Monday, September 17, 2018

Sen. Flake still hasn't decided how to vote on Kavanaugh? Calls needed.

If we have any shot of blocking Brett Kavanaugh's confirmation, it goes right through Arizona.

Yesterday, Christine Blasey Ford went public with her story of being physically and sexually assaulted by Brett Kavanaugh while they were in high school.1

The reasons to oppose Kavanaugh are clear and more appalling every day, but Sen. Jeff Flake is still on the fence.

We need all hands on deck to make sure that Sen. Flake hears from as many constituents as possible demanding that he stop Kavanaugh from being confirmed.

Other ways to contact Senator Flake:

https://www.flake.senate.gov/public/index.cfm/contact-jeff

Washington, D.C. Office:P: 202-224-4521

Tucson Office: 520-575-8633

Sample script:

Hi, my name is _____ and I live in Tucson. I’m calling Sen. Flake to ask that he vote no on Brett Kavanaugh's confirmation and prevent another accused sexual predator from being confirmed to the Supreme Court.

Even before the recent allegations, Kavanaugh had proven himself too extreme for Arizona. He threatens women's health, civil rights, workers and the environment and perjured himself during his hearings.

Kavanaugh is deeply unpopular in Arizona and as a constituent I am asking Sen. Flake to publicly commit to oppose him.

Thank you.

It is clear that Republicans on the Senate Judiciary Committee knew about, and prepared for the fallout from, Blasey Ford's allegations. But instead of acting on such obviously disqualifying information, they rushed through Kavanaugh's nomination and buried key documents that could shed further light on his character.

We already have an accused sexual predator in the White House. We don't need another one on the Supreme Court. Nor should the Senate hand over the Court to a criminal co-conspirator who may have helped a foreign government steal the 2016 election and whose dangerous agenda includes ripping children from their families, taking away women's rights, banning Muslims from the country, undermining LGBTQ equality and destroying the planet.

Despite the allegations against Kavanaugh, the White House has indicated it is "full steam ahead" on his nomination.2 This refusal to slow things down in the face of Blasey Ford's courage proves yet again that the Republican Party is willing to ignore, demonize and undermine women in service of partisan gain. Those of us who believe Blasey Ford must have her back now in any way we can, including by putting massive pressure on our senators to block Kavanaugh's nomination. Can you make a call to Sen. Flake today? Click the link below for a sample script and the number to call:

https://act.credoaction.com/call/Save_SCOTUS_constituents?t=7&akid=30065%2E3130208%2ERFeY4l

- Heidi Hess, CREDO Action
Click below for a sample script and the number to call:
Take action now ►
Reference:
  1. Emma Brown, "California professor, writer of confidential Brett Kavanaugh letter, speaks out about her allegation of sexual assault," The Washington Post, Sept. 16, 2018.
  2. Asawin Suebsaeng, Gideon Resnick, and Sam Stein, "Trump Believes There Is a ‘Conspiracy’ to Torpedo the Kavanaugh Nomination," The Daily Beast, Sept. 16, 2018.

Call DA Michael Jackson now: Tell him to protect victims of abuse - not jail them


Though the majority of women in prison are there for nonviolent crimes such as drug offenses, analyses of state and federal women’s prison populations estimates that as many as 4,500 women may be doing time for killing abusive male partners. The murder of an abusive partner is often a woman’s first offense, and for women who have prior offenses, they tend to be nonviolent. Convicted Survivors: The Imprisonment of Battered Women Who Kill By Elizabeth Dermody Leonard
Jacqueline Dixon’s nightmare is far from over. Since July, Jacqueline Dixon has been charged with murder-domestic violence for shooting and killing her abusive ex-husband in self-defense after he attempted to attack her in the driveway of her home. Despite clear evidence, a court granted order of protection, and knowledge of the history of violence, the Selma Police Department still arrested her and Alabama District Attorney Michael Jackson pursued charges against Jacqueline.

The case is still in the hands of DA Michael Jackson. He has full discretion to completely drop the charges. Jacqueline is now out of jail on bond. But he is refusing to drop the charges. Soon a grand jury will hear her case. Now that a “Stand Your Ground” defense will be used in the case by her legal team, it is now time for DA Jackson to consider Jacqueline’s full experience, show real leadership, and drop the charges. Over 34,000 people have already signed the petition to call on DA Michael Jackson to drop the charges against Jacqueline. Now the next step is to flood his office with phone calls. He needs to hear loud and clear that Jacqueline deserves justice, not prison.

Call 1-844-214-7947 now to demand District Attorney Michael Jackson drop the charges against Jacqueline Dixon.

