Action Alerts · Call Your House Rep · Online Privacy, Net Neutrality · Uncategorized

Call Your House Reps and Ask Them to Support Net Neutrality BEFORE June 11, 2018

Call your House Reps and ask them to support Net Neutrality before June 11, 2018, when the FCC can roll it back. Also, call your state legislators and ask them to pass legislation protect net neutrality, too.

 

After much struggle, the Senate voted 52-47 in May 2018 to overturn the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) and preserve rules upholding net neutrality, which prevent internet service providers from charging more for faster Internet speeds, and prevent them from blocking access to websites.

 

Unfortunately, the fight isn’t over. The future of net neutrality now rests with the House of Representatives, where it has less support.

 

That’s where you come in. You need to call your House Rep and make it clear that you want him or her to uphold net neutrality.

 

Celeste Pewter has been all over this for months now. Here’s her script on the topic. Remember: Congressfolk are back in their home districts until June 5, 2018.

 

 

Pewter also points out that it’s important to ask your state legislators to pass legislation that protects and enshrines net neutrality, as Oregon did in April 2018. Here’s her script on that:

Picture

 

In addition to following Pewter on Twitter (again, her handle is @Celeste_Pewter) you can support her in other ways.

 

After you call your elected representatives on these two topics, tweet about the experience using the #ICalledMyReps hashtag.

 

Pewter founded The Road to 2018, an organization devoted to defending Democratic Senators who are vulnerable and up for re-election this year. See our post on it:

https://onethingyoucando.com/2018/02/25/support-the-road-to-2018-which-defends-democratic-senators/

 

Subscribe to Pewter’s peerless newsletter, It’s Time To Fight:

http://itstimetofight.weebly.com

 

 

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!

 

More background on net neutrality:

 

Read stories on the Senate’s vote to uphold net neutrality:

http://thehill.com/policy/technology/387985-senate-votes-to-save-net-neutrality-rules

 

Here also is the I Called My Reps rundown on net neutrality and why we need it:

http://icalledmyreps.weebly.com/net-neutrality.html

Call Your State Legislators · Common-sense Gun Laws · Community Activism

Ask Your State Legislators to Require Gun Owners to Report Lost or Stolen Guns

Ask your state legislators to require gun owners to promptly report lost or stolen guns.

 

It seems ridiculous on its face, but it’s true. More than 36 states do not currently require gun owners to report lost or stolen guns.

 

It makes sense to require gun owners to formally report losses and thefts. Timely reporting makes it harder for firearms to fall into dangerous hands. It can also help them get their guns back.

 

The Giffords Law Center to Prevent Gun Violence has comprehensive information on how things are now.

 

According to the center, the only states that broadly require gun-owning residents to report losses or thefts to local law enforcement authorities are:

 

California

Connecticut

Delaware

Illinois

Massachusetts

New Jersey

New York

Ohio

Rhode Island

The District of Columbia also has this requirement.

 

A few states have more limited laws.

 

Michigan specifically requires owners to report thefts, but says nothing about losses.

 

Maryland requires reporting losses and thefts, but only for handguns and assault weapons, not other types of firearms.

 

New Jersey is alone in imposing civil liability on owners who fail to report lost or stolen guns that are later used in a crime, and its law focuses on assault weapons only.

 

 

If your state is not listed above, or has laws that could be improved, please call or email your state legislators and ask them to write a bill to address this problem.

 

To find your state legislators, plug your address and zip code into this web site:

https://whoaremyrepresentatives.org

 

Once you have the two names you need, go to the web site for your state legislature and find the contact information for your state senator and state house rep.

 

 

Contacting your state house rep and state senator is different from contacting your federal-level reps. Calls and emails are equally effective, and you’re far more likely to get through to the actual elected official, rather than a staffer.

 

 

While cautioning that jurisdictions should consult lawyers when approaching this issue, the Giffords center cites several aspects that make for a good common-sense state law regarding lost or stolen firearms:

 

The owners should be required to raise the alarm as soon as possible once they learn their guns are lost or stolen.

 

The legal duty to report starts once the owner knew, or should have known, about the loss or the theft.

 

Those who lost guns or suffered thefts before the law took effect should be given a reasonable deadline for reporting those losses and thefts.

