Action Alerts · Community Activism · Stand Up for Civilization · Stand Up for Norms

Make an Appointment to Donate Blood Every Time You Hear About a New Mass Shooting

This OTYCD post originally appeared in November 2018.

 

When news breaks of a new mass shooting in America, make an appointment to donate blood (if you’re eligible to do so). 

 

Because the majority of Americans are in fact sane, we are sickened when we learn of a new mass shooting. It makes us feel powerless as well (and don’t even ask about the decades, yes, decades of effort many of us have devoted, and will continue to devote, to trying to get our gun laws changed).

 

After the June 2017 shooting at the Congressional Republican baseball practice, we at OYTCD suggested that readers donate to the three charities that benefit from the game and also consider donating blood, even if they didn’t live in or around Washington, D.C. Blood donations drop in summer, what with vacations and the other schedule disruptions that come with the season. And Steve Scalise, the Congressman who suffered the worst injuries, definitely needed blood transfusions and continued to need them.

 

So here’s something to consider. Every time you hear about a mass shooting, consider making an appointment to donate blood at a facility near you.

 

Ok, we can almost read your mind–“But I won’t have any blood left if I do that!” If it’s too early for you to donate blood, offer to escort a friend. Or offer to volunteer at a blood donation facility. Or if you’re due to renew your driver’s license and you haven’t indicated you’re an organ donor, do that.

 

Or substitute some other bit of routine community activism that fits. Spend an hour at the library tutoring someone whose first language isn’t English. Donate peanut butter and tuna fish to a food bank. Do something to make your community better that you’ve been meaning to do but haven’t gotten around to yet.

 

Answer an act of random violence by making the world better. Every bit helps, however small it might seem.

 

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Action Alerts · Marches and Protests

Read A Story About Hong Kong Protestors Protecting Themselves from Their Own Government

Read a story about protestors in Hong Kong taking precautions against retaliation from the Chinese government for their actions.

 

It’s dated June 12, 2019 and is from the AFP service.

 

If you are a full-time activist, you probably already know these methods and practice at least some of them. We at OTYCD are pointing you toward this story so you can mull it over and make yourself aware of ways to protect yourself.

 

We feel weird and a little gross doing this, but the increasing authoritarianism of the Trump administration, as of July 2019, convinces us it’s something you all should see.

 

Read Surveillance-savvy Hong Kong Protesters Go Digitally Dark:

https://news.yahoo.com/surveillance-savvy-hong-kong-protesters-digitally-dark-003014805.html

 

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Candidates · Choose Your Core Four

Re-elect Washington, D.C. Democrat Eleanor Holmes Norton, Because She is Awesome (Good Update July 2019)

Update July 2019: Democrat Norton, the longtime incumbent, won re-election in 2018.

 

She next faces re-election in two years. Please keep her in mind when choosing your Core Four for 2020.

 

Re-elect Democrat Eleanor Holmes Norton, Congresswoman for the District of Columbia, because she is awesome.

 

Norton is in her fourteenth Congressional term. Because she represents the District of Columbia, she is a non-voting member of the House, which means she cannot join votes on the floor of the House. This does not stop her from being awesome and fierce. She serves on several House committees and can speak on the House floor.

 

She continues to pursue legislation that would give Washington, D.C. a vote in the House of Representatives. She belongs to the Congressional Progressive Caucus and the Congressional Black Caucus.

 

 

If you’re thinking, “I know she’s awesome, but I can’t remember how I know that,” let us refresh your memory. You saw her on The Colbert Report back in the day:

http://www.cc.com/video-clips/6quypd/the-colbert-report-better-know-a-district—district-of-columbia—eleanor-holmes-norton

http://www.cc.com/video-clips/zf1m9m/the-colbert-report-d-c–voting-rights—eleanor-holmes-norton

http://www.cc.com/video-clips/ez9npn/the-colbert-report-eleanor-holmes-norton

 

Yeah. Give her support and campaign donations, please.

 

 

See Norton’s Congressional webpage:

https://norton.house.gov

 

 

See Norton’s 2018 campaign website:

http://www.nortonforcongress.org/home.html

 

 

Donate to Norton’s campaign:

http://www.nortonforcongress.org/donation.html

 

 

Choose her for your Core Four:

https://onethingyoucando.com/2017/12/24/choose-your-core-four-for-2018/

 

 

Subscribe to One Thing You Can Do by clicking the button on the upper right of the page. And tell your friends about the blog!

 

 

Like her on Facebook:

https://www.facebook.com/CongresswomanNorton/?ref=s

 

 

Follow her on Twitter:

@EleanorNorton

 

 

Norton appears on Luvvie’s list of black woman candidates running for office in 2018. See Luvvie’s full list and our post about the list:

http://database.blackwomeninpolitics.com/candidate/custom?q=federal

https://onethingyoucando.com/2018/01/13/look-over-luvvies-list-of-black-women-who-are-running-for-office-and-support-them/

Community Activism

Help Children in Illinois Prisons by Donating to Liberation Library

This OTYCD post originally appeared in May 2018.

