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Posts Tagged ‘rights’

#Resist & Know Your Rights

January 30, 2017 Leave a comment

Whether you are a Protester, Federal Employee, Immigrant or Refugee, #resist & know your rights with information from the ACLU.

Since there is more information for Immigrants and Refugees concerning their rights, you will find two flyers at the end of the post: one for rights at home and one when traveling.

Rights of Protesters:

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Rights of Federal Employees:

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Rights of Traveling Immigrants & Refugees:

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Rights of Immigrants & Refugees at home:

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#NoBanNoWall #Resist #Resistance #OurRevolution

Each time a man stands up for an ideal, or acts to improve the lot of others, or strikes out against injustice, he sends forth a tiny ripple of hope, and crossing each other from a million different centers of energy and daring, those ripples build a current that can sweep down the mightiest walls of oppression and resistance.

-Robert Kennedy

 

 

 

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Bring on the Outrage and Change the Laws for Us All

July 25, 2013 4 comments
When I was a kid...

When I was a kid…

After the tragic death of Trayvon Martin, I noticed posts from people who were upset about a perceived lack of outrage regarding the death of children that did not appear to receive national attention. I asked myself, “Is this what it comes to? Using one child’s senseless death to belittle another’s?” So far, I’ve read three sad, heartbreaking stories. I’ve seen three types of postings of white children where the poster is asking, “Where is the outrage?” They were posted and liked by people who don’t understand. They don’t understand what it’s like to explain to their son that they might not return from a candy store, school or the movies. They don’t understand what it would be like to consider that their baby might be perceived as dangerous. They’ve never had to have the “racism talk” with their child, yet there are those who have had the racism talk with their children and understand the implications of it – all too well.

There is no doubt that people do become upset over a child’s death. Sadly, this fact is proven time and time again. Whether it’s a mass killing or an individual killing – every life matters and the taking of any child’s life is especially tragic. So I was compelled to check for updates regarding the three different postings of murdered children. It did not take long, even though one posting only provided the child’s first name. I found her and the others too, because there was public outrage. There was community involvement. However, their cases haven’t come to trial yet. Their killers are still in jail. This is why there is increased outrage and solidarity by our communities regarding Trayvon Martin. He was just a kid who went to the store and cut through the neighbor’s yards on the way home. I can’t tell you how many times I did that as kid, and I’d bet you’ve done the same. Yet, we survived our childhood. Even though most of us never had the talk with our parents about racism and how it could kill you. That’s because a white child’s odds of survival are better than a black child’s odds.

So if you’re truly outraged, open your minds and change the laws. Open your minds to understand what it would be like to be in another parent’s shoes. Consider what it would be like if the children and men in your family were at an increased risk. Then do what you would do if this was your reality and bring on the outrage and change the laws for all of our children. Fight to increase funding for education and after-school programs. Fight for the homeless and the hungry. Fight child-trafficking. Fight the proliferation of prisons. Fight voter disenfranchisement. Fight for a living wage. Fight for universal background checks for guns. Fight systemic biases. Fight for equal opportunity. This is just a start, but advocating for these causes will benefit us all. Hopefully, fostering greater understanding will bring our communities together and provide a safer and just world for all of our children.

“But I did want to just talk a little bit about context and how people have responded to it and how people are feeling. You know, when Trayvon Martin was first shot, I said that this could have been my son. Another way of saying that is Trayvon Martin could have been me 35 years ago. And when you think about why, in the African- American community at least, there’s a lot of pain around what happened here, I think it’s important to recognize that the African- American community is looking at this issue through a set of experiences and a history that — that doesn’t go away.

… And for those who resist that idea that we should think about something like these “stand your ground” laws, I just ask people to consider if Trayvon Martin was of age and armed, could he have stood his ground on that sidewalk? And do we actually think that he would have been justified in shooting Mr. Zimmerman, who had followed him in a car, because he felt threatened?

… And then finally, I think it’s going to be important for all of us to do some soul-searching. You know, there has been talk about should we convene a conversation on race. I haven’t seen that to be particularly productive when politicians try to organize conversations. They end up being stilted and politicized, and folks are locked into the positions they already have.

On the other hand, in families and churches and workplaces, there’s a possibility that people are a little bit more honest, and at least you ask yourself your own questions about, am I wringing as much bias out of myself as I can; am I judging people, as much as I can, based on not the color of their skin but the content of their character? That would, I think, be an appropriate exercise in the wake of this tragedy.”

