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Weekly Actions: Aug. 19, 2018

August 19, 2018

Dear PAGE activist,

 

Near Los Angeles this week, a pregnant woman and her husband were driving to the hospital to deliver her baby. They were stopped by ICE agents, who arrested the man and took him into custody, leaving Maria del Carmen Venegas alone. Ms. Venegas had to drive herself to the hospital and her husband is still in custody under suspicion of being undocumented.

 

In Yemen, a group of school children were riding the bus for a field trip to celebrate their graduation. With no warning, an airstrike hit the bus, killing 51 people, including 40 children. The Saudi-led war in Yemen is directly financed and armed by the USA; the bomb that was dropped on the bus was supplied by the USA.

 

The Southern Indian state of Kerala has been devastated by flooding. At least 190 people have died and thousands more are stranded, as the annual monsoon rains drop double the typical amount of rain. Climate change and deforestation are the main causes for the increase in rainfall.

 

And in Argentina, a 34-year old woman died after attempting an at-home abortion. Last week, the Argentinian Senate narrowly defeated legislation that would have legalized abortion during the first 14 weeks of pregnancy. Up to 500,000 at-home abortions are performed in Argentina every year. “Liz” is the first woman to have died since the legalization legislation failed to pass.

 

Violence comes in many forms: from ICE and endless wars to climate change-induced extreme weather and lack of access to health care. This week we focus on opposing these different forms of violence.

 

As always, our actions are curated for US Americans abroad and global citizens. If you’re new to PAGE, get in touch with us at engage.with.page@gmail.com, or check out our website and updated toolkit. Please help us spread the word about PAGE by forwarding this email to friends, family members, and like-minded acquaintances, where they can join our community by clicking on this link to our sign-up sheet.

 

In solidarity,

Progressive Action, Global Exchange

 

Priority Actions

  • Endless war. In just a few weeks, people who were born after 9/11 will be able to enlist to fight in Afghanistan. The “War on Terror” continues to spread and is now active on the Arabian peninsula, where US and British weapons support enables Saudi Arabia to fight the Houthis in Yemen. Some Democrats have opposed the violence in Yemen, but support for the Pentagon and militarism abroad is mostly bi-partisan. 67% of House Democrats and 85% of Senate Democrats voted in favor of a $82 billion budget increase for the military - more than even the Trump administration had requested.  

    • Call your MOC about Yemen. At least 10,000 people have died in Yemen and many millions have been displaced by the fighting. The fighting in Yemen is largely a proxy war between Saudi Arabia and Iran; there is no reason for the USA to be involved. The US supplies arms in the conflict, helps to refuel Saudi warplanes, and provides other assistance. Call your Congressperson using 5 Calls helpful script and tell them you oppose US support of the conflict.

    • Focus on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee. Democratic Senator Bob Menendez publicly opposes arms sales to Saudi Arabia for the war in Yemen. If other key committee members take a similar stance there is a real chance to stop arms sales. Reach out to Senator Bob Corker (TN) and House Representatives Eliot Engel (NY) and Ed Royce (CA) and tell them to join Menendez.  

    • Divest from war. With 18.5 million Americans living in extreme poverty, we need a broader conversation about our economic priorities. Why is it that when Democrats propose expanding health care, they are asked “how will you pay for it?”, but military spending does not get the same scrutiny. Use Code Pink’s resources to reach out to your MOC and start to tackle the core issues that promote militarism and violence in our government.

 

  • Support climate change victims. Every day we are confronted with new and frightening ways that climate change is already transforming our lives. The most vulnerable are on the front lines of climate change, and nowhere was this more evident than in the Southern Indian state of Kerala, where flooding has devastated entire communities. You can give directly to victims via Amazon.

 

  • Show solidarity for striking prisoners. You may have seen articles about inmate firefighters in California helping to put out the massive fires. What you may not know is that these inmates are only paid a fraction of what most firefighters are paid, despite facing significant danger. From August 21 to September 9, prisoners in at least 17 states are going on strike to protest exploitative labor policies and generally poor living conditions in prisoners. Join PAGE in supporting the strike on social media using the #August21 and #prisonstrike hashtags and consider other ways of supporting the strike.

 

  • Get Out the Vote continues! We’ve got 78 days until the midterms and we’re going to keep focusing on GOTV until then because it’s so damn important. Let’s make every day count.

    • Follow up and coming primaries! Progressive candidates in Minnesota, Wisconsin, and Hawaii had huge victories last week. We’re especially excited about Ilhan Omar, who won her primary in Minnesota and will likely join Rashida Tlaib as the first Muslim women in Congress. Ms. Omar is a refugee from Somalia and is an inspiring advocate for immigrant rights. This week there are primaries in Alaska and Wyoming.

    • Join our GOTV organizing crew! Pick a person from your group to join our GOTV Abroad WhatsApp group to get tips and tricks to register people from wherever you are. Send us an email at engage.with.page@gmail.com with the point person’s WhatsApp contact number, and we’ll add them to the group.

    • Make a pledge to GOTV when it matters most! Studies show the most effective way to get potential voters to actually go to the polls is via conversations on the weekend before Election Day (this year, Nov. 2-5). A coalition led by Swing Left is organizing #TheLastWeekend, where activists have already pledged over 10,000 volunteer hours to GOTV that weekend. How many hours can YOU give to save our democracy? Sign up here!

    • Sign up to phone bank with Democrats Abroad! According to DA, voters who are contacting from abroad are more than 3 times as likely to request a ballot! First, sign up for an account with Democrats Abroad. Then, click here to get in their system and sign up for the level of commitment that works for you. You’ll be set up to call other voters to help them register.

    • As always, join fellow US-Americans abroad to Get Out The Vote for November elections! VoteFromAbroad.Org has the info you need to register your friends abroad. To share widely with friends and on social media, like “VoteFromAbroad” on Facebook.  Don’t forget to use this form to organize and track the number of people you register to vote and tweet us @PAGEofdemocracy to tell us about your efforts, using #NotTooFarAwayToVote!

    • Primaries are kicking into full swing. Postcards for Voters has put together a helpful list of primaries and ways that you can send postcards to voters in states with primaries happening soon. If you haven’t already, take a look and learn about when your next election is coming up!

 

**** Thank you for your progressive action ****

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