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Joe Cunningham to visit Greenwood

Message from the Chair

Before we get to the big news, we want to thank YOU for the tremendous success of the 1st Annual Floyd’s Fish Fry & Cookout last Saturday. We will have a detailed recap with photos and videos in our next newsletter.

Please read below for some exciting and important information about events happening in the next few days that you will want to be aware of!

Tomorrow afternoon, former Congressman and 2022 gubernatorial candidate Joe Cunningham invites you to watch the Clemson Tigers take on Georgia Tech at 3:30 pm at Montague’s. Please RSVP here. Masks are required for the event for everyone’s safety!

Our friends in McCormick are holding their annual Fish Fry this Saturday from 11 am – 2 pm.

We can enjoy a delicious Fish Fried Dinner with Cole Slaw, Beans, & Dessert at old Senior Center!

Dine-in or Pick-Up options are available.

Senior Center
1421 S. Main St.
McCormick, SC

Finally, on Tuesday Sept 21, from 6 – 8 pm, there will be a public SC House Redistricting hearing at Piedmont Tech’s Medford Center (620 N. Emerald Rd, Greenwood). 

Visit https://redistricting.schouse.gov/ for more information about this process.

Videos of recorded sessions that have already happened elsewhere in the state are available here so you can get an idea of what happens. This is our opportunity to have our voices heard!

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Corporate World’s role in battling the pandemic

The following writeup came from a lengthy thread on Twitter by Andy Slavitt, former Biden White House Sr Advisor for COVID Response, past head of Medicare/Medicaid for Obama. We thought this was worth sharing here.

COVID Update: With requirements rolling across the country, I called a company that implemented vaccine requirements last month. Here is the experience & lessons for the rest of us.

Background first. The company is based in the Midwest with 6000 people. The workforce has salaried, factory workers and service center workers. Their starting point was 70% of the staff vaccinated.

The CEO announced that by 10/1 everyone needed to be vaccinated. The first reaction was a 10% reduction in their employee satisfaction surveys— the first reduction in the history of the company.

Some people were quite upset. So the CEO began to try to understand people’s reasons for being unvaccinated & their objections.He asked trusted people in the company (but never a person’s boss) to call and offer to consult with people who were unvaccinated about the decision.

Themes emerged about why & 90% of the time, the reasons were NOT a strongly held concern about the vaccine. The most common answers people gave:

  • “It was inconvenient”
  • “I’ve been on the fence”
  • “I’m young/not at risk/have had COVID”

One of the most common was:

  • “Other people were getting vaccinated so I didn’t feel like I needed to”

As we crept into September, the percentage of people vaccinated climbed from 70% to where they are today— 95%.

The vast majority of people needed a nudge & got vaccinated without protest. A lot of feedback was they felt good about the decision. The remaining 5% of the company gave a single word most commonly for why they say they won’t get vaccinated.

“Freedom”— the 5% don’t want to be coerced into putting something in their bodies. They expressed few concerns about vaccines or side effects. The CEO talked to the company explicitly about one of their company values.

“None of us individually are more important than all of us.”

He told people that he didn’t want to lose them, but that if they weren’t in alignment over this, they were free to find a new employer. He relayed a conversation he had with 1 person who said they didn’t believe the risk of a side effect was high, but that he wanted to make the choice himself on principal. He seemed to understand why the company was making the decision it was. And the company in return was completely understanding that the person would need to look for new work as a consequence of his decision not to be vaccinated. And that’s what he will be doing.

The CEO told me he has too many employees with kids who have had cancer & have elderly parents at home to respect the concern every individual over all the people in forced difficult situations. Not a close call.

As it stands today, the company may lose as many as 300 people. People who have put years and blood & sweat into building this company (which has invented technologies to prevent cancer).

The CEO desperately hopes many more come on board before the end of the month. He has asked for my help in communicating to people about the virus along the way & again today. Here’s what I glean from this situation and other things I’ve learned along the way.

  1. Requiring a COVID vaccine falls into the same category as many things we ask of people at work— take a drug test, stay home when you’re sick, don’t harass other people. This policy has plenty of precedent & is quite reasonable.
  2. All changes are disruptive and need to be explained to people. Start with the “why” not the “what” or “how.” It’s ok to be firm about a strongly held belief, rooted in your values, even if others don’t agree. Many people simply don’t care very much and will get vaccinated— maybe the majority. They have logistical concerns— time off, transportation, etc. Make it easy.
  3. Be willing to listen & talk to people 1:1 if need be. Make them feel heard. Ask them who they trust for information. Get reliable information to them through those sources when possible. Provide the source for answers to their questions.
  4. You will not get everybody. That’s impossible. It is possible to treat everyone respectfully and make every effort to provide them information to make an informed decision.
  5. This is not a popularity contest. Some people are going to be unhappy. Other people are going to be able to live. These are called decisions and not making them is making them in favor of fear of the loudest voice. Don’t do that. People who are deeply entrenched in not getting the shot often state that they don’t know anyone or many who are getting the shot. The echo chamber has an impact.
  6. If you know someone who isn’t vaccinated, it’s a pain, but talk to them. Do it because you care about them. There is someone we know who wanted to get vaccinated but his wife was opposed. We have been trying to persuade him. He was afraid of the marital strife. He’s now hospitalized. He got it from her. The investment in time & effort to understand his issues & concerns felt really idiosyncratic. At the time I wondered if talking to him was worth the effort. If he wasn’t in the situation he’s in now, I’d be less likely to say it makes sense to have this meddling convo.

