“A nation can survive its fools, and even the ambitious. But it cannot survive treason from within. An enemy at the gates is less formidable, for he is known and carries his banner openly. But the traitor moves amongst those within the gate freely, his sly whispers rustling through all the alleys, heard in the very halls of government itself. For the traitor appears not a traitor; he speaks in accents familiar to his victims, and he wears their face and their arguments, he appeals to the baseness that lies deep in the hearts of all men. He rots the soul of a nation, he works secretly and unknown in the night to undermine the pillars of the city, he infects the body politic so that it can no longer resist.” Marcus Tullius Cicero
This is a weekly update detailing social action oriented events/actions/meetings that you can plug into in Madison, WI.
Voces Solidarity Challenge: We’re Halfway There!
We have raised $32,161! We still have a ways to go, but news is spreading and we've had several great fundraisers. At this point we want to move beyond our community's circles and reach further into the larger Madison community. Do you have friends or colleagues in other congregations? Know an organization that's looking for a great project to take on? Helping us make those connections is really helpful. Questions or suggestions? Please email Joy at firstname.lastname@example.org and she'll direct you to the right person.
May 20: Friends of State Street Family Meal
Can you Help Provide a Meal for Madison's Homeless Community – Or Pay for Part of the Meal? We are looking for people who can cook a dish, make some sandwiches, or do some shopping. If you are interested, please sign up online or contact Laura at email@example.com. Each meal costs about $400, so we are also seeking financial donations. Please consider making a donation online or mailing a check to the office. We feed over 150 people through Friends of the State Street Family each month. Our next date is May 20, 3:00 – 4:00 p.m. Located at Philosopher's Stone Park on the corner of State Street and N. Carroll Street.
EVENTS AROUND TOWN:
May 15: Q & A Session about FUS Offering Sanctuary in its Building
Members of the FUS sanctuary taskforce are hosting a Q & A section about offering sanctuary. This session is open to FUS and CSS members and will be held in the Landmark auditorium from 6:00 – 7:00 p.m., 900 University Bay Drive.
May 21: Q & A Session about FUS Offering Sanctuary in its Building
Members of the FUS sanctuary taskforce are hosting a Q & A section about offering sanctuary. This session is open to FUS and CSS members and will be held in the Landmark auditorium from 12:30 – 1:30 p.m., 900 University Bay Drive.
May 21: Townhall Meeting with Ron Johnson
Ron Johnson will be at the Root River Center in Franklin at 3:00 p.m. Click here for more details. About two weeks ago he was at Madison East High school. Here is an Isthmus article about the questions and answers from that meeting.
June 2 – June 4: Where do we go from here? Understanding the Current Crisis & Building Social Justice in the Midwest
This is an annual gathering of Forward -- community activists, students, and educators committed to social justice. It is at Edgewood College and more details are here.This year’s gathering will devote substantial attention to understanding the outcome of the 2016 elections and their implications for the struggle for social justice in the Midwest, including Wisconsin. The central goal is to foster collaboration among organizers, activists, educators, and students interested in problem-solving on a range of crucial issues that reflect the present crisis, including immigration, mass incarceration and policing, resource and water defense, labor rights, and women’s rights, among others. For more information click here.
Jewish Social Services is Resettling Several Syrian Families
JSS has four families in Madison already, and it now looks like there will be more on the way. With the newest executive order on hold, the State Department is picking up the pace of moving refugees to the United States.
Contact Becca or Paul if you are interested in helping with this effort.
Also, JSS has many clients in need of support. Click here for additional volunteer opportunities at JSS.
Don’t Let Up About Health Care Insurance
On Thursday, May 4th, 217 Republican members of the House of Representatives voted to pass their latest version of the American Healthcare Act (AHCA) despite limited debate and no analysis from the CBO. Many of the representatives hadn’t even read the bill. There is a lot in there including a large change to the way the federal government funds Medicaid.
Continue to contact your Senators to fight passage of this bill. Click here for phone numbers and information. It is always more effective if you say what you oppose in the bill and then how it would impact you. The Kaiser Family Foundation has useful information in comparing the two health care bills.
Organizer and activist DeRay Mckesson has a new podcast called “Pod Save the People’. At minute 55 and 30 seconds in the 5.2.17 edition he has an interesting interview with Andy Slavitt, the former Acting Administrator of the Centers for Medicaid and Medicare. (Also if you are on Twitter, Andy Slavitt puts out some good information about health care - @ASlavitt.)
Insist on an independent special prosecutor in the wake of Comey's firing
On May 9th, Trump fired James Comey, the director of the FBI and leader of the investigation into the Trump campaign's potential coordination with Russia during the 2016 election. One action idea is to contact the appointment of a special prosecutor and an independent commission. This 5 Calls link provides phone numbers for DOJ and legislators. This Indivisible link has a toolkit for background on the investigation into Russian interference.
Voter ID Laws
The Wisconsin Voter ID law disenfranchises many voters. The State Journal recently published an article documenting this. (The Brennan Center is a great source for information on voting rights.) The Wisconsin League of Women Voters has an Election Observation report from the November 2016 with key findings and recommendations regarding election administration, voter education and the impact of new voting laws. Read a summary or the full report.
There isn’t an organized action campaign on this topic – but the State Journal article is a good reason to let the legislature know your concerns about fundamental voting rights. Here is a link to the Assembly Committee on Campaigns and Elections and this is a link to the Senate Committee on Elections and Local Government.
Bernstein and Woodward Hot on the Case
A couple of clips of reporters hard at work in ‘All the President’s Men’. Here and here.
Shaarei Shamayim Public Policy Advocacy Guidelines
Click this link to read the Shaarei Shamayim Public Policy Advocacy Guidelines.
Social Action email
I am the social action committee chair for Congregation Shaarei Shamayim (CSS) and send out social action updates by email most weeks.