In a “Stand Your Ground State,” District Attorney Michael Jackson’s position as an elected prosecutor is a crucial one. In June 2004, he became the first Black person elected to office in Dallas County, Alabama and at the time the first elected Black prosecutor in the entire state of Alabama.1 In 2013, he even became the first Black elected official to be named “District Attorney of the Year” in Alabama.2 Survivors of domestic violence constantly live in fear and are forced to use dangerous ways to protect themselves and their families. Punishing a survivor of abuse should never be the solution. If DA Michael Jackson truly cares about serving justice and representing the people, he should see and honor the full humanity of Jacqueline Dixon.

Phone calls are an important tool to make your voice heard directly with the target. It is easy and quick. Just follow along below. Call 1-844-214-7947 now.

When they answer you can read from the script below, or use your own words. Be polite and calm. While we might be angry, we need to send a consistent message that can't be twisted to discredit us. We'll connect you.

Here's what to say when they answer:

Hi, I'm [state your name].

I 'm calling to ask DA Michael Jackson to drop the charges against Jacqueline Dixon. Too many survivors of domestic violence, especially Black women, are punished and criminalized for protecting and defending themselves.

Jacqueline Dixon deserves protection and safety. 
 Please, drop the charges against Jacqueline Dixon now.
Let’s show up for Jacqueline. Call at 1-844-214-7947 today.

- Color Of Change team

References:
"Michael Jackson named first African-American "District Attorney of the Year" in AL." WSFA 12. 27 June 2013. http://act.colorofchange.org/go/91642?t=9&akid=17911%2E3510445%2EUnJx4i
"Michael Jackson named first African-American "District Attorney of the Year" in AL." WSFA 12. 27 June 2013. http://act.colorofchange.org/go/91642?t=11&akid=17911%2E3510445%2EUnJx4i
More information:

FACT SHEET ON DOMESTIC VIOLENCE & THE CRIMINALIZATION OF SURVIVAL

Friday, September 14, 2018

Tell School Boards: Stop poisoning our kids! No more Roundup on school grounds

Children play where Roundup is sprayed. 

In the U.S., more than 26 million pounds of Roundup are sprayed every year on school grounds, public playgrounds, and gardens. Recent testing reveals that glyphosate, the main ingredient in Roundup, is present in a multitude of common conventionally grown foods, including those served in school cafeterias.Glyphosate has been labeled a probable carcinogen by the World Health Organization, and it has no place in our schools.2
As the organization representing the top decision-makers in U.S. school districts, the National School Boards Association has a responsibility to millions of parents and school children to protect children from harm. Keep toxic pesticides out of our schools. 
On August 10, a jury awarded $289.2 million to Dewayne "Lee" Johnson, a former school groundskeeper whose job required him to spray Monsanto's Roundup weedkiller on school properties. Mr. Johnson is terminally ill with non-Hodgkin's lymphoma, a type of cancer linked to the use of Monsanto's Roundup and other glyphosate-based weedkillers.3

On August 15, California's Supreme Court rejected Monsanto's challenge to the state's decision to list glyphosate as a potential carcinogen under the California's Proposition 65, a law requiring the state to publish a list of chemicals known to cause cancer or birth defects.4

Tucson landscaper follows city's example
Tell the National School Boards Association to keep Monsanto's Roundup weedkiller away from schools.

In light of the latest evidence that Monsanto's Roundup weedkiller causes cancer, the National School Board Association must do these two things:
  • Issue a formal policy statement advising all school districts to end the use of Roundup and all toxic agrochemicals on school grounds.
  • Issue a formal policy statement advising all school districts to revamp their school lunch programs by transitioning to certified organic foods, in order to avoid serving foods contaminated with glyphosate and other pesticides.
Toxic poisons have no place in U.S. schools, either on playgrounds or in cafeteria food. Please act immediately to rid schools of Roundup and other toxic chemicals. Tell the National School Boards Association: Monsanto's Roundup and other toxic agro-chemicals must be banned on school grounds, and school lunch programs should stop serving foods contaminated with glyphosate, the active ingredient in Roundup.
Thanks!
–Katherine Paul, Organic Consumers Association
Sources:
1. "Thriving Communities Guide," U.S. Public Interest Research Group, accessed September 4, 2018
https://act.moveon.org/go/49496?t=17&akid=216029%2E6090523%2EjuDkQe
2. "IARC Monograph on Glyphosate," World Health Organization International Agency for Research on Cancer, accessed September 4, 2018
https://act.moveon.org/go/49497?t=19&akid=216029%2E6090523%2EjuDkQe
3. "Jury rules Monsanto liable in weed killer case," ABC 7, August 10, 2018
https://act.moveon.org/go/49498?t=21&akid=216029%2E6090523%2EjuDkQe
4. "Monsanto loses another court case over its widely used weed killer," San Francisco Chronicle, August 15, 2018
https://act.moveon.org/go/49499?t=23&akid=216029%2E6090523%2EjuDkQe


One more action: 
Also, consider forwarding the links above to the Mayor and City Council. Urge them to tell the landscape adviser committee and City Maintenance to stop spraying Roundup all over Tucson. 
Read: City Council, Stop allowing City Maintenance to poison Tucson

Information on how to contact Tucson Mayor and City Council in upper right hand column. 

