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What Should I Do: Resources for Making an Effort in Troubling Times

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EdibleKnife

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Oct 22, 2013
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You got anything for the environment? I know a few but I was wondering?

There are several charitable options like:
The Sierra Club
Natural Resources Defense Council
EarthJustice
Environmental Defense Fund

Resistance Manual also has a breakdown of resistance angles:

  1. Contact your state legislator and ask them to improve on the climate and environment policies that your State_and_Local_Pages/ state is working on.
  2. Call your Senator by dialing tel:844-6-RESIST and tell them to support actions to stop climate change and protect the environment. Write your Senator by sending postcards online at IStandUpFor.Us or faxing with ResistBot
  3. Write and call your Governor and encourage them to join the US Climate Alliance.
  4. Write and call your Mayor and encourage them to join the Climate Mayors
  5. Find out when your Senators and US Representative are holding town halls. Show up and tell them to protect the climate. Find other Upcoming Events/Opportunities.
  6. Join the EPA's public meetings and teleconferences to make your voice heard.
  7. Submit public comments to NOAA as it evaluates the future of National Marine Monuments.
  8. Get involved with Organizations Working for Justice and Equity that are working on environmental justice and climate change. Find organizations to volunteer with, organizations working near you, and information and opportunities for online activism.
 

EdibleKnife

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I'm not sure if I'll make a topic on this later but I thought it appropriate to put this news in this topic where resources are literally on the first page already. The Democratic Campaign chief has basically vowed that they'd financially support anti-choice candidates. One more front where calling your representatives, including your democratic ones, is vitally important. Call, message and rally to make sure Democrats are aware that you're not ok with the idea that women's health can stand by the wayside for now. I'm not in the mood to see what other marginalized groups Democrats would like to sacrifice for the sake of the possibility of winning seats. At this point, we have to start asking what separates us from the GOP.
 

EdibleKnife

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I thought this was a good article about fighting against Climate Change.
How To Get Past Climate Despair To Take Climate Action: Advice From Experienced Activists

For those looking to get involved during the August recess, Indivisible has a great resource:


https://www.indivisibleguide.com/resource/august-recess-toolkit/

Thanks for these! I regret that my health has made it so I couldn't boost this topic these past few weeks.
 

EdibleKnife

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Posting to bring attention to United We Dream. Again thanks to Pod Save America and today's episode for bringing attention to it. Now that DACA is ending, as much effort as was put into fighting against the Trump Administration's healthcare bill needs to be put into protecting the wealth of American who have had their lives pitched into an abyss because of more cruel, short-sighted and sick policy decisions.
 

EdibleKnife

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Today's Pod Save America (June 8 2017) discussed (@ ~40:00 Minutes) the dire situation of the reformatted AHCA possibly creeping into a pass. Let's not pussyfoot around: The fate of millions upon millions of Americans rests on the machinations of Mitch McConnell failing to pass this through the senate, particularly by the recess on July 4th. The Pod Save America hosts and their friends at MoveOn.org teamed up to make sure that people know exactly what they can do to try and stop the AHCA from going any further:

  • The United States Capitol switchboard number is (202) 224-3121 where the operator will direct you to the senate office you request. Make as many calls to your senator as you are able to every day.
  • When you reach your senators phone: DO NOT just stop at registering an opinion. ASK for your Health Legislative Assistant/Aide. Link to a list of those assistants by Senator, state and name



    As well as instructions on what to say once you get through courtesy of Ben Wikler, Washington director of MoveOn.org:

    Ben Wikler said:
    Ben Wikler ‏Verified account @benwikler 4h4 hours ago
    When you get through, explain that you're a constituent and you have grave concerns about how the bill will affect you. Then explain WHY 19/

    These staffers are human beings. They work on health care because they care about health. Even if their bosses don't. Tell your story. 20/

    What you want is for health staffers to be telling their bosses that they've spent all day with the phone from freaked-out constituents 21/

    And then you want to ASK FOR A MEETING, before the vote. With state staffers (or in DC, if you can come). Promise to bring a group. 22/

    If you get the meeting with your Senator or their staffers, bring a ton of people & make it huge. @MoveOn can help. (DM me.) 23/

    If you don't get the meeting, no problem. You should still recruit a group & show up at Senators' offices. Time to break out the signs. 24/

    Incidentally, it's also worth EMAILING the legislative assistants w/personal notes. Here's how to figure out Hill staff email addresses 25/

    If I, Ben Wikler, worked for Sen. Murkowski, (I don't; Chelsea Holt is her health LA), I'd be ben.wikler@murkowski.senate.gov. Get it? 26/

    So: CALL every day. Ask for health staffers. Email them, too. VISIT local offices—for scheduled meetings or to protest. Bring friends. 27/

    Find the letters to the editor submission email address for local papers in your state & send them your story, mentioning your Senator. 28/

    And mark your calendar for the last week of June, esp Wed-Fri. There should literally be round the clock vigils. You'll be needed then. 29/
  • Your friends and family. Use Facebook, Twitter, Phone calls or face to face interactions to convince them to do the same.
  • Visit your local congressional offices. I've posted several links that outline future boots on the ground protests and demonstrations. But even if there isn't one going on in your area, if you're able, you should be part of the difference. Demand that you be seen at your local office. Show up with signage, ways to video or photograph events. Make yourself heard and be clear about this being about the cruelty of the AHCA and the necessity of your legislators to show that they actually care about the lives of American citizens by not supporting it and openly deriding it all the better.

