Tip for Vermonters trying to contact their local state reps: Call on Weekends and Mondays – from Martha of Castleton Indivisible
- Monday, March 6 at 5-5:45 – Peter Welch Community Event atThe Elm Street Market Bennington 251 Elm Street
- Tuesday March 7 – ELECTION DAY IN RUTLAND – We all need to vote. At the recent meeting of the local Democratic party, a representative for the current mayor of Rutland expressed serious concerns that this election would represent a referendum on the issue of refugee resettlement. Whatever your position on this issue, we should all push for a large voter turnout.
- Do you know anyone who needs a ride to the poll? Offer to drive them
- Tuesday March 7 Town Meeting Day –
- Rights and Democracy will be distributing materials at various meetings. To find out if there will be a representative at your meeting contact rad-organizing-team—email@example.com
- 350 Vermont is encouraging individuals to work with their towns to http://350vermont.org/calendar/:
- Demand a Stop to the Pipeline: Get your legislators to sign on to this letter to tell the Department of Public Service we don’t stand for the pipeline. https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B4iqV2ra98hiVGtCY1o2UGJFZlk/view
- Demand your legislators support S.51 for 90% Renewable Energy and ⅓ Reduction in Energy Consumption by 2050.
- Demand your legislators support S.83 – a bill changing Columbus Day to Indigenous People’s Day.
- Demand your legislators support S.32 to add Climate Considerations for State purchases and contracts.
- 350 Vermont is looking for people to help get the word out on Town Meeting Day about the April 29th People’s Climate March (see below). If you can help canvas at your local polling spot, fill out this Google form, and we will get in touch. https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLScVYByalTqNDQJ__GtYoWh6GntGBjSBv5fN8Nadon7LGDHF_w/viewform
- Wednesday March 8 Day without Women
- Women who can do so are taking the day off from work https://www.womensmarch.com/letter
- Participants/supporters are either avoiding shopping or is patronizing small, women- and minority-owned businesses
- Participants/supporters are wearing red in solidarity
- Participants/supporters are donating to International Women’s Strike USA or simply committing to an effort to refuse gender roles and stereotypes in day-to-day life https://www.bustle.com/p/the-day-without-a-woman-strike-details-are-out-here-are-3-ways-to-participate-40551
- Rally at Cross Town Bridge in Middlebury. 12:30-1:30 p.m. https://www.facebook.com/groups/1421391397893128/permalink/1441017115930556/
- International Women’s Day celebration in the Contios Auditorium in Burlington, from 2:30-4:30pm. Admission is free. https://www.facebook.com/IWDVT/
- Rally 5pm – 8pm at 115 State St in Montpelier http://blacklivesmattervermont.com/events/
- Note: My deepest apologies for my oversight in not putting the Day without Immigrants in the newsletter two weeks ago. I did not learn of the strike until the day of it.
- Friday March 10 Native Nations March on DC – http://standwithstandingrock.net/march/ – I haven’t been able to find a local Vermont action, but a link is provided below for donations
- Saturday March 11 at 10am-noon – TD Bank Rutland protests continue (we’re on the corner, at the apex of the streets – if you’re looking directly at the stand-alone booth or at the side of the building you may not see us) https://www.facebook.com/events/782080125284082/
- Saturday March 11 at 5 pm ACLU is holding an online Resistance Training. “This event will launch People Power, the ACLU’s new effort to engage grassroots volunteers across the country and take the fight against Donald Trump’s policies not just into the courts, but into the streets.” Sign up here: https://go.peoplepower.org/signup/join There will be a livestream at Dana Auditorium, Middlebury College https://sites.google.com/view/middleburyresistance/calendar
- Monday March 13 at 7 pm – 9 pm – Black Lives Matter Monthly Meeting Integrated Arts Academy, 6 Archibald Street, Burlington VT http://blacklivesmattervermont.com/events/
- Wednesday March 15 – The Ides of Trump – mail a postcard to 45 expressing your displeasure with his administration https://www.theidesoftrump.com/#theidesoftrump
- Sunday March 19 at 3 pm Variety Show Fundraiser for Rutland County Women’s Network and Shelter cost $5 – 20 at West Rutland Town Hall https://rutlandvermont.com/event/eight-annual-west-rutland-variety-show/
- Sunday March 26 at 5:30 pm – 9 pm Black Lives Matter Awareness Film Event – at Black Lives Matter Vermont Store, 325 Main Street, Winooski “Part of the ongoing mission of Black Lives Matter Vermont is to provide education about racism, oppression, and white supremacy. We will show a film that tackles these issues and then host a brief discussion or lecture by one of the BLMVT leaders. Film is TBD.” http://blacklivesmattervermont.com/events/
- Tuesday March 28 at 6 pm Castleton Indivisible meeting – location TBD
- Wednesday March 29 at 6:30 pm Climate Change in Vermont talk at Rutland library https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=10210353732937491&set=gm.389919138053987&type=3&theater
- Thursday March 30 at 4:45/6:15 pm Soup Bowls for Hunger Rutland High School,22 Stratton Road, Rutland Enjoy soup and dessert, and take home a handcrafted bowl. All proceeds go to the Rutland Community Cupboard and other local food shelves. Two sittings (4:45 and 6:15 p.m.) $20 per person. To purchase tickets, contact Lynn Colomb at 770-1116, Rutland High School Main Office at 773-1955, or Ann Bannister at 747-0569, beginning March 1st. Rutland High School (RHS) Cafeteria, 22 https://www.vermonttoday.com/events/?tribe_paged=1&tribe_event_display=list&tribe_eventcategory%5B%5D=134
- Saturday April 29 – 1 pm People’s Climate March at 115 State St in Montpelier https://actionnetwork.org/events/peoples-climate-march-vermont?source=direct_link&referrer=robb-kidd
- To sign up for a bus going to DC: http://350vermont.org/peoples-climate-march-2017/
- Saturday April 29 at 6-9pm Pro-45 Rally at The Grange, Montgomery, VT https://www.facebook.com/events/266145203823971 I’m not aware of anyone organizing to protest this event at this time.
