- Campaign Finance Reform
- Civil Liberties / Surveillance
- Civil Rights
- Economic Justice
- Government Accountability / Whistleblowers
- Gun Violence Prevention
- Law Enforcement
- Post Office
- Retirement and Healthcare
Tell the new Virginia legislature: Let localities ban guns from public events and move monumentsGuns are the second-leading cause of death among children in the United States. Guns kill about 34,000 people per year in the United States. Countries with reasonable gun laws don't have this level of gun violence. Until the state can act (here are ideas for when it can: https://diy.rootsaction.org/p/gunideas ), it should cease preventing localities from acting. Localities like Charlottesville should not be burdened with any war monuments they do not want, including those that attract violent and hateful riots. The state has no business blocking localities' cultural advancement.250 of 300 SignaturesCreated by David S.
G-7 World Leaders, Boycott 2020 Summit Location, TRUMP® NATIONAL DORAL MIAMI, FLORIDA 33178Any compensation that Member States have or will contribute towards any of Donald J. Trump's businesses are in violation of The United States Constitution.44 of 100 SignaturesCreated by Douglas W.
Bring CounterSpin Back to KPFAFairness & Accuracy in Reporting (FAIR) produces a weekly radio show (Counterspin), which began decades ago. KPFA Radio was regularly airing CounterSpin until Oct. 19, 2018, when it was abruptly taken off the air with no explanation to listeners. Please urge KPFA General Manager Quincy McCoy (email@example.com) and Program Director Kevin Cartright (firstname.lastname@example.org) to bring back CounterSpin to a regular slot on its program grid. FAIR, the national media watch group, was established in 1986 by co-founders Jeff Cohen, Martin Lee and others. It describes its mission as: “FAIR has been offering well-documented criticism of media bias and censorship since 1986. We work to invigorate the First Amendment by advocating for greater diversity in the press and by scrutinizing media practices that marginalize public interest, minority and dissenting viewpoints. As an anti-censorship organization, we expose neglected news stories and defend working journalists when they are muzzled. As a progressive group, we believe that structural reform is needed to break up the dominant media conglomerates, establish independent public broadcasting and promote strong non-profit sources of information.” In the past CounterSpin aired shows featuring guests as Marjorie Cohn on the Afghan unending war, Amit Harana on deregulation, Sasha Abramsky on Trump’s new attacks on immigration, and Corey Gillan under attack by Monsanto. CounterSpin is meticulously researched and exceptionally well documented and produced. CounterSpin is in keeping with KPFA’s mission statement: * “To promote cultural diversity and pluralistic community expression. * To contribute to a lasting understanding between individuals of all nations, races, creeds and colors. * To promote freedom of the press and serve as a forum for various viewpoints. * To maintain an independent funding base”. Please urge KPFA General Manager Quincy McCoy (email@example.com) and Program Director Kevin Cartright (firstname.lastname@example.org) to bring back CounterSpin to a regular slot on its program grid.426 of 500 SignaturesCreated by Michael L.
Co-sponsor HR2407Tulsi has criticized Israeli human rights abuses such as the use of live ammunition against unarmed protesters, and supported the U.N. Security Council Resolution condemning the expansion of Israeli settlements. She also publicly defended Rep.Ilhan Omar against charges of anti-semitism. We thank her for all those actions; Tulsi's grass roots supporters have largely accepted her explanation of her vote for HRes246, even though many disagree with her sincere belief that it threatens or is intended to threaten the two state solution; Tulsi has cosponsored HRes496 clarifying that attempts by government to impede boycotts are violations of the 1st amendment, though that language should have been written into HRes246 to begin with; "SEC. 2. Findings" of H.R.2407 explains in great detail why the bill is necessary and provides documentation from organizations such as Human Rights Watch, an Israeli human rights organization (B’Tselem), UNICEF and even the US Department of State; Rep. McCollum's bill provides an appropriate vehicle for Tulsi to demonstrate her commitment to fundamental human rights for all people worldwide.96 of 100 SignaturesCreated by William R.