Do not, do not, do not get stuck in a nihilist loop. Republicans might seem like immense evil giants hellbent on crushing you and every other American. But the absolute worst thing you can do in the middle of this is nothing. Even worse than the slaktavism of a retweet. Even worse than just talking to your parents about it. Do something. Please. Anything related to crushing the AHCA and saving lives is absolutely important to your life and the lives of so many other Americans even those fervently working against you.

More info related to the AHCA:

Indivisible Project offshoot site called TrumpcareTen.org AKA 10 of the key states with senators who could swing towards preserving the ACA. Provides a toolkit for focusing efforts on how to get these Senators to do the right thing. Please try it out particularly those who live in these states and have these senators.

Bumping and reposting this again. The GOP once again is trying to rob people of healthcare and as usual, the appropriate response is to fight back. This is an excellent Twitter thread from Ben Winkler of MoveOn.org about the timeline and how to help in the pushback against Republicare. Tomorrow is when the opening salvo of calls, protests, messages, sit ins etc. need to start and shouldn't stop until September ends. Hell, it should never stop period. The GOP will continue to try this when they think our guard is down. Don't let them.
 

brianmcdoogle

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Something to consider, and my reason for bumping this thread, is with the healthcare vote now dead for the time being, if Murkowski, Collins, Paul, or McCain are your Senators, be sure to call them and thank them as well. Positive calls are good too.
 

EdibleKnife

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Oct 22, 2013
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Something to consider, and my reason for bumping this thread, is with the healthcare vote now dead for the time being, if Murkowski, Collins, Paul, or McCain are your Senators, be sure to call them and thank them as well. Positive calls are good too.

Yes! Thank you for this add. Politicians should hear what they've done/are doing right when it happens.

A lots been going on and I have some links:

People are still suffering in Puerto Rico. If you want to give some support there's:
In regards to the Las Vegas Massacre, there is an official/verified GoFundMe page created by Steve Sisolak, the Clark County Commission Chair

And in terms of one of one of the most important issues of our time, gerrymandering, you may feel that there's not much you can do now that it's in the hands of the Supreme Court but there is. Show up. Be visible. Talk loudly to the media when news cameras show up about this issue. There are people right now on the steps of the SC advocating for #FairMaps. You can do the same locally as well. The ACLU has a database of events related to voting rights advocacy on their site where you can find one or more nearby to attend. Make friends and family aware of the issue as well.

Also, here's more cases being heard that need attention.
 

EdibleKnife

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Oct 22, 2013
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Reposting this news from a topic I made specifically about it:

PBS News Hour said:
Following yesterday’s move to allow businesses to opt out of contraception coverage in employee healthcare plans, the Trump administration is now directing federal agencies to promote what it calls religious liberty but what critics call discrimination.

“Politico’s” Josh Gerstein is covering this development and joins me now from Washington.

Let’s break this down. This is much broader than just contraception coverage we heard a lot about yesterday.

JOSH GERSTEIN, REPORTER, POLITICO: Right. You’re really talking about policies across the federal government. Some of them affecting things like even disaster relief. Some of the them affecting participation in elections, could also have an impact on LGBT rights, and the degree to which employers have to treat those members of the LGBT groups fairly.

So, it’s something that could potentially impact a wide array of government programs, particularly when the government delivers those services directly, when you’re talking about them using contractors, who either for-profit or nonprofit may now say they have religious concerns or moral concerns.

SREENIVASAN: Now, this isn’t proposed legislation. It’s going to have to make its way through Congress. It’s a memo. But memos coming from the attorney general carry a weight.

GERSTEIN: Right. It’s technically just legal guidance. It’s not formally a directive or a policy, but it has a vey robust view of what is religious freedom, and as you said earlier, many people believe that it could effectively become a license to discriminate. You might have people who, say, work in a Social Security office and are responsible for arranging benefits who might say, you know, for religious reasons, I don’t believe in gay marriage, so I don’t want to deal with any gay couples that may come into the office seeking services.

SREENIVASAN: How does this effect, possibly, law enforcement? I mean, religious profiling, for example, could be shielded by the guidance that’s being offered today.

