Welcome to Timeline Photos. A few years back I started peeking around my archives in search of some of the first photographs I had taken. Here records my quest into better understanding my long term love of camera and experiencing the world with it in hand. All photos appear in chronological order hopefully revealing an evolution of how I see and what moves me to speak with light.

Images are licensed Creative Commons BY-NC-SA. You are welcome to share an image given that you credit me, Irene Kato, as photographer with mention of my blog link, 'irenekatophotos.blogspot.com'.

Contact irenekatophotos@gmail.com for information about prints, permissions, and on-site assignments. Thank you!!

(Photo credit Phil Monahan of Orvis)

Tuesday, February 21, 2017

My baptism into a town hall experience with Senator Bill Cassidy

People showed up in Denham Springs! The intention of Senator Bill Cassidy's Town Hall was to provide an opportunity for locals to address their concerns about flood recovery. He had a team of government FEMA officials with him to answer questions and encouraged people to have their questions answered. This was a positive and good move for those in need.

Non-flood and flood related questions, written on note cards from those in attendance before the meeting's start, were answered by him from the podium. 

ACA's repeal and replace response went 50/50 with cheers and boos. Well, we have folks here who don't like Donald Trump. Surprised? 

On 45's tax returns, he's for transparency without mention of cahones to do something about it.

What will he do to battle Jeff Sessions voter repression? Prove who you are. It's not asking too much to show a photo ID.

Is he limiting constituents engagement with him? "Thank y'all for being here today." 5,000 calls a week are coming in! DC and LA both getting calls, and they're wanting to put priority on LA calls who are having a tough time getting through. In particular, it is those who don't like DT who are calling. You know, most class are from CA and Oregon. If you call back 2 or 3 times, there are better chances of speaking to someone. He wishes he could answer everyone. Watch for FB live. Send email.

The sea level rises and there's climate change, yet there's a push to move away from regulations. Our state has a master plan for the next 50 years. DT's plan for greater use of US natural gas instead of China's will decrease emissions overall. It'll be a plus for emissions. DT's pipelines good for job creation and money, too. Need to put funds into the coastline restoration. @Stephen Poss, I believe there was a shout out to you within his discussion about Mother Earth. Of course I smiled.

After one hour he wrapped things up, but a women in the crowd shouted out for more time. He didn't expect the turnout and request, and an older gentleman called out, "You'd think you know by now!" BC said he'd address questions on a more personal level once done.

Once he left the stage, he was surrounded by reporters seeking clarification about his responses. I scooted into the huddle to listen in. I was not alone in raising my eyebrows throughout as he spoke of the goodness of DT. Those boos from 50% of the crowd were just because they don't like him, not because of the ideas. How can you not like a replacement of Obamacare that's cheaper and in your hands? A woman nearby muttered, 'No, no' as he went on in DT support.

Overall, I greatly appreciate the opportunity with Senator Bill Cassidy. I will do it again if just to join with others to listen and lift voices. I'll go to be inspired by the efforts of others - the mom with 4 little children making the long drive, the woman acknowledging other's attendance, the reporter from New Zealand collecting town hall stories, and the family still in temp housing after the flood seeking answers. Citizen activation has a learning curve, and I think that the senator walked out of there learning, too. A gathering intended for discussion of flood recovery also had a strong representation of LA citizens who are paying attention and demanding accountability from him and the president. Red state, red district, shared human concerns.

I also better know what to say to him in a follow-up note. He presented himself as a Donald man instead of a discerning senator listening to the people's voices. What will he do to change his ways so I know that, while he supports the DT's vision, he is making sure to support legislation that protects the people and our planet. While I appreciate his time, I don't support his apparent DT allegiance belittling our sincere concerns.

May his town hall in Metarie on Wednesday continue the wave of raised voices. Really, you don't like Donald Trump? In Louisiana?

Emily McMains, your calm wisdom. If I could only bottle it. Thank you.

#senatorbillcassidy #townhall #forthepeople #louisana #showupdiveinstayatit

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