Stop Serving Unhealthy Meals to Inmates and Robbing FamiliesAramark's prison food portions are inadequate, causing hunger. The food is not nutritious nor does comply with the daily requirements for nutrition and calories needed to sustain life. The foods are causing degenerative diseases like Diabetes, High Blood Pressure, Hypothyroidism, high cholesterol and so on. They have no regard for human life, which is cruel and unusual punishment.2,246 of 3,000 SignaturesCreated by Giovanna T.
Remove Monument to Genocide that Welcomes People to UVA“George Rogers Clark, Conqueror of the Northwest” is a massive sculpture (approximately 24 feet in height, 20 feet in length, and 8 feet in width) that was put up in 1921 by the University of Virginia, at the edge of its campus in Albemarle County, just across the line from the City of Charlottesville. The location is prominent, although not as prominent as it was in the 1920s, due to the growth of trees around three sides of the monument, which nonetheless proudly and openly faces University Avenue with some 10 yards of grass between the memorial and the sidewalk along the street. This monument was paid for by Paul Goodloe McIntire, the same wealthy individual who paid for three other statues in Charlottesville in the 1920s, all of which still dominate central spaces in the city: those of Robert E. Lee and Stonewall Jackson, which have been in the news in recent years, and that of Meriwether Lewis, William Clark, and Sacajawea. Like these other statues, that of George Rogers Clark was created without any vote by the general public. Like the statues of Lee and Jackson in downtown Charlottesville, the statue of George Rogers Clark at UVA depicts a white man on a horse dressed for war. But, unlike Lee and Jackson, Clark is not alone. He has other men behind him with a gun and a barrel of gun powder, and he appears to be reaching back for a gun with his right hand. There are four Native Americans in front of him, including one infant. One of them appears defiant. One appears to be a woman carrying the infant. An article from the 1921 dedication of the statue in the University of Virginia Alumni News approvingly describes the woman in the memorial as being forced to beg for mercy for her baby. A successful 1997 application to add the statue to the National Register of Historic Places reads, in part: “She kneels in front of Clark holding a covered cradle board aloft as if to plead for a papoose within.” At the dedication, then-UVA President Edwin Alderman credited George Rogers Clark with stealing large amounts of territory for an empire — the empire of Virginia, of which the land he claimed had been deemed a part. The Alumni News newspaper celebrated the statue when it was first created as “explaining the futility of resistance.” The base of the sculpture calls Clark the “Conqueror of the Northwest.” The Northwest means the general area of today’s state of Illinois. At least that was the focus of Clark’s victories which either importantly seized or easily and temporarily occupied, depending on the account. But the entire Old Northwest Territory, which the United States took from Britain at the end of the Revolutionary War, included all or large parts of six eventual U.S. States (Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, Michigan, Wisconsin, and the northeastern part of Minnesota). Conquering means . . . well, let’s allow George Rogers Clark to tell us in his own words. George Rogers Clark said that he would have liked to “see the whole race of Indians extirpated” and that he would “never spare Man woman or child of them on whom he could lay his hands.” Clark wrote a statement to the various Indian nations in which he threatened “Your Women & Children given to the Dogs to eat.” Thomas Jefferson, the founder of the University of Virginia, depicted in a smaller statue nearby in front of the Rotunda building, when he was Governor of Virginia, sent George Rogers Clark west to attack Native Americans, writing that the goal “should be their extermination, or their removal beyond the lakes or Illinois river.” Clark killed the captured and destroyed the crops of those he was sent by Jefferson to exterminate or remove. Clark later unsuccessfully proposed further military expeditions to Virginia Governor Benjamin Harrison in order to demonstrate “that we are always able to crush them at pleasure.” The quotations above are found in Surviving Genocide by Jeffrey Ostler, who shows that U.S. officials developed the policy that “wars of extermination” were “not only necessary, but ethical and legal.” Causes of decline among Native peoples included direct killing, other traumatizing violence prominently including rape, the