Common-sense Gun Laws · Community Activism

Learn About Gun Owners for Responsible Ownership

Learn about Gun Owners for Responsible Ownership (GOFRO), an Oregon-based gun safety group.

 

Paul Kemp, a gun owner who grew up with guns, launched the group after losing a brother-in-law in a December 2012 attack on a Portland, Oregon mall. The 22-year-old shooter used a semi-automatic rifle to kill two people and injure a third.

 

GOFRO supports common-sense gun laws. It asks its members to take the following pledge:

 

“I will practice safe storage.  I will keep my firearms and ammunition locked and separate.

I will support universal background check requirements.  I will not sell or buy a firearm without a background check.

I will support the rights of my fellow citizens to be free from intimidation by the open display of firearms in public.  I will avoid the unnecessary carrying of firearms in public, particularly in places where children are present.

I will always make gun safety a priority in my home, in the field or on the range.”

 

 

 

 

Visit the GOFRO website:

http://www.responsibleownership.org

 

 

Take the GOFRO pledge:

http://www.responsibleownership.org/take_the_pledge

 

 

See its ‘Research/Read More’ page:

http://www.responsibleownership.org/research_read_more

 

 

Donate to Gun Owners for Responsible Ownership:

https://oregongunsafety.nationbuilder.com/donate

 

 

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!

 

 

Volunteer for GOFRO:

http://www.responsibleownership.org/volunteer

 

 

Like its Facebook page:

https://www.facebook.com/GunOwnersForResponsibleOwnership/

 

 

Read a transcript of a January 2018 PBS Newshour interview with the founder of GOFRO (you can also watch the video, which is above the transcript):

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

 

A Note: OTYCD has devoted several posts to common-sense gun laws and gun safety, and will continue to do so.

 

That does not mean, however, that we want to ban all guns. We don’t, and we never have. We are pro-responsible gun ownership. We support people who fully understand the responsibilities of gun ownership, and who show a healthy respect for guns, and whose actions consistently show that understanding and respect.

 

As of February 2018, it’s obvious to most Americans that its gun culture is horrifically, grievously, and unconscionably borked, and its gun laws need to improve ASAP. Here’s hoping the students from Marjory Stoneman Douglas provide the push we need to truly fix things at last.

Community Activism · Fighting Bigotry, Racism, Sexism, Homophobia, Transphobia... · First Amendment, Defending a Free Press · Vote with your Dollars

Donate to the Ida B. Wells Fellowship and Support Journalists of Color

Donate to the Ida B. Wells Fellowship at the Investigative Fund and support promising journalists who are people of color.

 

Named in honor of Wells, the African-American journalist who investigated and published reports on lynching in America, the one-year fellowship provides $12,000, mentoring, and travel expenses to a reporter of color working on their first substantial investigative story.

 

One of the goals of the fellowship is to help diversify newsrooms. According to the American Society of Newsroom Editors, less than 13 percent of newsroom staffers and 10  percent of supervisors are non-white. Fewer than 10 percent of newsroom journalists have a working-class or poor background.

 

The Ida B. Wells Fellowship is offered by the Investigative Fund, which is in turn a project of The Nation Institute, which is devoted to boosting the independent press as well as advancing civil rights and social justice. The Wells fellowship is not restricted to journalists of color.

 

Read about the Ida B. Wells Fellowship:

https://www.theinvestigativefund.org/about/special-funds/ida-b-wells-fellowship/

https://www.documentcloud.org/documents/3990701-Ida-B-Wells-FAQ-040516.html

 

 

Donate to the Investigative Fund (specify it’s for the Ida B. Wells Fellowship):

https://donatenow.networkforgood.org/1441042

 

 

Learn about the Investigative Fund’s mission:

https://www.theinvestigativefund.org/about/mission/

 

 

Apply for the Ida B. Wells Fellowship for 2019:

https://nationinstitute.submittable.com/submit/71612/ida-b-wells-fellowship

 

 

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 · Community Activism

Subscribe to 3NoTrump!

