Roger Snyder is seeking election in the 5th Senatorial District on the Democratic and Green Party Lines. Although he has never held a political office, he has previously run for office twice and has a lot of ideas he would like to implement.
Snyder is the chair of the Green Party of Suffolk County and has been a member of the party since its formation approximately four years ago. Prior to that he worked with many candidates in Suffolk County for a number of years and says he gained a great deal of political knowledge in the process.
Snyder helped run Print Shop, for 46 years doing printing for nonprofit, social change and progressive groups and was a member of the IWW union. He is currently working as a "stay-at-home dad" caring for his two youngest children.
Snyder was first active in the anti-Vietnam war movement in the early 1970s. Starting in the 1980s he was an organizer with Long Island Sound and Hudson against Atomic Development, Long Island War Resisters League, and other similar groups. With Long Island Sound and Hudson against Atomic Development, he says he worked against the Shoreham Nuclear Plant in Suffolk County, other nuclear plants in the northeast, and the nuclear reactors and toxic waste at Brookhaven National Lab. With Long Island War Resisters League, he worked for peace and social justice and against the root causes of war. He has also been active in many facets of the environmental, anti-discrimination and women's rights movements, including anti-pesticide, pro choice and civil rights work.
Snyder says his activism includes organizing and attending rallies, acts of civil disobedience and public meetings; starting letter writing and similar campaigns to influence politicians and other people of power; and helping to empower people "so they can fight city hall."
"I'm running for State Senate because of issues that longtime incumbents don't adequately address, issues such as campaign finance reform, police oversight, ecological sustainability, social justice, renewable energy, women's rights, organic farming, pollution, ending racism, health care needs and much more," said Snyder.
Although he originally thought of term limits as " undemocratic," he has recently changed his mind. "I would think that we probably need term limits to shake things up," said Snyder. "The system is set up to benefit the incumbents. Once you are in, you are there for life."
Snyder believes that a change in the way government is run would benefit the people. "There are a lot of good laws and good bills that never get passed and this leads to a lot of problems," he said.
If elected next month, Snyder's main goals are campaign finance reform and issues dealing with quality education, the death penalty, taxes, organic farms and gay and lesbian rights. "We should have civil rights guaranteed for everybody - gay, lesbian, minorities and women," said Snyder. "We need to protect everyone's rights.