burning of towns and crops, forcible deportation, and the intentional and non-intentional spreading of diseases and of alcoholism to weakened populations. Ostler writes that the most recent scholarship finds the devastation caused by European diseases resulted less from Native Americans’ lack of immunity, and more from the weakness and starvation created by the violent destruction of their homes. In George Rogers Clark’s day, John Heckewelder (a missionary and author of books on the customs of Native Americans) noted that frontiersmen had adopted “the doctrine . . . that the Indians were the Canaanites, who by God’s commandment were to be destroyed.” That is not the view of the general public of Charlottesville or Albemarle County or Virginia today. It is not the view of the University of Virginia today. But it is the view blatantly and explicitly celebrated by the George Rogers Clark memorial that greets those arriving from downtown to the campus of the University of Virginia. The University is constructing a memorial nearby to those enslaved people who built the university. This will arguably be the first and only major memorial in Charlottesville and the immediate surrounding area that is not clearly or arguably a celebration of war or genocide. (One could include in that statement the monument to the war on Vietnam, while some would claim it does not apply to the monument to Lewis-Clark-Sacajawea. Minor statues at UVA include war poet Homer and a World War I memorial, as well as Jefferson who of course engaged in many activities including but far from limited to war and genocide). But the new memorial at UVA will be dedicated just down the street from the monument celebrating the horrors inflicted by George Rogers Clark. READ MORE: http://davidswanson.org/grc594 of 600 SignaturesCreated by David S.
Free Marzieh HashemiMarzieh Hashemi (she is a US citizen), when returning from Iran was arrested, without charges, at the St. Louis, Missouri Airport and then taken and put in detention in a prison in Washington D.C. as a 'material witness.' Actually she is an Anchor woman on Press TV. Since when does the US jail 'material witnesses?' This is another travesty against journalists, and the MSM isn't even covering it. Educate yourselves on this. As a material witness whom is she going to testify against---The US gov't, Britain, France and Israel for their ongoing mass murder around the world?677 of 800 SignaturesCreated by Charles A.
Demand that Indiana DOC Restore Kevin "Rashid" Johnson's Access to His PropertyKevin “Rashid” Johnson (IDOC# 264847) – a Virginia prisoner – was transferred to Indiana on November 4. His transfer was authorized under the Interstate Corrections Compact, commonly used to ship prisoners out of state. Virginia is one of several states that make use of this practice as a tool to repress and isolate prisoners who speak up for their rights. These transfers are extremely disruptive, and serve as an opportunity for prison officials to violate prisoners’ rights, especially regarding their property. This is exactly what has been done to Rashid. Rashid has 24 boxes of personal property. These are all of his possessions in the world. Much of these 24 boxes consist of legal documents and research materials, including materials directly related to pending or anticipated court cases, and his list of addresses and phone numbers of media contacts, human rights advocates, outside supporters, and friends. At Pendleton Correctional Facility, where Rashid is now being kept prisoner and in solitary confinement, only one guard is in charge of the property room. This is very unusual, as the property room is where all of the prisoners’ belongings that are not in their cells are kept. The guard in charge, Dale Davis, has a dubious reputation. Prisoners complain that property goes missing, and their requests to access their belongings – that by law are supposed to be met within 7 days, or if there are court deadlines within 24 hours – are often ignored, answered improperly, or what they receive does not correspond to what they have asked for. Despite having a need for legal and research documents for pending and anticipated court cases, his requests to receive his property have not been properly answered. The property officer, Dale Davis, is supposed to inventory the prisoners’ property with them (and a witness) present, according to IDOC regulation 02-01-101-VIII; this was never done. When Rashid did receive some property, it was a random selection of items unrelated to what he asked for, brought to the segregation unit in a box and a footlocker and left in an insecure area where things could be stolen or tampered with. On December 19th, Rashid received