4/22/17 To-do List
Contact Government Officials
- Here’s a bit of good news. Remember the contacts we made about Exxon trying to get a sanctions waiver to drill in Russia, because THAT doesn’t sound corrupt or sneaky at all? Well guess what? Our calls made a difference, and today the Commerce Dept. announced they would not issue the waiver. Read about it here: https://www.nytimes.com/2017/04/21/business/energy-environment/treasury-exxon-mobil-sanctions-waiver.html?_r=0 Calls work!!!! Let there be no doubt!
EPA has only gotten 5000 or so comments so far about why we need
environmental regulations. http://www.natlawreview.com/article/epa-requests-comments-regulatory-rollbacks
Considering the stakes, there should be many, many more. Please take a
moment to make a statement about why regulations matter to you here: https://www.regulations.gov/comment?D=EPA-HQ-OA-2017-0190-0042. If you’ve already done so, then your
job today is to post this link on social media, send it out as a tweet,
email your greener friends…whatever it takes. We need thousands more
comments, because believe me, the corporate opposition is loudly
proclaiming any regulations to be unnecessary and burdensome. And if you
need to fuel your ire a bit read this gem about Dow’s cozy relationship
with Trump and Pruitt. http://www.vanityfair.com/news/2017/04/dow-chemical-endangered-species#intcid=dt-recirc-cral_top1_2
- Let’s read this brief summary and remember the reasons we’re concerned about Trump’s ties to Russia: https://swalwell.house.gov/issues/russia-trump-his-administration-s-ties. Then, let’s contact our Members of Congress, even if we’ve done so many times before, and tell them that we demand an independent investigation.
- Those of us who have taken out student loans to finance our education know how complicated it is to negotiate the system. Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos wants to solve the loan default problem by allowing student loan companies, who are already known for their poor customer service, more latitude in punishing defaulting student borrowers. We'd like to let her know that giving loan companies an excuse to continue their poor business practices is not the way to reform the student loan system. We can watch a short, informational video here: http://fortune.com/2017/04/12/betsy-devos-student-loans-obama/, and read an excellent in-depth article here: http://www.slate.com/blogs/moneybox/2017/04/18/betsy_devos_is_wasting_no_time_screwing_over_student_borrowers.html. Then, why not file a complaint to question the wisdom of DeVos' decision, here? https://feedback.studentaid.ed.gov/
- Attorney General Jeff Sessions managed to insult the state of Hawaii, the birthplace of our 44th President, and a federal judge in one fell swoop: https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/the-fix/wp/2017/04/20/jeff-sessions-doesnt-think-a-judge-in-hawaii-a-k-a-an-island-in-the-pacific-should-overrule-trump/?utm_term=.be7bb36ec56c Let’s write to Sessions to remind him that Hawaii is a state and that federal judges do have the jurisdiction to block Trump’s travel ban: U.S. Department of Justice, 950 Pennsylvania Ave, NW, Washington, DC 20530
- The House Presidential Tax Transparency Act is stuck in committee. https://www.bna.com/25000-marchers-trump-b57982086821/ A discharge motion has been filed, which requires 218 signatures to get the legislation out of committee. As of Thursday, April 20th, the motion had 178 signatures. We can check here to see if our rep has signed yet: http://clerk.house.gov/115/lrc/pd/petitions/DisPet0001.xml If our rep has NOT signed, it is time for us to make contact and make sure they do!
- Gabby Gifford's Americans for Responsible Solutions has posted this useful piece on H38/S446, the concealed carry bills currently being considered in the House and Senate Judiciary Committees: https://medium.com/@resp_solutions/permitless-carry-is-reckless-carry-8135e2d1767b We should contact our MoCs before these bills go any further. The Committee members are listed at : https://www.judiciary.senate.gov/about/members and https://judiciary.house.gov/wp-content/uploads/2017/02/115th-House-Judiciary-Committee-Updated-21517.pdf
- Former Vice President Biden was an author of the landmark legislation The Violence Against Women Act more than 20 years ago. He thought it important then and he thinks it is important now. http://www.cosmopolitan.com/politics/a9523840/joe-biden-sexual-assault-essay-its-on-us/ While Huffington Post is not generally sited here, this article by the President of the National Organization for Women of New York says it all: http://m.huffpost.com/us/entry/us_58f0d81ae4b0bb9638e33428/amp The Trump administration is set to defund many programs that rely on this federal money. We know how important the VAWA has been over the years and how many lives it has helped to save. Let’s contact our legislators and ask that they help maintain these funds that help so many women and families.
- In what we hope is a good move, the House Intelligence Committee has invited several current and former senior Obama administration officials, including former acting Attorney General Sally Yates, to testify publicly in the panel’s probe into Russian interference in the U.S. election. http://thehill.com/policy/national-security/329914-house-intel-panel-invites-former-acting-ag-yates-to-testify Let’s let the Committee know that we think this is a step forward and that we will be watching them: Majority members: http://intelligence.house.gov/about/hpsci-majority-members.htm and minority members: http://intelligence.house.gov/about/hpsci-minority-members.htm
- Phone number correction: From Sleeping Giants: We're hearing whispers that Amazon is considering dropping Breitbart! Help convince them: Call Amazon customer support at (888) 280-4331. You don’t have to say much. Just say something like: "I am a customer of Amazon and I want to urge the company to drop Breitbart over its hateful content. Does Amazon have plans to drop Breitbart soon?
