What a difference a year makes

Hello fellow RUWMI activists!

What a difference a year makes.

RUWMI Announcements

Got Action Items?

We are always looking for action items to include in our newsletter.  If you are a member of an ally group and you have an action item you’d like amplified, please let us know.  Also, if you see an action item you feel is important, forward that information to us.  We scan emails, news and social media but there are always ones we are likely to miss!  You can send them to riseupwesternmass@gmail.com.  Please include all relevant details, including links (for online petitions etc.).  Also include the source as we do not post items from unverified sources.

Action Items

  • RUWMOneSmallThing – If a picture is worth a thousand words, then a video can speak volumes. Gun law reform organization Sandy Hook Promise created a powerful, moving video hoping to spur our lawmakers to act. The video is shocking, disturbing, and difficult to watch. But it may be exactly what it needed. So, this week’s #RUWMOneSmallThing, one small thing you can do that will make a difference is to watch the video (if you feel able), and consider sharing it, if appropriate to your circumstances.  You can find the video on the following platforms here (h/t Sandy Hook Promise)


  • Tell CNN and The New York Times: The next Democratic presidential debate must address white nationalism – (h/t Bend the Arc). White nationalism is one of the greatest threats facing our country and our communities — and we need this crisis to be addressed on the national debate stage. We need you to ask each and every Democratic presidential candidate: How will you stop the growth of the white nationalist movement, which has a foothold in our government and is targeting immigrant, Latinx, Jewish, Black, Muslim, Sikh, indigenous, and LGBTQ communities with cruel policies and acts of violence? Click here to sign the petition


  • Tell your Congressman it’s time for Impeachment – (h/t Rogan’s List) Former Trump Campaign Manager Corey Lewandowski testified last week in front of the House Judiciary Committee and the layers of his lies were eventually revealed under questioning by Committee Consultant Barry Berke: In the same week we learned of the astonishing whistleblower report alleging that Trump made a promise to Ukraine that would involve using official government resources for personal gain. You can use this link to see whether your congressman supports impeachment or not and if not how to contact them about it (please share widely so others can do the same). If you are in CD1 here is the link directly to Congressman Neal.




  • Tell Congress to Ban Surprise Medical Bills – (h/t Moms Rising). For the first time ever, Congress has an opportunity to pass bipartisan legislation that will ban surprise medical bills, and would protect patients while holding down health care costs and premiums. That’s right—bipartisan legislation that would have a huge positive impact for families across the country is within reach of passage. Sign this petition asking congress to pass strong legislation to ban surprise medical bills and protect millions of families from economic insecurity and stress.


  • Send testimony to support the We the People Act – (h/t Our Revolution MA). A MA joint legislative committee hearing has been scheduled for the We The People Act S.2163 / H.3208 and we need YOUR help to push the legislation forward in the State House and then over the goal line. Can’t make it to Boston in person on Sept 24? You can still send testimony to rickycanavanwagner@gmail.com. Your voice will make a difference.


  • Remind the high school students in your life to register to vote. (h/t AOC Checklist). National High School Voter Registration Week (September 23-27) is a great time for high school students to register to vote so they can participate in this November’s election (even 16- and 17-year-olds can pre-register in many states).  Use this link to learn how!


  • Ban Facial Recognition – (h/t Media Justice). Facial recognition technology is among the most dangerous forms of surveillance — especially for communities of color. And it’s spreading across the country like wildfire. Yet, our efforts to fight back against this technology are working. Just this week Team MediaJustice helped pass a state bill in California preventing police officers from installing facial recognition in their body-cameras.3

And now we have word that Congress is about to introduce bipartisan legislation to address this issue. It’s time to capture this momentum and flood our lawmakers with emails and calls. Take action here to tell Congressional and local lawmakers to ban the government from using this dangerous technology.



Mark Your Calendars – Upcoming Events

  • White Supremacists: Rise, Resurgence, and Radicalization – Tuesday, September 24, 7:00-9:00PM, Edwards Church of Northampton, 297 Main St, Northampton. Please join us for an in-depth discussion with Dr. Pete Simi, author, American Swastika: Inside the White Power Movement’s Hidden Spaces of Hate. “American Swastika takes readers through hidden enclaves of hate in America, exploring how White Supremacy movements thrive nationwide, even as the country on the surface advocates racial equality. The authors explain the difference between movements such as the KKK, the Aryan Nation, and Skinheads, among others, then discuss the various ways White Supremacists cultivate, maintain, and spread their beliefs, largely under the radar of most Americans. View event details


  • Easthampton Candidates Climate Forum – Tuesday, September 24, 7:00-9:00PM, Mass Audubon Arcadia Wildlife Sanctuary, 127 Combs Rd, Easthampton. Join us for a City Council Candidates Forum about confronting the climate crisis in Easthampton. Mayor Nicole LaChapelle will also update us on Easthampton climate initiatives and plans for the future. 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


  • Fire and Flood: Queer Resilience in an Era of Climate Change” – Wednesday, September 25, 7:00-10:00PM, Science & Engineering Library, UMass Amherst. View a sneak peek of documentary: “Fire and Flood: Queer Resilience in an Era of Climate Change” followed by facilitated discussion. This event is part of a state-wide initiative called Climate Preparedness Week, which includes approximately 50 climate change library events across the state. View Facebook event details


  • 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


  • Springfield Solidarity Training: RideShare, Court Accompaniment – Thursday, September 26, 6:30-8:30PM, 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. Sign up View the event on Facebook here for more information.