notice that Davis had confiscated various documents deemed to be “security threat group” or “gang” related from his property. Rashid has no idea what these might be, as (contrary to the prison regulations) he was not present when his property was gone through. Rashid does not know how much or how little was confiscated, or what the rationale was for its being described as “gang” related. None of Rashid’s property should be confiscated or thrown out under any circumstances, but it is worth noting that the way in which this has been done contravenes the prison’s own regulations and policies! Dale Davis has been an IDOC property officer for 8 years. He has boasted about how he does not need any oversight or anyone else working with him, even though it is very unusual for just one person to have this responsibility. Prisoners’ property goes “missing” or is tampered with, and prisoners’ rights – as laid out by the Indiana Department of Corrections – are not being respected. Rashid is not asking to have all of his property made available to him in his cell. He is willing to accept only having access to some of it at a time, for instance as he needs it to prepare court documents or for his research and writing. After two months in Indiana, he has still not been supplied with his documents containing the phone numbers and addresses of his loved ones and supporters, effectively sabotaging his relationships on the outside. Rashid is not asking for any kind of special treatment, he is only asking for the prison property room to follow the prison’s own rules. We ask that you look into this, and make sure that Mr. Johnson's right to access his property is being respected, and that something be done about the irregularities in the Pendleton property room. We ask that the rules of the Indiana Department of Corrections be respected. Call the Pendleton Correctional Facility and to ask to speak to the Warden or to someone in the Warden’s office. Also, call the Indiana Department of Corrections and ask that they intervene to make sure Rashid gets access to his property. In each case, please be prepared to give a name and phone number for them to call you back, if needed. Please make phone calls to: Indiana Department of Corrections Stephanie Lightfoot (317) 232-5711 - press 2, press 3, press 2 You may get a voicemail, in which case please leave a detailed message. Pendleton Correctional Facility (765) 778-2107; press 3 and then press 1 You will get a receptionist; explain that you would like to convey your concerns to the warden or to someone in charge, about problems Kevin Johnson is having accessing his property. For updates on Rashid and to access his writings, go to http://rashidmod.com/5,879 of 6,000 SignaturesCreated by Jamani M.
Help Free an Unfairly Prosecuted Man from PrisonTruthout reports: "Hamilton was imprisoned with a man named Darnell Thompson, who claims he was threatened by police into pinning the crime on Hamilton. In an affidavit reviewed by Truthout, Thompson said that homicide detectives and prisoner Olivera Rico Cowen conspired to pressure him into testifying against Hamilton. Thompson, who was 18 at the time, says he was coerced into signing a statement against Hamilton, but he later refused to testify against Hamilton in court. But Thompson’s statement, as well as Cowen’s testimony and testimony about Hamilton’s character by a neighbor, were enough for a jury to convict Hamilton to a maximum of 80 years in prison." Lacino Hamilton has said, "There was no physical evidence for the crime I was accused of -- only manufactured by detectives, detectives who wrote a script for them to perform at trial. And when the prosecutor’s office was approached by several attorneys with credible evidence that this was a common police practice, the prosecutor’s office simply forged ahead. I was convicted and sentenced to 52 to 80 years. They just threw me away, like I was garbage." Affidavits, courthouse transcripts, letters and internal memos obtained by Truthout suggest that Darnell Thompson – who is now long deceased – was in fact part of a ring of jailhouse informants – or “snitches” – that allegedly received lenient sentences as well as other monetary and special privileges from detectives in the Detroit Police Department’s homicide division in exchange for making false statements against dozens of prisoners eventually convicted of murder, Lacino just being one of them... “Informants lie primarily in exchange for lenience for their own crimes, although sometimes they lie for money,” according to an article in Golden Gate University Law Review. Testimony from a single jailhouse informant is enough to convict a person for a charge as serious as murder, according