Ralph Dennis letter – the many accomplishments of Progressive Democrats of Benicia

Appeared in the Benicia Herald, January 19, 2020
Ralph Dennis, Chair, Progressive Democrats of Benicia

I was reading a recent letter to the editor from a writer who submits letters quite often to the Benicia Herald, and he used much of the same diatribes against Councilmember Steve Young and the Mayor he always does.

He also shared his opinion yet again about a local political club – the Progressive Democrats of Benicia (PDB), a club which I know.

At the same time, I had also been reminiscing about some of the activities over the past three years undertaken by PDB, in addition to the candidate endorsements PDB has chosen to make.

    • Last February, in celebration of Black History Month PDB honored four local African-American women for their longtime service to the Benicia community and surrounding area.
    • In another meeting, PDB discussed the use of glyphosate (Round Up) and heard from Benicia’s Public Works Dept. on landscape maintenance practices it follows regarding the use of chemicals.
    • PDB also honored the Good Neighborhood Steering Committee for its near-20 year activism on getting better and more air monitoring sites in Benicia.
    • PDB has brought in the founder of Cultivate Community Co-op, Solano County’s only food Co-op.
    • PDB has also organized appearances in Benicia by US Congressman Mike Thompson, California State Senator Bill Dodd, and California Assemblymember Tim Grayson, along with regular updates from Monica Brown, our Solano County Supervisor.
    • PDB helped organize public rallies on anti-gun violence and the federal immigration policies, trying to raise awareness in the community on these issues.
    • During the past two years, PDB has worked with other groups in tracking legislation in Sacramento to provide information to the community on bills that impact Benicia, encouraging Benicians to call their legislators on matters that concern them.

These are just a few examples of the efforts put forth by PDB since its beginnings.

Progressive Democrats of Benicia is a political organization, chartered by the Solano County Democratic Central Committee, and we do provide opportunities to Club members to vote on endorsing Democratic candidates in elections.  But endorsements are only one aspect of what the Club does, one of the partisan political things we do.

Much of what PDB does is in fact non-partisan in nature.  I’ll leave it up the reader and the community to conclude the “effectiveness” of the Club’s efforts.

As Chair of the Progressive Democrats of Benicia, I want to remove the misleading impression left by the frequent writer to the Benicia Herald about the Progressive Democrats of Benicia, and what we do.  And, you might want to check the Club out at one of its meetings and visit the Club’s web site progressivedemocratsofbenicia.org/.