 

The law on reporting losses and thefts should apply to all firearms, not just assault weapons or handguns.

 

Owners should face civil liabilities for not reporting the loss or theft of a gun that is later used in a crime.

 

Requiring owners to report losses and thefts swiftly should be a condition of receiving a state gun license or registration, and failure to report losses and thefts soon after discovery should be enough to justify yanking those permissions.

 

 

FWIW, federal law does not require individual gun owners to report–but it does require firearms dealers who suffer thefts or losses from their inventories to speak up. Right now, we at OTYCD feel it best to ask you to focus on getting state-level laws passed to fix this problem.

 

 

 

Visit the Giffords Law Center to Prevent Gun Violence:

lawcenter.giffords.org

 

 

Donate to the center:

https://giffordslawcenter.networkforgood.com/projects/38759-giffords-law-center-to-prevent-gun-violence

 

 

Like it on Facebook:

https://www.facebook.com/giffords/

 

 

Follow it on Twitter:

@GiffordsCourage

 

 

Subscribe to One Thing You Can Do by clicking the blue button on the upper right or checking the About & Subscribe page. And tell your friends about the blog!

 

 

See a January 2018 PBS Newshour transcript that notes in passing that 39 states do not require gun owners to report lost or stolen guns (scroll down a little):

https://www.pbs.org/newshour/show/gun-owning-group-in-oregon-advocates-for-firearm-safety

 

 

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.

Action Alerts · Call Your Senators · Call Your State Legislators · Online Privacy, Net Neutrality

Call Your Senators and State Legislators to Defend Net Neutrality TODAY IS THE FCC ROLLBACK DEADLINE, FOLKS

Call your MoCs and defend the principle of net neutrality, which ensures equal access to the Internet for all. The Federal Communications Commission could move to start repeal on April 23, 2018 (TODAY! So! Call if you haven’t called yet, dammit!).

 

We at OTYCD have written about defending net neutrality many times in the past. The current urgency stems from the FCC’s vote to repeal it earlier this year. We have until April 23, 2018, and then the agency can embark on the rollback.

 

Celeste Pewter (who you should be following at @Celeste_Pewter) did a good overview of the situation recently on Twitter. We are reproducing her April 4 tweets here:

 

Let’s continue to make a strong push for at the federal level. I’m alarmed we’ve stopped talking about it. Here’s a recap: A) Markey’s [Massachusetts Senator Ed Markey] petition has 50 supporters. He needs one more. B) Congress returns on the 9th. C) The FCC rollback happens on 04/23.

 

If Markey’s petition passes the Senate, TBD if it can pass the House. However, this doesn’t mean we shouldn’t try. Script:

 

At the same time, states are trying to think of ways to pass their own laws. IS your state onboard? If you live in a state like CT, are you aware your bill was defeated? Are you calling to protest? (CC: )

 

She included a link to a Gizmodo story on the Connecticut situation: https://gizmodo.com/connecticut-republicans-kill-net-neutrality-bill-throug-1824280826

 

Here’s a script to either ask your state electeds to introduce Net Neutrality legislation, or vote in favor. The world isn’t going to end on April 23rd, but it’s important we encourage our electeds to act on when it’s a fresh political issue.

 

 

We have 19 days before the FCC rolls back . Mark your calendars for April 23rd. Spread the word. Act on both the state and federal level. Let’s make sure Chairman Pai doesn’t get the satisfaction of winning.

 

 

For the reasons Pewter cites, we at OTYCD will devote one weekday post to defending Net Neutrality this week, next week, and on Monday April 23, 2018.

 

Please call your senators. If they’re Dems or Indies, thank them for supporting Markey’s bill. If they’re Rs and they’re not Susan Collins of Maine, ask your Senators to get on board.

 

We only need one Republican senator to join Collins for Markey’s bill to succeed.

 

As for state legislative efforts–An April 4, 2018 report from the National Conference of State Legislatures (NCSL) said that 28 states had introduced legislation requiring internet service providers (ISPs) to uphold net neutrality or aspects of it.

 

The report included an alphabetical list, by state, of net neutrality bills across the country. Find your state by scrolling down:

http://www.ncsl.org/ncsl-in-dc/publications-and-resources/net-neutrality-legislation-in-states.aspx

 

If your state legislature is on the case or has already passed a good bill, call your state senator and state house rep to thank them.