- AG Sessions has recused himself from the investigation into 45’s Russian ties http://time.com/4689877/recuses-meaning-jeff-sessions-donald-trump/
- Court allows a case to continue challenging Virginia’s Republican gerrymandering http://www.dailykos.com/story/2017/2/28/1638698/-Court-allows-challenge-against-Virginia-s-state-legislative-gerrymanders-to-proceed
- Democrats won two out of three seats in a Connecticut special election http://shareblue.com/while-everyone-was-watching-trump-democrats-won-another-special-election/ The Republican who won nevertheless lost 11 points – 11 points! http://www.dailykos.com/story/2017/03/01/1638922/-Loss-and-Victory-in-Connecticut
- Over a million dollars has been raised to help the victims/family of the racially-motivated in Kansas http://www.kansascity.com/news/local/crime/article134959329.html (h/t http://jenniferhofmann.com/home/weekly-action-checklist-democrats-independents-republicans-conscience/)
- Trans LifeLine has received so many donations that their website crashed. For this and other recent victories see http://www.peaceisloud.org/blog/small-victories-issue-9 (h/t http://jenniferhofmann.com/home/weekly-action-checklist-democrats-independents-republicans-conscience/)
- 45’s address to Congress last week got less than stellar ratings http://www.nbcnews.com/news/us-news/trump-ratings-first-address-congress-don-t-beat-obama-n727836
- Last week’s newsletter asked you to intercede on behalf of the woman with a brain tumor who had been removed from the hospital by ICE and placed in detention. The campaign was successful! She has been released and will live with her family “while her request for asylum is processed.” http://amnestyusa.org/news/press-releases/young-mother-with-brain-tumor-will-be-released-from-ice-detention
NEW ITEMS REQUIRING ACTION in no particular order – there are a lot, but that’s because I know that people are interested in different things. Pick the issue that you’re most concerned about, and take action. Note: I’ve reorganized this to group calls/emails to representatives separately from petitions and similar items. Let me know if you prefer the old organization.
CONTACT YOUR HOUSE REPRESENTATIVE ON THE FEDERAL LEVEL
1 We recommend that you contact your Representative (for me this is Peter Welch 802-652-2450 or https://welch.house.gov/contact/email) asking him/her to vote against the following legislation:
- Ask him/her to oppose legislation that would 1) require congressional approval of all major regulations issued by federal agencies before those regulations could go into effect and 2) rollback Obama’s “Midnight Rules” (HR 26 https://www.congress.gov/bill/115th-congress/house-bill/26 and https://www.citizenvox.org/2017/01/03/reins-act-oppose/ and HR 21 https://www.congress.gov/bill/115th-congress/house-bill/21 and https://www.nytimes.com/2017/01/30/us/politics/congressional-review-act-obama-regulations.html?_r=0 )
- Script: Hi! I’m from _ZIP_ and want to convey my absolute, 100%, full, and unwavering opposition to both the REINS Act and the Midnight Rules Relief Act in the House right now. How my Representative votes on these two sneaky bills matters to me and will affect my future vote. (from http://jenniferhofmann.com/home/weekly-action-checklist-democrats-independents-republicans-conscience/) Note: Jennifer has identified this as a high priority issue.
- Ask him/her to vote against the legislation 1) to defund Planned Parenthood HR 354 https://www.congress.gov/bill/115th-congress/house-bill/354 and 2) to criminalize abortion, cleverly titled “Prenatal Nondiscrimination Act” HR 147 https://www.congress.gov/bill/115th-congress/house-bill/147
- Script: I’m one of the Representative’s constituents. I would like him/her to vote against legislation to defund Planned Parenthood and to criminalize abortion. It’s important to me that he/she vote against HR 354 and HR 147. Thank you.
