Community Activism · Read, Educate Yourself, Prepare · Stand Up for Civilization · Stand Up for Norms

Read About the History (Yes, History) of Accusing Protestors of Being What Some Now Call “Crisis Actors”

This OTYCD post first appeared in May 2018.

 

Read a February 2018 New York Times piece on the history–yes, the history–of accusing protestors and activists of being what some people now call “crisis actors.”

 

A particularly gross, but damnably inevitable, aspect of the aftermath of the shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas (MSD) High School in Parkland, Florida, was the claim by some that the eloquent young survivors were “crisis actors.”

 

Their accusers weren’t talking about actual crisis actors, who are people hired to play victims and survivors during realistic disaster drills. They were implying that the MSD students, who emerged from their trauma as pissed-off gun safety activists, were paid by some shadowy cabal that’s bent on destroying the Second Amendment.

 

Here’s the thing–while the term has changed, the concept behind the “crisis actor” has not. In a February 2018 piece for the New York Times, writer Niraj Chokshi shows it goes as least as far back as the years following the Civil War. Back then, black “outside agitators” were blamed for allegedly exaggerating their testimonies of the violence and discrimination they suffered, both from the Ku Klux Klan and in general.

 

In the 20th century, the nine children who bravely volunteered to integrate the public schools in Little Rock, Arkansas, were accused of being paid for their trouble.

 

The piece does not discuss why some people are so determined to push the myth that people who step up and do and say difficult things have to be getting paid to do it. (That would be an interesting and worthy follow-up.) Regardless, it’s worth your time.

 

 

Read the New York Times piece on the history of the “crisis actor” accusation:

 

 

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!

 

 

Common-sense Gun Laws · Community Activism · Health Care · Public Education · Stand Up for Civilization · Stand Up for Norms

Support Students for Changes, an Advocacy Group Started by Marjory Stoneman Douglas Students

This OTYCD post originally appeared in April 2018.

 

Support Students for Changes, a nonprofit advocacy group started by students of Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, site of the deadly shooting on February 14, 2018.

 

Cofounded by three survivors of the attack that killed 17 of their peers and teachers, Students for Changes focuses on three things: gun safety, mental health, and school safety. The ultimate goal is to create a world where deadly school shootings are memories and not ever-present threats.

 

 

The pinned tweet on its Twitter page as of early March 2018 stated:

This Nonprofit Organization is started and led by Marjory Stoneman Douglas students. We’ve made this for the express purpose of connecting and consolidating the efforts of students nationwide to change our current policies and societal notions.

 

 

During the same period, its Twitter feed thanked Delta Airlines for rescinding the group discount it had offered to National Rifle Association (NRA) members, thanked Kroger, Walmart, and L.L. Bean for raising their minimum customer age for gun sales to 21, and promised to keep fighting after the Florida state senate passed, then quickly revoked, a two-year ban on the AR-15 semi-automatic rifle.

 

 

The founders intend this to be a student-led movement, and they encourage the creation of chapters in schools across America. As of March 4, 2018, SSC is filing to become a 501 (c) (3) nonprofit.

 

 

Visit the Students for Changes webpage:

https://www.studentsforchanges.org

 

 

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 to Students for Changes:

https://www.studentsforchanges.org/copy-of-make-a-donation

 

 

Like it on Facebook:

https://www.facebook.com/studentsforchanges/

 

 

Follow it on Twitter:

@students4c

Action Alerts · Community Activism · Fighting Bigotry, Racism, Sexism, Homophobia, Transphobia... · Read, Educate Yourself, Prepare · Support Immigrants and Refugees

Help RAICES Texas Fight to Get Migrants and Their Families Out of Detention

Help RAICES Texas fight to get migrants and their families out of detention along the southern border of the United States.

 

Babies are still in cages.

 

We wish we didn’t have to write that sentence, but we must, because it’s true.

 

RAICES Texas came to prominence in mid-2018 when the horrors of what the Trump administration was doing to migrant families–separating parents from kids pretty much because they could, in hopes that would scare them from coming north–became public.

 

The spotlight has moved to other ongoing Trump administration horrors and betrayals, but its treatment of migrants continues to be a scandal and a shame.