 

If your state has tried and failed, ask your state legislators to try again. If your state hasn’t done anything to protect net neutrality, ask your state legislators to step up.

 

Here also is a February 2018 Ars Technica piece on state efforts to defend net neutrality:

https://arstechnica.com/tech-policy/2018/02/to-kill-net-neutrality-fcc-might-have-to-fight-more-than-half-of-us-states/

 

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 · Call Your Senators · Call Your State Legislators · Online Privacy, Net Neutrality · Senate Bills, Federal

Call Your Senators and State Legislators to Defend Net Neutrality (Yes, Again), AND While Talking to Your Senators, Demand They Protect Mueller and Rosenstein (Yes, Again)

Call your senators and state legislators and defend the principle of net neutrality, which ensures equal access to the Internet for all. The Federal Communications Commission could move to start repeal on April 23, 2018.

Also, while talking to your senators, demand that they move to protect Special Counsel Robert Mueller and Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein. 

 

We at OTYCD have written about defending net neutrality many times in the past. The current urgency stems from the FCC’s vote to repeal it earlier this year. We have until April 23, 2018, and then the agency can embark on the rollback.

 

A note: Scroll down a ways if you want to jump to the information about demanding protection for Mueller and Rosenstein.

 

Celeste Pewter (who you should be following at @Celeste_Pewter) did a good overview of the situation recently on Twitter. We are reproducing her April 4 tweets here:

 

Let’s continue to make a strong push for at the federal level. I’m alarmed we’ve stopped talking about it. Here’s a recap: A) Markey’s [Massachusetts Senator Ed Markey] petition has 50 supporters. He needs one more. B) Congress returns on the 9th. C) The FCC rollback happens on 04/23.

 

If Markey’s petition passes the Senate, TBD if it can pass the House. However, this doesn’t mean we shouldn’t try. Script:

 

At the same time, states are trying to think of ways to pass their own laws. IS your state onboard? If you live in a state like CT, are you aware your bill was defeated? Are you calling to protest? (CC: )

 

She included a link to a Gizmodo story on the Connecticut situation: https://gizmodo.com/connecticut-republicans-kill-net-neutrality-bill-throug-1824280826

 

Here’s a script to either ask your state electeds to introduce Net Neutrality legislation, or vote in favor. The world isn’t going to end on April 23rd, but it’s important we encourage our electeds to act on when it’s a fresh political issue.

 

 

We have just days before the FCC rolls back . Mark your calendars for April 23rd. Spread the word. Act on both the state and federal level. Let’s make sure Chairman Pai doesn’t get the satisfaction of winning.

 

 

For the reasons Pewter cites, we at OTYCD will devote one weekday post to defending Net Neutrality this week, next week, and on Monday April 23, 2018.

 

Please call your senators. If they’re Dems or Indies, thank them for supporting Markey’s bill. If they’re Rs and they’re not Susan Collins of Maine, ask your Senators to get on board.

 

We only need one Republican senator to join Collins for Markey’s bill to succeed.

 

As for state legislative efforts–An April 4, 2018 report from the National Conference of State Legislatures (NCSL) said that 28 states had introduced legislation requiring internet service providers (ISPs) to uphold net neutrality or aspects of it.

 

The report included an alphabetical list, by state, of net neutrality bills across the country. Find your state by scrolling down:

http://www.ncsl.org/ncsl-in-dc/publications-and-resources/net-neutrality-legislation-in-states.aspx

 

If your state legislature is on the case or has already passed a good bill, call your state senator and state house rep to thank them.

 

If your state has tried and failed, ask your state legislators to try again. If your state hasn’t done anything to protect net neutrality, ask your state legislators to step up.

 

Here also is a February 2018 Ars Technica piece on state efforts to defend net neutrality:

https://arstechnica.com/tech-policy/2018/02/to-kill-net-neutrality-fcc-might-have-to-fight-more-than-half-of-us-states/

 

Now the demand to call your senators and demand protection for Mueller and Rosenstein. Again.

 

This is a reaction to Mitch McConnell’s evident decision to stop the Special Counsel Independence and Integrity Act from proceeding to the Senate Floor.