GERSTEIN: I think it’s fair to say President Trump certainly as a candidate was pretty tough on Muslims, and there was a big focus on terrorism and blaming Muslims for terrorism. But under this policy, there seems to be a very broad, kind of base — broad-based exception, or broad latitude given to religious views, so you might have a sect of followers of some particular tenet that might be very violent or very extreme, and you could see them trying to claim some sort of liberty under this particular policy and say, look, you know, just because I’m an adherent of some particular sect that might have a violent ideology, I haven’t done anything or talked to anybody about anything, so you really should leave me alone.”

ACLU said:
The Department of Justice today issued religious-liberty guidelines for all federal agencies, and anyone who values equality for all and the separation of church and state should be deeply disturbed by the message the guidelines send.

Purporting to interpret religious-liberty protections in federal law, the guidance — a 25-page memo sent to all executive branch departments — doubles down on a distorted understanding of religious freedom. Not only does it allow discrimination in the name of religion, it also treats the separation of church and state as a mere afterthought.

One of the most troubling aspects of the guidance is its broad reading of the Religious Freedom Restoration Act (RFRA). You’ve probably heard of RFRA before: It’s the statute under which the Supreme Court ruled that some closely held corporations like Hobby Lobby could obtain a religious exemption from a federal regulation requiring employers who offer health insurance to provide birth control coverage for employees.

Today’s DOJ guidance requires federal agencies to interpret RFRA to go even further, declaring that “RFRA too might require an exemption or accommodation for religious organizations from antidiscrimination law . . . even where Congress has not expressly exempted religious organizations.” This could open the door for widespread, religious-based discrimination against women, LGBT people, people of minority faiths and races, and others in a variety of contexts.

For example, if the Justice Department’s suggested interpretation of RFRA is correct, a hotel could argue that providing service to Muslim or Jewish customers violates the owner’s faith and that the hotel should be exempt from complying with federal law barring such discrimination. And the funeral home currently arguing in federal court that it has a right to fire an employee because she’s transgender could have a free pass to discriminate because of its religious beliefs. The government’s compelling interest in enforcing these laws should mean the businesses lose their arguments — but the Department of Justice guidance suggests that the interest in ending discrimination against LGBT people isn’t actually all that important.

Human Rights Campaign said:
In May, Donald Trump signed an order that threatened to exacerbate anti-LGBTQ discrimination by laying the groundwork for Attorney General Jeff Sessions to implement the license to discriminate announced today. Already, more than 50 percent of Americans live in an area of the U.S. where LGBTQ people are at risk being fired, evicted, or denied services because of who they are — and two-thirds of LGBTQ people report having faced such discrimination in their lives.

A preliminary analysis of the Trump-Pence administration’s license to discriminate indicates that LGBTQ people and women will be at risk in some of the following ways:

  • A Social Security Administration employee could refuse to accept or process spousal or survivor benefits paperwork for a surviving same-sex spouse
  • A federal contractor could refuse to provide services to LGBTQ people, including in emergencies, without risk of losing federal contracts
  • Organizations that had previously been prohibited from requiring all of their employees from following the tenets of the organization’s faith could now possibly discriminate against LGBTQ people in the provision of benefits and overall employment status
  • Agencies receiving federal funding, and even their individual staff members, could refuse to provide services to LGBTQ children in crisis, or to place adoptive or foster children with a same-sex couple or transgender couple simply because of who they are
The guidance instructs federal government attorneys on how to handle matters before them and instructs federal agencies to reconsider current and future regulations in light of this license to discriminate. It’s important to note this Department of Justice interpretation of existing federal law is not consistent in the way that federal courts have interpreted these issues and are subject to legal challenges.

Huffington Post said:
The Southern Poverty Law Center went a step further, vowing to “resist this guidance and all that it stands for” moving forward.

“As with so many of the Trump administration’s actions, this guidance is intended to and will encourage federal agencies to ignore the rights of vulnerable communities,” SPLC’s Deputy Legal Director David Dinielli wrote in an email statement. “But this administration cannot turn our collective hearts against our fellow Americans.”

The move came one day after news broke that Sessions had issued a directive indicating that the Justice Department would roll back 2014 guidance that included protections for trans government employees under Title VII, which prohibits employment discrimination based on race, color, religion, sex and national origin.

PBS News Hour
ACLU
Human Rights Campaign
Huffington Post
Washington Post

Trump, Pence, Sessions and this entire administration have made it clear that the GOP is interested in stripping LGBTQ+ American citizens of their humanity. Not a few year ago we celebrated the end of marriage discrimination. Like happens so often, too many people thought the civil rights battle was over when one concession was made and that homophobes and transphobes who spent millions in money and man-hours trying to prevent even one LGBTQ+ friendly law would lay down their arms.
 
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