Monday 23rd of October 2017

a reminder of gentler times...


About 3.2 million people around the world attended the D.C. Women’s March or one of its satellite marches, according to estimates from FiveThirtyEight. There are 4,000 (and counting) chapters of Indivisible. These are encouraging signs for Americans opposed to President Donald Trump and his policies, but many of these newly minted activists are struggling to balance their work for the resistance movement with daily responsibilities. Can these newcomers sustain their energy, continue showing up to protests and meetings, and calling and visiting their legislatures months and years into the Trump administration?

With help from Rapid Resist and Hustle they just might, all while decreasing the burden on seasoned organizers. Rapid Resist is a platform that helps organizers increase attendance at or participation in a variety of resistance-related events and actions, simply by sending text messages. It's powered by Hustle, a peer-to-peer texting tool to organize volunteers and supporters to participate in resistance-related events and actions. Hustle's platform enables volunteers to text and reach as many people as possible.

As co-founder Yoni Landau told AlterNet, he was inspired to start the organization and use Hustle's tool “by grassroots organizing work that was being done in Reno... We door-knocked during GOTV [Get Out the Vote] at weekly motels to turn people out to vote but also to connect them to local organizing that was building power for folks on the front lines. It seemed like a much more fruitful partnership for my friends who wanted to contribute than the usual way blue-state volunteers come in to just help with a campaign.”

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the keeper of the nation's future...

Within a day of President Trump’s election last November, California's top Democratic lawmakers responded with a joint statement that contained an audacious promise. It was their state, not Washington, D.C., that would be the "keeper of the nation's future."

An artistic rendering of that vow, with looping calligraphy and a roaring Grizzly, is now on display in the offices of Senate leader Kevin de León and Assembly Speaker Anthony Rendon. In the wake of Trump's win, the words seemed to be a sort of foundational document — California's declaration of resistance.

That pugilistic posture is often conveyed in shorthand: California versus Trump. But the ensuing legislative year, which ended Friday, revealed the messy reality of squaring up against the federal government.

“It’s been challenging,” De León (D-Los Angeles) said, bleary-eyed as he took a break during the final days of the session. “You have to debate, you have to negotiate, you have to make your case, and I think at the end of the day, we’ll still have the most far-reaching policy in the nation.”

The Capitol’s ruling Democrats introduced more than 35 bills to mount policy blockades against Trump. Four have since become law or part of the state budget, and eight more await the governor’s signature. Some have been scaled back from their original sweeping premise, and many early bills flamed out entirely. The most acid-tipped barbs came from more than two dozen resolutions, mainly regarding Trump’s conduct, which do not carry the force of law.

But for some members, even those had value. As proceedings limped into Friday evening, the Assembly lobbed another salvo, a resolution calling for a congressional censure of Trump’s reaction after a violent white supremacist rally in Charlottesville.

“I would like to move on to another subject, too,” said Assemblywoman Shirley Weber (D-San Diego), the daughter of Arkansas sharecroppers. “But I keep getting pulled back to reality …. Hatred and discrimination is a weed, and it grows best in neglect.”

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