 

Celeste Pewter (@Celeste_Pewter), who is perennially quick on the draw with this stuff, laid out why this is bad and why we need to scream about this, specifically, in a series of April 17 tweets:

 

All, please pay attention to this re: protection for Mueller. Remember, Senate Judiciary is taking up the bill on Thursday. But if this is McConnell’s stance, it’s going to have trouble making it to the floor. Please call your Senators again, particularly GOP ones.

 

Call your Senators and protest. Script in TL. Seriously, all. Not kidding about this. If we don’t have a loud response now, then we’re basically letting the GOP know it’s okay to do this. And they will. Over and over.

 

If we don’t push back now, we’d also be setting the groundwork for the GOP to give a collective shrug, if/when Trump does decide to fire . Let your Senators know in no uncertain terms how NOT okay McConnell’s decision is. Amended script TK.

 

And here is her amended script:

 

 

In addition to following Pewter on Twitter (again, her handle is @Celeste_Pewter) you can support her in other ways.

 

After you call your elected representatives on these two topics, tweet about the experience using the #ICalledMyReps hashtag.

 

Pewter founded The Road to 2018, an organization devoted to defending Democratic Senators who are vulnerable and up for re-election this year. See our post on it:

https://onethingyoucando.com/2018/02/25/support-the-road-to-2018-which-defends-democratic-senators/

 

Subscribe to Pewter’s peerless newsletter, It’s Time To Fight:

http://itstimetofight.weebly.com

 

 

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!

Call Your State Legislators · Stand Up for Civilization · Stand Up for Norms

Fight Back If Your State Wants to Pass A Law That Lets Drivers Escape Liability for Hitting Protestors

This OTYCD entry originally posted in August 2017.

Is your state working on a law that would lighten or lift punishments for drivers who hit protestors with their cars? Call your state legislators and tell them to vote no or stop progress on that bill. 

 

Months ago, in the depths of winter 2017, we at OTYCD were grossed out enough to ask readers who live in North Dakota to oppose HB 1203, a bill that would lessen legal penalties for drivers who hit protestors with their cars:

https://onethingyoucando.com/2017/04/21/oppose-a-north-dakota-state-bill-that-would-cheapen-the-lives-of-protesters/

 

It failed to pass the North Dakota house by a too-close-for-comfort margin of 50 to 41. But apparently some sick individuals who got elected to state office elsewhere in the country thought that HB 1203 was a good idea and introduced their own versions in their home legislatures. (You get one guess as to what their party affiliations are.)

 

According to a CNN story linked below, these five states have joined North Dakota in pursuing bills that would make it easier for drivers to hurt or kill protestors with their vehicles and escape punishment or receive what amounts to a slap on the wrist. The bill numbers are included:

 

 

Rhode Island, HB 5690. Introduced in March but has since been held, per the state’s House Judiciary Committee, for more study.

 

 

North Carolina, HB 330. Introduced in March. It passed the house in April on a 67-48 vote and is now with the state’s Senate Committee on Rules and Operations. It could proceed from there to broader consideration in the state senate.

 

 

Tennessee, SB 944 and HB 668. The house version is dead, but the Senate version is still alive, sitting with the Senate Judiciary Committee.

 

 

And so you’re aware:

 

Florida‘s senate and house introduced bills along these lines in February and March, respectively. Both have since died.

 

The Texas house introduced HB 250 last month during its legislative special session. It was referred to the House Judiciary and Civil Jurisprudence Committee and was still there when the session ended on Aug 15.

 

So, what should you do?

 

If you live in any of the four states where the bills are not-quite-dead, call your state legislators and make it damn clear that you expect them to let these bills die in committee or vote against them if they come up. If your reps happen to be sponsors of one of these bills, ask them to remove their support. If you live in one of the two states where bills were introduced, but died, call and make it clear that you expect the bills to stay dead. And if you live anywhere else? Call your state reps, mention these bills, and make it clear that you want them to stop any such bill before it starts.

 

Here’s how to find your state legislators. You have a state senator and a state house rep. Plug your street address into this search engine to find them:

whoaremyrepresentatives.org

 

 

Sample script for state legislators who are from the four states that have not-quite-dead-yet bills: “I am (Firstname Lastname, from town, zip code). I am asking state senator/house representative (Lastname) to oppose (Bill ID goes here), which would shield drivers from the consequences of accidentally hitting protesters who block a roadway. It was a sick idea before that guy attacked those protestors in Charlottesville, and it’s an even worse idea now. Please do everything you can to stop its progress. If you are a sponsor, please remove your support, thank you.”