 

Help children serving sentences in Illinois prisons through Liberation Library, which gives them books.

 

Liberation Library is a volunteer-led group based in Chicago that serves children in prison and juvenile detention centers in Illinois. Its members ask the kids what they’d like to read, and gets those titles.

 

They believe access to books is a right, not a privilege. Twice a month, it hosts “packing days,” in which volunteers prep and mail books to young readers.

 

It also sends birthday cards to incarcerated children year-round, and holiday cards around Christmas.

 

 

See the Liberation Library webpage:

http://www.liberationlib.com

 

 

See its About page:

http://www.liberationlib.com/about.html

 

 

See its FAQ page, which includes advice on how to find a Liberation Library-type organization in your community, or set one up:

http://www.liberationlib.com/faqs.html

 

 

Sign up for its newsletter:

http://liberationlib.us10.list-manage.com/subscribe?u=b3d1719ad4771efe8f1a9b022&id=a7c868d487&orig-lang=1

 

 

Subscribe to One Thing You Can Do by clicking the button on the upper right of the page. And tell your friends about the blog!

 

 

Donate money or gently used books to Liberation Library (please check if the books are on LL’s Amazon Wishlist first):

http://www.liberationlib.com/donate.html

 

 

Donate birthday cards for use by Liberation Library, or purchase blank birthday cards from its Amazon Wishlist:

http://www.liberationlib.com/birthday-cards.html

 

 

If you live in or near Chicago, volunteer for Liberation Library:

http://www.liberationlib.com/volunteer.html

 

 

Like its Facebook page:

https://www.facebook.com/LiberationLibrary

 

 

Follow it on Twitter:

@liberationlib

Elections · Stand Up for Civilization · Stand Up for Norms · Voting Rights, Fighting Voter Suppression

Read Alexandra Erin and Courtney Milan On Why You Need to Vote, Even Though 2020 Won’t Be Fair

Read Alexandra Erin’s and Courtney Milan’s tweets on why you need to vote, even though the 2020 election almost certainly won’t be fair.

 

Alexandra Erin is a goddamn genius. We’ve said as much before, and we’re sure to say it again.

 

Her political tweets are marvels of insight and clarity. It’s tempting to devote blog posts to all her threads, and we avoid this only through serious discipline.

 

But she said some things in the wee hours of June 30, 2019 that need your attention. If you’re not on Twitter, or on Twitter and missed it, here you go.

 

It’s about the 2020 election, and what we’re facing, and why we need to vote anyway, no matter what fuckery and nonsense arises.

 

It’s in response to a June 29, 2019 thread by Courtney Milan (@courtneymilan) on the same subject.

 

We’re cutting and pasting the tweets as they appeared. Below them you’ll find info about Erin and Milan.

 

Courtney Milan (@courtneymilan) kicks it off:

 

A thing that is weird to me is that the Republicans seem to understand how the Democrats win elections, but the Democrats don’t.

 

See, it’s actually very simple: high turn out favors the Democrats. The higher the turn out, the better it is for the Democrats.

 

That’s why the entire Republican playbook is about disenfranchising and setting up stumbling blocks. Yes, some of those stumbling block differential hurt Democrats, but basically, all stumbling blocks hurt Democrats.

 

But the *spoken* words of Republicans and Democrats alike suggest that Democrats lose elections because they don’t convince enough Republicans, and that’s simply not true. Democrats don’t win elections because US voter turn out is abysmally low.

 

And so there’s this game that the media plays—and that Democrats play—and that the GOP plays—where we act like the election will be decided by three coal miners, the same three, every year. When the election will be decided by turn out.

 

If we care about electability, the question we need to be asking ourselves is: Which candidate is going to maximize turnout? Not: which candidate is going to convince three coal miners?

 

If it were easy to vote, we wouldn’t have any red states. We’d have a lot of deep blue states, some light blue states, and a handful of purple ones that would oscillate from year to year.

 

I’ve spent a lot of time wondering why the US is so different than their est of the world and—after looking at public opinion polls—I’m actually convinced that our population actually isn’t substantially more conservative than the rest of the world.

 

The issue we have is that a lot less of our population votes, and even if you consider only the voting population, our system is set up to magnify the votes of some segments of the population and to squelch the votes of others.

 

The truth of the matter is that if Democrats could enact laws that permanently got voter turnout to around 80%, the Republican party (at least in its current form) would case to exist in two to three election cycles.

 

 

Alexandra Erin (@alexandraerin) responds with her own thread:

 

We are not headed for a fair election. Not anything close to one. Probably the worst of my lifetime. Doesn’t mean we can’t win it. We definitely won’t if we don’t try, though, and that’s what the GOP counts on.