 

RAICES Texas is carrying on the fight. It’s a 33-year-old 501(c)(3) nonprofit that has evolved into the largest provider of legal services to immigrants in Texas. They have a team of more than 130 lawyers who defend migrants in court, educate them about their rights, and even help them obtain abortion care.

 

 

See the RAICES Texas website:

https://www.raicestexas.org/?ms=raices_tw

 

 

Donate to RAICES Texas:

https://www.raicestexas.org/donate/donate-in-honor-or-memory-of-someone-you-love/?ms=raices_tw

 

 

See its Resources page:

https://www.raicestexas.org/resources/?ms=raices_tw

 

 

See its Services page:

https://www.raicestexas.org/services/?ms=raices_tw

 

 

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!

 

 

Sign up for its email newsletter:

https://www.raicestexas.org/email-newsletter/?ms=raices_tw

 

 

If you live close enough and have the skills needed, volunteer for RAICES:

https://www.raicestexas.org/volunteer/?ms=raices_tw

 

 

Follow RAICES on Twitter:

@RAICESTEXAS

Call Your House Rep · Stand Up for Civilization · Stand Up for Norms

Call Your House Rep and Urge Him or Her to Override Trump’s Veto of Congress’s Termination of His National Emergency Border Declaration

Call your member of the House of Representatives and ask him or her to override Trump’s veto of Congress’s vote to terminate his bullshit national emergency declaration about the southern border.

 

Ok, a recap. Trump has been jonesing for his damn border wall since the campaign, when he claimed he’d get Mexico to pay for it.

 

Of course, Mexico refused to pay for it. So Trump tried to force taxpayers to pay for it.

 

Congress, rightly, said no. There’s no factual basis for a wall that stretches across the entire 2,000-odd mile border between the U.S. and Mexico. It’d be a waste of money, and it won’t do what Trump claims it will. (There are better and more efficient ways to address the legitimate points he has on this score.)

 

When Congress said no, Trump decided to trample the Constitution instead by declaring a “national emergency”.

 

Presidents can declare national emergencies, and until now, they’ve been judicious and responsible in their calls. None have resorted to calling a national emergency when they didn’t get their way on something.

 

In March 2019, Congress called Trump out again. The Democratic-controlled House of Representatives voted to terminate the national emergency, and so did the Senate, after much whingeing and weaseling.

 

Trump vetoed the Congressional termination.

 

Congress can override his veto, but both chambers have to muster two-thirds of their members to be successful.

 

The House had little trouble voting to terminate the national emergency order, but that succeeded with less than two-thirds of its members joining the effort.

 

The second time around is harder, by design.

 

If the House of Representatives can’t get two-thirds of its members to vote to override, the override vote cannot proceed to the Senate, and the national emergency takes effect.

 

We need 290 House members to vote to override.

 

On the first go-round, the vote to terminate succeeded by 245 to 182.

 

We need to hold those 245 and add 45 more.

 

This is where you come in.

 

We at OTYCD want you to call your member of the House of Representatives and urge that person to vote to override Trump’s veto.

 

It is harder to get to 290 than it is to get to 245. It means that almost four dozen Republicans have to switch sides.

 

We probably won’t succeed. But we have to try.

 

We at OTYCD expect to make this a daily action until the point is moot.

 

As always, you need to pick up the phone and call, because that’s what Congressfolk pay attention to. If you can’t call, send email.

 

Sample script:

 

“Dear (House Rep Lastname), I am (Firstname Lastname of town, zip code). I am calling to ask you to override Trump’s veto of the termination of the national emergency he called over the border wall.

As an elected official in Congress, I expect you to uphold the Constitution and fulfill your role as a check on Trump. With this act, he is trying to do an end run around our system of laws, and of checks and balances. [If your House Rep voted to terminate the national emergency on the first go round, say thank you here. If your House Rep supported Trump, say something like, ‘This is your chance to show that you will fulfill the oath you took when you were sworn in/sworn in again in January.’ This is bigger than Trump, and is bigger than any one person. Please do the right thing and override Trump’s veto.”