 

 

Sample script for state legislators from the two states where bills were introduced, but died: “I am (Firstname Lastname, from town, zip code). I realize that (Bill ID goes here) has essentially died and can’t become law in the current session, but I am asking state senator/house representative (Lastname) to make sure it stays dead and is not revived in a future session. The bill would have shielded drivers from the consequences of accidentally hitting protesters who block a roadway. It was a sick idea before that guy attacked those protestors in Charlottesville, and it’s an even worse idea now. Please do everything you can to stop its progress. If (State Senator/House Rep Lastname) co-sponsored the bill, I am asking (him/her) to please withdraw support. Thank you.”

 

 

Sample script for those of us in the 44 other states: “I am (Firstname Lastname, from town, zip code). In the wake of the horrifying car attack on protestors in Charlottesville, I learned that six states had been pursuing bills that would lessen or remove penalties on drivers who hit or killed protestors with their cars. I realize there is no such bill moving through our state legislature now but I am asking State Senator/House Rep (Lastname) to oppose such a bill if anyone tries to introduce one. Thank you.”

 

 

See the CNN story from August 19, 2017 on states’ efforts to lessen penalties on drivers who injure protestors:

http://www.cnn.com/2017/08/18/us/legislation-protects-drivers-injure-protesters/index.html

 

 

See a similar story from a British paper (warning: It includes a graphic image from the Charlottesville attack):

http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/americas/us-politics/charlottesville-states-introduced-bills-laws-protect-drivers-run-protesters-texas-florida-tennessee-a7902546.html

 

 

Read about backlash to these bills after the terrorist incident in Charlottesville that killed Heather Heyer and injured 19:

http://abcnews.go.com/Politics/wireStory/backlash-gop-bills-shield-drivers-hit-protesters-49234719

 

 

Read state-level coverage of various laws (warning–some of these stories include links to eyewitness videos taken of the attack in Charlottesville):

http://www.tennessean.com/story/news/politics/2017/02/10/bill-would-make-drivers-immune-civil-liability-protests/97743390/

http://www.miamiherald.com/news/nation-world/national/article167065952.html

http://www.latimes.com/nation/la-na-bills-protest-criminal-20170201-story.html

 

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 · Call Your Senators · Call Your State Legislators · Online Privacy, Net Neutrality

Call Your Senators and State Legislators to Defend Net Neutrality (Yes, Again)

Call your MoCs and defend the principle of net neutrality, which ensures equal access to the Internet for all. The Federal Communications Commission could move to start repeal on April 23, 2018.

 

We at OTYCD have written about defending net neutrality many times in the past. The current urgency stems from the FCC’s vote to repeal it earlier this year. We have until April 23, 2018, and then the agency can embark on the rollback.

 

Celeste Pewter (who you should be following at @Celeste_Pewter) did a good overview of the situation recently on Twitter. We are reproducing her April 4 tweets here:

 

Let’s continue to make a strong push for at the federal level. I’m alarmed we’ve stopped talking about it. Here’s a recap: A) Markey’s [Massachusetts Senator Ed Markey] petition has 50 supporters. He needs one more. B) Congress returns on the 9th. C) The FCC rollback happens on 04/23.

 

If Markey’s petition passes the Senate, TBD if it can pass the House. However, this doesn’t mean we shouldn’t try. Script:

 

At the same time, states are trying to think of ways to pass their own laws. IS your state onboard? If you live in a state like CT, are you aware your bill was defeated? Are you calling to protest? (CC: )

 

She included a link to a Gizmodo story on the Connecticut situation: https://gizmodo.com/connecticut-republicans-kill-net-neutrality-bill-throug-1824280826

 

Here’s a script to either ask your state electeds to introduce Net Neutrality legislation, or vote in favor. The world isn’t going to end on April 23rd, but it’s important we encourage our electeds to act on when it’s a fresh political issue.

 

 

We have 19 days before the FCC rolls back . Mark your calendars for April 23rd. Spread the word. Act on both the state and federal level. Let’s make sure Chairman Pai doesn’t get the satisfaction of winning.

