• Support Veterans United To Stop The Border Wall
    Right now, the Trump administration is in a mad dash to build a border wall before the elections in order to rally an increasingly violent racist base of supporters, seizing public and private lands and tossing aside over 40 federal laws. The flagship piece of the wall runs right through the city of Laredo, TX a densely populated city right on the Rio Grande river. If built, the wall would stoke further anti-immigrant hatred across the country, and impose destruction on border towns and cities for generations. There is no "national emergency" happening in Laredo. That is a manufactured story created by the administration. Laredo is actually safer and more peaceful than most US cities. The wall serves no actual security purpose. In truth, the wall is a symbol meant to stoke racism across the country. It also has lasting, devastating impacts on the communities in which it is built. The border wall in Laredo would carve a path of destruction through Laredo, TX destroying public spaces, historic structures, public parks, private homes, places of worship, even a children's home run by Catholic nuns. The wall is not just a fence, it would be a 30 foot tall prison wall more than twice the height of the Berlin Wall. It is a 200 foot wide security corridor, that would militarize the entire waterfront of Laredo, which is precious to the people of Laredo, and has been theirs for for 265 years. Laredo depends on the Rio Grand for 100% of it's drinking water. If built, the zone would not only cut off all 250,000 residents from accessing their river, the now federally owned zone would void over 25 federal laws protecting water, land, and air quality. As Congress returns to session and a presidential election right around the corner, it's imperative that we stop this wall. We support human rights and urge you to do the same. Stand with the vets who are defending their city. Please sign this petition to have our vets' backs. Thank you! FOLLOW US on facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Vets-United-To-Stop-The-Wall-111198500719227 Once you sign the petition, there are 3 other things you can do: 1) Send the vets a PERSONAL LETTER OF SUPPORT https://forms.gle/L2rZdn2e8YJc1EcP7 2) SIGN UP with No Border Wall Coalition for updates on the Vets' actions: http://www.noborderwallcoalition.com/ 3) DONATE to support the upcoming Veterans' actions: Donate here: https://bit.ly/NBWMuralDonate All solidarity is welcomed, Deepest thanks, Vets United to Stop The Border Wall, The No Border Wall Coalition, Laredo, TX
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  • Support Latinx Writers: Tell Flatiron Books to Fairly Represent Latinx Stories and Voices!
    This month, Flatiron Books published American Dirt, a problematic book filled with stereotypes, hackneyed and often ridiculously unrepresentative language of the Latinx community. Its flawed premises, the racism in its promotion and much more—were resoundingly exposed in the critical reception it received in the New York Times, USA Today and many other outlets, as well as in the Latinx community. Dig and you will discover the deeper truth expressed in publishing industry statistics: 1. Latinos make up 18% of the U.S. population [2] 2. Latinx authors, Latinx books are abysmally underrepresented. For example, of the 3,400 children’s books received and studied by The Cooperative Children’s Book Center in 2015, only 83 were about Latinos and only 59 were written by Latinos. And all indicators are that the statistics for adult publishing are far worse. [3] 3. White people make up over 79% of the overall industry. [4] 4. The overwhelming majority of book reviewers (89%) percent are white. As a result of a callous, ill-conceived marketing campaign, Flatiron Books is now associated with the symbol of a wall wrapped in barbed wire. Flatiron Books is now associated with the commodification of carnage. Flatiron Books is now associated with the glamorization and romanticization of rape. Flatiron Books is on its way to becoming synonymous with racism. These associations tarnish the dignity of the publishing industry–and of Latinos. Latinos reject the indignity forced upon us by misrepresentation, cultural appropriation, and other modes of exploitation. We refuse to allow these behaviors to continue. Such behaviors harm the Latinx community. They harm the publishing industry as well. We have the potential to shape how Latinxs voices and stories are represented in publishing and in marketing. Please add your name to our petition to tell Flatiron Books to abandon these behaviors and repair the damage that has been done. Thank you: Myriam Gurba Roberto Lovato David Bowles References: [1] Bermudez, Esmeralda. “Commentary: When Latinos are shut out of the book industry, you end up with ‘American Dirt’.” Los Angeles Times. January 24, 2020: https://www.latimes.com/entertainment-arts/story/2020-01-24/american-dirt-book-latino- response [2] Flores, A & Lopez M.H & Krogstad, J.M. “U.S. Hispanic population reached new high in 2018, but growth has slowed.” Pew Research Center. July 18, 2019. https://www.pewresearch.org/fact-tank/2019/07/08/u-s-hispanic-population-reached-new-high-in-2018-but-growth-has-slowed/ [3] “Publishing Statistics on Children's/YA Books about People of Color and First/Native Nations and by People of Color and First/Native Nations Authors and Illustrators.” CCBC. November 21, 2019. Accessed on January 24, 2020. https://ccbc.education.wisc.edu/books/pcstats.asp [4] Flood, Alison. “Publishing industry is overwhelmingly white and female, US study finds.” The Guardian. January 27, 2016: https://www.theguardian.com/books/2016/jan/27/us-study-finds-publishing-is-overwhelmingly-white-and-female
