Volume 2, Issue 17 The Newsletter of Minuteman Indivisible April 24, 2018
Muster (verb) – assemble, especially for inspection or preparation for battle
We hope you were able to take advantage of last week's Patriots' Day holiday and school vacation week to spend time with friends and family, rest up, and get ready for the many challenges ahead. This week's Muster is a bit shorter than usual, but still highlights many important actions to take and upcoming events to attend.
Activism can be more fun when you get together with a group to accomplish your goals! This Thursday, needle crafters and postcard writers can share good company and light refreshments in Lexington while helping to flip a legislative seat in Pennsylvania and get out the vote in Ohio (there are also similar events this week in other nearby communities). And then on Sunday, we're hosting our first event as part of Activist Afternoons at WeWorks in Cambridge - a phonebanking and postcarding party for our candidates - and hope you'll join us. There's also a Dance party coming up in May to raise funds to flip ME-02 to blue! Get all the details below.
On a more serious note, our Recommended Reading section this week focuses on threats to our national security. Check out Indivisible's resources on the national security issues currently facing Congress and a recent opinion piece about how the administration's decisions might affect our local communities.
Hope to see you at one of our team meetings or other events this week!
Your Devoted Muster Editors
MORNING COFFEE ACTIONS
(Actions you can do while enjoying your morning cup!)
Oppose MA Budget Amendments that Limit Civil Liberties
The Massachusetts House of Representatives are voting on amendments to the proposed state budgetthis week. In addition to appropriating money, legislators can also add policy items to the budget. Several amendments have been filed that would roll back protections for civil liberties and undermine local safe community initiatives.
Please ask your state representative to oppose these amendments and urge colleagues to do the same. If your state representative offered one of these amendments, let him know that you oppose these provisions.
• Amendments 113 (Rep. Lombardo), 227 (Rep. Diehl), and 347 (Rep. Lyons), which would would create broader authority for police to detain immigrants or punish the 31 cities and towns that have adopted measures to limit police participation in immigration enforcement
Tell your state legislator that, instead, you want the House to include provisions to bar police from asking people about immigration status; ensure that immigrants in custody know their legal rights; and end collaboration agreements with ICE.
Sign Up to Phonebank and Send Postcards for PA-06 and NJ-11
What better way to help turn the House blue than to attend a phone bank and postcard party for our selected candidates in PA-06 and NJ-11 on Sunday, April 29th from 4-6pm during Activist Afternoons at WeWorks in Cambridge. Bring a computer, phone, pen, and stamps and feel free to join for the full 2 hours or any other amount of time you are available. WeWorks is right near the Central Square stop on the T's red line; parking is available on the street or at Green Street Garage. Signup using this link so we know how many people to expect and can provide more details.
Get the Extreme Risk Protection Order (ERPO) Bill Passed in MA
Last week, the Extreme Risk Protection Order bill (H. 3610) was voted out of the Joint Committee on Public Safety and Homeland Security and is now set for a full vote before the House. Let’s keep up the momentum! Please ask your state representative to support quick passage of this bill. If you prefer to lobby them in person, rather than by calling or emailing, use this link to sign up for the Massachusetts Coalition to Prevent Gun Violence’s State Day of Action on next MondayApril 30th.
Demand Better Control Over Your Credit Report
With credit-reporting firm Equifax revealing that hackers may have stolen financial and consumer data on at least 143 million customers in the U.S., the case for allowing consumers in Massachusetts to freeze their credit reports without paying a fee to credit reporting agencies has never been stronger. There is legislation (An Act Removing Fees for Security Freezes and Disclosures of Consumer Credit Reports H.4241, S. 2304) pending at the State House to remove those fees. The bill currently resides in the Senate Committee on Ways and Means. Please contact your state senator and say "I support H.4241/S.2304 and would like you to reach out to the committee to voice your support."
Oppose Trump Sabotage of Medicaid
Three states — Arkansas, Indiana and Kentucky — have recently had waivers for Medicaid work requirements approved by the Trump administration. Requests from another seven states are pending. Work requirements will decrease enrollments and lead to poorer health outcomes, are part of Trump’s sabotage of the ACA, and are possibly illegal. Contact your MoCs to thank them for signing letters, along with other senators and representatives, opposing Medicaid work requirements. Ask them to keep doing all they can to speak out in opposition. For more background and scripts (including for use with Rep. Lynch, MA-08, who didn't sign the letter), see this resource from the Indivisible team.
