Act of Resistance 7-11-2018

This is cutting into writing time so I’m going to make this quick!

Last week I sent an email to the Democratic Party in the county where I live, volunteering for whatever they might need me for. Now, this is the second time I’ve done this, so I’m not actually expecting a response, but today I also sent them an application form to join as a member. I’ll be attending my first monthly meeting next Wednesday and plan to make it a recurring habit. I don’t know why I haven’t received responses to my calls to volunteer. Maybe they have so many volunteers they didn’t need me, or maybe they prefer volunteers who are members, or (and this is what I think most likely) in this rather Red county they don’t actually do a lot. I don’t know. But I’m going to get involved, find out, and do what I can to help elect Democrats in all offices.

I also called my Senators using scripts and info from this page on the I Called My Reps site. We need to do everything we can to block the SCOTUS nomination put forth by Trump. Brett Kavanagh is a threat to Roe v Wade and we need to take this very, very seriously. There’s also info on the above page for what you can do in the meantime, including supporting a Democratic Senate race in your state. This is very important. Not only because of the SCOTUS nom, but for the country as a whole for the next two+ years.

I also secured my absentee ballot for the August primary since I’ll be away from home on the day of the primary. I haven’t filled it out yet because I need to review a few candidates and decide who I’d like to support (Democrats of course, but which one!) I’ll do that tonight after the kiddos are in bed!

And last I shared information on Twitter, Facebook, and here on how to oppose this SCOTUS nomination. It may not seem like much, but if my posts or tweets get even one person to join the fight, then I’m happy with that result.

So find something you can do in the fight against Trump and get involved! Also, I’d love to hear from others what they have been doing to resist! Feel free to respond in the comments.

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March for Our Lives, Postcards to Voters, and Letters to My Representatives 4-19-2018

Okay, so it’s been a wee while since I posted. This is the first day I’ve had time to write my reps and you will find a letter below, but I haven’t been completely out of the Resistance loop.

On March 24th I joined over 4000 people in Ann Arbor, and more than 1.2 million in the United States (and more globally!) to demand reform on gun control and gun safety measures. I was part of a group known as Kid Lit Marches for Kids organized nationally by author Jenny Han and regionally by local writers. Me being who I am I made signs for all our participants and handed out the extras to the surrounding crowd. Here are a few pictures from the event:

I also participated in Postcards to Voters a program to allow volunteers to write postcards to registered Democratic voters coming up to an election. It’s a small thing you can do to encourage voter participation even in small elections. Here’s a picture of mine and you can check out my Twitter Thread on how you can get involved!

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And now for my letter to my reps. It was essentially the same to all three so I’m only sharing the Letter to Senator Debbie Stabenow:

Dear Senator Stabenow,

I ask that you support the Special Counsel Independence and Integrity Act to protect Robert Mueller, as introduced by Senators Tillis, Coons, Booker and Graham. The NYT’s latest report indicates that Trump considered ending the Russian investigation in the fall, the second time he has made such considerations. That move along with his continued rhetoric suggests Trump might try to end Mueller’s work sooner than later. Prominent members of the GOP keep reiterating they believe in Mueller and want to let him do his work. Please pass the Special Counsel Independence and Integrity Act as soon as possible. I would also like to ask that you reiterate that Rod Rosenstein cannot be fired as well.

I demand that you speak up about the airstrikes on Syria. You need to push the Trump Administration to provide clarification on what’s a “sustained response” to address the situation might look like. I would rather not get into a sustained conflict in the region, and any effort we do engage in needs to be focused on gaining freedom for the Syrian people and humanitarian aid for the millions affected by this crisis.

I would also like for you to push for changes to the presidential war powers. The lack of clarity in the language allows the president the leeway to carry out limited precision strikes and that needs to be changed. Similarly I also want you to bring up the need to debate the Authorization for the Use of Military Force passed in 2001. What scope does the authorization now cover?