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  • Save Lives - Support AB 392 #LetUsLive
    Across California, Latinx families are grieving and suffering the trauma and pain caused by losing loved ones at the hands of police violence. AB 392 is supported by hundreds of victims’ family members and Latino-led organizations. California Latinxs have marched on the streets in San Diego, Los Angeles, the Inland Empire, Bakersfield, Salinas, San Jose, Oakland, Sacramento, and many other parts of the state. We have lobbied in the Capitol, sent in hundreds of letters, and made thousands of calls to our representatives in support of AB 931 and now AB 392. This bill is being introduced less than a year after Assemblymember Shirley Weber introduced AB 931, a common sense legislative proposal that would have updated a weak and dangerous use of force standard that was established in 1872 - 137 years ago, the oldest in the nation! This minimal California use of force standard was passed in order to protect racialized state violence at a time when our state had the highest lynching rates in the nation - largely perpetrated by law enforcement on Mexican and Native people - including the genocide of indigenous Californians, which resulted in the murder of 90% of Native Californians. AB 931 was stalled in the legislative process in 2018, but the California Let Us Live Coalition decided that in order to protect Black and Brown people from being killed in our communities then we needed to raise it again in 2019. The California Act to Save Lives (AB 392) will reduce and prevent use of force resulting in homicide and also ensure that officers avoid the use of deadly force unless it’s in response to an imminent threat of death or serious bodily injury. AB 392 is modeled after best practices already in place in a number of departments across the country – practices that have already been proven to reduce deadly use of force. You can find out more by downloading the fact sheet here. Specifically, AB 392 will: - Clarify that police should use deadly force only when there are no reasonable alternatives. - Require de-escalation whenever possible. - Hold officers accountable when deadly force wasn’t necessary to prevent death or serious bodily injury and when the officers’ conduct created the circumstances that led to deadly use of force. Latinx-based organizations and self-identified individuals stand in solidarity with black and indigenous communities who are killed at the highest rates by law enforcement and urge you to protect our communities and take action for our families.
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  • Launch a UN investigation into US violations of the human rights of asylum seekers
    As a Member State of the United Nations, the United States government has the moral, ethical and legal obligation to adhere to international law and protect the human rights of the vulnerable. Article 14 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR) states that “Everyone has the right to seek and to enjoy in other countries asylum from persecution.” As such, governments are responsible for protecting people who seek safety in their territory without discrimination on the basis of race, religion, nationality, political opinion or physical incapacity. As a signatory to the UDHR, International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights; the Convention against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment; the International Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination; and the Convention and Protocols Relating to the Status of Refugees, the US has international legal obligations to ensure refugees exercise their basic human rights and live securely and with dignity. Moreover, the US has the obligation to ensure refugees right to seek asylum is respected and they are not forcibly returned. Closing the U.S.-Mexico border port of entry, the use of lethal force, subjecting asylum seekers to forcibly return to their countries where they risk persecution (refoulement), as enacted by U.S. officials in the San Isidro-Tijuana U.S. port of entry on 25 November 2018, are gross violations of international law and the human rights of refugees. The US government must end its hostile treatment of refugees and uphold its international legal obligations. This effort is a collaboration between among the US Human Rights Network, Puente Arizona, Mijente and Presente.org. Reference: 1. "Mexico to deport up to 500 migrants who tried to cross US border." The Guardian. November 26, 2018. https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2018/nov/25/us-mexico-border-crossing-closes-migrants?fbclid=IwAR1DNsKtC67Evcx2z0GIBAfMv6EHh8_y-7iUFjVQO4P33Hza_lCLSE_z_B0
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  • Demand a fair and reasonable lease for Galeria de la Raza!