Subscribe to 3NoTrump! an Action Alliance member that gives you at least three actions you can take every week to stop Trump and his agenda.

In bridge, 3 No Trump is a winning bid. A bunch of bridge-loving anti-Trump folks funneled their activism into 3NoTrump!, a weekly list that gives you at least three useful actions to take.

There’s usually one of each of these three types of actions:

 

Quick phone calls

Organizations to support

Personal actions

 

See the 3NoTrump website:

http://www.3notrump.org

 

Subscribe to 3NoTrump!:

http://www.3notrump.org/subscribe/

 

Like its Facebook page:

https://www.facebook.com/3NoTrump/

 

Follow it on Twitter:

@real3NoTrump

 

 

 

 

Action Alerts · Community Activism · Stand Up for Civilization · Stand Up for Norms · Use Your Power, Recruit Friends · Vote with your Dollars

Subscribe to My Civic Workout

Subscribe to My Civic Workout, an activist outlet that delivers twice-weekly action items broken down into things that demand a bit of your time, more of your time, and a bit more of your time than that.

My Civic Workout is one of the many online activism outlets that sprung up after the November 2016 election. It belongs to Action Alliance, as does One Thing You Can Do. But it doesn’t seem to get the play or the recognition that some of the others do, so we’re giving it a blog post.

My Civic Workout does an admirable job of picking a timely resistance-related topic and breaking it down into three actions that demand varying amounts of investment.

The “Five Minute Workout” is quick and simple (but not necessarily easy)–donate money, read a short article, watch a video.

The “Ten Minute Workout” is more involved. Read a longer, more densely written article, such as a white paper or an academic article. Type your address into a database and learn about gun deaths in your area, and share it with friends and family. Call your senators, using a script offered by MCW, and advocate for a bill.

The “30 Minute Workout” is even more involved, and sometimes reminds you to do stuff that you should have done ages ago anyway. For example, in the wake of Harvey, it suggested drawing up a comprehensive, personalized disaster plan. During the effort to defend Obamacare, it encouraged setting up a phone tree–recruiting friends to call their senators, and having them recruit friends in turn. One of its post-Charlottesville tasks was to check an interactive map and see if there were Confederate monuments on public land near you, and if so, urge local officials to remove them.

The twice-weekly email finishes with a selection of nice little digestifs: “Second Wind,” a nugget of wisdom related to the overall theme of the email, and “Need a Little Joy?” a bit of pure fun.

My Civic Workout also stands out among the post-2016-election activist sites for its consistency. Sarah Jane, OTYCD leader, has been a subscriber since January at least and she can’t recall MCW missing a week or otherwise dropping the ball. The graphics are elegant, well-chosen, and pleasant to look at. *We say check it out.

 

Visit the website for My Civic Workout:

https://www.mycivicworkout.com

 

Subscribe to My Civic Workout:

https://www.mycivicworkout.com

 

Suggest a topic to My Civic Workout or otherwise contact them:

https://www.mycivicworkout.com/contact/

 

Meet the My Civic Workout team:

https://www.mycivicworkout.com/theteam/

 

Donate to My Civic Workout:

https://www.mycivicworkout.com/support/

 

Like it on Facebook:

https://www.facebook.com/mycivicworkout/

 

Follow it on Twitter:

@MyCivicWorkout

 

And while you’re at it, check out Action Alliance, which accepted My Civic Workout and One Thing You Can Do as members who offer and encourage post-2016-election actions.:

https://www.actionalliance.co/#members

 

*My Civic Workout didn’t ask us to write about it. As of late-ish 2017, when we wrote this post, neither MCW or any member of its six-member team followed or subscribed to OTYCD (at least as far as we know). We’ve interacted with whoever speaks for MCW on Twitter. We wrote about MCW because we like it and thought you might like it too, simple as that.

Community Activism · Fighting Bigotry, Racism, Sexism, Homophobia, Transphobia... · Stand Up for Civilization · Stand Up for Norms · Support Immigrants and Refugees

Tell Your World: Hate Has No Home Here

Tell the world you live in that you value all races, religions, and nationalities with a Hate Has No Home Here sign.

