The Ten-Minute Activist administrators are going on vacation for the next couple of weeks and will be unable to post. Enjoy a vacation too, or keep talking to your representatives about what most concerns you every day.
In the meantime, read this optimistic piece by Robert Reich:
See you on August 13!
Let's just all agree to dedicate the rest of our lives to making Mr. Rogers proud.
Keep His Fingers Off the Button
Donald Trump’s recent intemperate rants about Iran (especially given his overall impulsive and foolish nature) are a good reason to revisit S. 200 and H.R. 669, Restricting First Use of Nuclear Weapons Act of 2017, legislation which would prohibit the President’s first use of nuclear attack without prior congressional authorization.
1. Contact your Senators and ask them to support S. 200, or if your Senator is a co-sponsor, thank them.
2. The Senate bill has been referred to the Foreign Relations Committee. If your Senator sits on this committee, let them know you are anxious for the bill to be brought to the Senate floor for a full vote.
3. Contact your Member of Congress and ask them to support H.R. 669, or if they are a co-sponsor, thank them.
4. The House bill has been referred to the House Foreign Affairs Committee. If your MoC sits on this committee, let them know you are anxious for the bill to be brought before the House for a full vote.
Mention that you have contacted your reps about this before and that your concerns have intensified.
We Still Don’t Like Kavanaugh
In 2016, Brett Kavanaugh told the American Enterprise Institute in an interview that he would like to see Morrison v. Olsen overturned. This SCOTUS decision affirms that the status of an independent counsel as operating outside the control of the executive branch, is constitutional. The current Department of Justice regulations under which the title Independent Counsel was changed to Special Counsel also relies on the SCOTUS decision as its basis for protection from executive control. Kavanaugh explicitly states that he would like to overturn this decision.
Contact your Senators and say:
July 26 Deadline for Reunification
A federal judge ordered the Trump administration to reunite all migrant children and parents who were separated under the zero tolerance policy at the border. The deadline for reunification is this Thursday, with around 1,700 children still separated from their families. Reunification in some cases is further complicated by parents having already been deported. The scandal of this having happened in the first place is stupefying, and the administration which engineered this disaster is not fit to govern.
1. Contact your MoC and ask them to introduce articles of impeachment against the president who is responsible for this violence against humanity. Ask what they plan to do to ensure the reunification of these families.
2. Email Secretary of DHS, Kirstjen Nielsen to state your outrage at the violence which has been perpetrated by the government of the United States and demand that DHS make it their priority to identify and locate the parents of every single child.
3. Consider donating to the Texas Tribune, which is maintaining a presence at the border to monitor and report on the plight of migrant children and their families.
Universal Basic Income
There is as much to kvetch about as usual, but let’s turn to a positive step our nation could take - the adoption of a universal basic income (UBI), an idea whose time has come. The idea of UBI is to replace or supplement the existing social safety nets, which often leave many needy people unserved, with a guaranteed minimum income - no strings attached, and not needs-based. Many communities around the world are experimenting with this policy, and the results are encouraging.
1. Read Annie Lowrey’s book Give People Money.
2. Contact your state legislators and ask for your state to adopt a universal basic income policy.
3. Contact your MoC and Senators and ask them to adopt a federal UBI.
4. Donate to GiveDirectly, an organization which is successfully alleviating extreme poverty by giving long-term grants of income to individuals, with no strings attached.
In light of Trump's Helsinki conference with Putin last week, contact your senators and demand that they subpoena Trump's financial records to determine Trump's financial ties to Russia, if any. If your senators are Republicans, ask them what their response would be if Obama had made similar statements at such a conference with Putin. I think we all know the answer to that...
For more info, see:
Enjoy Barack Obama’s speech at the 2018 Nelson Mandela Memorial Lecture: