For months, we have pestered the Members of European Parliament with calls, mails, street protests, visits, and even faxes. On July 4, they killed ACTA decisively in a 478-against-39 vote. Now comes the next step: showing our love for doing the right thing. That part is easily overlooked, and almost always forgotten.
The thing that makes it so efficient as citizens to contact Parliament that each of us only has to do something small in order to have an immense effect when many of us do that little something. It leads to effects on a large scale that just haven’t happened before – like every MEP office getting about 6,000 e-mails from all over the world, ordinary people telling their story.
In the same vein, MEPs are used to just being yelled and yanked at from people who want favors. In rejecting ACTA, I think the MEPs who voted to reject it deserve a little show of our appreciation, so why not send them a bunch of flowers? The MEPs are quite ordinary people, too, and put yourself in their shoes – if a complete stranger should just break through the wall where you work and give you flowers, how would you react? That, just that, is the effect we can accomplish together.
This has never happened before. People, ordinary citizens, have never showered Parliament with flowers out of gratitude for standing up for us. If we shouldn’t do it now, then when?
The European Parliament is currently in Strasbourg, and will be flying back to their home countries tomorrow for the weekend, so I’d suggest ordering flowers to arrive in Brussels on Monday. (Yes, the Europarl works in several different places, and they’ll be working in Brussels next week.)
- Pick a MEP that voted against ACTA from this page at random. That’s all the MEPs voting for rejection of ACTA on July 4 – the original 478 plus three more that appeared in “correction of minutes”. I’d suggest either picking one from your home country, or picking one by clicking here to get a random number, then sending to the corresponding MEP in the list. Or use any method you like.
- Go to Belgian Interflora, Euroflorist, or FloraQueen to order flowers. (If you get the site in a strange language, check the top right for language settings.) Any flowers. A clover or an immense bouquet, it doesn’t matter. If you can afford it, it could be helpful to include a vase (there’s a significant risk they’ll run out of vases if enough people do this).
- Set the delivery date to Monday, July 9, Tuesday, July 10, or Wednesday, July 11.
- Send flowers to this address: MEP [name of your selected MEP], European Parliament, Rue Wiertz 60, 1047 Bruxelles/Brussels, Belgium. The phone number to Parliament is +32 2 284 21 11.
- Include a simple message like “Thank you for voting no to ACTA.”
- Last but not least – tweet/share this page across your network to spread awareness of the action. It needs volume to get the desired impact and long-term effects, and nobody knows your friends better than you.
Our representatives stood up for us and our rights today. That may be their job, but let’s encourage them to keep listening to the citizens by doing something that’s never happened before: actually showing them how much we appreciate it.