  • Rebellion Begins – Friday, September 27, 11:00AM-2:00PM, The Rebellion has landed in Western Massachusetts. Beginning with UMass, we call on the five colleges to declare a climate emergency and take immediate action. Join us for a funeral for our futures. Wear black. Further details to come! If you or an organization you’re part of is interested in supporting, performing, or speaking as part of this event, fill out the form here. View the event on Facebook for coming details.


  • Fix It Movie & Panel Discussion at HCC – Saturday, September 28, 1:30-3:30PM, Holyoke Community College, 303 Homestead Ave, Holyoke. “Fix It- Healthcare at the Tipping Point” film shows the problems with our broken healthcare system and how it can be fixed! The movie is followed by a Q & A and a Panel of medical professionals who have specific experience dealing with the current system. You will leave informed and ready to take action on behalf of US Congressional and Massachusetts legislation regarding single-payer Medicare for All. Click here for more information.


  • Escalating Resistance: Training and Book Signing of Shut It Down – Monday, September 30, 5:30-8:30PM, Northampton Center for the Arts, Northampton. Lisa Fithian is an anti-racist organizer who has worked for justice since the 1970s. As part of her tour to support the release of her new book, “Shut It Down: Stories from a Fierce, Loving Resistance,” Lisa will be offering training to hone our strategies and tactics to impact power holders and create social disruption at increasingly larger scales One of the goals of this training is to build a foundation for an alliance of movements with thousands of people for a coordinated mass disruption nationwide that goes beyond what we have done before. Come learn strategies and tactics to impact power holders and create social disruption at increasingly larger scales. Click here for more details.


  • Greensboro Massacre: Lessons for Confronting White Supremacy Today – Sunday, October 6, 2:00-4:00PM, Edwards Church of Northampton. Join us for a community dialogue with civil rights leaders Rev. Nelson and Dr. Joyce Johnson. Forty years ago, five young labor and anti-racist organizers were murdered by white supremacists in Greensboro, NC. We will share with the community the living lessons of that experience and its aftermath. Click here for more details.


  • GOTV VA Letter Writing – Sunday, October 6, 4:30-6:00PM, Barnes and Noble Café, 7 Holyoke Street, Holyoke. Why are writing to voters in Virginia? The GOP holds slim majorities in both the State Senate (21 -19) and the State House of Delegates (51 – 49.) All of these seats are up for election this November. In the Pioneer Valley we can help Virginia Democrats win majorities in both houses with our letters to potential Democratic voters. A victory will mean that Democrats can address gerrymandering and bring the state’s focus to important climate and immigration issues. Sign up here to help Virginia Democrats take back two houses.


  • Medicare for All: A Discussion about Healthcare – Thursday, October 10, 6:00-7:30PM, Southampton Town Hall, 8 East St, Southampton. Watching the presidential debates and getting confused about what Medicare for All actually is? Come by the Selectboard room at Southampton Town Hall on October 10th for a discussion with State Representative Lindsay Sabadosa, lead House sponsor of the Massachusetts Medicare for All legislation, on the topic of Medicare for All. Bring your questions and comments! View the event on Facebook


  • S. Foreign Policy in the Middle East: Trends and Trajectories – Thursday, October 10, 7:00-9:00PM, Mount Holyoke College, 50 College St, South Hadley. With Iran-U.S. tensions rising, geopolitical alliances shifting, and U.S. influence waning, what will be the future of U.S. policy in the Middle East and broader Muslim world? Join us to hear renowned Middle East experts, Dr. Trita Parsi and Dr. Stephen Walt discuss the broad contours of the Trump administration’s approach to the region and implications for stability. Our speakers will examine the administration’s rhetoric and policies and will discuss how these reflect its priorities in the region. Click here for more details.


  • RUWMI-Swing Left 2020 Monthly Action – Sunday, October 13, 10:30AM – 12:00PM. Gateway City Arts, 92 Race Street, Holyoke. Come join us for our October postcard/letter-writing event! It’s fun, easy, and effective. We’ll supply postcards/letters and stamps and all the information you will need. You just bring yourself (and maybe a friend), good cheer, and a limber writing hand! (Donations of 35-cent postage stamps, or cash to cover stamps greatly appreciated but not required). Election Day 2020 seems a long way off, but now is when we need to begin making sure that Democratic voters in critical swing states, get registered and show up at the polls! You can view the event on Facebook here


  • 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: news@indivisible-ma.org.


Indivisible Massachusetts

Building Momentum with Indivisible MA T-Shirts

You can continue the momentum started by the Indivisibles who were delegates to the Massachusetts Democratic Convention and get your own Indivisible MA t-shirt to wear to events! You’ll have many upcoming opportunities to wear your Indivisible MA t-shirt such as to lobby days, local town events, rallies on the Common, various marches, town parades and the like.

When you wear an Indivisible MA t-shirt, you’re wearing a recognized brand of activism that says that you care and are organized, involved, and impactful.

Elizabeth Warren is in the know, and when she saw two of our delegates wearing their Indivisible MA t-shirts this past Saturday at the Convention, she said to them before the selfies were taken, “Indivisible, I love Indivisible!”

To order your t-shirt ($20) tell us the quantity and size (Medium, Large, XLarge or XXLarge), and send your request via email to debbie@indivisible-ma.org or ppoindexterpup@gmail.com. We are sold out of small sizes but with enough requests we’ll order more.


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