You’ve probably seen Hate Has No Home Here signs in your favorite shops or maybe even decorating your neighbors’ lawns. It springs from a Chicago-based project of the same name and it endeavors to combat hate speech and hateful behavior with public declarations that make clear that it won’t be tolerated.

If a yard sign isn’t your thing, you can opt for a window poster or a magnet.

 

Learn about the Hate Has No Home Here initiative:

https://hatehasnohomehere.wordpress.com

 

Purchase signs and magnets from the HHNHH web site:

https://hatehasnohome.org/index.html

 

Like HHNHH on Facebook:

https://www.facebook.com/HateHasNoHomeHere/

 

Follow it on Twitter:

@HateHasNoHome

Read, Educate Yourself, Prepare

Read This Blog Post on Living Under a Narcissistic Boss

Read Lessons I Learned Working for a Narcissist and What That Means for Il Trumpe, a December 2016 post on Mike the Mad Biologist’s blog.

Apologies for missing this initially; I only found it by chasing a tweet chain that lead from Steve Silberman to John Scalzi to Mike the Mad Biologist in early September.

Any number of people, with and without medical qualifications, have identified Donald Trump as a narcissist and tried to unpack what that means.

Mad the Mike Biologist speaks as someone who worked under a classic Narcissist, as delineated in Stanley Bing’s book, Crazy Bosses. It’s not a clinical work–Bing is the pseudonym of a business writer–but Mike found it useful nonetheless, and so did his co-workers, with whom he shared Bing’s description of a narcissist.

We’re pointing you to Mike’s post because we feel it’s the sharpest description of a narcissist we’ve come across, and we feel Mike’s observations are the most useful on the subject. It’s also held up solidly, though he wrote it when Trump was president-elect. He shows what Mattis, Kelly, and the rest must be going through.

 

We’re also going to pull out and amplify the last paragraph of Mike’s post, because it shows us all how to deal with President Narcissist. Spoiler alert! You need to carry on as you have been doing–resist, dammit:

“Our refusal to bow before his fantastical order is vital. It will enrage him at times–which can be useful for those of us who then can conciliate him as it makes them appear to be solving his problem. But opposition will also cause him to make mistakes and lash out at those near him. His administration will collapse under its own contradictions, though not without a strong push from us. In the meanwhile, resistance will remind us what we are fighting for. It will keep us sane and ethical. The act of resistance is important for the sake of those who resist–and for those who are unable to do so.”

 

Read Lessons I Learned Working for a Narcissist and What That Means for Il Trumpe (you’ll find the email subscription button for his blog about halfway down on the right side of the page, just above Categories):

Lessons I Learned Working For A Narcissist And What That Means For Il Trumpe

 

Follow Mike the Mad Biologist on Twitter:

@mikethemadbiol

Call Your Members of Congress · Ethics · Supreme Court of the United States (SCOTUS)

Support Elizabeth Warren’s Call to Create a Code of Ethics for Members of the Supreme Court

Note from Sarah Jane: I wrote and queued this post before Brett Kavanaugh was nominated to SCOTUS. Senator Warren’s call, and the bill drafted by Senators Blumenthal and Murphy are that much more needed now.

 

Support Massachusetts Senator Elizabeth Warren’s call to create a code of ethics for sitting members of the Supreme Court of the United States (SCOTUS).

 

It might surprise you to learn this, but the nine judges who serve the Supreme Court are not bound by an explicit, formal code of ethics.

 

As with so many other things in a small-d democratic government, norms prevail. It is simply assumed that Supreme Court judges would conduct themselves impeccably, and would not do anything that would make them look partisan.

 

Well, guess what? Not all of them do, and the problem predates the Trump administration.

 

The late justice Antonin Scalia attended political retreats run by the notorious right-wing donor Charles Koch. He dined and hunted with then-Vice President Dick Cheney and declined to recuse himself from a SCOTUS case that involved him. He accepted more sponsored trips than any of his contemporaries on the court, and when he passed away in 2016, he was found dead in bed at a Texas hunting lodge owned by someone who had recently been involved in a potential SCOTUS case.

