Women’s march on Washington

“We will not go away; welcome to your first day,” we chanted as we took over the streets of Washington D.C. on January 21, 2017. Pink hats, knitted by women around the world and mailed to D.C. for marchers, as far as the eye could see. Children with handmade signs held hands with moms and dads, aunties, grandmas, sending the next generation the message that they are strong, bold and have a voice. 

People complained that organizers didn’t have loud enough speakers, or room, for the over a million women who streamed into the streets from buses, the metro, Uber, and houses with women from around the globe bedding down on couches and air mattresses or on friends’ floors. But this is the success. They imagined at most 500,000. And the people kept coming. 


And when people tired of standing on the mall–the place we weren’t permitted to be–and started chanting, “March, march, march” singers like Janelle Monae had the moms of sons fallen to police brutality, like Trayvon Martin, say their child’s name to witness and pay tribute to their lives, and deaths. Though not everyone could hear this powerful tribute, nor the fiery speech by Madonna, the women gathered to talk, and brainstorm. So many what’s next conversations floated through the air. Black women talking to older white women from Michigan and Montana. Coastal LGBTQ activists chatting with young girls from West Virginia, Florida, Arizona. 

And when the women finally tired of waiting well past the original marching time, in spite of rumors that homeland security was shutting down the march, the women headed to the streets only to find them barricaded. 

So women climbed atop walls and traffic signals and pointed the marchers toward Pennsylvania Avenue. Here we took over the streets, filled them, up past the Trump Hotel, the White House and through downtown. Women in wheelchairs, 80 year olds, babies, fathers, grandfathers, joined the able bodied to sing and chant and hold each other up to say we are here. We’ve grieved and now we are ready to stand together–the Black Lives Matter, socialists, LGBTQ activists, religious people, atheists, health care advocates, reproduction rights activists, mothers, sisters, climate change activists, grandmas, humans, education activists, and people who believe in the good of humanity–to fight. 

This post is dedicated to Nicolette Reed from Seattle who made and donated my pink pussy hat. Thank you. I marched for you. And all of us. 

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Actions: December 6, 2016

  1. Ask Obama to declassify all information pertaining to foreign interference in the 2016 election.
  2. Many electors are saying they will not vote for Trump. Write letters to ask more to save our democracy.
  3. Sign up for this new action organization for actions delivered to your inbox.
  4. Another resistance organization boasting tangible action you can take daily, weekly, monthly.
  5. And yet another site offering weekly acts of resistance.
  6. Ask the electoral college to make Hillary Clinton president.
  7. From Daily Kos: Last week, New York Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand laid down a clear marker: She’ll filibuster the waiver that retired Gen. James Mattis would need in order to serve as secretary of defense during Trump’s administration.  A 70-year-old federal law bars retired members of the military from holding senior defense posts if they’ve served on active duty within the last seven years. Mattis retired only three years ago and thus requires a special waiver to pass both houses of Congress.
    While the filibuster for cabinet appointees was eliminated a few years back, meaning a nominee can be confirmed with just 50 votes in the Senate, the waiver Mattis requires is subject to a filibuster. Mattis would therefore need 60 votes in order to become secretary of defense—so he’d need the support of at least eight Democrats to overcome a filibuster.
    Call Senator Dianne Feinstein at (202) 224-3841. Tell them to filibuster the waiver Gen. Mattis needs to become secretary of defense.

    Sample script:

    Hi, I’m (say your name) from (say from where you’re calling). I’m calling today to urge my senator to filibuster the waiver Gen. Mattis needs to become secretary of defense. Civilian control of the military is a bedrock foundation of any democracy, and it’s more important than ever to uphold it now that we have a president-elect dead set on eroding constitutional norms. Thank you.

    Once you’ve placed the call, please click here to tell us how it went.

  8. Send a message to block the Exxon CEO as a candidate for secretary of state.

 

News of the day: [NOTE: I realize these are all liberal sites. I have been searching for any conservative news that seems to offer a balanced perspective, or fact-based information and I am coming up with slim pickings. Anyone find anything of interest?] 

http://www.politico.com/story/2016/12/larry-lessig-electors-trump-232231

http://m.baynews9.com/content/mobile/news/baynews9/news/article.touch.html/content/news/articles/bn9/2016/12/5/florida_attorney_fil.html

https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/wonk/wp/2016/12/04/democrats-can-look-forward-to-the-coming-republican-era-being-a-disaster-for-republican-voters/?postshare=6091480949871185&tid=ss_fb&utm_term=.75ab819ce13d

http://www.rollingstone.com/politics/features/van-jones-only-a-love-army-will-conquer-trump-w454026

https://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/plum-line/wp/2016/12/06/donald-trumps-most-terrifying-appointment/?tid=ss_fb&utm_term=.0936d2b6278d

ACTIONS to do this week

The Daily reads: Spoiler alert–there’s some good news!!! 

https://broadly.vice.com/en_us/article/kkk-trump-victory-rally-canceled-as-protesters-flood-streets-in-north-carolina

https://www.thenation.com/article/the-lesson-from-standing-rock-organizing-and-resistance-can-win/

http://www.rawstory.com/2016/12/eric-trump-claims-wisconsin-recount-killed-at-least-5000-children-and-gets-pounded-on-twitter/

http://usuncut.com/resistance/veterans-standing-rock-beg-forgiveness-war-crimes/

Great fact checking site: www.ProPublica.org

 

ACTIONS TO DO THIS WEEK:

From Rebecca Solnit on Facebook. She is an amazing writer and someone to follow on Facebook.

