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Follow Alexandra Erin on Twitter

 

Follow Alexandra Erin on Twitter.

Erin is an author, poet, trans woman and all-round smart person who lives in Maryland and has an exceptional gift for interpreting and explaining Donald Trump, whether he is tweeting madly or reading someone else’s words off a teleprompter. She makes sense when it seems like there is no sense to be made.

Sample her genius by reading this Twitter thread on Trump’s address to a joint session of Congress on February 28:

https://www.kanvz.com/alexandraerin/canvas/1488382193824

 

Follow her on Twitter:

@alexandraerin

 

Read her blog here:

http://www.alexandraerin.com

 

Support her here:

https://www.patreon.com/AlexandraErin

https://www.paypal.com/donate/?token=3OEHAVn8SOrIky4-Et3gYMrIZxIW5Z1nOQZWj5CqEvnfzABpi01GyKbzHqSgZeI3xxfLxG

 

 

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Trying This Again: UPDATED: Listen to Pod Save America and the Crooked Media Family of Podcasts

Note: Apologies to subscribers who didn’t get this substantially updated post yesterday due to a WordPress glitch.

Did you enjoy the podcast Keepin It 1600? Start downloading Pod Save America, the new broadcast from the same team.

Jon Lovett, Jon Favreau, Tommy Vietor, and Dan Pfeiffer decided that the outcome of the election called for a more activist tone. They have ended Keepin It 1600 and launched Pod Save America, which covers politics as well as how to push back against Trump.

The first episode went up on January 9 and covered the Russian hacking scandals, Obama’s farewell speech, Trump cabinet nominees, and defending Obamacare. It also featured Linda Sarsour and Tamika Mallory, talking about the Women’s March on Washington, set for January 21.

 

Substantial update: Since writing the original post about Pod Save America and Pod Save the World, Crooked Media has launched three more podcasts. All are good.

 

The best of the new crop is Pod Save the People. Primarily hosted by DeRay Mckesson, it is an eye-opening look at the history and living reality of fighting for social justice.

Download Pod Save the People here:

https://getcrookedmedia.com/pod-save-the-people-56bc42af53d

 

Lovett or Leave It, hosted by Jon Lovett before a live audience, brings the funny. There’s rage, too, but funny rage. Warning: The theme song is infectious.

Download Lovett or Leave It:

https://getcrookedmedia.com/lovett-or-leave-it-6077c7aca95c

 

With Friends Like These aims straight for the awkward in a gutsy, admirable way. Hosted by Ana Marie Cox, it dwells on “what divides us and what doesn’t.” It does not shy away from getting emotionally raw at times.

Download With Friends Like These:

https://getcrookedmedia.com/with-friends-like-these-aeee91fa31da

 

Download Pod Save America, the original Crooked Media podcast, from iTunes or listen here:

https://art19.com/shows/pod-save-america
Download its foreign policy spinoff, Pod Save the World, from iTunes or listen here:

https://art19.com/shows/pod-save-the-world

 

Like Crooked Media on Facebook:

https://www.facebook.com/TheCrookedMedia/

 

Follow Crooked Media on Twitter:

@crookedmedia

 

More on the launch of Pod Save America and Crooked Media, the company founded by three of the four ex-Keepin It 1600 co-hosts:

http://www.thedailybeast.com/articles/2017/01/09/the-keepin-it-1600-guys-launch-crooked-media-to-counter-trump.html

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Want to Do More Than One Thing?

One Thing You Can Do‘s purpose is to help you focus. It gives you one thing you can do, every day, to push back against Trump. One thing. Every day.

So you’ve done the one thing, but you want to do more. What next?

Here are recommendations for groups, mailing lists, blogs, and other entities that will give you more things to do.

The list is not comprehensive, and it’s not meant to be. Nor is it closed. Everything is OTYCD-approved. The blog relies on many of these sources when seeking and researching subjects for future posts.

 

Rogan’s List blog (http://roganslist.blogspot.com)

Susan Rogan will keep you as busy as you want to be. The retired university librarian’s blog gives you more than a dozen useful nuggets of information per day, from actions to tools to organizations to join, and more. Are you extra-eager to do more? Start here. The newest daily tends to go live around 9 am EST.

 

Flippable (https://www.flippable.org/)

Flippable’s goal is to turn state and federal offices blue, one electoral race at a time. Its email list sends out one message per week that contains several action items. It’s especially good for learning about upcoming elections in state legislatures.

 

Stronger Together newsletter (http://tinyletter.com/onesmallthing)

This is an offshoot of Laura M. Browning’s Facebook group of the same name. Its tagline is “Pledge to do one small thing every week to spread the love and equality that America needs right now. ” Its weekly email is charming and features valuable links and tips.