- Ask him/her to vote against legislation to terminate the Department of Education HR 899 https://www.congress.gov/bill/115th-congress/house-bill/899 and to “distribute Federal funds for elementary and secondary education in the form of vouchers for eligible students and to repeal a certain rule relating to nutrition standards in schools.” HR 610 https://www.congress.gov/bill/115th-congress/house-bill/610?q=%7B%22search%22%3A%5B%22HR+610+Vouchers+for+Public+Education%22%5D%7D&r=1 . Also see: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1JsJeHZi4EAHtYJiu-EMUx7VRhuY3_F8zCGdKz3js6_A/edit
- Script: I’m one of the Representative’s constituents. I would like him/her to support public education. It’s important to me that he/she vote against HR 899 and HR 610. Thank you.
- Ask him/her to vote against legislation to undermine unions, cleverly titled “National Right to Work” HR 785 https://www.congress.gov/bill/115th-congress/house-bill/785
- Ask him/her to vote against legislation to mobilize against Sanctuary Cities HR 83 https://www.congress.gov/bill/115th-congress/house-bill/83
2 ACA In addition to the above calls, if you haven’t already called asking your Representative to vote against repeal of the ACA, do so ASAP. Word is that they’re voting on this on Wednesday.
- Script: from https://www.indivisibleguide.com
Caller: Good morning/afternoon! Can you let me know the Congressman’s position on the Affordable Care Act?
OPTION 1: SUPPORTS ‘REPEAL AND REPLACE’ AND LACK OF TRANSPARENCY
Staffer:Thank you for calling! Congressman Bob believes that the ACA needs to be repealed in order to provide better coverage for all Americans. The Congressman is committed to repealing the ACA as soon as possible and replacing it with another plan that is better for Americans.
Caller: That’s terrible. No one has even seen this “plan” being pushed through the legislative process starting this week! How can you tell me it is better than the ACA if no one has seen it? There has not been a public score by the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) so how can Congressman Bob assess its impact on the economy or on the future cost of my health insurance?
I want Congressman Bob to know that I think the secretive way in which the House Republicans are proceeding is irresponsible. As your constituent, I deserve to know about the potential impacts of a bill of this magnitude and so do all Americans. Any ACA repeal bill needs to be made available for us, external experts, and other MOCs to read and thoughtfully consider.
Staffer: The ACA was drafted behind closed doors and passed in secret. House Republican leadership is not acting any differently than leadership at that time.
Caller: That is not true. The ACA had a historic number of hours of debate and amendments during Committee development of the legislations. Specifically, the House held 79 public hearings on the health reform bill over the period of an entire year. House members spent nearly 100 hours in hearings, heard from 181 witnesses from both sides of the aisle, and considered 239 amendments from both Democratic and Republican MOCs.
I want Congressman Bob to commit to a transparent process for any potential Obamacare replacement bill. This includes having public hearings on options besides full repeal and allowing MOCs, the public, and nonpartisan agencies like the CBO to review the bill and allow enough time for congressional debate.
Will Congressman Bob commit, publicly, to opposing any congressional action on ANY ACA repeal bill without a transparent process, including a public CBO score?
Staffer: I will certainly pass on your concerns to the Congressman.
Caller: Please do, and please take down my contact information to let me know when the Congressman has made up his mind. I’m eager to hear what he decides.
OPTION 2: SUPPORTS ‘REPEAL AND REPLACE’ AND DODGES QUESTIONS ON TRANSPARENCY
Staffer: Thank you for calling! Congressperson Bob believes that the ACA needs to be repealed in order to provide better coverage for all Americans. The Congressman is committed to repealing the ACA as soon as possible and replacing it with another plan that is better for Americans.
Caller: That’s terrible. No one has even seen the “plan” being pushed through the legislative process starting this week! How can you tell me it’s better than the ACA if no one has seen it? There has not been a public score by the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office (CBO) so how can Congressman Bob assess its impact on the economy or on the future cost of my health insurance?
I want Congressman Bob to know that the secretive way in which the House Republicans are proceeding is irresponsible. As your constituent, I deserve to know about the potential impacts of a bill of this magnitude and so do all Americans. Any ACA repeal bill needs to be made available for us, external experts, and other MOCs to read and thoughtfully consider.
Staffer: We have a CBO score; we will release it once the bill comes out of committee. The ACA was drafted behind closed doors and passed in secret. House Republican leadership is not acting any differently than leadership at that time.
Caller: That is not true. The financing of the ACA’s coverage provisions was well known and debated. The CBO issued many reports on the Affordable Care Act’s cost and how it would impact Americans, including on how the individual mandate would ensure that Obamacare would be sustainable and paid for.
I want Congressman Bob to guarantee that any replacement plan will cover at LEAST as many people that would be covered under the ACA and that we understand the financial impact of any new plan. You cannot do that unless the bill has been analyzed by CBO.
Will Congressman Bob commit, to opposing any congressional action on ANY ACA repeal bill without releasing a CBO score publicly?
Staffer: I will certainly pass on your concerns to the Congressman.
Caller: Please do, and please take down my contact information to let me know when the Congressman has made up his mind. I’m eager to hear what he decides.
