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Don’t Wait: Activate in Your State

Don’t Wait: Activate in Your State

Wendy Brandes

If you’re upset by what’s happening this country and you’re not calling your two U.S. senators and your one congressperson EVERY DAY, you ain’t serious. Stop playing! Put those phone numbers in your contacts and spend five minutes (total) telling the officials who work for you what you expect to see out of them. Can’t find time between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. to call? Oh, I got you. Text the word RESIST to 50409 and you can use Resistbot to send messages 24/7.
I wrote that in June, after a #CloseTheCamps protest in front of the offices of my senators, Chuck Schumer and Kirsten Gillibrand. Here's a video of me saying the same shit!
That task -- the daily phone calls and/or Resistbot -- are both so easy to do and so meaningful. It's kind of the least you can do and the most you can do at the same time. So do it! If you have time to write a Doomsday tweet or Facebook post, that means you have time to write a Resistbot tweet or Facebook message instead. You have the power! Seize it, own it, use it! Unleash your inner Megan Rapinoe!
Embed from Getty Images
Already calling/writing your U.S. senators and congressperson every day? Ready for the next step? Time to plunge into state politics. It is state legislatures that are passing draconian abortion bans in a deliberate attempt to get Roe v. Wade dismantled by the right-wingers on the Supreme Court. When you learn about some of the fuckery that's been going on right under your nose, you're going to be good and mad. In New York, for instance, we had eight longtime state senators who ran for election as Democrats but always voted with Republicans against anything progressive. As I explained in January, they got away with it simply because people didn't pay attention. They counted on this thought process: “It’s too hard to get to the polls on Election Day, I don’t know anything about state politics, and, hey, this Democrat is going to win anyway.” Unfortunately, eight of those Democrats were Republicans on the down-low. Let Edie Falco tell you more about it:
Thanks to grassroots activism -- especially through the efforts of No IDC NY -- we got rid of six of those eight liars and now Democrats have a majority in the New York State Senate and Assembly. We've finally passed desperately needed laws at the state level, including early voting that will give people more than one day to get to the polls. Today I went to a neighborhood meeting of the Four Freedoms Democratic Club to hear a progress report from my senator, Liz Krueger.
[caption id="attachment_43166" align="aligncenter" width="498"] Liz Krueger[/caption]
Liz has been in office 17 years and she doesn't hold back. At one point she mused about former colleagues, "We had four -- how do I put this politely -- narcissistic criminals .." She gave us a lot of insight into the strategy and passage of legislation ranging from a reproductive health act to protect New Yorkers from the federal government's assault on abortion rights to vaccination requirements to renters' rights to the banning of cat declawing. For real, if you want to control your own body and be safe from outrageous rent increases, get to know your state politicians. Love cats and hate measles? Same thing.

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