 

 

For the reasons Pewter cites, we at OTYCD will devote one weekday post to defending Net Neutrality this week, next week, and on Monday April 23, 2018.

 

Please call your senators. If they’re Dems or Indies, thank them for supporting Markey’s bill. If they’re Rs and they’re not Susan Collins of Maine, ask your Senators to get on board.

 

We only need one Republican senator to join Collins for Markey’s bill to succeed.

 

As for state legislative efforts–An April 4, 2018 report from the National Conference of State Legislatures (NCSL) said that 28 states had introduced legislation requiring internet service providers (ISPs) to uphold net neutrality or aspects of it.

 

The report included an alphabetical list, by state, of net neutrality bills across the country. Find your state by scrolling down:

http://www.ncsl.org/ncsl-in-dc/publications-and-resources/net-neutrality-legislation-in-states.aspx

 

If your state legislature is on the case or has already passed a good bill, call your state senator and state house rep to thank them.

 

If your state has tried and failed, ask your state legislators to try again. If your state hasn’t done anything to protect net neutrality, ask your state legislators to step up.

 

Here also is a February 2018 Ars Technica piece on state efforts to defend net neutrality:

https://arstechnica.com/tech-policy/2018/02/to-kill-net-neutrality-fcc-might-have-to-fight-more-than-half-of-us-states/

 

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!

Call Your State Legislators · Community Activism

Urge Your State Legislators To Pass Laws That Stop Police Forces From Accepting Surplus Military Equipment

This OTYCD entry originally posted in September 2017.

 

Contact your state legislators–your state senator and state house rep–and urge them to pass laws that prevent your state’s police departments from accepting surplus military combat gear that the federal government might offer to their forces. 

 

In August 2017, Trump issued an executive order that reversed a 2015 executive order of President Obama’s which had barred American police forces from accepting castoff military gear. Before Obama’s order, the police had access to some heavy-duty stuff: armored vehicles, grenade launchers, bayonets, and more.

 

Obama had issued his order partly in response to concerns about how the local police had handled protests in Ferguson, Missouri after a white police officer killed Michael Brown. In explaining why Trump was lifting the ban, U.S. Attorney Jeff Sessions stated, “Those restrictions went too far. We will not put superficial concerns above public safety.”

 

We can’t stop the feds from offering the military gear to state police departments. But we can ask state legislators to pass laws that stop police departments from accepting it.

 

Back in March 2015, Montana state legislator Nicholas Schwaderer, a Republican, wrote just such a bill. It passed with bipartisan support, and Montana’s governor, Democrat Steve Bullock, signed it into law.

 

First, find the contact information for your state representatives. If you don’t know who they are, plug your address into this search engine, and it’ll tell you:

http://www.whoaremyrepresentatives.org

 

State representatives are far easier to reach directly than federal representatives, though some do have an intern or a staffer. State reps are also far less likely to be stratified in their views–conservative Democrats and liberal Republicans still exist on the state level.

 

Here is a suggested script for calling or writing your state reps:

“Dear (Senator/House Rep Lastname,) I am (Firstname Lastname, from town, zip code). I am (calling/emailing) to ask you to write a bill that would prevent state police departments from receiving castoff military gear, such as bayonets, armored vehicles, and grenade launchers. I believe that the state’s police departments should not have the opportunity to use equipment designed for warfare against the citizens they are supposed to protect and serve. Writing a bill that prevents the police from accepting military gear from the federal government will keep us all safer. Thank you.”

 

Read more about Trump’s executive order on castoff military gear:

http://www.bbc.com/news/world-us-canada-41078158

http://www.npr.org/2017/08/28/546743742/trump-administration-lifts-limits-on-military-hardware-for-police

http://www.slate.com/blogs/the_slatest/2017/08/28/cops_can_already_get_military_gear_trump_s_new_policy_ensures_they_can_use.html

 

Read about the Montana bill and its success:

https://newrepublic.com/article/144600/trump-wants-re-militarize-police-montana-none-it

http://mtpr.org/post/bill-would-stop-montana-police-using-military-surplus

http://mtpr.org/post/montana-republican-praises-presidents-restrictions-military-surplus-police

 

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!