- Just as for the Women’s March, illustrator Mary Engelebreit is offering a free download of an image for the Science March. Use it for shirts, signs, posters, etc. See all her free progressive images for download here: https://www.maryengelbreit.com/collections/free-downloads
- Maribel Trujillo, mother of four, has been deported: https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2017/apr/19/trump-immigration-policy-maribel-trujillo A GoFundMe page has been set up (and link shared by the AMOS Project) for her children: https://www.gofundme.com/help-support-maribels-children
- “Charging Bull” sculptor Arturo di Modica continues to fight the presence of “Fearless Girl” in New York City and Mayor Bill Di Blasio continues to stand up for the sculpture’s presence. https://www.washingtonpost.com/business/economy/fearless-girl-ignites-debate-about-art-wall-street-and-the-lack-of-female-executives/2017/04/20/47ec6d52-239b-11e7-a1b3-faff0034e2de_story.html?utm_term=.f2dafd19acd7 Let’s thank Mayor Di Blasio: City Hall, New York, NY 10007
- The ACLU has filed suit against neo-Nazi leader Andrew Anglin, who used his Daily Stormer website to launch a "troll storm" that has terrorized a Jewish woman and her family. Tanya Gersh has received more than 700 anti-Semitic messages and threats, some containing horrifying images invoking the Holocaust. https://www.splcenter.org/news/2017/04/18/splc-sues-neo-nazi-leader-who-targeted-jewish-woman-anti-semitic-harassment-campaign Let’s thank the ACLU for taking on this cyber-case: 125 Broad Street, 18th Floor, New York NY 10004
- Voter ID laws are an extremely effective way to suppress votes; across the country, eligible voters are not able to vote because they do not have the required ID. Spread the Vote works to combat voter suppression by helping voters obtain photo Ids -- assisting with paperwork and transportation. With Georgia's runoff election coming up on June 20, it is especially important to make sure that eligible voters are able to show up and vote. For those of us interested in helping with this election and others we can support Spread the Vote in two ways. We can 1) volunteer: https://www.spreadthevote.org/volunteer and/or 2) donate: http://bit.ly/2oZpf7W
- We need healthier families and communities, and grocery stores and pharmacies could help promote this by lining their checkout lanes with healthier food options. Let's join MomsRising in asking Walgreens to get rid of junk food in their checkout aisles: http://action.momsrising.org/sign/walgreens/
- May Day is coming! The Majority and the Movement for Black Lives asks us to stand up for labor rights, immigrant rights, reproductive rights, criminal justice, Indigenous rights, Black liberation, gender justice, LGBT rights, and our collective power as the people on May 1st: https://beyondthemoment.org/may-day/
- Chlorpyrifos is a neurotoxic pesticide that was banned by the Obama EPA. Scott Pruitt's EPA has reversed that. Corporate pressure is big: Dow Chemical is pushing Trump administration to ignore studies of toxic pesticide: http://www.latimes.com/business/la-fi-dow-pesticides-trump-20170420-story.html Let’s make the people’s voice big, too Let's unite and apply consumer pressure by contacting the largest food corporations to tell them that we don't want chlorpyrifos used on the products they sell us. Let’s contact: 1) Conagra, 222 W. Merchandise Mart Plaza, Chicago IL 60654 phone: 800-252-0672 2) General Mills, PO Box 1113, Minneapolis MN 55440 phone: 800-328-1144, 3) Kellogg Company, PO Box CAMB, Battlecreek MI 49016 phone: 800-62-1413, 4) KraftHeinz, 3 Lakes Dr, Northfield IL 60093 phone: 800-431-1001, and 5) Nestle USA, 800 Brand Ave, Glendale CA 91203 phone:800-225-2270
- Some of us would rather have others send out postcards for us. StampsLicked has us covered! For 99-cents per postcard, we can chose a postcard design, either use our own words or theirs, and they will mail off the postcard on our behalf. If you live out of the country, you can send postcards at the same cost, as they will be mailed IN the states. Check them out: https://stampslicked.org and learn more about them: https://stampslicked.org/about-us
- Remember last summer when Trump made racist remarks about the federal judge who was to hear the Trump University case? Well, the same judge is the one who will be hearing the deportation case of the DREAMer, Juan Manuel Montes. http://www.latimes.com/local/lanow/la-me-judge-curiel-trump-20170420-story.html Let’s say a silent thanks for this good fortune.
Petitions to Sign
- The proposed 2018 federal budget eliminates all funding for the National Endowments for the Humanities and for the Arts (not to mention the Institute of Museum and Library Services and the Corporation for Public Broadcasting). Let’s join in this White House petition to save these crucial institutions: https://petitions.whitehouse.gov/petition/do-not-defund-nea-or-neh-0
- Let’s join the Sierra Club in telling Congress to defend the EPA: https://sierra.secure.force.com/actions/National?actionId=AR0068844
- As we ponder the politics of this election, Linda Burnham suggests "it is worth taking a moment to examine what might be problematic about analyses that lay 2016’s rout of the Democratic party at the feet of “identity politics”. " Her excellent attempt to do just that is here: https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2017/feb/10/liberals-right-identity-politics-progressive
- This week’s United States of Resistance newsletter: “Let Trump & Congress Know, We Are Just Getting Started”: https://www.risestronger.org/newsroom/tell-trump-and-congress-we-are-just-getting-started
- And now, for our weekly dose of good news, here’s “Small Victories”: http://www.peaceisloud.org/blog/small-victories-issue-16