I want you to address the fact that our country has only taken in 11 Syrian refugees this year. If we are to seriously address the challenges being faced by Syrians, the refugee restrictions put forth by this administration need to be reversed.

I demand you call for Scott Pruitt’s resignation. The daily scandals that keep coming out of the EPA are absolutely unacceptable. Not only is he repeatedly committing ethics violations, he clearly doesn’t spend enough time doing his job, versus trying to defend his job.

I ask that you vote NO on against Mike Pompeo for Secretary of State if the vote comes to the Senate floor. Mike Pompeo has little to no background in diplomacy, and has been unable to fully answer many of the questions that were asked during his confirmation hearing.

I want you to vote in favor of Senator Markey’s resolution to repeal the FCC’s December decision to unwind Net Neutrality, via the Congressional Review Act. Polling suggests 60-80% of Americans do not support the rollback of the net neutrality, and voting in support of this bipartisan resolution will help ensure this issue isn’t singlehandedly decided by five people.

I support the FCC Inspector General case against Chairman Pai and I ask that you do as well. Chairman Pai’s potential connections with Sinclair Broadcasting need to be explored, particularly given the potential Sinclair-Tribune merge on the table. I also ask you to consider passing anti-trust laws, so Chairman Pai’s actions to help Sinclair in the merger process, cannot be repeated.

I am adamantly opposed to John Bolton’s appointment as National Security Advisor, and demand you do everything in your power to protest this appointment. John Bolton has a track record for advocating for extreme foreign policy views, often to the detriment of the nation. It’s for that reason Senate Foreign Relations determined Bolton was unfit to serve TWICE during the Bush Administration, and why he’s still unfit to serve now. I understand that you have no confirmation power when it comes to Bolton. But I demand you push forward w/ other options, including pushing forward w/ the Markey/Lieu bill limiting POTUS’s ability for first strike.

I expect you to take a stand against the Trump Administration’s latest attempts to ban transgender individuals from serving in the military. The administration’s justification for banning transgenderĀ  individuals is based on flawed, discriminatory research. Moreover, many active service duty members have already reiterated: this discriminatory act against potential/serving officers, only damages unit cohesion. It doesn’t improve it. I expect you to take a stand, and let your constituents know you are supportive of any and all who choose to serve.

I ask that you do what you can to defend Andrew McCabe from the administration’s latest attack. Firing him days before he’s scheduled to retire is, as Senator Hirono called it, “sadistic”. He will lose his pension, after a twenty-two year career at the Bureau. I encourage you to call to let McCabe retire and receive his full pension, and continue on with whatever investigations are needed at that point.

I want to know why Trump is meeting with Putin and why Russia made the announcement.

I am against Trump’s steel and aluminum tariffs, and I am demand you take a stand against these measures. According to economists, the tariffs will likely cause trade wars, disrupt the US economy and cause job losses in certain industries. Moreover, history has shown us before, tariffs simply are not effective. Please take whatever steps you can to oppose these measures.

I demand you work with your colleagues, to determine a concrete solution to address Dreamers. Since the Trump administration has announced the end of DACA, more than 19,000 immigrant youth have lost their protections from deportation. 850 more lose it every week. We need action NOW, especially as Leader McConnell wants the immigration debate to end. Now the bipartisan budget bill is out of the way, I demand you take the promises you made in the lead-up to that vote seriously, and figure out a solution for DACA. Please take this seriously. Please support a clean DREAM/SECURE Act for all then people currently in this country who need it, including 200k Slavadorans who will lose their protected status.

Thank you for your time and consideration.

Sincerely,

Jennifer Austin

So that’s it for today. It looks like the site It’s Time to Fight has merged with the I Called My Reps website, so for more information and scripts be sure to head over there! And if you do call or write your reps be sure to use #ICalledMyReps on Twitter to talk about it. We need to see each other resisting to maintain our morale and momentum!