OPTION 3: ON RECORD DEFENDING THE ACA
Staffer: Thank you for calling! Congressperson Bob believes that the ACA is a historic piece of legislation that needs to be preserved and protected.
Caller: That’s great! I’m calling to say that if Congressman Bob truly believes, as I do, that it can be challenging to access affordable healthcare in this country, he should do everything he can to protect the historic gains of the Affordable Care Act. This includes doing everything in his power to prevent House Republicans from moving forward with an ACA repeal and replace bill that no one has seen and has not been publicly scored by CBO. This lack of transparency and the unknown impact on our economy is unacceptable.
Will Congressman Bob do everything he can to stop the Trump Administration and the Congress from dismantling the ACA? Will you commit, publicly, to opposing any congressional action on ANY ACA repeal bill without a transparent process, including a public CBO score?
Staffer: Yes, Congressman Bob is proud of his work ensuring that Americans can access and afford the healthcare they need. He’ll do whatever he can to ensure transparency in the Congressional process and to prevent further action on any ACA bill without a public CBO score.
Caller: Wonderful. This is extremely important to me and I will be watching closely. Thank you for your time.
- Action: Thank Rep. Daniel Donovan (R-NY) for publicly stating he won’t vote for ACA repeal without a replacement proposal first. (source) Mail to: 7308 13th Avenue, Brooklyn, NY 11228 (from http://jenniferhofmann.com/home/weekly-action-checklist-democrats-independents-republicans-conscience/)
CONTACT YOUR NATIONAL SENATORS
3 Creation of Military Force to be directed against US Citizens/Immigration Previous newsletters have discussed apparent violations of the rights of US citizens on the part of DHS/ICE/CBP officials (recall the detainment of Muhammad Ali’s son). “In a memo on new enforcement rules released in the past few days, Department of Homeland Security Secretary John Kelly gave his immigration officers total discretion to detain anyone without a warrant, who “in the judgment of an immigration officer … pose a risk to public safety or national security.” …a second DHS memo had to put in writing that American citizens and green card holders should be released if detained. So to be clear here – the U.S. government is anticipating that DHS immigration agents will be so aggressive that it will be common for U.S. citizens to be swept up and detained in the coming months… Neither native-born nor immigrant Americans typically walk around with their passport or birth certificate. This means that if a citizen is detained it is not easy to prove lawful presence here, and many citizens may end up being held for days. …. And as if this isn’t bad enough, the president wants to increase the number of Border and Immigration agents from 44,000 to 59,000… The cruelty involved in these new efforts are hard to fathom, and taken together with the threats of martial action against other groups, feels like we are on the verge of tipping from a more benign form of white tribalism into the early stages of institutional racial oppression or even violence by the United States government against its own people.” https://www.usnews.com/opinion/op-ed/articles/2017-03-03/donald-trumps-new-immigration-policies-are-un-american-and-dangerous This is particularly disturbing considering the failure of many ICE/CBP applicants to pass the basic standards for hiring. http://money.cnn.com/2017/03/03/news/economy/hiring-immigration-agents-ice/
- Actions: Contact Senators Leahy and Sanders asking them to take action to prevent the expansion of DHS/ICE/CBP powers
- Sanders Local office 802-862-0697 https://www.sanders.senate.gov/contact/comment
- Leahy: Local office 802-863-2525 https://www.leahy.senate.gov/contact/
- Script: I’m one of the senator’s constituents in Vermont. I’m deeply concerned by efforts to expand the size and powers of DHS forces. This sounds like an attempt to create a military force to be used against US citizens. This violates democratic norms and traditions. I would like the senator to introduce or support legislation preventing the expansion of the DHS’ powers. American citizens or not the enemy. We shouldn’t be the target of our nation’s military.
4 AG Sessions’ lied under oath to Congress We now know that AG Sessions lied under oath to Congress about his contact with Russian officials http://www.msnbc.com/msnbc-news/watch/rep-lieu-sessions-lied-under-oath-should-be-sent-to-prison-890242115696 Representative Welch and Senator Sanders have called for his resignation. https://welch.house.gov/media-center/press-releases/rep-welchs-calls-attorney-general-sessions-resign and https://twitter.com/SenSanders/status/837348576518897664 Senator Leahy has called for Sessions to “appear in public before the Senate Judiciary Committee to explain why he twice gave misleading testimony under oath and why he failed to disclose such false testimony until prompted by news reports.” https://www.leahy.senate.gov/press/leahy-attorney-general-sessions-partial-recusal-does-not-go-far-enough
- Action: Contact Senator Leahy Local office 802-863-2525 https://www.leahy.senate.gov/contact/ Script: I’m one of the Senator’s constituents in Vermont. I would like to thank him for asking Sessions to appear before Congress to explain why he lied under oath to them. I would like the Senator to go further and to call for Sessions to resign as AG. We can’t have a perjurer serving as the chief judicial authority in this country. Thank you.
