Community Activism · Health Care · Read, Educate Yourself, Prepare

Learn to Use a Tourniquet, and Carry One With You, Just In Case

Learn to use a tourniquet, and carry one with you, just in case.


Former Senator and full-time Republican fool Rick Santorum was deservedly smothered under a heap of scorn in March 2018 after suggesting that students should learn cardio-pulminary resuscitation (CPR) in case they found themselves and their friends under attack in a school shooting.


Several doctors slammed Santorum for obvious idiocy, but Jo Buyske, executive director of the American Board of Surgery, summed it up best in a tweet that said, “Mr. Santorum, CPR doesn’t work if all the blood is on the ground.”


Santorum’s underlying impulse wasn’t wrong. Knowing what to do in a borked situation can help you get through it. He just reached for the wrong solution.


The best way to stop all the blood from pooling on the ground is to apply a tourniquet. It’s a temporary solution that stops a victim from bleeding out before medical help can arrive.


Granted, a tourniquet can be as useless as CPR when a victim has been shot multiple times by an assailant wielding an AR-15. But someone who’s been wounded in an arm or a leg could live to tell the tale if someone ties on a tourniquet in time.


Applying a tourniquet is a skill that needs to be learned. If you don’t know what you’re doing, you can make things worse.


First, you need to purchase a tourniquet. The Combat Application Tourniquet (CAT) is well-regarded, as is the SOF Tactical Tourniquet-Wide (SOFTT-W). Both are available through Rescue Essentials.



The CAT:






Then you need to learn how to apply a tourniquet. Here’s a page from the Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH) website, written by Dr. David R. King, who tended to victims of the 2013 Boston Marathon bombing:



You can also review the instructions offered by Stop the Bleeding, a government-sponsored awareness campaign launched in 2015 to encourage everyday people to teach themselves how to handle a bleeding emergency before medical help arrives:



If you have a bit more to spend, you might consider a Concealed Carry Trauma Kit, which contains a tourniquet as well as a pair of gloves and a hemostatic agent–a substance that stops bleeding. The kit is designed to fit in a back pocket (hence the reference to ‘concealed carry’).



Read about Rick Santorum making a damn fool of himself and getting flayed by doctors who know better:



Also, read an October 2017 WBUR interview with a volunteer from Stop the Bleeding on the power of the tourniquet:



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Start a 2018 Fund

This OTYCD entry originally posted in January 2017, but with the mid-terms approaching and the stakes rising, we are reposting past posts that discuss key things you can do to push back against Trump. And yes, even if you only start saving now, and only save $2 per week, it still matters and can still have an effect.


Start saving two dollars a week to fund political actions that will shape the 2018 midterms.


It doesn’t have to be two dollars. You can save more if you want. If you’re struggling, find a sum you can comfortably set aside, even if it’s just a quarter.


If you start saving two dollars per week now, you should have about one hundred set aside when the 2018 primaries crest the horizon.


The point is to develop the habit of squirreling away something every week to support your political efforts. You can define ‘political efforts’ as broadly as you wish. You can draw on your stash to donate to Congressional candidates. You can give to Planned Parenthood, Emily’s List, the Sierra Club, the Southern Poverty Law Center, or dozens of other worthy organizations that matter to you. Or you can use it as seed money for your own run for local office.


Budget for politics just as you’d budget for Christmas, or tithes, or a down payment on a house. Think long-term. Put away something every week, no matter how small.



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Save This Tool That Shows How Your Senators Voted on Trump’s Cabinet Appointments

This OTYCD entry originally posted in March 2017.

Save this web site that shows you how all 100 senators voted on Trump’s cabinet picks.

The web site below records how every senator voted on Trump’s cabinet choices:

You can sort the data to show just Republicans, just Democrats, just Independents, or everybody. The link above is set to everybody.

OTYCD will also repost this entry as we approach the 2018 midterms, but do bookmark it.

Thanks to @theonetruebix on Twitter for the tip and the link.




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Save This Tool:

This OTYCD entry originally posted in May 2017.


Bookmark What Do I Do About Trump, a clearing house of resistance resources.


Many anti-Trump lists, sites, services, and social media accounts have sprung up since the election. Most are good, but some are better.


What Do I Do About Trump, an all-volunteer effort, stands out for its depth and breadth. It’s the digital equivalent of a Trump resistance supermarket, except it’s a supermarket where half the aisles are full of cool stuff you heard of once and forgot about, or had no idea existed.


The site also stands apart from its competitors for offering two dedicated sections of note:


Inspiring Friends, which explicitly recognizes the value of recruiting your friends to join you in your activism


Protect Yourself, which gives you resources on how to protect yourself “if some of Trump’s campaign promises become reality”.


Fair warning: Set aside an afternoon and get your bookmarking finger ready. You’ll be disappearing down the rabbit hole, in a good way.



Visit the whatdoidoabouttrump site:



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Action Alerts · Elections · Vote with your Dollars

Sign On to It Starts Today and Help Fund ALL Democrats Up for Election in 2018

This OTYCD entry originally posted in July 2017.

Sign on to It Starts Today, a nonprofit PAC that will give money to ALL 468 Democrats up for election and re-election to the House and Senate in 2018.


The notion is this: You donate a minimum of $4.68 a month, every month, until we know who all the Democratic candidates are (aka once the primary candidates are chosen). That sum represents a penny for each of the 468 seats that are open in 2018–all 435 House seats and 33 Senate seats–but you can give more if you want.


Once the Democratic candidates are named, It Starts Today will send each a lump sum to start and then weekly payouts up until the election. Everyone gets the same amount, be they a high-profile Congressional legend or a greener-than-green rookie. Founder Jonathan Zucker hopes that through delivering the 468 candidates the same amount of funding, It Starts Today can lift the Democratic party’s fortunes overall. As of July 1, it had raised $453,000 for Democratic candidates.