 

And this is the thing! This thing is the thing. The thing, it is this. For all that Bret Stephens talks about “ordinary people” like they’re red state racist rust belters, these guys *know* that this country skews blue and at least likes to think of itself as decent. [She’s referring to a late June 2019 Op-Ed in the New York Times.]

 

They know that “ordinary people” have some empathy and recoil from raw cruelty (when it’s not made palatable to them somehow).

 

And so while the digital arm of Trump’s campaign of despair does use incredibly sensitive data targeting, the everyday “ops” are far more broadly targeted.

 

The fewer people who vote, the more easily they can control the outcome. The fewer people who vote, the more the people they *prevent* from voting count, the more any votes that get changed count, the more their own votes count.

 

There is not a solid red state in this country. Whatever state you’re thinking of… nope. It’s got deep blue pockets and every election it could be a serious battlefield. They use gerrymandering and voter suppression to change that…

 

…and use psychological ops to obscure that this is what they’re doing. Call something a red state and half of us are ready to abandon it, even if they’re holding onto it by their fingernails. By the skin of their teeth.

 

The more people here in the US vote, the more progressive candidates and policies will win. If we can internalize that, if we can mobilize on that, if we can use that… then we can win so hard the GOP dies. And then let people choose between different visions of progress.

 

 

Follow Courtney Milan on Twitter:

@courtneymilan

 

See Milan’s website:

http://www.courtneymilan.com

 

See her blog:

http://www.courtneymilan.com/ramblings/

 

 

 

Follow Alexandra Erin 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

 

Subscribe to One Thing You Can Do by clicking the button on the upper right of the page. And tell your friends about the blog!

 

 

 

 

 

Action Alerts · Candidates · Choose Your Core Four · Vote with your Dollars

Check Out Democrat Sara Gideon, Who Will Run Against Republican Susan Collins in 2020

Check out Sara Gideon, a Democrat who has pledged to run against Republican Senator Susan Collins in 2020.

 

Gideon is one of three Democrats who has expressed interest in running against Collins. (The others are Bre Kidman and Betsy Sweet). She is the only one among them to have held major elective office; she’s the Speaker of the House in Maine’s legislature.

 

Ady Barkan’s Be a Hero organization and activists from Maine famously launched a Crowdpac campaign to fund Collins’s eventual Democratic opponent after she voted to put Brett Kavanaugh on the Supreme Court. As of late June 2019, the fund held just over $4 million.

 

Presumably, this fund will go to the winner of the Democratic primary. That election will take place on June 9, 2020.

 

The Cook Political Report scores Collins’s Senate seat as Lean Republican. By its definition, “Lean” means “These are considered competitive races, but one party has an advantage.”

 

As of June 2019, the Senate holds 53 Republicans and 45 Democrats, plus two Independents, Angus King of Maine and Bernie Sanders of Vermont, who caucus with the Democrats.

 

The Democrats need to hold all their seats and pick up four in order to gain control of the Senate. Collins is among the most vulnerable.

 

Please consider adding Gideon to your Core Four for 2020.

 

See Sara Gideon’s campaign homepage:

https://saragideon.com

 

Donate to Gideon’s campaign:

https://secure.actblue.com/donate/sg-website?refcode=website-nav

 

See Gideon’s Ballotpedia page:

https://ballotpedia.org/Sara_Gideon

 

Subscribe to One Thing You Can Do by clicking the button on the upper right of the page. And tell your friends about the blog!

 

Like Gideon on Facebook:

https://www.facebook.com/pg/SaraGideonME/photos/?tab=album&album_id=2330577087269160&ref=page_internal

 

Follow Gideon on Twitter:

@SaraGideonME

 

See the Crowdpac page for Collins’s to-be-named Democratic opponent:

https://secure.actblue.com/donate/fund-susan-collins-future-opponent

 

See Ballotpedia’s page on the 2020 Senate election in Maine:

https://ballotpedia.org/United_States_Senate_election_in_Maine,_2020

 

Read a New York Times story on Gideon’s announcement:

 

 

 

Uncategorized

See and Bookmark These Lifehacker Pieces on How to Protest Human Rights Abuses at the Southern U.S Border

See and bookmark these Lifehacker stories on how to protest human rights abuses at the southern U.S. border.

 

Several such pieces have appeared in and around June 2019, but we at OTYCD are devoting a post to these so you can have them at hand to reference and share.

 

How to Protest Human Rights Abuses at U.S. Detention Centers, from Lifehacker:

https://lifehacker.com/how-to-protest-human-rights-abuses-at-u-s-detention-ce-1835731469?fbclid=IwAR10ksN55b3UmRzqEjyKNhXjHJy_3tnm4dZE8PrjFrZUDEePtNEhxoW6CVo

 

How to Fight Trump’s Policy of Separating Children from Their Parents, from Lifehacker:

https://lifehacker.com/where-to-volunteer-donate-and-protest-to-fight-family-1826918071

 

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