to Valerie Newman, assistant defender in Michigan’s State Appellate Defender Office. Hamilton says the reason his original defense attorney did not challenge the prosecutor’s use of an informant speaks to some of the reasons Black communities across the country suffer at the hands of the state: neglect and an assumption of disposability. After being sent to prison, Lacino spent four of his first six years in solitary confinement. It was there that he began to read, think critically and write about the many ways the U.S. criminal justice system perpetuates values of anti-black violence, coercion and oppression. “How some of us live is not a mistake; neither is it the product of a broken system,” he wrote from prison. “We live like that because it is profitable to a lot of people[‘s] businesses…. “I am locked in a windowless cell measuring 10×8 feet, 23 hours per day. For one hour every other day, I am handcuffed, chained around the waist and allowed exercise and a shower in a small cage. I am not allowed to interact with others, or to participate in any educational, vocational, or employment programs. All meals are delivered to the cell. I have no access to a phone.” After nearly two decades of wrongful imprisonment, Hamilton spends most of his time reading and writing about the experience of incarceration. He also spends his time working tirelessly to plead his case and affirm his innocence. After writing to thousands of journalists, lawyers and colleges to plead his case, Hamilton was able to get in touch with Claudia Whitman from the National Death Row Assistance Network, who supplied Truthout with most of the documents behind his story. Whitman also made contact with Christopher Brooks, the prisoner who says he knows who really killed Hamilton’s foster mother. With Whitman’s help, Hamilton was able to convince an attorney to work pro bono to overturn his conviction. The Conviction Integrity Unit of Wayne County, Michigan must do everything in its power to investigate and reverse this wrongful conviction. The Conviction Integrity Unit of Wayne County investigates claims of innocence, to determine whether there is clear and convincing new evidence that the convicted defendant was not the person who committed the conviction offense. As stated in the American Bar Association standards, Rule 3.8(h), "When a prosecutor knows of clear and convincing evidence establishing that a defendant in the prosecutor's jurisdiction was convicted of an offense that the defendant did not commit, the prosecutor shall seek to remedy the conviction." In the case of The People of the State of Michigan vs. Lacino Hamilton, there is clear and convincing new evidence that the convicted defendant was not the person who committed the conviction offense. In accordance with Rule 3.8(h), it is the duty of the Wayne County Prosecutor’s Office to investigate and reverse the conviction of Lacino Hamilton. Lacino Hamilton needs your help to affirm his innocence. After nearly two decades of wrongful imprisonment, he deserves immediate justice. Background: > Truthout: Ring of Snitches: How Detroit Police Slapped False Murder Convictions on Young Black Men https://truthout.org/articles/ring-of-snitches-how-detroit-police-slapped-false-murder-convictions-on-young-black-men Write a letter of support to Lacino: Lacino Hamilton, Inmate ID: 247310 Marquette Prison 1960 US Highway 41 South Marquette, MI, 498553,390 of 4,000 SignaturesCreated by Jamani M.
Academic Institutions Must Defend Free SpeechAcademic institutions are restricting free speech, due mainly to organized pressure campaigns. This is destructive to academic activity and to free pursuit of ideas in the institutions and the wider societies which they serve.3,422 of 4,000 SignaturesCreated by PAUL L.
No Kristallnacht in the USTrump wants to find out what he can get away with. If he gets away with attacking people seeking asylum, he will take it as license to get even more extreme. This is what Hitler did in 1938. Things only got worse because most Germans looked away. We must preserve our national honor and not let it happen here.3,110 of 4,000 SignaturesCreated by Leon K.
Change The Name of Dixie School DistrictIt's time to lose the lost cause in Marin County. Dixie is a synonym of the Confederacy and the national anthem of the Confederacy. The school district should have a name that welcomes all students regardless of the color of their skin. We are all stakeholders in Dixie School District. 78% of their funding is from state and federal funds. We should teach our children the historical meaning of words like Dixie. Changing the name is a simple gesture for respect, equity and inclusion.378 of 400 SignaturesCreated by Kerry P.