 

Warren complained after Neil Gorsuch, the man Trump appointed to Scalia’s seat after the GOP schemed to prevent hearings on President Obama’s choice, Merrick Garland, spoke at a September 2017 lunch at a Trump-branded hotel that was sponsored by the Fund for American Studies, a conservative group.

 

Without an ethics code in place to guide him, Gorsuch was free to say yes, but it would have been smarter for him to decline. It had ‘bad optics’ written all over it.

 

The fact remains, however–judges on lower courts are bound by ethical codes, but SCOTUS members are not. The example of Scalia, a smart man who stupidly dismissed claims of conflict of interest in the case involving Cheney by saying, “I do not believe my impartiality can reasonably be questioned,” and “If it is reasonable to think that a Supreme Court Justice can be bought so cheap, the Nation is in deeper trouble than I had imagined.”

 

You can be the most principled, ethical person who ever walked the earth and if you enjoyed the extracurriculars that Scalia did, it’d still look hinky. Because dammit, they look hinky. Why even go there?

 

With Trump stampeding norms like they’re houses of cards and Jenga stacks, it’s probably time to spell out, explicitly, what so many other past and current SCOTUS members understand without needing explainer documents. It’s time for a SCOTUS code of conduct.

 

Back in April 2017, Senators Richard Blumenthal and Chris Murphy, along with House Rep Louise Slaughter, introduced the Supreme Court Ethics Act of 2017. If passed, it would address the problem. The bill is S. 835 in the Senate and H.R. 1960 in the house.

 

Sample script for your MoCs: “Dear (House Rep/Senator Lastname,) I am (Firstname Lastname, of town, state). I am calling to ask you to support Senator Elizabeth Warren’s call to create a formal code of ethics for sitting members of the Supreme Court of the United States (SCOTUS), and to ask you to support bills now in Congress that would create the code. Both bills are named the Supreme Court Ethics Act of 2017. In the Senate, the bill is S. 835, and in the house, it’s H.R. 1960.

We live in charged times, and Neil Gorsuch agreeing to speak to a conservative group at a Trump hotel property is the sort of thing he can do, but shouldn’t. His accepting the offer shows bad judgment on his part, and the last thing we want in a SCOTUS judge is bad judgment. Surprisingly, while members of lower courts are formally bound by a code of ethics, the nine who sit at SCOTUS are not. Given the off-duty adventures of the late Antonin Scalia and others, I think it’s time to support the creation of a set of binding guidelines that detail what SCOTUS members can and can’t do. It would improve the reputation of the court by giving it a means to show the public that it is fighting partisanship and the perception of partisanship. Thank you for listening.”

 

 

Read about Gorsuch’s speech, Senator Warren’s reaction, and calls to create an ethics code for sitting SCOTUS members:

http://thehill.com/regulation/court-battles/352920-gorsuch-speaks-at-trump-hotel-event-despite-criticism

http://thehill.com/homenews/senate/358163-warren-gorsuchs-links-to-koch-brothers-are-an-ethics-problem

https://www.politico.com/magazine/story/2017/11/01/supreme-court-ethics-problem-elizabeth-warren-opinion-215772

 

 

Visit the website of Fix the Court, a nonpartisan advocacy group that calls for ethics rules for SCOTUS:

https://fixthecourt.com

 

 

Like Fix the Court on Facebook:

https://www.facebook.com/FixTheCourt/

 

 

Follow it on Twitter:

@FixTheCourt

 

 

Donate to Fix the Court:

https://fixthecourt.com/donate/

 

 

See the GovTrack entries on The Supreme Court Ethics Act of 2017, both the Senate and the house versions:

https://www.govtrack.us/congress/bills/115/hr1960

https://www.govtrack.us/congress/bills/115/s835

 

 

Read about the late Antonin Scalia’s adventures away from the court, and his refusal to recuse himself in the Cheney case. In particular, see the 2016 New York Times article that included a sidebar that showed how often the nine justices travel:

http://www.cnn.com/2004/LAW/03/18/scalia.recusal/