It can all be so exhausting. But vaccines without vaccinations is going to land us where we are— an embarrassment of resources & the world’s ongoing hot spot.

Lose a friendship. Lose an employee. Lose some popularity.

Life will have losses. But be willing to lose a lot of things before being willing to lose lives that we don’t have to lose.

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Newsletter for Sep 6, 2021 – Floyd’s Fish Fry speaker list set!

Message from the Chair

We are less than a week away from the 1st Annual Floyd’s Fish Fry & Cookout and, as you’ll see below, it’s going to be an incredible event!

But first I want to take a moment to express my gratitude to the millions of hard-working Americans who make all of the great and small things happen. We saw how our everyday lives can be disrupted as the American workforce was decimated by the pandemic. It’s brought a special appreciation to those working in restaurants, grocery stores, warehouses, computer chip facilities, tractor trailers, and in our classrooms. YOU are who make us great!

I thank the good unions who bring strength in numbers to fight for the safety and security of the employees who can often be thought of as disposable collateral in the pursuit of profits and dividends. From the nightmarish conditions of the Chicago meatpacking plants in the early 1900s to the high injury rates at Amazon warehouses today, we see a continued need for worker protection. 

And finally, a special shout-out to the worker-friendly corporations, the entrepreneurs, and the inventors who create and grow industries from which families are fed and economic security is achieved. Stories abound of businesses who thrive without having to do so at the expense of their employees’ happiness. I’m grateful to have worked for a few in my life and appreciate the risks that are often taken to start up a new business.


Floyd’s Fish Fry & Cookout

If you’ve not yet purchased tickets to the 1st Annual Floyd’s Fish Fry & Cookout, it’s not too late! But hurry, because the ticket count is limited, and once we’re sold out, we’re sold out! You can purchase them online or call 864.715.2341 to secure yours today.

Here are the many reasons you should join us at the Boys & Girls Club (Brewer Rec Center) on Saturday, Sept 11 from 11 am – 3 pm:

The Keynote speaker will be SC Senator & candidate for Governor, Mia McLeod

In June of next year, we will participate in a Democratic primary to determine who will be representing our Party in the November election. Here’s a perfect opportunity to hear from and meet a long-time servant of SC who is running for Governor!

SC House Representative and candidate for US Senate, Krystle Matthews will be making a return visit to Greenwood.

If you’ve never heard this “one tough mother” speak, you are in for a treat!

The health and safety of our community is paramount! We’re grateful that DHEC has accepted our invitation to set up a COVID vaccination site in the cafeteria. Whether it’s your first or second shot, here’s a convenient place to get it done. Boosters are also available, but only for the immunocompromised.

It’s not too late to protect yourself and your loved ones! 

Note: Testing will not be available, but there are plenty of places in Greenwood to get a free test!

Sen Floyd Nicholson will be honored for his legacy and decades of service to Greenwood County with a surprise thank-you gift from the GWCDP!

We’ll hear from the legend himself and thank him for all he has done for our community.

Raffle & door prizes abound thanks to the generosity of local businesses and donors.

$1 raffle tickets will be for sale, giving you a chance to win one of 10 prizes. From gift baskets to electronics to folding lawn chairs – odds are very good that you can walk away with a valuable prize!

South Carolina Democratic Party Chair, Trav Robertson, and 3rd Vice Chair, Jalen Elrod, return to Greenwood to provide words of inspiration and encouragement.

Hear how we can work with the SCDP to fight for Democratic values in South Carolina!

Food and music abound!

Delicious fish plates will be served up by Smokin’ the City.

DJ Nafi will be spinning the tunes and we’ll have a special live performance by Greg Lee and The Take Over Band!

We will hear words of wisdom from four amazing local leaders: SC House Representative Anne Parks, County Councilwoman Edith Childs, City Councilwoman Betty Boles, and City Councilwoman Patricia Partlow.

GWD School Board trustee, Sabrina Connor, will lead a tribute to former School Board trustee & organizer of previous GWCDP Fish Fries, Claude Wright.

Last, but not least, GWCDP Chair, Bill Kimler, and 1st Vice Chair Rev. James Thompson will speak on the state of the Greenwood County Democratic Party and lead a prayerful remembrance on the 20th anniversary of the 9/11 tragedy.

There may still be additional surprise guests but we hope this convinces you that the Floyd Fish Fry & Cookout is the place to be on Saturday!

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