J: Hello and welcome to American Cafe! My name is Jody!
Y: 大家好，我是杨晨。Eh, Jody... 你拿了一堆什么东西啊?
J: Oh, this stuff? Let's see, I have political posters .... what else do I have flyers, you know, information sheets... Wow, I really have a lot of work to do!
J: Well, I'm excited because the work is for a political grassroots campaign. See, I volunteered to hang posters and hand out flyers to people at subway stops.
J: It's the best way for everyday citizens to get involved and make a difference! But hey, some of the people I met a grassroots campaign meeting can explain that it much better than I. Let's hear from them. Here's Rudy who organized the meeting that I went to.
实录1 Rudy: My name is Rudy. I've lived in DC for a little under a year. And grassroots campaigning to me is a movement of people coming toward for a common cause, be it political or social, or whatever, banding together, working together to come to a common goal and hopefully be victorious in its outcome. The hierarchy is loose so everybody's voice counts. And in the end hopefully everyone is happy with the outcome.
Y: Rudy总结的很好。他说基层活动就是为了共同的目的， 大家聚集在一起，共同努力，最后获得成功。 Jody, 你给大家解释一下hierarchy的意思好吗？
J: Okay! The hierarchy means the chain of command. And in a grassroots campaign the structure of the hierarchy is very loose. That means there's really no specific leader or boss.
J: Right. And in a grassroots campaign everybody comes together for, as Rudy said, a common goal and contributes what they can.
J: Right, like a true democracy.
J: Here's another definition of grassroots campaigning that I liked a lot from Michael.
实录2 Michael Briggs: If I had to define grassroots campaigning, I would think that it's people working with each trying to really bring democracy to life, share ideas, get people involved behind their candidate, trying to change minds, and raise awareness about an issue or a politician.
Y: 哎，Jody，我突然想到，grassroots campaign这个说法是怎么来的呢？
J: Oh, you know, I was curious about the origin, or the roots, haha, get it? Grassroots...anyway. I was curious about that myself. So let's have Michael help us out again.
实录3 Michael Briggs: My understanding of it is that grass has roots that are very broad, and they're not very deep but they broad. The way grass grows is it sends its roots out and then sprouts and those sprouts send more and more roots out. So it's about a chain reaction or a growing web of people that over time come to life.
Y: 中文里的“grassroots”就是草根的意思。草的生命力很旺盛，它的根部蔓延得很快，用这个词来形容这种基层群众活动非常形象。另外，Michael说的chain reaction就是连锁反应的意思。
J: The more people you reach out to, the more people they reach out to, and so on, and so on and so on. I'd say that joining a grassroots campaign is the best to empower yourself.
J: That's why a woman named Catayune joined a grassroots campaign to elect a political candidate.
实录4 Catayune: My name is Catayune and I live in Washington DC. I grew up in Ohio. Grassroots campaign helps me because it means that ideas and emphasis and energy comes up from the grassroots, from everyday citizens. So it helps empower everyday citizens to really have a voice in national politics.
J: Well, what do you think, Yang Chen. Joining a big group of people and fighting for the same common goal doesn't it sound exciting?
J: You don't sound very 激动了. Come on let's go join everyone and take part in the grassroots campaign.
J: Thanks for joining us on American Cafe. We gotta go! See ya!