-President Obama, July 19, 2013

There is Still Time to Rise Up Against Income Inequality

March 10, 2013 8 comments

Income in America Out of Balance

“A Harvard business prof and a behavioral economist recently asked more than 5,000 Americans how they thought wealth is distributed in the United States. Most thought that it’s more balanced than it actually is. Asked to choose their ideal distribution of wealth, 92% picked one that was even more equitable.” -Mother Jones Article: It’s the Inequality, Stupid

Obviously, our system is broken, but there is still time to fix it by rising up against income equality. It’s important to take the time to contact your elected officials, speak with your neighbors, and advocate with and for our communities. Together we can fight against the rising income equality in our country, and a way to start is by speaking up in support of living wage initiatives, and signing petitions such as the “Time for a Raise” Petition.

Once upon a time, the benefits of American life were bountiful, but our unions are being trounced upon by corporate interests. Full-time workers are living in poverty while corporations are getting subsidies, and taxpayers are picking up the tab for all of it.

So, please start your own raise awareness campaign:
-Support living wage initiatitives
-Invest in products made in the USA
-Support unions, local businesses, and artisans
-Contact your elected officials, and speak about the lack of job investments

Lastly, I want to thank you for your activism; it’s important that we all do what we can to extinguish apathetic tendencies, and promote opposition to income inequality in order to have equal opportunity for us all.

“There can be no peace as long as there is grinding poverty, social injustice, inequality, oppression, environmental degradation, and as long as the weak and small continue to be trodden by the mighty and powerful.”
-Tenzin Gyatso, The 14th Dalai Lama quotes (Dalai Lama, b.1935)

Women: Our Vote, Our History and Our Future

October 25, 2012 3 comments

Photo credit to Google Free Images

We owe a debt to the women before us who fought for our rights; not only to fight to keep the rights they worked so hard to obtain, but to ensure future generations will also benefit by living in a country where we have equal rights, equal opportunities, and an equal voice.  In order to do this we all need to know what is at stake which includes our personal civil liberties to make our own decisions about our own bodies without government interference.

In the past few years, we have seen an influx of legislation to eviscerate our healthcare, and the following encompasses the very least you should know regarding their proposed means to do so: The Blunt Amendment, The Personhood Amendment, as well as Mandatory Transvaginal Ultrasounds, and remember, ladies, if these more than distracting proposals were not made we could have focused on alternate objectives such as expanding upon the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act, the Equal Pay Act, the Paycheck Fairness Act and the reason why our women did so well in the Olympics: Title IX.

Instead of this focus, we were bombarded by men’s views on how they “struggled” to make their decision regarding whether a woman has a right to choose.  Furthermore, some are so bold as to decide when certain choices are deemed justified.  Some allow for an exception to their “Anti-Choice Agenda” if the life of the mother is at stake while others would not allow exceptions for rape and incest.  Think about explaining that to your daughter!  These pillars of society have stated their neanderthal views on choice clearly in order to subjugate and/or disallow your choice: Todd Akin (R)Tom Smith (R), Roger Rivard (R), Steve King (R), and Richard Mourdock (R), or as Stephen Colbert recently dubbed them: “Team Rape which they probably wouldn’t appreciate, but c’mon they’re kinda asking for it.”

Amazingly, I do not recall these types of discussions or legislation regarding men’s bodies, and I would counsel these “men” to not “struggle” with their decision regarding choice because they do not need to make or live with that choice, the rape victim does.

Lastly and more importantly, I ask that all women take notice and fight for our rights by casting your vote for our freedom to choose what is best for ourselves now and in our future.

“I know you are smart and I know that you think

You’re doing what is best for me.

But if freedom is handled just your way

Then it’s not my freedom or free.”

Toni Morrison, Author, The Big Box

Categories: Advocacy, Laws, Vote Tags: , , ,

Block versus Rock the Vote and Our Future!

August 27, 2012 2 comments

Although it is evident shameless party politics plays a major role in disenfranchising voters, it is without a doubt that many voters regardless of party affiliation will not have their vote counted in upcoming elections; the inability to vote will most notably be through voter suppression, purging of voter rolls, and laws now requiring current government-issued photo ID.  Hundreds of thousands of voters in a multitude of states will go to the polls like so many years before only to find out they are not eligible to vote, and even first time registered voters may be advised the same.  In order to ensure you are not one of these voters, please contact your local board of elections to confirm you are registered, and ask if there are changes in the requirements for identification, change in polling hours and locations.