 

See a Business Insider story about the vote in the House to terminate Trump’s national emergency:

https://www.businessinsider.com/house-vote-national-emergency-termination-trump-border-wall-2019-2

 

 

See an NBC News story on the vote in the Senate to terminate Trump’s national emergency, which led to his veto:

https://www.nbcnews.com/politics/donald-trump/trump-vows-veto-resolution-terminating-his-national-emergency-declaration-n983106

 

 

See a CNN story about Nancy Pelosi scheduling the House of Representatives vote to override the veto on March 26, 2019:

https://www.cnn.com/politics/live-news/trump-veto-national-emergency/h_3b298f1c29ee231af2621e6516b5e34f

 

 

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!

Community Activism · Ethics · Fighting Bigotry, Racism, Sexism, Homophobia, Transphobia... · Stand Up for Civilization · Stand Up for Norms

Support the Transgender Law Center

Support the Transgender Law Center (TLC), which defends transgender rights.

 

Founded in California in 2002, TLC is the largest civil rights organization in America that’s run by transgender and gender-nonconforming people. It’s committed to improving the lot of transpeople, as well as those who thrive at different points along the gender spectrum, through advocacy and fighting discrimination.

 

Its concerns include the Black LGBTQIA+ Migrant Project, which defends and advocates for this doubly (and sometimes triply) marginalized group; the Trans Immigrant Defense Effort (TIDE), which recruits and trains lawyers to provide pro bono help to trans immigrants fight deportation; and the Detention Project, which seeks ways to minimize and ideally end the abuses trans people suffer in prisons, hospitals, and other facilities that curtail freedom, be it briefly or for life.

 

 

See the Transgender Law Center’s website:

https://transgenderlawcenter.org

 

 

See its About page:

https://transgenderlawcenter.org/about

 

 

See its blog, which provides updates on the TLC’s actions and related issues:

https://transgenderlawcenter.org/blog

 

 

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 to the Transgender Law Center:

https://transgenderlawcenter.org/donate

 

 

Volunteer with the Transgender Law Center:

https://transgenderlawcenter.org/archives/14237

 

 

Like the Transgender Law Center on Facebook:

https://www.facebook.com/translawcenter

 

 

Follow it on Twitter:

@TransLawCenter

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!

 

 

Community Activism · Ethics · Health Care · Separation of Church and State · Stand Up for Civilization · Stand Up for Norms

Help Expose Fake Abortion Clinics

Help expose fake abortion clinics–facilities set up by pro-life groups that mimic abortion clinics, but attempt to pressure women out of seeking the help they need.

 

You’re going to want to sit down for this one. Fake abortion clinics have been a thing since the 1960s. Today, there are more than 4,000 of them across America while there are fewer than 800 legitimate clinics.

 

They are designed to look like medical facilities in every respect, but because they are not actual clinics, they don’t have to abide by HIPAA privacy laws. That’s right–they don’t have to safeguard any medical information that they might receive.

 

These facilities can exist and carry on with their borked mission because what they do is regarded as religious outreach, which is in turn protected by the First Amendment.

 

Activists are trying to hold fake clinics accountable by pursuing them on truth in advertising laws–making them more clearly admit that they are not abortion clinics and do not provide abortions or referrals to abortion clinics.

 

One of the ways they’re doing this is through the #ExposeFakeClinics website, which is a resource hub for those trying to spread the word about fake clinics.

 

Exposing fake clinics takes several forms. They include:

 

Liking online reviews of legitimate clinics

 

Reviewing fake clinics

 

Reporting fake clinics that engage in false advertising

 

Protesting outside of fake clinics (but scroll down for important information about this)

 

 

See the main Expose Fake Clinics webpage:

https://exposefakeclinics.squarespace.com

 

 

Learn how to spot a fake abortion clinic:

https://exposefakeclinics.squarespace.com/what-is-a-cpc-2/

 

 

Learn if there are fake abortion clinics near you:

https://exposefakeclinics.squarespace.com/cpc/

 

 

Take action against fake abortion clinics (note: if the fake clinic you want to protest in front of is physically near a genuine abortion clinic, check with the real one before you start work. If the real one asks you not to protest in person, please don’t):

https://exposefakeclinics.squarespace.com/take-action-1/

 

 

 

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!

 

 

Read the Expose Fake Clinics blog:

https://exposefakeclinics.squarespace.com/blog/

 

 

Like Expose Fake Clinics on Facebook:

https://www.facebook.com/exposefakeclinics