“I can’t feel my heart”
Hello fellow RUWMI activists!
Grab your pumpkin spice latte (I’ve acquiesced to those of you insisting that it is now fall) and get outside for some activism this week! It’s time to #DefundHate with Indivisible!
Our local event will be tomorrow (Tuesday, 9/10) at noon, at 300 State St, Springfield (outside of Congressman Neal’s office). Join us for a brief rally/press conference to ask Congressman Neal, along with his primary challenger, Mayor Alex Morse, to address the current administration’s inhumane detention and deportation practices by publicly committing to #DefundHate. For details about the event please see the events section below).
Need some extra motivation to attend? – try this: “I can’t feel my heart”
We had another well-attended morning of letter writing at Gateway City Arts on Sunday. Our group is steadily growing (to the point where we now get our own private room at Gateway!). We had a nice mix of regulars and first-timers as we wrote letters to voters in Wisconsin. It’s never to late to join us for the first time (mark your calendars for our next event on October 13)
- RUWMOneSmallThing – The biggest fight on immigration this year will be over funding. While Democratic control of the House has given us a firewall against some of the worst Republican attacks, Trump’s attacks against immigrants continue. He has already requested billions more for ICE and CBP in next year’s budget, “FY20.” He hopes to use the money to pay for his wall, more ICE and CBP agents, and more cages for immigrant families. It’s time to tell Congress to pass a fiscal year 2020 spending bill that finally puts an end to DHS’s ability to manipulate the appropriations process to expand the immigration detention and deportation systems. So, this week’s #RUWMOneSmallThing, one small thing you can do that will make a difference is to choose one #DefundHate event this week and take part! You can join our local one in Springfield on Tuesday or use this tool from Indivisible to find another one near you.
- Oppose Trump’s Labor Secretary Nominee – (h/t The Other98%). Donald Trump has spent the first two-and-a-half years of his presidency undoing labor protections that have taken generations to build. Now, he’s nominated a Labor Secretary who has spent his career fighting for the interests of financial firms, corporate executives and shareholders rather than the interests of working people. Sign this petition to oppose Eugene Scalia as the next Secretary of the Department of Labor.
- Help the Bahamas – (h/t Rogan’s List and Forbes). In the wake of Hurricane Dorian, there is unprecedented devastation in the Bahamas. There are a few ways to help. Rogan’s List notes “As soon as it’s safe, there are several organizations ready to go there and start doing the work” They offer this article to find out more about supplies needed, volunteers, especially with medical skills, wanted and donations accepted to help the Dorian Survivors in the Bahamas. Also, according to a recent article in Forbes the best ways to help are to “donate and then travel there”. In the article, linked here, they list a variety of established organizations you can donate to.
- Help #DefundHate – (h/t Indivisible) House Democrats must act during this year’s appropriations process to reduce funding to ICE and CBP and to rein in the worst abuses of these agencies. That’s why we’re planning a massive week of action September 9-13 to show up and demand our members of Congress act to defund Trump’s racist deportation machine. Here’s what you can do to hold them accountable:
- Record a video to put pressure on your House representative. We’ve made it easy: grab your phone and record your message on why ICE and CBP must be brought to heel. Post it on social and tag your member of Congress. Get your Facebook friends and Twitter followers involved and take control of the narrative.
- Call your member of Congress right now at 1-844-909-0232 and demand that they reject ICE’s attempt to steal money from other agencies. It is unacceptable that ICE is subverting Congress’ authority to decide how much funding they should receive. We’ll give you a script and connect you directly with your representative’s office.
- Call Out Anti-LGBTQ Legislators – (h/t Rogan’s List). 50 Senators and congresspeople signed onto a brief that the Trump administration submitted to the Supreme Court arguing that the Civil Rights Act of 1964 should not cover sexual orientation and gender identity. Let’s show our displeasure by contacting these legislators, publicizing their actions to their constituents, and telling them we are donating money or volunteering for candidates who oppose them. You can read about the legislation and find the legislators using this link.