    Considered by many as the heart of San Francisco’s Mission district, and the voice of Latinx arts and culture for more than 4 decades, Galería de la Raza is at urgent risk of losing the lease on its historic home and needs your help. The toxic combination—money mixed with greed— that’s destroying San Francisco’s black, Latinx and poor communities now threatens Galeria, an organization that has consistently paid its rent for over 46 years. But you can join the hundreds of Mission artists and concerned community members fighting for a stable and thriving Galeria. Following the death of the former landlord, the Trust overseeing the estate of Lily Ng is breaking with the good faith and kindness of the late former owner and are, instead, giving in the temptation of greed, giving Galeria unrealistic and predatory rates on their lease. The terms offered by Mr. Thomas Foo on behalf of the Trust of Lilly Ng would either break Galeria de La Raza or force it to move to another location. To speed up the process, Mr. Foo and the Trust have already initiated a 3 day pay or quit notice that effectively forces Galeria out of its cherished space. Our demand to Mr. Foo, the Trust and Mrs. Ng’s family is simple and reasonable: retract the 3 day pay or quit notice and make a more reasonable offer to Galeria. For this reason, we ask that you join Galeria and all its supporter by adding your name to the petition below. We will then make sure that all the interested parties—the Trust, Mr. Foo, the Latino and Chinese communities, the Mayor and other elected officials, the media–know that Galeria is neither alone nor defeated. This fight is only beginning. Please join us.
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  • Call for Seminole County Tax Collector’s Immediate Resignation
    Joel Greenberg publicly shared Islamophobic content to his social media page that is harmful and divisive to the Muslim community, misperceived Muslim Community, people of color, moreover for our entire Central Florida community. Rasha Mubarak, President of Young Democrats of Orange County and civil rights advocate, stated "we refuse to let Seminole County Tax Collector, Joel Greenberg use the Muslim Community as a tool for his political banter. His provocative posts are not new and his responses have been increasingly condescending, inappropriate, and dismissive. Greenberg has previously tried to use his position as an elected official to grant him privilege in getting out of a ticket and yet again, he is abusing his position in office to demean Muslims. His Islamophobic views not only impacts the Muslim community, it disturbs the peace in Central Florida, moreover compromises the safety and inclusivity across the state, and our country as a whole. We reject the xenophobia against all of our underrepresented communities. There is no room for any kind of discrimination in office. We will continue to stand up against hate, no matter who spews it."
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  • Stop Commercializing Dr. King's Legacy
    Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. did more than fight for an end to racial segregation. In his own words, Dr. King fought against the triple evils of "racism, materialism and militarism." He lamented to pursuit of material wealth and argued a shift of values "from a 'thing-oriented' society to a 'person-oriented' society." While Dr. King's estate has steadfastly defended his words, images and artifacts against usage in historical productions, documentaries, movies and even the Museum of African American History and Culture without the payment of what many consider 'exorbitant' fees, they continue to commercialize his images and words for profit. Dr. King has appeared in advertising for products by Apple, Rolex, Alcatel, Mercedes and, now, Chrysler. At the same time, news agencies have been sued for printing or airing Dr. King speeches and street vendors have been threatened with suits for selling t-shirts with King's image. The Estate- run by his children and their lawyers- is tarnishing Dr. King's image by preventing historians and social justice advocates from using his words, while selling those same words to corporations with histories of racial discrimination for the same type of commercial use that Dr. King himself opposed.
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  • End Slavery in Florida's Prisons
    The Florida state prison system is run like a 21st century slave plantation. Prisoners endure brutal conditions at the hands of guards and that state. That is why Florida has the highest inmate death rate in the US. While this sounds horrific, big corporations are cashing in. Florida sells prison labor to corporations for a fraction of what they would pay employees covered by labor laws. And because Florida does not pay the prison workers, Florida's government directly profits from free slave labor. This arrangement creates a perverse incentive to under-educate, under-employ and over-incarcerate large numbers of low-income Black bodies for the benefit of corporate profit. The state of Florida should not promote, manage and benefit from this arrangement. Florida prisoners are on strike in what they are calling #OperationPUSH to fight for an end to prison slavery and humane conditions for prisoners.
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  • Harvard: Divest from Hate! Dump Baupost Group
    Four months after Hurricane Maria, Puerto Ricans are still suffering from the impacts of the storm. 40% of the island is still without electricity and supplies are still being brought in while Puerto Ricans rebuild their homes and lives, many from scratch. There’s no question that Puerto Rico should use all of its resources to recover and rebuild right now, but hedge fund CEO Seth Klarman thinks otherwise. Seth Klarman leads Baupost Group, a hedge fund that holds $911 MILLION of Puerto Rico’s debt, and has said that canceling the debt would be “impractical.” What’s really impractical and unconscionable is holding Puerto Ricans hostage with an unjust debt while the island recovers from the worst disaster in recent memory. This is colonization in the 21st century and we will not stand for Seth Klarman’s profit-driven tactics. Harvard University, having the largest endowment and most money invested in Baupost Group, must take action to stand with Puerto Ricans and divest its $2 billion from Seth Klarman’s hedge fund. Harvard has a moral obligation to divest any and all funds from Baupost Group -- we call on Harvard University and its endowment to divest from Baupost now!
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  • Sheriff Clarke is Unfit for any Office!