Thursday, September 13, 2018

Customs and Border Protection accepting Public Comments on Trump's border wall plan

TOPSHOT - US President Donald Trump inspects border wall prototypes in San Diego, California on March 13, 2018. DAFP PHOTO / MANDEL NGAN (Photo credit should read MANDEL NGAN/AFP/Getty Images) (Photo: Getty Images)

Customs and Border Protection will extend the deadline for public input on the proposed construction of a border wall along the U.S.-Mexico border, about two months after a coalition of 40 organizations requested the agency allow more time for feedback.

The area of proposed construction spans about 33 miles and bisects numerous National Wildlife Refuge tracts, Bentsen-Rio Grande Valley State Park, Roma and La Lomita National Historic Districts, and dozens, if not hundreds, of private properties, the letter states. 

Customs and Border Protection will take public input via email through Nov. 6, a news release states. Comments, questions, or concerns can be emailed to CBP at commentsenv@cbp.dhs.gov.

Input is welcome on the potential border wall's impact on the environment, culture, and commerce, including potential socioeconomic impacts, and quality of life, the agency release states. The agency also will conduct environmental site surveys and assessments and is gathering data and input from state and local government agencies, federal agencies, Native American tribes, and landowners that may be affected by or otherwise have an interest in the construction projects.

Helpful comments are fact-based, include links to data or research, and provide specific information concerning potential impacts to biological, cultural, and natural resources," the release states. If known, your response should include any state and local restrictions, permitting or other requirements that CBP should consider during project siting, construction, and operation.

Last month, the U.S. Government Accountability Office published a report describing testing and evaluation methods used, as well as a summary of some of the findings, according to the Arizona Republic.  The report points to structural issues in the design or with the construction of eight prototypes that were erected in a hilly area on the outskirts of San Diego, California.

Excerpt taken from: 


Here's another report with more information you can use to form an effective public comment:

Download ACLU Report:

More Information:


Wednesday, September 12, 2018

Tell the National Marine Fisheries Service to protect the Endangered Species Act


The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) and National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) recently proposed a series of regulatory changes that would undermine the U.S. Endangered Species Act and jeopardize critical protections for wildlife.

The Endangered Species Act has proven to be an incredibly successful tool for protecting imperiled wildlife—nearly every species listed since the law was enacted has been saved from extinction. Yet the current administration is seeking to weaken the law by relaxing the regulations that guide its implementation.

Among the proposed regulatory changes are efforts to: weaken protections for threatened species; open the door to substituting economic considerations for sound science; interfere with the establishment and protection of critical habitat; and undermine the role of inter-agency consultation in safeguarding species.

It's critical that you let FWS/NMFS know that you value this essential law and oppose their proposals to weaken it.

- Beth Allgood, IFAW US Country Director

Click here to send the following message:   

(Feel free to personalize it for even more impact.)

Send to: National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS):

I am writing to express my strong opposition to regulatory changes proposed in the following U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) and National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) rulemaking dockets, which were published on July 25, 2018: FWS-HQ-ES-2018-0006; FWS-HQ-ES-2018-0007; and FWS-HQ-ES-2018-0009.

The U.S. Endangered Species Act has proven to be an incredibly successful tool for protecting imperiled wildlife—nearly every species listed since the law was enacted has been saved from extinction. The pending proposals to weaken the law by relaxing the very regulations that guide its implementation would threaten its continued success, and run counter to the spirit of the Endangered Species Act and the Services’ missions.

More Information:

Monday, September 10, 2018

"Making your vote count" events

AZ Superintendent of Public Instruction clean elections debate

WHEN: Thursday, September 13, 2018 @ 5:30 pm – 6:30 pm

WHERE: Online at AZPBS "Arizona Horizon."

Featuring Democratic candidate Kathy Hoffman and Republican Frank Riggs.

Sierra Club: Arizona’s Legislature Again Weakens Environmental Protection to Benefit Industry Polluters

WHEN: Thursday, September 13, 2018 @ 7:00 pm – 8:30 pm

WHERE: Ward 3 Council office, 1510 E Grant Rd, Tucson, AZ 85719.

Grand Canyon Chapter Director and Lobbyist Sandy Bahr describes how the 2018 Legislature failed to strengthen water law in the face of lingering drought while doling out favors to corporate polluters and climate changers. 

League of Women Voters: How to be an Informed Voter in the Post-truth Era

WHEN: Saturday, September 15, 2018 @ 9:30 am – 11:45 am

WHERE: Joel D. Valdez Main Library, 101 N Stone Ave, Tucson, AZ 85701.