Zucker has also estimated that if each person who donated to the campaigns of Bernie Sanders and Hillary Clinton gave $5 per month, starting in January 2017, It Starts Today could award $2.5 million to EACH 2018 Democratic candidate for Congress.


In the past, OTYCD advised readers to start a 2018 fund, and recommended putting away at least $2 per week with the ultimate aim of helping non-Trumpish candidates win or hold office. If you have trouble saving, or want to augment your saving efforts, It Starts Today might be just the thing for you.



See the It Starts Today webpage:



Like It Starts Today on Facebook:



Follow It Starts Today on Twitter:




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!



Read about the efforts of It Starts Today:



*Disclosure. Ben from It Starts Today emailed us in May 2017, told us about It Starts Today, and asked us to consider writing about it. We did, and we did.

Community Activism · Read, Educate Yourself, Prepare

Learn First Aid and CPR, or Refresh Your Skills

This OTYCD entry originally posted in August 2017.

Learn first aid and cardio-pulmonary resuscitation (CPR) or brush up your skills.

Knowing the right thing to do when things go pear-shaped helps you gain control over a crazy situation. For this reason, you might want to learn first aid and CPR if you don’t already know them, or refresh your skills if it’s been a while since you took a class.

If you know how to revive adults, you may want to seek a class devoted to performing CPR on children and infants–their needs are different. Same again for first aid–the needs of kids and babies are different from those of adults.


The Red Cross provides several options for learning all forms of first aid:


It also offers one-stop shopping for those wanting to learn CPR or needing a refresher course:


The National Safety Council gives training in first aid and CPR:


The American Heart Association is another great resource for learning CPR:

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Save This Tool for Contacting Congress

This OTYCD entry originally posted in March 2017.


Save this convenient web site that shows you how to contact any member of Congress.


The very first post on OTYCD was about how to find your three members of Congress. It’s advocacy 101, yes. Even still, this tool is worth saving.


It’s really well-designed and gives a handy overview of EVERYONE in Congress, with their photos, contact info, location, district, social media accounts, plus when they were first elected and when they’re due for re-election.


Special thanks to @theonetruebix for the tip and the site.


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Save This Tool That Shows What Laws Your State Is Making Right Now in Six Key Areas

This OTYCD entry originally posted in May 2017.


Bookmark a tool by OurStates that shows you what new laws your state might be making in six key areas: immigration, policing and protest, reproductive justice, voting rights, LGBTQ equality, and economic justice.


State legislators aren’t just the equivalent of the farm teams for the Democratic and Republican parties–they’re the farm teams for federal laws, too. Well-funded right-wing activist groups have attempted to pass weird, extreme laws on the state level before trying to get Congress to bite.


While there are web-based tools that show what your state legislature is doing overall right now, and tools that show what bills the states are considering on a single issue, there aren’t many that show what all 50 states are doing on more than one issue.


In fact, what OurStates built might stand alone. It’s a project of StayWoke, a 501(c)4 organization devoted to pursuing justice and equality. Its planning team includes DeRay Mckesson, Samuel Sinyangwe, Brittany Packnett, and a whole host of smart, perceptive people who you’d be smart to follow on Twitter.


When you click on a category, it colors the U.S. map accordingly: States colored red are working on harmful laws; blue states are creating good laws; and grey states are not currently chasing anything on that topic.


Click on your state, and you’ll open a window that shows you everything it is doing on all six topics. It will describe the law and tell you if the bills are good or bad, as well as which party controls the legislature, what the law would do, and how close the bill is to becoming law.


If you scroll down, the OurStates page will give you a link through which you can find your state legislators’ contact information, as well as advice on how to speak with them.



See and use the nifty tool built by OurStates:


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Meet the StayWoke planning team and follow them all on Twitter:


Donate to StayWoke:



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Call your MoCs and Tell Them to Protect the National Endowment for the Arts

This OTYCD entry originally posted in March 2017.

Call your members of Congress and tell them to defend the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) from any attempts to defund or abolish it.

When Republicans gain control of the government, a few rusty old issues always come up. Abolishing the NEA is one of them.

Republicans inevitably claim that they want to kill the NEA to save money, but it only receives $148 million, which represents 0.004 percent of the federal budget.

We citizens get a lot for that meager sum. The arts stimulate the economy and have proven critical to reviving ailing cities and towns.

The NEA also does something that few outside the museum world appreciate: It backs indemnity agreements that allow U.S. museums to arrange for loans of art for exhibitions that they otherwise could not afford to insure. Remember the last blockbuster museum show you loved that had oodles of priceless canvases from Europe, or sculptures from Asia? If the NEA disappears, so do exhibitions like those.

The NEA does a lot of good with a small budget. It also represents a fundamental commitment to the arts and humanities that any nation must honor if it thinks of itself as civilized. French-born composer Edgard Varèse put his finger on it when he said, “Art is the highest expression and not a luxury–Where are the Egyptian bankers today? And Egyptian art survives.”

We know the Egyptians through their art. We know the Neanderthals through the images that they inscribed on the walls of caves. Art is how we speak to generations yet unborn. Art is what those generations will think of when they think of America. That’s why we need the NEA, and that is why we will always need the NEA. Don’t let Trump and Paul Ryan and his ilk kill it.

Sample script: “I am (Firstname Lastname, from town, zip code). I am asking (Senator/Representative Lastname) to fight against any attempt by the Trump administration to cripple or kill the National Endowment for the Arts. The NEA is one of the best bargains in the entire federal government. It helps museums arrange blockbuster shows by backing indemnity agreements that allow for loans of priceless art. If we lost the NEA, we would all feel it, and we would feel it deeply.”