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Learn from How Italians Ultimately Defeated Silvio Berlusconi

This OTYCD entry originally posted in January 2017.


Trump has been likened to Hitler, Mussolini, and other 20th-century autocrats, but his closest analog is Silvio Berlusconi, the blustering, womanizing media mogul who served as Italy’s prime minister from 1994 to 2001.


In this November 2016 New York Times op-ed, Luigi Zingales shows us how to avoid the mistakes of Berlusconi opponents, which had the effect of prolonging his grip on power.

The key point to remember:


Attack what Trump does, not who he is. Yes, he’s morally bankrupt. Yes, he’s an awful human being. Yes, he’s unbelievably ignorant. Yes, his view of women is horrific. Yes, his twitter-squawkings are insane. Yes, he looks goddamn ridiculous.


If you need to complain about things like that, vent in a private Facebook group, or some other protected space. Empty it from your mind, then go out and shine a light on what he is doing, and explain why what he’s doing is bad.


You need to do it in a way that spotlights the consequences of his actions as president, and not on why Trump, the man, is repugnant. The instant you start attacking his character, you make him sympathetic. It’s not fair, but it’s what it is. The anti-Berlusconi crowd made that mistake and got seven years of his rule. Do you want eight years of Trump? Then lay off.


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Community Activism · Escape Your Bubble · Ethics · Fighting Bigotry, Racism, Sexism, Homophobia, Transphobia... · Health Care · Marches and Protests · Public Education · Stand for Science · Stand Up for Civilization · Stand Up for Norms

Commit Now to Put Any Tax Benefits You Might Get from the GOP Tax Bill to Fighting Its Effects

This OTYCD entry originally appeared in December 2017.

If the GOP tax bill passes, will you benefit from it in the form of lower taxes? Commit now to put any extra money to the work of fighting its effects.


Yes, the GOP tax bill rewards the rich at the expense of the middle class and the poor. Not too terribly many people who read this will belong to the group who will benefit if it becomes law.


Still. If you are one of those people, think about how you will use that money for good, and use it to fight the ill effects of the bill.


The bill treats waived graduate school tuition as taxable income. Fight this by talking to your alma mater, or a favorite public or private university, about how you can help relieve the burden the bill imposes on grad students. In particular, do what you can to assist grad students from marginalized communities, who will be hit hardest.


The bill removes a tax credit that employers received if they hired veterans. Look around your community, see which organizations are serving veterans and helping them find jobs, and see about pointing your gains in that direction.


The bill removes a tax credit for teachers who buy supplies for their classrooms. Find the neediest public school in your community and commit to underwriting those perpetual costs.


The variants are endless, but we should also mention yet again that in addition to what you choose to do, you should also support and elect candidates who will change the laws, fix the flaws, and help the people who will be hurt by the GOP tax bill.


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Action Alerts · Community Activism · Marches and Protests · Stand Up for Civilization · Stand Up for Norms · Use Your Power, Recruit Friends

Enough! Join the National School Walkout on Wednesday, March 14, 2018, to Protest Congress’s Failure to Pass Gun Safety Laws

Join the National School Walkout planned for Wednesday, March 14, 2018 to protest Congressional inaction on putting common-sense gun laws in place.


Organized by Women’s March Youth EMPOWER, it calls for students, teachers, administrators, staff, parents, you name it to walk out of classrooms at 10 am in your local time zone for a total of 17 minutes–one for each person who died in the Valentine’s Day 2018 shooting at the high school in Parkland, Florida.


Find your nearest walk-out event via the link below:


Learn how to host your own school walk-out event on March 14:


Visit the Facebook page for Enough!: National School Walkout and indicate if you’re interested or going:



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A note: We at OTYCD intend to nurture and encourage the movement sparked by the Margory Stoneman Douglas High School shooting by devoting one post at least every other week to gun safety-related issues.


The reason that the NRA has a death grip on Congress, and in particular, GOP Congressfolk, is that NRA members get off their asses and call if there’s a whisper of a muttering of a hint that a law might pass that could impose even the slightest imposition on ownership of guns in America.


That’s what the politicians are afraid of. It’s not just that some of them get metric buttloads of money for their campaigns from the NRA. Those who embrace the NRA’s outlook pounce on their phones and berate their representatives the instant they think their beloved guns are under threat.


So, yes, it’s on us to shout back.


We have to adopt the tactics of those who support the NRA.


We have to call our representatives often to make it damn clear that the status quo is unacceptable, and we want common-sense gun safety laws.


OTYCD will start out with one weekday post every two weeks, at minimum, that has to do with improving gun safety and pushing back against the NRA.


We do this in honor of the Parkland victims, and all victims of mass shootings in America, and everyone who has been fighting to change our laws on firearms all along.


If Trump finally bows to the will of Congress and imposes the sanctions against Russia for messing with the 2016 election, we will switch to devoting one post per week to these issues.


Honor the victims of the Parkland shooting, and all other shootings, by stepping up and calling your reps about common-sense gun safety laws, and by supporting politicians who have low grades from the NRA, and voting out those who do the NRA’s bidding.


#NeverAgain. For the love of all that is right and good, Never Again.




Marches and Protests · Use Your Power, Recruit Friends

Invite a Friend to Come With You to Marches

This OTYCD entry originally posted in July 2017.


Are you going to a protest or a march in your area? Invite at least one friend to come with you.


