Americans of Conscience: Spread the Light 2018, Week of December 2, 2018 Posted on December 5, 2018 by Linda Clark Submitted by Judy Sullivan, USH Social Justice Chair Americans of Conscience: Spread the Light 2018, Week of December 2, 2018 107 weeks down, 100 weeks to the presidential election. Democracy works when you and I do. If you’re like me, sometimes reading the news feels like one gut punch after another. There comes a point when you just want to turn it off so you don’t have to feel so awful. Between the spin of reactions to our president’s latest commentary and the graphic scenes of violence against people who have already lost everything, the stress and pain you feel is real. It means you are a compassionate human. When elected officials seek to claim all of the power and override democratic standards, you are most useful to them feeling helpless. You and me feeling overwhelmed is strategic. There’s no better time than right now to decide you believe in a better country than our current leadership does. If you have a hard time speaking up, let the words in this clear, compassionate Checklist help you find your voice. Making even one call means you refuse to condone this administration’s inhumanity. It means that you can look back on this time 10 years from now, knowing you believed in something and did what you could to speak up for the voiceless. Remember: Democracy works when you show up for it. Please make the choice to speak up this week. It matters. Let your heart can guide what you do. Shine your light. Use your voice. Open te Americans of Conscience Checklist: Week of December 2, 2018. Warmly, — Jen Hofmann In the season of light, we offer options for holiday giving that align with the goals of the Americans of Conscience Checklist. I value democracy. With respect and collaboration, we create a government for the people, by the people. ▢ Action 1: Purchase quality journalism for your loved ones. A 2017 study found that FOX news is actually worse than no news at all. Give the gift of quality journalism and trustworthy news. Consider: Christian Science Monitor weekly The Guardian weekly The Atlantic monthly YES Magazine monthly I value equality. Stand with your rainbow of neighbors from every religion, race, ethnicity, culture, gender, sexual orientation, economic status, age, and ability. Out of many, we are one. ▢ Action 1: Give people behind bars opportunities for self-improvement. Donate: Cash or donate requested books to the Prison Book Program. ▢ Action 2: Support the education of a literacy justice advocate. We featured Jamarria Hall in Good News for his efforts to sue Detroit Schools for the right to literacy. Support his next college semester’s fees. Donate: https://www.gofundme.com/jamarria-hall039s-funding-for-school ▢ Action 3: Bring a spirit of generosity to a Lakota community. Make holiday wishes come true for grandparents and grand kids on Pine Ridge Reservation. Email coordinator: http://okini.net/holiday.cfm ▢ Action 4: Support youth advocates with complex needs. Little Lobbyists work to expand the rights of all America’s kids with special needs. Donate: https://littlelobbyists.org/ ▢ Action 5: Give clean, lead-free water to Flint residents. Donate: Give to the Flint Water Fund through the United Way of Genesee County. I value voting as a foundation of democracy. All citizens have a right to freely and fairly elect people to represent their values. ▢ Action 1: Protect our constitutional democracy. Support non-partisan advocacy and legislation that strengthens our democracy. Donate: To the Brennan Center here. I value showing hospitality to all people, no matter where they were born. People who immigrate are fellow human beings whom we treat with respect and decency. We oppose inhumane treatment and vilification of people who immigrate and the government bodies that perpetuate it. ▢ Action 1: Support effective legal representation for people seeking asylum. Donate: To Innovation Law Lab here. ▢ Action 2: Provide legal reprentation for vulnerable, unaccompanied children. Donate: To Raices’ LEAF fund here. When you choose among these options, you can print out the receipt and wrap it up with a bow to give someone you love. Spread the light.