Sign Up to Register Voters
Our members have been volunteering with the Massachusetts Immigrant and Refugee Advocacy Coalition (MIRA) to register new American citizens just after they are sworn in. Interested in joining us? You can see what's involved on MIRA's website, then sign up for specific days using this link. Volunteers are typically needed for an hour or so on Thursday afternoons in Boston and a coordinator is at every event to answer any questions and provide brief training on the day of the event. This week's event is already full, but there are many more events scheduled from May through September.
Sign Up Now for the Mueller Rapid Response Rallies
Although fewer news stories are being written about the possibility that Trump might try to fire Special Counsel Robert Mueller or Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein, the threat still remains. Be Prepared - use this link to sign up for one of the more than 900 Mueller Rapid Response rallies that will take place all over the country within 24 hours if Trump acts to impede the investigation, then check out the “This Week’s Actions” page on our website for other steps you can take to protect Mueller's investigation.
Learning about Climate Change Opportunities
Rep. Jay Kaufman's forum on Climate Change on 4/19 featured Jack Clarke of Mass Audubon and Abbie Goodman of the American Council of Engineering. Some highlights:
• Gov. Baker offered a $1.2B bond bill for climate mitigation but nothing to prevent climate change.
• A carbon fee is the best answer.
• To get climate legislation, all legislative candidates must be pressured.
• More mass transit is essential.
Time is short to get climate legislation passed this session and calls asking for release of the Omnibus Climate bill to the Senate floor would be helpful. Please ask your state senator to urge Karen.Spilka, Chair of the Senate Ways and Means Committee, and Joan Lovely, Vice Chair, to move the bill out of committee and to the full Senate for a vote.
Keep Your Eye on the Trump Threat Level, Nationally and Locally
One of the scarier aspects of the Trump administration is its sharp turn towards saber-rattling and warmongering and away from diplomacy as a way to resolve global conflicts. Indivisible has created a website focused on Trump's threats to our national security that includes timely resources on current issues before Congress including the nominations of Mike Pompeo to be Secretary of State and Gina Haspel to head the CIA and the recent bombing of Syria:
Our MoCs have spoken out forcefully on many of these issues, but in a classic demonstration of "all politics is local," have also supported the selection of Hanscom Air Force Base to be the Program Executive Office for Nuclear Command, Control, and Communications (NC3) which is designed to "provide survivable and endurable communications for the nuclear enterprise.” Here's an Op-Ed by the Director of Massachusetts Peace Action outlining concerns about housing the NC3 program in the heart of residential Massachusetts that recently appeared in several local newspapers: A Risky Plan for Hanscom
UPCOMING MEETINGS & EVENTS
Organizing Meeting to Defend Transgender Equality Wednesday, April 25th 7:00-8:30 PM
Temple Isaiah, 55 Lincoln St., Lexington
For the last year, Massachusetts law has fully protected transgender people from discrimination in public spaces, but there's a 2018 ballot initiative seeking to repeal these hard-fought protections. Don't let anyone roll back the clock in Massachusetts. Learn more about the campaign to defend transgender equality and how to mobilize for change in Lexington and the surrounding area. RSVP using this link - walk-ins also welcome. If you can't attend, but would like to attend future meetings or be added to the email distribution list, please email LexPrideMA@gmail.com and include your name and phone number.
Elections Team Meeting Wednesday, April 25th 7:15-8:45 PM
Lexington Community Center, Room 242
Join the Elections team for updates on our work in PA-06, NJ-11, and KY-06 and a discussion about which campaign(s) we should consider supporting. Do you have a favorite House race out there that you'd like to see us throw our muscle behind? Put together your 2-minute "elevator speech" in favor of that race and come to the meeting ready to pitch it! One fun way to research our choices is to use this nifty NYTimes interactive graph. We welcome new team members.
Democracy Team Meeting Thursday, April 26th 7:00-8:45 PM
Lexington Community Center, Room 245
Come hear about Democracy Team activities and strategy on voter registration (including AVR), immigrant rights, conflict of interest issues, and What About Charlie Baker. Learn what actions you can take to affect change and how you can help the team achieve its goals. New members welcome.
