- Campaign Finance Reform
- Civil Liberties / Surveillance
- Civil Rights
- Economic Justice
- Government Accountability / Whistleblowers
- Gun Violence Prevention
- Law Enforcement
- Post Office
- Retirement and Healthcare
Stop Military Demonstration TeamsThese military demonstration teams draw tens of thousands of visitors to an already overcrowded city during the annual Cherry Festival. The planes emit tons of CO2, violate the city noise ordinance, disturb the young, old and those with PTSD and they cost taxpayers over $100 million per year. Further, the crowds overextend our first responders and overtax our limited infrastructure. Finally, these aircraft are war machines - they are not entertainment. Stand with me in asking the city commission to restore a measure of purity to our town.
Toxic Work Conditions in Texas PrisonsPrisoners within the Texas Department of Criminal Justice are working, unpaid, in the TCI chemical plant without being issued the proper air-ventilated safety masks. In an open letter, TDCJ inmate David Martinez described the entire work area at the Coffield Unit’s Metal Fabrication Plant as having a faulty ventilation system. "It is not fully operational and does not protect prison workers or TCI employees from hazardous and toxic fumes that are put into the atmosphere by numerous projects like welding and painting," writes Martinez. The Metal Fabrication Plant Manager and his staff have devised a “warning system” that TDCJ inmates are very familiar with, Martinez says — a warning system that gives the Metal Fabrication Plant Manager a “heads up” when any kind of inspector or auditor is at the front gate — allowing the prisoners and Texas Correctional Industry employees to shut down all activities deemed illegal and unsafe by the Fire Marshal or any other oversight Agency. The Metal Fabrication Plant is currently devising a plan for expansion, filling an order for 5,000 new storage lockers, Martinez adds, while there are no current plans to fix the plant’s ventilation system, nor to restock masks and safety equipment for the inmates who work there. Many of the chemicals and substances used in the Coffield Unit’s Metal Fabrication Plant, and in many other units and plants throughout Texas, have clear warning labels that they have the potential to cause cancer. Martinez explains that Texas prisoners are being forced to work in a very dangerous environment and to engage in hazardous and illegal practices with no regard for their health or safety. "Many prisoners are afraid to speak out for fear of retaliation," Martinez reports. "Prisoners are threatened with disciplinary action if they [complain, refuse to work or] do not sign Material Safety Data Sheets (which give the 'appearance' that Texas prisoners are being given the proper training and safety equipment) in this very volatile and hazardous atmosphere." David Martinez and thousands of other Texas prisoners need your immediate help and support! Sign this petition to demand that Texas state officials provide immediate relief to the affected prisoners and to facilitate investigation by a body that's not part of the prison administration
We Need High-Speed Long Island FerriesLong Islanders and New Yorkers in general put up with the worst transportation in the United States, with the highest average commute. We are the ONLY city surrounded by water which does NOT have a government funded ferry system. This is important in many ways including, less commute time (by half), easier access to destinations, an alternative to the constant delay and shut down of LIRR and major roadways, less cost to the rider, less pollution, and restoration of our ports. Some of the other advantages are less tax due to direct revenue, more high paying jobs, and increased property value for those communities with a port.
End Funding of "Defense" Research That Ignores Climate ChangeThe United States has hundreds of programs at universities, think tanks, and research institutes that claim to devote their attention to “security” and “defense” studies. Yet in almost all of these programs that receive many millions of dollars in Federal funding, the vast majority of research, advocacy and instruction have nothing to do with climate change, the most serious threat to security of our age. In an act of profound intellectual irresponsibility, so-called scholars of "security studies" spend their hours imagining fantastic military scenarios, rather than responding to incontrovertible threat of climate change which scientists have unanimously identified as a reality. We cannot waste any more of our tax dollars on security and defense studies that fail to address the primary threat to the well-being of the United States, and of the world. The time has come to put an end to this insanity. We demand that all programs of defense and security studies in the United States identify in their statement of purpose climate change as the primary security threat to the United States and that they dedicate at least 70% of their budgets to research, teaching and advocacy to the critical topics of mitigation of (primarily) and adaptation to (secondarily) climate change. Any program that fails to focus on climate change in this manner should lose its status for Federal funding. Mitigation of, and adaptation to, climate change should be the primary concerns for all in security and defense field studies. Obviously other security issues deserve study, but granted the fact that the cost of climate change will run in the trillions of dollars over the next decade, and even more beyond then, we do not have the funds to support programs that are not dedicated to addressing this immediate threat. Signers include: Emanuel Yi Pastreich Director The Asia Institute David Swanson Director World Beyond War John Kiriakou Associate fellow Institute for Policy Studies John Feffer Director Foreign Policy in Focus Norman Solomon Cofounder RootsAction.org Coleen Rowley Retired FBI agent and former Minneapolis Division legal counsel