The speakers are Kate Kenski, Associate Professor of Communications, U. of Arizona, Chris Weber, Associate Professor of Government & Public Policy, U. of Arizona, Dylan Smith, Editor and Publisher, TucsonSentinel.com and Jill Jorden Spitz, Editor, Arizona Daily Star.

Tell Republicans in Congress : Oppose Jim Jordan's bid as party leader

Tell House Republicans:
"A man accused of covering up sexual assault who blatantly tried to undermine the investigation into 2016 election interference should have no place in leadership. Reject Jim Jordan's bid to be speaker."
Add your name:
Sign the petition ►

Tell Republicans: Don't make Jim Jordan leader
Multiple former Ohio State University wrestlers accused Rep. Jim Jordan of helping cover up sexual harassment and abuse, but he could still be the next Republican party leader.1
Shortly after the allegations against Jordan became public, news broke that he had pressured former wrestlers to recant.2 While at first other conservatives distanced themselves from Jordan, in the months since they have continued collaborating with him, indicating they might support his campaign to replace Speaker Paul Ryan, who is resigning.3
The fact that Jordan is still in Congress – and running for leadership at that – is testament to the Republican Party's indifference to sexual assault and harassment, but if enough people speak out, we can remind vulnerable Republicans that someone who covered up for harassment should have no place in leadership.
As one of Donald Trump's most loyal lapdogs, Jordan has been doing everything in his power to impede Robert Mueller's investigation into Trump's Russia ties.4 Jordan, along with other extreme conservatives, introduced articles of impeachment against Rod Rosenstein, the person overseeing Robert Mueller's investigation – an outrageous and blatant attempt to discredit Mueller's investigation and protect Trump from Mueller's findings.5
Taking a page out of Trump's playbook, Jordan fueled fringe right-wing conspiracy theories that the OSU allegations are somehow connected to the "deep state" and called the timing – as he launched his run for speaker and tried to initiate Rosenstein's impeachment – suspect.6 In fact, the first wrestler to file a complaint with OSU over repeated abuse by former team doctor Richard Strauss did so in the spring and reportedly reached out to Jordan ahead of time. Jordan instructed him to "leave me out of it."7
After the initial allegations broke, another former wrestler recalled he told Jordan directly after Strauss sexually assaulted him.8 Then, more than six former wrestlers came forward to say they were routinely harassed in their training facility – one of whom said he saw Jordan "yell at male voyeurs to get out of the sauna."9
Jordan reportedly pressured two of the wrestlers who named him as complicit in the cover up to recant. After he and his brother Jeff Jordan called the parents of one former wrestler, that wrestler walked back implicating Jordan.10
With an assaulter-in-chief in the White House, it's not surprising that a Republican candidate for House leadership can so easily dismiss credible allegations that he covered up sexual harassment and abuse. It's also not surprising that Republicans are playing politics instead of standing up for survivors of sexual assault, but with a huge public outcry about Jordan's role in the OSU cover-up, we can ensure they can't sweep this under the rug and elect him as Republican leader.

Tell Republicans in Congress: Oppose Jordan's bid for House leadership. Click the link below to sign the petition:
https://act.credoaction.com/sign/Reject_Jordan?t=7&akid=29970%2E3130208%2Et1kqnR
- Kaili Lambe, CREDO Action
Add your name:
Sign the petition ►
References:
  1. Elise Viebeck, "Jim Jordan denies allegations that he ignored sexual abuse of wrestlers at Ohio State," The Washington Post, July 3, 2017.
  2. Felicia Sonmez, "Retired Ohio State coach asked Jim Jordan accusers to recant, report says," The Washington Post, Aug. 1, 2018.
  3. Bob Brigham, "GOP Freedom Caucus Members Refuse to Support Jim Jordan on the Record as More Accusers Come Forward," Alternet, July 7, 2018.
  4. Olivia Beavers, "GOP lawmakers introduce articles of impeachment against Rosenstein," The Hill, July 25, 2018.
  5. Fred Wertheimer and Norman Eisen, "In bid to impeach Rod Rosenstein, House Republicans are abusing power to protect Trump," USA Today, July 19, 2018.
  6. Tina Nguyen, "Jim Jordan says the deep state is engineering his sex-abuse scandal," Vanity Fair, July 11, 2018.
  7. Corky Siemaszko, "Powerful GOP Rep. Jim Jordan accused of turning blind eye to sexual abuse as Ohio State wrestling coach," NBC News, July 3, 2018.
  8. Ibid.
  9. Rachael Bade and John Bresnahan, "‘A cesspool of deviancy’: New claims of voyeurism test Jordan denials," POLITICO, July 6, 2018.
  10. Siemaszko, "Powerful GOP Rep. Jim Jordan accused of turning blind eye to sexual abuse as Ohio State wrestling coach."
photo: Saul Loeb/Getty Images