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Bluejay
Bluejay
Thu, Jan 26, 2017 4:27pm

And here’s a simple way for dissenting Americans to stand up: Call your representatives. It works. Don’t just email, don’t just sign online petitions (though those can’t hurt); CALL. Constantly. Wear them down. Jam their lines. Clog their voicemails. Exhaust their staff. MAKE THEM HEAR YOU.

(And by “you” I mean you, reading this right now, whoever you are. Yes, you. Too busy today? Too despairing? Too tired? Too shy? Fuck that. People have died for your right to vote and live in an ostensible democracy. You can make a phone call.)

There are websites out there that make it a lot easier, providing phone numbers and scripts for a range of issues. Here are a couple.

https://5calls.org/

https://callsforchange.com/

Danielm80
Danielm80
reply to  Bluejay
Thu, Jan 26, 2017 5:49pm

I admire your dedication. I’ve called each of my senators nine or ten times and still haven’t spoken to a live human being. If you’re planning to call a dozen politicians, you’re in for a long day. It’s essential, though. One of my senators has stated publicly that she’s voting against DeVos, but Schumer keeps speaking out against the nominees and then voting them in. Even Elizabeth Warren (who’s not from my state) seems to be voting for Ben Carson.

Bluejay
Bluejay
reply to  Danielm80
Thu, Jan 26, 2017 6:45pm

Have you tried calling all their numbers? Aside from their offices in DC and NYC they have various offices around the state. (Their websites have all the info.) It’s easier in some offices to get through to a live person, and it doesn’t matter whether you do it through DC or NYC or Albany or wherever — your opinion as a constituent counts the same.

I just spoke to a DC staffer for Kirsten Gillibrand, who assured me she was opposing DeVos and urging her colleagues to do the same. I also left a message for the Army Corps of Engineers, which has a dedicated voicemail for receiving public comments about DAPL as they conduct their EIS. I just followed the script from 5calls.org .

Thanks for your admiration, but it doesn’t take all day to do this. :-)

Jurgan
Jurgan
reply to  Bluejay
Fri, Jan 27, 2017 5:55pm

I have called, but I guess I wonder if there’s diminishing returns. If I call every time something happens I don’t like, will I eventually just be ignored as someone who’s never satisfied?

Bluejay
Bluejay
reply to  Jurgan
Fri, Jan 27, 2017 6:28pm

Some common advice seems to be: You, personally, don’t have to call about *everything.* Pick a few issues you really want to fight for, and trust that others will be fighting on other fronts.

Also, volume is key. If your rep’s office gets so few calls that you’re actually recognized by name when you call, maybe you’ll be considered the local crank. But the point is to add your voice to hopefully many others, so that your rep’s office recognizes that the issue you’re calling about is of concern to lots of people. So get your friends and family to call too.

I would also hazard a guess that, if you’re calling your representative and you make it clear that you’re a constituent AND A VOTER, you won’t be ignored or dismissed. Remember, they need you. AND THEY WORK FOR YOU.

LaSargenta
LaSargenta
Fri, Jan 27, 2017 2:20pm

This seems like a good place to put this link. The thread is long and there are a couple of very interesting sub-threads.The first step in liberation is to know and liberate ourselves.

https://twitter.com/ScribblingSandy/status/824286591761924096

LaSargenta
LaSargenta
reply to  LaSargenta
Fri, Jan 27, 2017 2:58pm
Bluejay
Bluejay
reply to  LaSargenta
Fri, Jan 27, 2017 3:11pm

I like that the resistance is claiming “alt” for itself. The “alt-right” and “alt(ernative) facts” don’t have a monopoly on that prefix.

Danielm80
Danielm80
reply to  Bluejay
Fri, Jan 27, 2017 4:11pm

I’m not using “alt” to describe ultra-right-wing bigots. We’re the alternative to them, and they’ve been around long enough that we have plenty of words to describe them.

Dent
Dent
reply to  Danielm80
Fri, Jan 27, 2017 5:10pm

I’ve seen people using Authoritarian Left/Right a lot recently. I suppose that makes sense, it seems like if you go far enough to either side you end up with mass censorship and alternative truth. You’d think that people who rely on social media to get their message out would be against censorship in any form.

What bothers me is how now a lot of social justice activists are being lumped in with kidnappers and extremists.

Bluejay
Bluejay
reply to  LaSargenta
Fri, Jan 27, 2017 3:08pm

Thanks for this. I’ve ordered her recommended novel, Anna Seghers’ “The Seventh Cross.” Lots of affordable used copies on the Abebooks website (cheaper than on Amazon).

LaSargenta
LaSargenta
reply to  Bluejay
Fri, Jan 27, 2017 5:39pm

Yeah, I’m going to get a copy, too. Is it still in print and can we put it in libraries everywhere?

Bluejay
Bluejay
reply to  LaSargenta
Fri, Jan 27, 2017 6:12pm

Amazon apparently still sells it, for $30. Cheaper copies are on abebooks.com . The local libraries here seem to have it but only as on-site-only reference, or you have to request it from off-site storage, which takes longer.

Bluejay
Bluejay
Fri, Jan 27, 2017 4:24pm

More resistance links (from my congressman):

“5 tips on how to resist from a first-time activist”:
http://www.upworthy.com/5-invaluable-tips-on-how-to-resist-from-a-first-time-activist

“How to stay outraged without losing your mind”:
https://medium.com/the-coffeelicious/how-to-stayoutraged-without-losing-your-mind-fc0c41aa68f3#.aikupsprm

Danielm80
Danielm80
reply to  Bluejay
Fri, Jan 27, 2017 7:13pm

Thanks. I really needed that second article this week. Next week, I’ll really need the first article.

Fortunately, both of my senators swore publicly that they would oppose Betsy DeVos, even before I reached them on the phone. I may call again to thank them.