5 45’s Russian ties Previous newsletters have mentioned the allegations of 45’s collusion with Russia during the election. Over the weekend, 45 accused Obama of illegally tapping Trump Tower and Trump during the campaign. The House Judiciary Democrats have sent a letter to White House Counsel McGahn regarding 1) McGahn’s efforts to gain access to information regarding applications for warrants to the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court (which would have been the basis for “tapping” 45) and 2) contacts between the White House and the Department of Justice and the FBI regarding a potential investigation into 45’s collusion with Russia. McGahn has been asked to provide the content of all contacts between the White House and the DoJ/FBI regarding this investigation. https://twitter.com/chrisgeidner/status/838536319924068352 Senator Sanders has called for the appointment of a special prosecutor https://twitter.com/SenSanders/status/837349381909196800 Senator Sasse has called for 45 to share his source of information for his allegations against Obama. http://thehill.com/blogs/blog-briefing-room/news/322379-gop-senator-demands-trump-give-more-information-behind
- Action: Contact Senators Leahy and Sanders
- Sanders Local office 802-862-0697 https://www.sanders.senate.gov/contact/comment
- Leahy: Local office 802-863-2525 https://www.leahy.senate.gov/contact/
- Script: I’m one of the senator’s constituents in Vermont. I am concerned about the president’s accusations regarding a wiretap and the White House’s efforts to interfere in an investigation of the president’s ties with Russia. I would like the senator to oppose the White House’s interference in this investigation, and to call for the president to provide evidence supporting his claim regarding the wiretap. If it is true that he was tapped, then a court must have been provided probable cause for Trump’s collusion with Russia and the public has a right to this information. If it is not true that Trump was tapped, then he owes Obama an apology. Thank you.
- Action: For the highly motivated, here are other people you can contact:
- Senate Select Committee on Intelligence,https://www.intelligence.senate.gov/, 202-224-1700
- House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence,https://intelligence.house.gov/ , Minority Office=202-225-7690, Majority Office=202-225-4121
- Senate Judiciary Subcommittee on Crime and Terrorism,https://www.judiciary.senate.gov/about/subcommittees , Majority Office: 202-224-5972; Minority Office: 202-224-2921
6 Wildlife/Environment HJR 69, which would overturn “Non-Subsistence Take of Wildlife, and Public Participation and Closure Procedures, on National Wildlife Refuges in Alaska,” has passed the House. And SJRes15 has been proposed: It “would release 250 million acres of public lands for mining and oil digging. This Bill will gut a Bureau of Land Management rule that ensures the public is involved in decisions about drilling, mining and logging on our public lands. Votes on this bill that would give polluters power to dictate where drilling and mining happens on Americans’ land. This means permanent damage to our public lands and threats to our community health.” https://www.congress.gov/bill/115th-congress/house-joint-resolution/69 and https://www.congress.gov/bill/115th-congress/senate-joint-resolution/15
- Action: Contact Senators Sanders and Leahy asking them to vote against HJR 69, which would overturn “Non-Subsistence Take of Wildlife, and Public Participation and Closure Procedures, on National Wildlife Refuges in Alaska”
- Action: Send Sanders and Leahy a postcard opposing SJRes15
- Senator Sanders, U.S. Senate, 332 Dirksen Building, Washington DC 20510
- Senator Leahy, U.S. Senate, 437 Russell Senate Building, Washington DC 20510
- Dear Senator____, I am your Constituent and I am asking you to oppose SJRes15 which would release 250 million acres of public lands for mining and oil digging. This would mean permanent damage to our public lands and threats to community health. Your constituents are watching closely how you vote. #postcardsforAmerica https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B0k1qCMVpKZpSHppZ0lsLWhudmM/view (recommended by http://roganslist.blogspot.com/)
- Action: Thank members of the bipartisan Climate Solutions Caucus for fighting for our environment. Click this link (list of CSC members) and choose one or more. Look up mailing addresses here. Script: Express your gratitude for bipartisan collaboration and creative policy making to address the global climate crisis. (from http://jenniferhofmann.com/home/weekly-action-checklist-democrats-independents-republicans-conscience/)
CONTACT THE DEPARTMENT OF HOMELAND SECURITY ABOUT IMMIGRATION
7 DHS is considering a proposal to “separate mothers and children if they illegally cross into the US.” http://www.reuters.com/article/us-usa-immigration-children-idUSKBN16A2ES