First, please read the post titled Learn to Welcome People to the Movement, Period, Full Stop:


Part of your power is the power to encourage others to join you in protest. If you’re going to any of the marches this month, make a point of inviting others to come with you. If you’ve already invited people to come with you, try to add someone who has never come to a protest march before, or hasn’t come to one in the Trump era.


Be prepared to offer extra help. Do they need a ride? Do they need money for lunch or snacks? Do they need cold-weather gear? See what you can do to remove whatever’s standing in the way of their participation.


It’s not about offering someone an engraved invitation. It’s about using your power as someone your friend respects and trusts for good. You matter, and they matter. Going to protests matter. Join forces and do so together.



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Action Alerts · Fighting Bigotry, Racism, Sexism, Homophobia, Transphobia... · Marches and Protests · Use Your Power, Recruit Friends · Vote with your Dollars

Help John Oliver Keep Up The Great Work By Subscribing to HBO

This OTYCD entry originally posted in June 2017.

Support the work of John Oliver and his team at Last Week Tonight by subscribing to Home Box Office (HBO) and telling HBO that you signed on specifically to get his show.

Comedian John Oliver, alumnus of Jon Stewart’s The Daily Show, has done powerful and impressive work before and since the election of Donald Trump. If we manage to save net neutrality, he and his #GoFCCYourself campaign will deserve a big slice of the credit.

While the 2016 presidential campaign was still live, Oliver called attention to the madness of the presidential primary process and asked us to reserve February 2, 2018, as the day to ask our legislators to fix it. (Yes, we will write a post to remind you of that, but there’s no harm in marking your calendars if you haven’t already.)

He’s aimed his guns at income inequality, payday loans, the rank injustices of the prison system, student debt, civil asset forfeiture, and dozens of other vital issues.

You’ve learned a lot from him, admit it. So forgive us for asking, but do you watch his segments for free online, or do you subscribe to HBO?

If you don’t, well, it’s past time for you to subscribe to HBO. And when you do, please go out of your way to tell HBO that you signed up specifically because it runs Last Week Tonight, and you want Oliver and his team to carry on with their good work.


Sign up for HBO, with or without cable:


Once you’ve done that, contact HBO and tell them you subscribed expressly to support John Oliver and Last Week Tonight:


Follow Last Week Tonight on Twitter:



Like the show on Facebook:


Follow John Oliver on Twitter:



Read about Last Week Tonight‘s #GoFCCYourself campaign and how effective it’s been:


Read about how the efforts of John Oliver and Last Week Tonight have boosted other worthy anti-Trump and pro-democracy causes:





Action Alerts · Common-sense Gun Laws · Community Activism · Marches and Protests · Vote with your Dollars

Help DC Local Ambassadors House Students Coming to Washington for the March for Our Lives

Help DC Local Ambassadors house students who are coming to Washington, D.C., for the March for Our Lives event on March 24, 2018.


Founded in 2017, DC Local Ambassadors helps organizations that plan marches and protests in D.C. by offering volunteers and helping with logistics.


Their current project is helping students who come to the city for the March for Our Lives pro-gun safety event arrange housing for the nights of March 23 and 24.



If you live in Washington, D.C., and can host out-of-town students, fill out the form at this link (you must be over the age of 21, have sufficient space, and must live in walking distance to public transportation):



If you are a student coming to D.C. for March for Our Lives and need housing, fill out the form at this link (the deadline is March 18, 2018):



Also see the main March for Our Lives lodging page:



If you don’t have the space, you can still volunteer in other ways with DC Local Ambassadors:



If you don’t live near Washington, D.C., you can still help the cause.



See the DC Local Ambassadors webpage:



Donate to DC Local Ambassadors:



Like its page on Facebook:



Follow it on Twitter:




Read news stories about DC Local Ambassadors:



Marches and Protests

Honor Those Who You Carry With You When You March

Honor those who you represent when you march or protest.


When you go to a march or a protest, it’s not just about you. You stand for many other people who want to be there, but can’t.


Maybe they’re working. Maybe they’re care-giving. Maybe they’re cramming for finals. Maybe they’re traveling. Maybe they’re too sick to go. Maybe they live too far away to make the trip. Maybe they can’t afford it and would be insulted if you tried to pay their way. Maybe they’re dead, but would go without hesitation if they were alive to join you.


Find a way to bring these people with you even though they can’t come in person.

The cheapest and easiest way is to write their names on a piece of paper and tuck it in your pocket.


Sit and think. Who would want to come with you? Your mother. Your great-grandfather. Your cousin. Your favorite teacher. Your sorority sister. Write their names. That can be enough.


You could also build a charm bracelet or a necklace, with each charm representing a person who you’re “bringing” to the event.


Jewelry isn’t as cheap as pen and paper, but it can be pretty cheap (see the link below).


And when you do this, find a way to carry the memory of Heather Heyer with you. She was killed in Charlottesville, Virginia on August 12, 2017 when a 20-year-old man deliberately drove his car into a group of anti-racist protesters.


Heyer’s favorite color was purple. If you have purple clothing, you could wear that to remember her and carry her with you. Or maybe you could carry or wear a violet–she named her dog Violet.


Never lose sight of the fact that when you lace up your marching shoes and ready your signs, you are not alone, at least not in spirit. Draw strength from those who you carry with you.


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