Geri Randall, with Valerie Taylor, Worship Associate
As Unitarian Universalists, we have no mandated beliefs in God, no rigid religious doctrine. What we do have are seven principles, inspired by humanistic teachings and the guidance of wisdom, reason and science.
Two of those principles are:
5th Principle: The right of conscience and the use of the democratic process within our congregations and in society at large;
6th Principle: The goal of world community with peace, liberty, and justice for all.
It may come as a shock to you that anyone would question the practice of democracy. Indeed, UUs accept democracy as an article of faith. We are likely to cite Churchill's famous dictum: "Democracy is the worst form of government, except for all those other forms that have been tried from time to time." In her talk, Geri will suggest that, in light of current political events, we need to recognize the perils of democracy–perils that were identified as long ago as 400 BC by Socrates and Plato, and more recently by, among others, the founders of our nation and the drafters of our Constitution, including James Madison and John Adams. She will discuss the reasons people vote the way they do, and she will raise the questions of whether democracy is always compatible with our goal of world community with peace, liberty, and justice for all, and whether there are any preventatives for the perils a democracy may present.
Geri Randall is an attorney who for 40 years worked as an independent arbitrator and mediator, resolving thousands of labor and employment disputes. She was on the panel of arbitrators who addressed the issues which led to the crippling 1993 American Airlines strike, pursuant to a deal brokered by then-president Bill Clinton. She was appointed Special Master by a federal court to hear numerous claims of sex discrimination filed against State Farm Insurance Company.
Geri has also been a successful real estate investor since she was 23 years old. She paid for her law school expenses with profits from her first investment. Geri holds an AB in math from UC Berkeley, where she graduated Phi Beta Kappa. She obtained her JD from UC Davis. She is a life member of Mensa. Geri first began attending UUCM in 1977. She left in 2001 to live in Hawaii, and returned to UUCM when she got "island fever" and moved back to the Bay Area.