- Action: Call DHS : 202-282-8495 to tell them that you oppose this cruel and unnecessary practice (from http://roganslist.blogspot.com/)
LOCAL VERMONT ENVIRONMENTAL JUSTICE
8 VT governor Scott has rejected a tax plan to fund a clean-up for Lake Champlain https://vtdigger.org/2017/03/02/scott-administration-rejects-31-million-tax-plan-lake-champlain-clean/ The absence of a plan for funding this clean-up is especially troubling in light of threats to seriously reduce EPA spending on projects like this http://www.cnn.com/2017/02/27/politics/epa-cuts-25-percent/ Furthermore, legislation has been introduced in the House to eliminate the EPA (HR 861 – To terminate EPA https://www.congress.gov/bill/115th-congress/house-bill/861). Among other things, 45 is threatening to cut EPA funding for Great Lake clean-up by 97%. Even though Vermont doesn’t border on the Great Leaks, we should be concerned, as the Great Lakes “contain 20% of the world’s fresh water and exhibit tremendous diversity.” (from http://roganslist.blogspot.com/) Representative Welch and Senators Sanders and Leahy have indicated that they are going to fight to protect the environment https://twitter.com/PeterWelch/status/836668460247633921 and https://twitter.com/SenatorLeahy/status/837743300945788929 and https://twitter.com/SenSanders/status/836784903672971264
- Action: Contact your local state representatives urging them to continue working on legislation to clean up Lake Champlain (lookup or Text your zip code to 520-200-2223 and you will receive a text with the phone numbers of your federal and local government legislators, or for Vermont see http://legislature.vermont.gov/)
- Action: Contact Governor Scott to express your concern over the lack of a plan for future clean-up of Lake Champlain. Ask him to continue working on legislation to for this task. 802 828-3333 or http://governor.vermont.gov/contact-us/message
CONTACT THE DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE ABOUT PRIVATE PRISONS
9 AG Sessions has rolled back Obama’s efforts to move away from the privatization of prisons. Yet a recent DoJ study found that “private prisons were more dangerous than public ones. Per capita, private prisons reported 28% more inmate-on-inmate assaults and more than twice as many inmate-on-guard assaults than their government run counterparts did, as well as higher rates of sexual misconduct, drug use, and lockdowns. Disturbingly, BOP monitors did not verify whether inmates were receiving basic medical care, and at least two private prisons violated inmates’ civil rights by putting them in solitary confinement to deal with overcrowding.” https://5calls.org/#issue/recw7FWAST5dHU1bo Senators Sanders and Leahy have denounced Sessions’ decision, noting the especially troubling detail that GOP has received a great deal of funding from organizations that support the privatization of prisons. https://www.sanders.senate.gov/newsroom/press-releases/sanders-statement-on-private-prisons and https://vtdigger.org/2017/02/27/leahy-comment-justice-departments-announcement-regarding-private-prisons/ Also see http://www.mynbc5.com/article/vermont-s-federal-private-prison-contract-set-to-expire/8593064
- Action: Complain directly to Sessions
- https://www.justice.gov/doj/webform/your-message-department-justice or 202-353-1555 or U.S. Department of Justice, 950 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW, Washington, DC 20530-0001
- I’m writing to demand an end to private, for-profit prisons. Last year, the Department of Justice issued a report that shows that they are significantly more dangerous than government-run prisons. In endorsing private prisons, the Trump Administration is blatantly ignoring the data. Thank you. https://5calls.org/#issue/recw7FWAST5dHU1bo
ANOTHER WAY TO SUPPORT WORKERS
10 One of the reasons that the Labor Secretary, Puzder, raises concerns is his support for automating the workforce and thereby cutting back on jobs. http://www.marketwatch.com/story/trump-labor-secretary-pick-andy-puzder-talked-about-replacing-workers-with-robots-2016-12-08
- Action: Don’t use the self-checkout lane in stores http://labor411.org/411-blog/1457-three-reasons-why-self-checkout-machines-are-bad-for-everyone (from http://roganslist.blogspot.com/)
- Previous newsletters have mentioned threats to net neutrality. “Ending net neutrality would restrict the open exchange of information, and undermine fair competition. This could open the door for oligarchies and higher prices,hurting small businesses and leaving working families behind.” https://www.project1461.org/daily-call-to-action/save-net-neutrality
- Action: Sign a petition to protect net neutrality https://act.credoaction.com/sign/net_neutrality_2017
- The second newsletter discussed threats to reintroduce measures that promote racial profiling by the police, leading to discriminatory practices and the use of excessive force, ultimately undermining the well-being of everyone as the police come to be seen as enemies rather than allies in efforts to lower crime.