 

Movement to Oppose Trump (https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSfBigMnFKHEKMAY6q0cB1ONWiWeVluDwQtyqEtH0cZ_GZq-1A/viewform#responses)

The multi-talented Michael Skolnik releases a weekly action email with the does-just-what-it-says-on-the-box title Movement to Oppose Trump. It’s a smorgasboard of calls to action, pieces to read, resistance resources, upcoming events, social media accounts to follow, donations to make, finished with a music suggestion (late in January 2017, he pointed to Tupac’s Keep Ya Head Up).

 

Weekly Resistance to Trump (http://www.weekly-resistance.online)’

This web site sends a weekly email that recommends an action to take and a donation to make.

 

Wall-of-Us (https://www.wall-of-us.org)

Another good site that produces a weekly email containing several action items.

 

While it’s not the most important thing you can do to push back against Trump, it’s certainly amusing to follow @HalfOnionInABag on Twitter. It’s just that–half an onion in a bag. Its goal is to get more followers than Donald Trump to show that having a big honking Twitter audience really doesn’t mean all that much if half an onion in a bag can meet or beat Trump’s.

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Subscribe to Wall-of-Us and Fight Trump

Subscribe to Wall-of-Us, which offers a weekly collection of actions to push back against Trump.

Encouraging greater activism is the goal of Wall-of-Us, which says on its home page, “He promised a wall. He will be stopped by a wall of us.”

Every Sunday it sends out four actions that you can take over the course of the coming week. Some are timely, some are long term. All provide food for thought and fuel for concrete action.

 

See the Wall-of-Us home page:

https://www.wall-of-us.org

 

See Brick by Brick, its victory page:

https://www.wall-of-us.org/brick-by-brick/

 

Subscribe to Wall-of-Us:

https://www.wall-of-us.org/subscribe/

 

Donate to Wall-of-Us:

https://secure.actblue.com/contribute/page/wall-of-us?refcode=nav

 

Like its Facebook page:

https://www.facebook.com/1beautifulwall/

 

Follow Wall-of-Us on Twitter:

@1beautifulwall

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Learn Whether and When to Freak Out Over Bills Moving Through Congress

ICYMI: A while back, various corners of the internet whipped themselves into a minor freakout over H.R. 193, a bill that, if passed, would withdraw the United States from the United Nations.

In this Medium post, former Congressional aide Emily Ellsworth explains why H.R. 193 won’t go anywhere, and shows you how to spot the bills that could become laws.

To summarize her points:

No more than three percent of all bills became laws during the last four Congressional sessions.

Members of Congress introduce bills for lots of reasons, and making law isn’t necessarily one of them. They’re just as likely to offer a bill to:

 

Look productive

Roust their base

Please activists

Generate headlines back home

 

She offers three tools for following legislation that matters to you, and schooling yourself on them before you call your members of Congress about them:

https://www.govtrack.us

https://www.countable.us

https://www.popvox.com

 

Also, when looking at a bill’s prospects to become law, keep these thoughts in mind:

How many times has the bill been introduced before without going anywhere? If the answer is “a whole honking lot,” it’ll probably stall this time too.

Bills get referred to relevant Congressional committees. Do the bill’s sponsors and cosponsors actually sit on the right committee? If not, its chances aren’t that great.

Is the timing right? A bill that has to do with Standing Rock and the pipeline under construction will probably get more traction now than a general environmental bill.

How well does the bill suit the broader plans of the majority party? Congressional leaders will likely prioritize those.

 

…And this is where we at OTYCD feel compelled to admit a possible mistake.

About 10 days ago we wrote a blog post asking you to oppose H.R. 490, a bill that would ban abortion upon detection of a heartbeat. Its sponsor, Iowa Republican Steve King, dubbed it the Heartbeat Protection Act of 2017.

While it is a legitimate bill and King evidently hasn’t introduced something like it in previous sessions of Congress, it’s likely to wither and die. As of February 4, the Govtrack.com site says it has yet to be referred to a committee, and the Govtrack summary of the bill cites Predictgov odds of passage at 4 percent.

We will continue to watch this house bill and other bills of interest, but we admit (and, frankly, hope) H.R. 490 may well go nowhere.

See the Govtrack.com summary of H.R. 490:

https://www.govtrack.us/congress/bills/115/hr490

See the OTYCD post on H.R. 490:

https://onethingyoucando.com/2017/01/23/call-your-house-rep-and-oppose-h-r-490-an-abortion-ban-bill/

 

 

 

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Learn How to Be a Silent Trump Protestor

 

Not everyone can afford to be out and proud opponents of Trump. Spouses, bosses, grown children, religious leaders, caregivers, and others we depend on can make it difficult and dangerous for us to express our views freely and honestly.

