Michael Cashman, speaking at Plattsburgh State about his experience at the Democratic National Convention.
PLATTSBURGH — Our freedoms, values and liberty are guaranteed for as long as each citizen remains vigilant in ensuring it, said Michael Cashman, a higher education professional at Plattsburgh State, motivational speaker and consultant.
Political apathy, a common psychosis of those who believe they are not affected or resigned to victimhood, inspired Cashman to step up his quest to spread liberty.
Part of that journey recently took him to Charlotte, NC, where he represented the 21st New York Congressional District at the Democratic National Convention. A total of 384 delegates comprised the delegation from New York, the second largest after California.
Cashman was one of seven who represented the 21st congressional district.
There he met individuals from across the country and all walks of life, rubbing elbows with political heavy weights such as James Carville and watching Presidents Bill Clinton and Barack Obama speak.
Cashman, a Massachusetts native who had lived in Plattsburgh 13 years, said the idea of public service pushed him toward politics.
At Plattsburgh State he served as Student Association president, a role he saw as an advocate, going on to volunteer and work on political campaigns, including for Hillary Clinton, Obama, and Congressman Bill Owens.
“I knew I wanted to be an active citizen.”
Cashman embraced his role at the Democratic National Convention, an opportunity to meet with like-minded people and listen to various perspectives while sharing his own views.
For Cashman, this election is about representation, and he feels Obama, Owens and a democratic congress will represent the voice, needs and integrity of the North Country. By attending the convention, he was able to make it clear that the North Country is a vital and vibrant contributor to state and national dialogue.
“When I cast my vote for the president, I will be doing so on behalf of every farmer, grocer, student, contractor and teacher from our district.”
At the convention, it was comforting for Cashman to learn that North Country struggles are mirrored nationwide.
His own concerns included making higher education affordable and growing the middle class.
While there that Monday through Friday, he was up at 5:45 a.m. to catch the shuttle a half hour later and was home around 2 a.m.
Cashman shared his experience, through commentary and photos, on Facebook: facebook.com/cashmangoestocharlotte.
“I wanted to provide a local connection to a national event.”
The journey was electrifying, such as when Clinton took the stage, seemingly speaking to each individual in their living room, meeting America where it is today and stressing that no president could make a quick recovery in four years alone.
Cashman feels many people have lost perspective, but he is hopeful and confident America is in a better place than four years ago and encouraged, excited and hopeful about the next chapter.
“I learned that we as a nation are able to come together and unite when we put our hearts and minds into it.”