- Action: Sign a petition to support a Vermont “bill that calls for the establishment of a Racial Justice Reform Oversight Board that would conduct management and oversight of the implementation of racial justice reform across the State, including within the criminal justice system, by managing and overseeing the collection of race-based data, ensuring such data are publicly available, and developing policies and trainings to address systemic implicit bias.” http://click.exacttarget.change.org/?qs=723312d0d5bd71a4afbbce7b44a948c5708b081ae763243c18283c1686fdde04faf96e33891021706d8042b8ff4dc8e9cefa299bd708ff45
- Previous newsletters have discussed 45’s efforts to rollback support for immigrants and refugees
- Action: Sign a petition encouraging the DHS to continue accepting LGBTQ seekers of asylum, especially in light of the vulnerability of the LGBTQ community around the world https://www.change.org/p/dhs-must-continue-to-protect-lgbtq-asylum-seekers-in-the-u-s
- Action: Sign a petition asking Congress to stop human rights abuses perpetrated under the cloak of immigration enforcement http://action.momsrising.org/sign/immigrants/?t=4&akid=8852.2502493.C4ERxd
- Action: Sign a petition asking Congress to help refugees https://act.amnestyusa.org/ea-action/action?ea.client.id=1839&ea.campaign.id=44665&ea.tracking.id=MessagingCategory_RefugeeandMR
- Previous newsletters have reported the spike in threats to Jewish community centers, schools and cemeteries. Other outbreaks of what appear to be racially-motivated acts of hate include the murder of an Indian man in Kansas and the shooting of a Sikh man in Seattle. https://www.forbes.com/forbes/welcome/?toURL=https://www.forbes.com/sites/alyssaayres/2017/03/03/the-kansas-city-shooting-is-quickly-changing-how-indians-view-the-u-s/&refURL=https://www.google.com/&referrer=https://www.google.com/ and http://www.npr.org/sections/thetwo-way/2017/03/05/518637650/sikh-man-shot-outside-his-seattle-home-told-to-go-back-to-your-own-country
- Action: Sign the Anne Frank Center for Mutual Respect’s petition to 45 with concrete suggestions for combatting hate https://www.change.org/p/tell-president-trump-to-take-these-steps-to-stop-hate
- Regarding 45’s Russian ties and Sessions’ perjury
- Action: Sign a petition calling for the appointment of a special prosecutor to investigate this issue https://actionnetwork.org/petitions/appoint-a-special-counsel-to-investigate-trumps-russia-ties
- Action: Sign three petitions calling for Sessions to resign https://act.credoaction.com/sign/sessions_resign?t=2&akid=21966.10960890.BmCWn1 and http://petitions.moveon.org/sign/sessions-must-go-special and http://www.pattymurray.com/act/attorney-general-sessions-tell-the-truth-about-russia
- Senator Sanders has introduced legislation to import affordable pharmaceutical drugs.
- Action: Sign a petition supporting Sanders’ legislation to import affordable pharmaceutical drugs https://act.credoaction.com/sign/trump_sanders_big_pharma?t=2&akid=21960.10960890.1Ar2-I
- Last week 45 addressed Congress. We encouraged you not to watch (and his ratings were dismal). But if you did watch, let him know what you thought (from http://roganslist.blogspot.com/)
- Action: Take survey https://www.whitehouse.gov/joint-address-exit-survey
- My former governor, Martin O’Malley, thinks that Congress and Irish Taoiseach should skip 45’s St. Patrick’s Day party. https://twitter.com/MartinOMalley/status/836628152474554368 Boycotting this celebration would send an important symbol that we are not normalizing 45.
- Action: Sign petition to support a boycott of 45’s St. Patrick’s Day party http://p2a.co/1nB4uyu
- 45 claims that Obama is organizing the protests against him https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/post-politics/wp/2017/02/27/trump-says-obama-is-helping-to-organize-protests-against-his-presidency/?utm_term=.2a388845b2c8 (from http://roganslist.blogspot.com/)
- Action: Take a survey from a conservative source to let 45 know whether or not his allegation is true http://forms.conservativetribune.com/tools/polls/poll-do-you-think-obama-is-organizing-protests-against-president-trump/
- Obama is being awarded the John F. Kennedy Profile in Courage Award (from http://roganslist.blogspot.com/)
- Action: Congratulate him https://profileincourageaward.org/
- DAPL protesters are in danger of being prosecuted as terrorists http://dailycaller.com/2017/02/10/fbis-terrorism-unit-opens-up-investigation-against-dakota-pipeline-opponents/ (from http://roganslist.blogspot.com/)
- Action: Sign a petition to defend the DAPL protesters https://actionsprout.io/A3F91F/initial
- Join the League of Conservation Voters in joining the senators who are seeking to protect our environment (from http://roganslist.blogspot.com/)
- Some members of Congress are looking to rescind Bears Ears National Monument in Utah’s status as a monument. https://durangoherald.com/articles/140749-republicans-in-utah-seek-reversal-on-bears-ears-national-monument
- “Texas is working on many anti-LGBTQ bills, including a transgender bathroom bill similar to North Carolina’s HB 2. As a response to HB 2, NCAA and other organizations showed their support for the LGBTQ community by withdrawing from hosting games in North Carolina. Let’s show the NCAA that we want them to take a stand before the bill in Texas goes any further.” (from http://roganslist.blogspot.com/)
- Action: Sign letter to the NCAA to support LGBTQ rights https://act.credoaction.com/sign/Texas_NCAA
- 45’s lack of respect for the press is well-demonstrated by his decision not to attend the White House Correspondent’s Dinner http://www.cnn.com/2017/02/25/politics/trump-declines-to-attend-white-house-correspondents-dinner/
- Action: Sign a petition suggesting that they invite all former presidents https://www.change.org/p/invite-all-former-u-s-presidents-to-white-house-correspondents-dinner-to-support-press (from http://roganslist.blogspot.com/)
- Hyatt launched a global campaign during the Oscars calling for empathy http://www.cnbc.com/2017/02/24/hyatt-launches-new-global-campaign-focusing-on-empathy-ad-to-run-during-oscars.html
- Action: Thank Hyatt for their efforts Hyatt Hotels Corporation, 71 South Wacker Dr 12th Floor, Chicago, IL 60606 or comment on their FB page: https://www.facebook.com/hyatt/videos/1316944635010156/?hc_ref=PAGES_TIMELINE (recommended by http://roganslist.blogspot.com/)
- A previous newsletter discussed the use of the Congressional Review Act to roll back climate protections. The Congressional Review Act “allows Congress to roll back executive action taken during the past 60 legislative work days if a rule is thought to impose excessive costs, exceeds agency authority or is redundant. The Congressional Review Act erases recently finalized protections with little debate and zero public input.” http://www.vox.com/energy-and-environment/2017/2/1/14459630/congressional-review-act-obama-regs
THINGS TO KEEP AN EYE ON – If you have a suggestion regarding an action we can take right now, please let me know.