A November Medium piece by Patti Mulligan outlines five ways to protest Trump without taking to the streets or battling trolls on social media.

To find it, search for ‘5 Ways to be a Silent Trump Protestor’ under Mulligan’s name. (Attempts to post the link here aren’t succeeding, sorry.)

The good news is, if you’re a regular reader of OTYCD, you’re already doing at least some of the things she recommends.

Her five actions boil down to:

Donate to worthy causes that fight Trump, such as the Electronic Frontier Foundation, Lambda Legal, Black Lives Matter, the ACLU, and the Human Rights Campaign;

Call your Congressional delegation often, even daily, about issues that matter to you, and ask them to act;

Sign up for newsletters from web sites and digital organizations that are devoted to helping you push back against Trump, such as Wall-of-Us;

Listen to reputable political podcasts, such as Keepin it 1600 and NPR’s Code Switch;

And take care to cheer on and support your friends who can afford to protest Trump in public.

 

 

View story at Medium.com

Postcard Campaigns · Save These Tools

Stock Up on Postcards and 34-cent Stamps

Stock up on postcards and 34-cent stamps.

When a Congressional representative from another state does something that delights you or annoys you, don’t call their offices.

Jamming their lines only makes it harder for their own constituents to get through, and they only listen to their own constituents.

Instead, see if you have friends in that state and urge them to contact their reps. Help them find their reps’ contact info if they need it (See the first blog post, ‘Self-advocacy 101: Find Your Congressional Representatives’, for tools to help you do this.)

If you still want to say something to the out-of-state rep that made you happy or mad, send a postcard. Your opinion will show up in a physical way while leaving the rep’s phone lines free.

It also sets a price on your emotions: OK, you’re mad, but are you 34 cents’ worth of mad? Yes? Then have at it.

Good ‘happy’ example: Sending thank-you postcards to Lindsey Graham, Chuck Schumer, Jack Reid, and John McCain for calling for a bipartisan investigation of the Russian hacking scandal.

Good ‘mad’ example: Sending a postcard to Ohio governor John Kasich, asking him to veto both of those Ohio anti-abortion bills.

IMPORTANT: When you write your postcard message, you need to leave room for your name and your full address. This is per Emily Ellsworth, author of Call the Halls. Initials and a zip code are NOT enough. If your postcard lacks a full address, the MoC’s office folk will probably trash it. If you can’t fit your address and your message on a postcard, best to send an email or a letter instead.

Here is a link through which you can purchase postcard stamps:

se/uspsProductDetailMultiSkuDropDown.jsp?categoryNav=false&navAction=push&navCount=0&atg.multisite.remap=false&categoryId=buy-stamps&productId=S_117604

This “Fanciful Flowers” stamped card is the closest thing to a pre-stamped postcard that the USPS sells:

https://store.usps.com/store/browse/uspsProductDetailMultiSkuDropDown.jsp?categoryNav=false&navAction=push&navCount=0&atg.multisite.remap=false&categoryId=cards-envelopes&productId=S_222110

 

Many venues sell postcards. If you live in a touristy area, you’re set–try your local Visitor’s Center and souvenir shops.

You can also try stationery and paper goods stores; museum gift shops; big pharmacies such as Walgreens and CVS; and any place that sells tchotchkes, knick-knacks, keepsakes, and assorted shelf-clutterers.

The Norman Rockwell Museum Store sells postcard versions of his Freedom of Speech painting for a buck each (Item no. P057):

http://store.nrm.org/stationery/postcards/freedom-of-speech-postcard.html

The first action that the Women’s March organizers asked in their 10 Actions/100 Days campaign is to send a postcard to your senators about the issues that matter most to you, and say how you will fight for them. They included a postcard design that you can download and print:

https://www.womensmarch.com/100/

 

If you’d like a fine, subtle, albeit pricey way to troll Trump, stock up on postcards of Titian’s painting of Danae.

Danae is a mortal princess from Greek mythology who was impregnated by the god Zeus when he visited her in the form of–no joke–a golden shower.

Here’s the link through which you can order the Danae postcards (warning–the company is in the UK, so the postcards and the shipping will be on the expensive side of things):

Danae

And here is the story of Danae:

http://www.greekmythology.com/Myths/Mortals/Danae/danae.html

 

And if you’re crafty, visit Michael’s or A.C. Moore and buy card stock, paper cutters, and rubber stamps and make your own postcards.