- Help Support Ranked Choice Voting – (h/t Voter Choice MA). Voter Choice MA has been working to place a question on the November 2020 ballot that would bring Ranked Choice Voting to Massachusetts elections starting in 2022. Yesterday, they got exciting news: The Massachusetts Attorney General has certified their ballot question! Now that the ballot question is allowed to move forward, we’ve formed a ballot committee, Voter Choice for Massachusetts, to run – and win – that campaign. Our next step is to collect tens of thousands of signatures across the state this fall. You can sign up here to help them collect signatures this fall to get Ranked Choice Voting on the ballot.
- Tell ABC & Univision: The next Democratic presidential debate must address white nationalism – (h/t Bend the Arc). The next Democratic debate is just five days away — and what gets discussed there could influence the rest of the 2020 election. It’s time for the candidates to confront one of the greatest threats to our country and our communities: white nationalism. To do that, Bend the Arc, is working to get ABC and Univision’s attention to ask each and every 2020 candidate how they will confront white nationalism and fight for a vibrant, multiracial democracy where all of us are safe. You can help by signing the petition
- Want even more action items? You can get additional action items delivered directly to your inbox by signing up with Rogan’s List, and Americans of Conscience Checklist.
Mark Your Calendars – Upcoming Events
- Rally to Defund Hate – Springfield – Tuesday, September 10, 12:00-1:00PM, 300 State Street, Springfield. This event is part of the Indivisible’s national #DefundHate week of action. We will be holding a rally/press conference outside Congressman Neal’s office in Springfield to ask him, along with his primary challenger, Mayor Alex Morse, to address the current administration’s inhumane detention and deportation practices by publicly committing to defunding Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) and Customs and Border Protection (CBP). For more information, view the event on Facebook
- Defund Hate Week of Action – September 7 – September 12, various sites around the Pioneer Valley. The key to fighting concentration camps, ICE raids, and family separation is by defunding them! Join us in blanketing our towns with flyers, spreading the word and urging neighbors to call our congress members NOW to demand that they defund hate in the upcoming September budget bill. We’ll provide flyers, info and talking points, and you make sure everyone understands what’s at stake and how each of us can make a difference! Give out 1 or 100 – every call matters! Contact Natalie (firstname.lastname@example.org) to pick up your flyers which are ready NOW!
- Mass POWER Hampden County Kick Off! – Wednesday, September 11, 5:30-7:30PM, Wesley United Methodist Church, 741 State St, Springfield. Massachusetts Prisoners and Organizers Working for Enfranchisement and Restoration — and our collective effort to restore the #right2vote to people who are incarcerated in Massachusetts. Learn a bit about the history of voting rights in this state and how we are going to get this right back because we know our democracy is stronger when everyone is able to participate. Click here for more information.
- Chicopee Municipal Candidate Meet and Greet – Thursday, September 12, 6:30-8:00PM, Chicopee Public Library, 449 Front St, Chicopee. This is your opportunity to meet Chicopee’s Municipal Candidates before primary day: September 17, 2019. You will be able to shake hands with candidates and ask questions face to face in a relaxed environment. Children and families welcome, light refreshments will be served. This is FREE and OPEN to the public. View event details
- Springfield Training: RideShare and Court Accompaniment – Thursday, September 12, 6:30PM– 8:30PM, (also Sat October 5 at 10:30AM), Trinity United Methodist Church, 361 Sumner Ave, Springfield. Put your solidarity into action by becoming part of the Sanctuary in the Streets Rideshare and Court Accompaniment networks. We request that you attend the Rideshare training BEFORE attending the Court Accompaniment training. If you’ve already been trained for Rideshare, you can sign up for Court Accompaniment training only. You can either attend the Rideshare training only or do both of these trainings on either of the two available dates. Sign up here. View details on Facebook
- 2019 MassDems State Convention – Saturday, September 14, 7:30AM-5:00PM, MassMutual Center, 1277 Main St, Springfield. The 2019 MassDems Action Agenda Convention is an important opportunity to come together and talk about how we fight to make progress on real issues like climate change, healthcare, education, immigration, and civil rights. During the convention, you’ll join breakout sessions to work collaboratively with other delegates to develop strategies to organize for critical issues facing our Commonwealth. For more information (including link for guest tickets) visit their website.