According to The Brennan Center for Justice,  there are no less than “180 restrictive bills introduced since the beginning of 2011 in 41 states” which can impact your right to vote.  The Brennan Center for Justice provides an analysis of the 2012 Summary of Voting Law Changes, the difficulties citizens must overcome in obtaining voter ID, and information regarding our voting rights and elections.

Furthermore, you may review The National Conference of State Legislatures which provides information regarding Voter ID information and news for each state.  Moreover, if you are a first time voter, you can register to vote by contacting your local board of elections, or organizations like Rock the Vote or USA.Gov.

Do not take the chance in the mere belief that you will be allowed to vote; take the time to ensure your vote will be counted.  Remember, there is tremendous value in your vote; it is your voice regarding your future and collectively our citizenry which will forge the future of our nation.  This upcoming presidential election will not only choose our future president and the direction of our national policies, but our president will also appoint Justices to the Supreme Court who will interpret the constitutionality of the laws of our land.

Please share this information with your family and friends to ensure our democracy will endure and prosper; it’s your vote – make it count.

Lower voter participation is a silent threat to our democracy…It under-represents young people, the poor, the disabled, those with little education, minorities and you and me.” – Nancy Neuman, Editor

Call to Action For Our Independence

July 3, 2012 1 comment

Photo credit to Google Free Images

On this holiday, most of our focus is on family, friends, barbecues and fireworks, but today on the eve of our national holiday my request is two-fold: a “call to read” the very document we celebrate: The Declaration of Independence, and a call to action to ensure our country knows the needs of our citizenry.

The Declaration of Independence is a quick read filled with contradiction, bias and hypocrisy, yet these words also reflect our rebellious nature which fills many citizens with pride. We are the United States of America; we are Americans. We understand that all men are created equal even if at the time of this document’s inception – or even now – we do not include everyone, nor are are they all treated in such a manner. Over the years, many people understood this document to be a starting off point not an end, and to those who fight for the America we endeavor to be, I salute you.

To those who shed light on the injustices of this world and request a call to action, thank you for your efforts in agitation.

To those of you who invest in our country, thank you for making the difference in our livelihoods and our future.

To those who fight “stop and frisk” procedures, thank you for your efforts in ensuring freedom for all.

To those who fight to stop fracking, thank you for your efforts to protect our environment and specifically our water.

To those who fought for a healthcare law because you understood the need, thank you for caring.

This list falls short; there are so many people who need to be appreciated for their efforts in working towards a positive evolution of our nation. So, I ask you to seize the opportunity to thank them, help them and if not already – become them. We can do better; we are Americans.

“When you have decided what you believe, what you feel must be done, have the courage to stand alone and be counted.”

Eleanor Roosevelt

Produce the Note! The Rallying Cry Against Foreclosure

March 30, 2012 10 comments

There’s hope for some, and it’s all about saving one’s home.  Foreclosure is no longer the end all; instead, there appears to be a couple of options from squatting in your own home to an offer from at least one bank to rent your own home.

I was watching The Rachel Maddow Show  when I first heard about Representative Marcy Kapture who rallied the cry on the house floor:  “I say to the American people you be squatters in your own homes.  Don’t you leave!”  This statement made back in 2009 has gained steam not only from the dire straits of those who are losing their homes today, but was founded and fought for by those who protested against the loss of their homes in the past: Foreclosures and Evictions from Depression to Recession.

Now, the new rallying cry is Produce the Note!  After all the fraud spurred by greed, it appears that many may have a chance to save their homes because mortgage brokers failed to secure the proper documents to prove your home is no longer yours.  In light of this information, it’s not surprising that at least one bank is offering the option to rent you your own home.

Call me a skeptic, but I believe the main reason why the rental option is now on the table is two-fold: the bank wants to make money until they can actually sell your home, and more importantly if you sign a document now there is an actual record.

You can find more information about the Occupy Our Homes movement via a host of media outlets inclusive of  Mother JonesSalon.com and Truthout.org while FindLaw offers specifics regarding “Produce the Note” tactics.

“If the American people ever allow private banks to control the issue of their currency, first by inflation, then by deflation, the banks and corporations that grow up around them will deprive the people of all property until their children wake up homeless on the continent they conquered.”  Thomas Jefferson