Peace & Planet Call for the Total Elimination of Nuclear Weapons2015 marks the 70th anniversary of the United States atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki. It also marks 45 years since the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) entered into force, obligating all States parties to undertake good faith negotiations for the elimination of nuclear weapons. Instead, the world’s nuclear-armed nations are spending over $100 billion per year to maintain and modernize their nuclear arsenals. The danger of wars among nuclear-armed States is growing, and with it the threat of unimaginable death and suffering. From April 27 – May 22, 2015 representatives of the 189 members of the NPT, including the original nuclear-armed States (the U.S., Russia, the U.K, France, and China) will come together at the United Nations in New York City to review the Treaty’s operation. The recent Vienna Conference on the Humanitarian Impact of Nuclear Weapons set up the potential for a direct challenge to the nuclear- armed States: States not possessing nuclear weapons will be demanding a new diplomatic process to achieve nuclear disarmament. It is long past time for the world’s governments to implement the global obligation to achieve a nuclear-weapon-free world. We are at a crucial juncture, a time when the unresolved tensions of a deeply inequitable society, great power ambitions, and the destructive effects of an unsustainable economic system are exploding into overlapping crises. This petition campaign is part of the Peace & Planet Mobilization for a Nuclear-Free, Peaceful, Just and Sustainable World. In a demonstration of their determination to build a fair, democratic, ecologically sustainable, and peaceful future, people will gather in New York City and around the world for international days of action April 24 – 26, 2015.
Defund Bratton's Army!Whether it's a counterterrorism-unit build up or mobile units for neighborhood “safety” and disorder control, New Yorkers say NO to Department of Homeland Security-funded NYPD militarization! The War Resisters League's campaign, "Demilitarize Health and Security," condemns the unveiling of a DHS-funded 900-officer counterterrorism and special operations overhaul by New York Police Commissioner Bill Bratton. According to Bratton, in amendments to his original statements on January 29th, both the 350-member counterterrorist auxiliary unit - equipped with "long rifles and machine guns" designed for "disorder control and counterterrorism protection capabilities" - and the 500-officer special-operations unit Strategic Response Group (SRG) mandated to monitor protests and “sudden rises in crime” will be rolled out in the Summer of 2015. Bratton’s conflation of “terrorism issues, crime issues and demonstrations issues” will only further criminalize our communities, violate our right to protest, and curtail our ability to survive and thrive. We demand an end to the build up of Bratton’s army because militarization is a threat to our safety! We urge Mayor de Blasio to stand with New Yorkers and call for the defunding of Bratton’s two newly proposed units. Together, we can create real solutions for community safety and wellness without tanks and assault rifles!
Questions for USA Government Regarding Paying Down or Paying Off the USA National DebtThis is the dirty secret that nobody in politics wants to talk about that needs to be talked about and debated in the presidential debates, because this is what has caused the decline and fall of the USA as a nation, and if it is not redressed there is no economic solution to the economic collapse of the USA in 2008 that has continued from 2008 to the present as a decline and fall sequence of the USA as a nation.
Oppose militarist and interventionist US foreign policy* WIN/Gallup International’s annual global End of Year survey for 2013, among others, shows that the US is considered to be the greatest threat to peace in the world. We agree, and it's no surprise Gallup did not ask the question in its End of Year survey for 2014. * A 2012 study by Stanford and New York universities' law schools, and numerous reports in the UK's Guardian and Telegraph, The Atlantic, New York Times and others indicate that drone attacks create more terrorists than they kill, due to the high number of civilian casualties. We will never actually know how many civilians are casualties because the US government insists that all male victims of military age are "militants" or "terrorists" unless there is irrefutable posthumous evidence they are not. Even the US captured organization, Human Rights Watch (HRW), and the Council on Foreign Relations question the practice. * HRW says that Saudi-led airstrikes in Yemen appeared to violate international humanitarian law and could constitute war crimes with which the US is complicit. * Numerous reports in the UK's Guardian, New York Times, Der Spiegel and even the Washington Post confirm the CIA has been spending about $1 billion/year since 2012 helping the Saudis and Qatar arm Syrian rebels, with little regard for vetting as confirmed by the latest fiasco with US trained "rebels" turning arms over to al-Nusra immediately on entering Syria, then bragging that they had "fooled" the US. Seymour Hersh reported on the "ratline" of captured Libyan arms from Benghazi through Turkey to Syria. * The US can not afford the programs for the 99% that Bernie proposes as long as it is wasting trillions of dollars on the military and foreign interventions, and Bernie's "political revolution" needs to make this clear to poorly informed US voters. * Last, but most importantly, you don't protect the human rights of women, children and civilian men by killing hundreds of thousands of them and forcing them to flee their countries.