#dailydemocracydefense #day5 You never know what will happen. Standing Rock: how many people said they could never halt the pipeline? It’s not definitively and permanently stopped, but yesterday was a huge victory for the Standing Rock Sioux, for indigenous sovereignty, for the protection of water, and for the power of ordinary people come together in nonviolent resistance.
Or rather, you never know what we can make happen, because without those passionately committed thousands standing up for their beliefs, even when the odds seemed impossible, the pipeline would have been finished months ago. We make history. It’s hard work, but sometimes we win. If we show up, if we try. The great paradox we face now is: we can stop Trump, but only if enough people believe it and act on that belief, only if we seize our democracy and make it work—to protect our ideals, our beloved communities, our vulnerable populations, our future.
We’re asking you to do something daily to defend democracy and stop Trump in the days leading up to December 19, when the electoral college meets. Today, we aren’t asking you to donate or sign a petition or make a phone call. We are asking you to start thinking about showing up at statehouses all over the United States, a week from today, December 12. We’re organizing peaceful gatherings, or asking you to, on statehouse steps to share a vision for how this country can bring to life the unrealized promise of democracy, exactly when it is facing a threat unlike any that has come before. How can we make a leap forward at the very moment that a small minority of hateful leaders are trying to take us back in time?

If you can organize your caravan, buy your bus or plane tickets, book those hotel rooms or find a couch to surf, start now! The future of our democracy depends on us showing up in large numbers where the fate of our country will be decided.

Here’s the schedule:
December 12th – Reading of the Declaration of Interdependence: Defending and Expanding Our Democracy – At a statehouse near you!. We’re going there to tell the electors in the electoral colleges (which meet in our nation’s fifty state capitols) why they must not choose Trump. Can you go? Can you organize a group, signs, transport? Let us know.

December 18th – 5:00PM Candlelight Vigils in support of our Hamilton Electors who are committing to vote their conscience and defend the Constitution and protect the Republic from the greatest threat it has ever faced

December 19th – 8:00am – Protect Our Democracy and Defend the Constitution Rallies at a State House near you, where the 538 members of the electoral college will meet to choose the next president of the United States.

Make your plans, tell your friends, pack your bags! Call in sick from work! Our participation on these three days could dramatically the course of the next 4 to 8 years – but only if enough of us show up.

 

Communicate with your congresspeople!

Another Action to Support the Fight Against Injustice: Join Shaun King’s Injustice Boycott.

View story at Medium.com

View story at Medium.com

Boycott excessive holiday gifts and sign up to fight injustice here.

Sign the petition to get Facebook to stop censoring activists.

 

 

Action: Do Now

Thank the Obama Administration for taking action in DAPL.

Thank the Standing Rock protesters. 

Sign a petition to save Medicare.

DO NOW: Administrators at the following email addresses are tracking emails in support of Elizabeth Warren’s request to audit Trump’s finances. I sent one email to all three, using the bcc: option. Please do this, every little bit helps.
The email addresses are:
siggerudk@gao.gov
minellit@gao.gov
congrel@gao.gov
The text of my letter was one sentence:
“I’m writing in support of Senator Elizabeth Warren’s request for an audit of our incoming President Elect’s finances, to prohibit conflicts of interest that would prevent him from carrying out the responsibilities of the office without corrupt influence.”
Thanks…we are all in this together!

Sign the petition to Stop Bannon!

Check out this helpful list of actions compiled from the last week.

DONATE! There are so many amazing organizations working hard to combat hate, offer good investigative journalism, and save our planet. Instead of buying more stuff we don’t need, consider donating to these organizations.

READ, READ, READ!!!! There’s tons of stuff out there. But these are my two favorites for today.

http://nymag.com/thecut/2016/11/the-importance-of-being-an-angry-woman.html?mid=facebook_nymag

https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2016/dec/04/standing-rock-victory-turning-point

Be kind. Be patient. People are feeling frayed at the moment. Take some time to offer a smile, hold the door for someone. Simple actions go a long way. We had a major victory this week. This allows for everyone breath a little deeper to do the work that needs to be done now.

Catalogue your strengths. Are you a good organizer? Are you loud? Are you a good researcher? Make a list of what you are good at. Then think about all the issues you care about. How can you take a few minutes a day to help the environment? Educate someone?

Lastly, we are looking for Spanish speakers in California willing to donate some time to assist with the Guardianship Project. Email me if you are interested in working with the undocumented population, or if you have connections with organizations that serve this population. More on this once we get the action rolling.