    In a 6 month period last year, 4 community members died in Clarke's jail, including a newborn baby and Terrill Thomas, who died of dehydration after guards shut off his water for 8 days. Clarke later threatened the medical examiner in an attempt to obstruct the investigation into Thomas' death. Clarke is being sued by dozens of women who were shackled by his deputies while giving birth. Clarke has wasted hundreds of thousands of taxpayer dollars in litigation while enriching himself as a mouthpiece for white supremacists. He has referred to the Black Lives Matter movement as "black slime" and "garbage," and compared the movement to ISIS. He has slandered Muslims. He has called for beating up protesters and said he wants to round up 1 million dissenters for Guantanamo. He has threatened violence against elected officials and community members opposed to his policies. Clarke wants to turn Milwaukee County Sheriffs deputies into Immigration agents through the discriminatory 287g program, which Joe Arpaio used in Arizona to racially profile and terrorize immigrant communities. Clarke would use his new position to continue his vicious rhetoric against immigrants, Muslims, and Black people, and to bully sheriffs and chiefs of police into adopting 287g, which is opposed by the vast majority of local law enforcement and elected officials. Secretary Kelly, do not appoint Sheriff Clarke to any position in the federal government!
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  • Governor Walker: Fire Sheriff Clarke!
    Clarke is a national pariah. His efforts to bring 287g to Milwaukee County will increase civil rights violations, hurt the economy, and make everyone less safe. 287g has been totally discredited nationwide. Where it has been implemented, it has lead to an increase in racial profiling and constitutional rights violations. Communities that enrolled in the program, like Joe Arpaio’s Maricopa County, Arizona, have wasted millions defending themselves in civil rights lawsuits, while serious crimes have gone ignored. The program would make tens of thousands of people in Milwaukee County afraid to report crimes, making all less safe. On places like Fox News and at white nationalist events like the "Deplora-ball," Clarke has compared the Black Lives Matter Movement to ISIS and made racist slurs against Black, Muslim, and Latinx community members he is sworn to protect. The deaths in the Milwaukee jail are a tragedy for which Clarke may bear legal responsibility. His harassment of a community member at the airport is shameful, and his obstruction of the investigation may well be criminal. Clarke's extremist antics in the right wing media completely misrepresent Milwaukee County and Wisconsin. Governor Walker, use your authority to fire Sheriff Clarke! --------------- Clarke es un paria nacional. Sus esfuerzos para llevar 287g al Condado de Milwaukee aumentarán las violaciones de los derechos civiles, perjudicarán a la economía, y harán que todos estén menos seguros. 287g ha sido totalmente desacreditado en todo el país. Cuando se ha implementado, ha llevado a un aumento en el perfil racial y violaciones de los derechos constitucionales. Comunidades que formaron parte del programa, como el condado de Maricopa de Joe Arpaio, en Arizona, han perdido millones defendiéndose en demandas de derechos civiles, mientras que los delitos graves han sido ignorados. El programa haría que decenas de miles de personas en el Condado de Milwaukee tuvieran miedo de denunciar los delitos, haciendo que todo fuera menos seguro. En lugares como Fox News y en eventos nacionalistas como el "Deplora-ball", Clarke comparó el Movimiento de las Vidas Negras con ISIS e hizo insultos racistas contra miembros de la comunidad negra, musulmana y latinx a quienes juró proteger. Las muertes en la cárcel de Milwaukee son una tragedia por la cual Clarke podría tener responsabilidad legal. Su acoso de un miembro de la comunidad en el aeropuerto es vergonzoso, y su obstrucción de la investigación bien podría ser criminal. Las tonterías extremistas de Clarke en los medios de comunicación son una desgracia para el condado de Milwaukee y Wisconsin. ¡Gobernador Walker, use su autoridad para despedir al Sheriff Clarke!
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  • #StopBannon! The White House is no place for white supremacy
    As the highest ranking member of Congress, we demand that Speaker Paul Ryan do everything in his power to vet and stop white supremacist Stephen Bannon from becoming chief strategist during Donald Trump’s administration. Speaker Paul Ryan has the power to hold members of his own party accountable. We demand him to do right by his own promises and protect our community against racism and white supremacy, which is embodied and represented by Stephen Bannon. References: 1. http://www.motherjones.com/politics/2016/11/why-its-fair-and-necessary-call-trumps-chief-strategist-stephen-bannon-white-nationalist 2. http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/us-elections-2016/Its-jail-or-deportation-for-3-million-migrants-without-papers-says-Donald-Trump/articleshow/55406259.cms 3. http://www.cnn.com/2016/11/13/politics/paul-ryan-donald-trump-obamacare-deportation-force/index.html?eref=mrss_igoogle_politics
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