Phonebanking and Postcarding for PA-06 and NJ-11 Sunday, April 29th 4:00-6:00 PM
In conjunction with Activist Afternoons at WeWork, 625 Massachusetts Ave, Cambridge
What better way to help turn the House blue than to attend this phone bank and postcard party for our selected candidates in PA-06 and NJ-11. Bring a computer, phone, pen, and stamps and feel free to join for the full 2 hours or any other amount of time you are available. WeWorks is right near the Central Square stop on the T's red line; parking is available on the street or at Green Street Garage. Please RSVP here so we can know how many people we will have and provide more details.
Action Day for Extreme Risk Protection Orders Monday, April 30th
11:00 AM -12:30 PM
Massachusetts State House, 24 Beacon St., Boston
The MA Coalition to Prevent Gun Violence is holding an action day to make a final push for the Extreme Risk Protection Order (ERPO) bill. Meet at 11AM at the Wolcott Statue outside the House Chamber at the State House.RSVP using this link.
Climate & Environment Team Meeting Monday, April 30th 7:15-8:45 PM
Lexington Community Center, Room 237
Join the Climate & Environment Team as we review the past month's activities and make future plans. New members welcome!
LOCAL FUNDRAISERS FOR OUT-OF-STATE CANDIDATES
We know the number of requests for financial support can feel overwhelming, but if you're inclined to offer support and would like to meet or learn more about promising candidates, check out these upcoming parties and events in our area
Knit to Flip a State Legislative Race in PA or Send Postcards to Voters in Ohio Thursday, April 26th 7:00-8:45 PM
40 Moon Hill Road, Lexington
Come together with other knitters and needle-crafters to help raise money for Melissa Shusterman, who’s running for a legislative seat in PA-157. For people who don’t want to knit, there will be postcards available to write to young voters in Ohio who are at risk of being purged from the voter rolls. Get more details and RSVP using this link. There are also similar events in other nearby communities this week - check out this link for the complete list.
Fundraiser for Regina Bateson (CA-04) Friday, April 27th 5:30-7:30 PM
Private Residence in Cambridge (Address provided with RSVP)
While the Elections Team is no longer formally supporting Regina Bateson's campaign in CA-04, many of us still think she's a great candidate. We encourage you to consider supporting her on your own, and here's a great way to do just that. Meet Regina at a house party in Cambridge on Friday, April 27, 5:30-7:30pm. RSVP via email to email@example.com to receive the address for the party and donate using this link.
Swing Maine to Blue Dance Party Friday, May 11th 7:00-11:00 PM
Artlounge, 1346 Massachusetts Ave., Arlington
Arlington Resistance is throwing a dance party to raise money for the Democratic challenger in the Maine 2nd Congressional District. The proceeds go to Swing Left’s District Fund for ME-2 to support the eventual Democratic nominee in the Maine 2nd Congressional District, who will challenge incumbent Republican Bruce Poliquin in November. We want to make sure the Democratic candidate hits the ground running in the general election -- which means giving him or her a big check after the primary on June 12th! Artlounge serves wine, beer, snacks and small plates. Get more details and RSVP here, then donate using this link.
Learn More about MI Teams
Are you new to Minuteman Indivisible? While it is not required, one of the best ways to get involved is to join one or more of our teams! (See our website for more information on the teams.) If you'd like to contact one of our team leaders, their contact emails are below. (Although many teams have more than one team leader, for simplicity's sake, we list just one contact point.)
If you haven't had a chance to sign up for a team and would like to get more involved, just fill out this form: TEAM SIGN-UPS
Send Us Your Photos and Follow Us on Social Media
We know our members are working hard on a wide variety of issues and spending time at town halls, protests, MI working meetings, and other events. We'd love to feature your photos in our newsletter, on our website, and on social media - just email them to firstname.lastname@example.org.
We the peopleof Minuteman Indivisible are a team of concerned citizens living in the greater Lexington, Massachusetts area, home of the American Revolution. Our mission is to advocate for the rights and dignity of all people, informed by science and humanitarian principles. We are networked with many Indivisible groups throughout Massachusetts and the nation to build a strong and effective resistance movement against racism, authoritarianism, and corruption, and to promote a vigorous democratic process.