45 has announced a plan to create a taskforce devoted to dealing with and publicizing crime committed by immigrants (VOICE). This is especially concerning in light of a similar tactic of Hitler, who publicized the crimes of Jews in order to lay the groundwork for the Holocaust http://www.cnn.com/2017/02/28/politics/donald-trump-voice-victim-reporting/ and https://theintellectualist.co/in-move-reminiscent-of-adolph-hitler-trump-to-publish-weekly-list-of-crimes-allegedly-committed-by-immigrants/
- Representative Polis has already responded by announcing a proposal for publicizing immigrants’ contributions (SAINT) http://www.denverpost.com/2017/03/04/rep-jared-polis-proposes-task-force-to-highlight-immigrant-contributions-in-the-u-s/
- Be prepared to call Congress to voice your support for SAINT
- Be prepared to contact your local media to encourage them NOT to facilitate VOICE
- Be prepared to contact your local media to encourage them to facilitate SAINT
HR 1236 PROTECT Immigration Act has been introduced “to discontinue the federal program that authorizes state and local law enforcement to investigate, apprehend, and detain aliens” (from http://roganslist.blogspot.com/) Also see: https://www.congress.gov/bill/115th-congress/house-bill/1236
HR 637 will amend “’the Clean Air Act to exclude carbon dioxide, water vapor, methane, nitrous oxide, hydrofluorocarbons, perfluorocarbons, and sulfur hexafluoride pollution from the scope of that act.’ It will undo decades of progress.” http://augustafreepress.com/kind-impact-will-trump-administration-environment/ (from http://roganslist.blogspot.com/)
GROUPS TO FOLLOW/SUPPORT
Interested in supporting lawyers fighting for our civil rights – Lawyers for Good Government http://www.lawyersforgoodgovernment.org/
- PiperCleo is donating to She Should Run for every item purchased https://www.pipercleo.com/collections/nevertheless-she-persisted-jewelry-and-more (h/t http://roganslist.blogspot.com/)
Concerned about the fight for Standing Rock http://standwithstandingrock.net/donate/
Concerned about supporting minorities in your local community – Rutland NAACP https://docs.google.com/document/d/1I3o8w5zjF31BZItMkG0N1Z2GdCeFugix_oxg66O_nUA/edit and https://www.facebook.com/naacprutland/
Want some postcards to use when mailing Congress? (h/t http://roganslist.blogspot.com/)
- com Resistance art is so important in spreading the message – support artists
- https://www.etsy.com/shop/resistpersist The proceeds for this one go to the ACLU
Interested in learning how to debate 45’s supporters – https://mindsworth.blog/2017/01/14/how-you-should-be-using-social-media-to-resist-trump/
- Also follow the linguist George Lakoff, who talks about messaging. https://georgelakoff.com/blog/ For instance, when 45 recently referred to the press as an “enemy of the people,” social media immediately responded with arguments tagged “not the enemy.” Lakoff criticized this response: Using the tag “not the enemy” meant employing 45’s own language, meaning that 45 was being allowed to frame the debate and that it was be carried out in language that already accepted that it was a given in some circles that the press is an “enemy.” Instead, Lakoff recommended the tag “Protect the truth.” https://georgelakoff.com/2017/02/18/protectthetruth/
Concerned about offending people (employers?) with your comments in social media: Learn how to adjust privacy settings – https://mindsworth.blog/2017/01/14/how-you-should-be-using-social-media-to-resist-trump/
Want advice on writing letters to the editor https://www.ofa.us/get-involved/lte/?topic=immigration (h/t http://roganslist.blogspot.com/)
Want to understand the far right’s references? (No, I don’t really want to be able to do this either – but it is useful) https://www.buzzfeed.com/katienotopoulos/a-normal-persons-guide-to-how-far-right-trolls-talk-to-each?utm_term=.rsKz1ELmZ#.pgxjJV30Q
Disappointed that Keith Ellison didn’t win his bid for DNC Chair? http://roganslist.blogspot.com/ recommends this article: http://us14.campaign-archive1.com/?u=542e52557cb249fb2535906ea&id=66c83abc96&e=4e77fc70f6