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southdakotaOne of my co-workers is volunteering in South Dakota this week. On Election Day, South Dakota voters will decide if they want to keep or reject the ban on Abortion that their legislature passed in the spring. This is what she wrote to me about what it's like there right now:"We woke up this morning to find out that the weather outside was inthe teens. We walked to our nearest coffee shop, which also happenedto be next door to the Campaign office. A coffee and an oatmeal laterwe walked into the Campaign office for the very first time. They had leftover pumpkin carvings from the pumpkin carving party this past weekendthat greeted us, as they were slowly rotting away.At noon, we walked through the freezing ass weather to a rally thatwas organized by the Campaign. There were plenty of journalists andcameras (and a Japanese tv crew, weired). After 5-7 people finishedspeaking, we were joined by a group of anti-choice people who released couple ofhundred of pink and blue balloons, representing all the "unbornchildren killed by an abortion." It was weired because they came lateand the balloons seem almost like a celebration of our rally than whatthey intended.We then walked over to a busy intersection, where all the Campaignvolunteers stood on all four corners with our No on 6 signs. Somehonked, some gave us the finger. We were there for about 45 minutes.I think S was going to lose her fingers from frost bites if westood there any longer. We finally found good food at a enchaladajoint with the gals from NAF for lunch. The afternoon was filled withphonebanking.....calls after calls of "can you volunteer with us?" Notmany bites to the call.The highlight of the day was the forum at University of Sioux Falls.It was a panel discussion with 9 panelists (5 anti-choice and 4pro-choice).I would say 75% of the audience, mostly college kids from the USF,were anti-choice. Each side was allowed to have 10 minutes for theiropening statement and audience wrote their questions on index cards,where the facilitator read the questions. There were no directinterations between the audience and the panelists. This forum by farwas the most depressing, horrifying expereince I've attended.I can't even empathize with their position. Thescientific evidence DOES NOT work with this audience. The forum wassupposed to be about Referred Law 6, yet it ended up being aboutPlanned Parenthood and about when life begins. It was a rough night.It's rough out here, but I hear that the Campaign is anticipating alarge group of volunteers this weekend from ACLU.Another day starts tomorrow. Bring on the phone banking!"