- Navigating Muslim-Jewish Relations in the Current Climate – Sunday, September 15, 10:00AM-12:00PM, Mount Holyoke College, 50 College St, South Hadley. Muslims and Jews in America share many commonalities. Both are minority communities that have been at the receiving end of prejudice and persecution. Both communities feel exceptionally insecure at this time in the US and have come to each other’s support in the aftermath of attacks against the other community. Additionally, both Muslims and Jews belong to the Abrahamic tradition and share a multitude of theological beliefs. And yet, Jewish-Muslim relations in the U.S. are often challenged in our current political turmoil, both by incidents within the US and when confronted with developments in the Middle East. Accusations of Islamophobia and anti-Semitism fly both ways. What are the current challenges and opportunities in navigating Jewish-Muslim relations in the U.S. and what is the way forward? Join us to hear Rabbi Or Rose and Dr. Sohail Hashmi explore the complexities of Jewish-Muslim divides here in the U.S. and identify strategies for increasing connections. View event details
- Climate Emergency March for a Just Future – Friday, September 20, 4:15-6:00PM, Sheldon Park, 269 Bridge St, Northampton. (march to Rally on Steps of Northampton City Hall). This powerful march in solidarity with the Global Youth Climate Strike will to respond to the climate crisis here in Northampton. It’s time for our government, institutions, corporations, and all people to take action to scale with the enormity of the problem and acknowledge the urgency of our situation. View event details
- We the People Solidarity Rally – Saturday, September 21, 1:00-2:00PM, Pulaski Park, Northampton. We the People are rallying to be seen and heard. We are here to remind our elected officials that they work for us. We are here because the current regime is a threat to our democracy and values. We are here to demand action. Silence and inaction are complicity. For a list of speakers and general information view the event on Facebook.
- Breaking Hate: Helping kids push against white nationalism – Tuesday, September 24, online Webinar. White nationalism is in the news and our kids are listening. In addition to the anxiety and anger provoked by the headlines, kids are also encountering this hateful ideology online, at school, in their peer groups and communities. Parents and youth workers need to know how to recognize signs of recruitment efforts, as well as the vulnerabilities that might leave a young person susceptible to recruitment. Join teacher Nora Flanagan and youth worker Christian Picciolini for a discussion of how our children can be stronger upstanders if they see signs of hate, how they can resist increasingly insidious attempts to engage them in organized bigotry, and how every adult can help strengthen their communities against white nationalism. Register for the free online event
- Preparing to Run for Office: A Workshop for Potential Candidates and Their Support Teams – Thursday, September 26, 6:00-8:00PM, Arise for Social Justice, 38 School Street, Springfield. If you or someone you know is considering running for office, come learn from a pair who, through lived experience, know what works and what does not when organizing a campaign. Take this opportunity to talk in-depth with Tahirah and Yasmin and learn from their experience. Participants will come away with practical steps to guide you, and will gain insight into how to shape a run for elected office and what is the most important work of a support team. You can find more information, and register
- To get the most up to date list of events, go to Rise Up Western Mass’s event calendar here. Also bookmark the National Resistance Calendar for additional events. Also, to be “in the know” about what Indivisible groups are doing across Massachusetts, sign up for the MA ACTION newsletter by sending an email to: email@example.com.
Join us for a Facebook live featuring Ezra and Leah
Take a look inside our national #Defund Hate Week of Action and what we are looking for in the coming debate
This is going to be a busy week! Indivisibles across the country are preparing for the #DefundHate Week of Action AND the first one-night debate of the 2020 cycle! Leah and Ezra can’t wait to check in Tuesday night to discuss both with Indivisibles.
The More You Know
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Check This Out
Our own Alicia Fleming, making news! Why A Chicopee Parent Joined An Education Funding Lawsuit Against Mass. Officials