Tuesday, June 18, 2019

What's Up, Marcy?

What's up, Marcy?
rally photos by C.A. & A.J. Matthews

What's up, Representative Marcy Kaptur? She has refused  to co-sponsor the Medicare For All (HR 1384) Bill in the House, and now she refuses to sign the "No War with Iran Resolution" (HR 2354). It's very confusing since Kaptur (D), our longest serving Congresswoman representing Ohio's 9th district,  previously supported the Sanders-Conyers Medicare For All Bill. 

What's up, Marcy? We know you can do better than this. Much better!

On the picket line, the nurses of St. Vincent Mercy Health picketed alone that day, their fellow medical tech workers having signed a separate contract to return to work earlier in he week. Our Revolution (National), traveling across the country in their Medicare For All van, stopped by Toledo to rally with the striking nurses and local activists.  A national Medicare For All program would help the nurses deal with their current mediocre health insurance coverage. It could possibly help with the extra long hours they've been forced to work due to staffing shortages (because the Bon Secours Corporation that runs their "charity" Catholic hospital chain expects higher profits). If the corporation didn't have to pay health care benefits to its workers because they had Medicare For All, then they could afford to hire more nurses and med techs, right?

Speakers at the Medicare For All protest in front of St. V's included the national director of Our Revolution and local OR leader Dennis Slotnick who also represents the Ohio Single Payer Action Network. Nancy Larson, a candidate for state office in 2020, spoke out as well as Stefania Czech, candidate for Toledo City Council District 2, Quinn Albright, a young activist representing the newly formed Northwest Ohio Democratic Socialists of America, physician-activist Dr. Jon Ross, and Adrian Matthews, a British national and proponent of socialized health care. 

After the rally, the crowd headed to Rep. Kaptur's local office downtown to present her staff a petition stating the voters' desire for Marcy to become a co-sponsor of HB 1384.

Unfortunately within a few days of the rally the St. Vincent nurses left the picket line when their union (UAW) folded and told them the strike was over. None of their demands for increased staffing and less mandatory overtime were addressed.

Two days later, another protest formed in front of Rep. Marcy Kaptur's office building located downtown at Maritime Plaza. The Northwest Ohio Peace Coalition had been planning the peace protest rally to inspire Rep. Kaptur to sign HR 2354 for some time when the story of two oil tankers in the Gulf of Oman, supposedly hit by Iranian missiles, monopolized the mainstream news feeds.
Many of the activists at the No War on Iran rally expressed surprise and disappointment in the Democratic  Congresswoman. Why hadn't she signed onto the resolution? What could be holding her back? 

It's difficult to know for sure, but Ohio has always been a favorite of Big Oil lobbying interests. Big Oil could realize some massively big profits in taking over Middle Eastern oil fields and shipping lanes. War is a profitable business after all. Is the answer to why Marcy Kaptur hasn't been more vocal on this issue simply "the money is too good to ignore"?

We're very disappointed if it is simply the lobbyists' cash motivating the congresswoman's non-action. You can do better than this, Marcy. Much better!
Our children's futures are at stake here. Without decent, universal health care, many of their futures will be shortened. With more wars for oil, their world becomes an even unsafer place to live in than it already is. 

Marcy--what's up? We can't afford to wait for leadership on these issues. All our  lives are hanging in the balance. Listen to these activists. Step up! 

Call your Congressmember today at https://www.callmycongress.com/ 

From Food & Water Watch

There’s a fast-moving amendment in the House of Representatives that would stop Trump's Department of Energy from financially backing dirty energy projects masquerading as clean energy projects.

A full House vote could happen any time this week, and you can help keep the pressure on by taking action TODAY — tell your representative we need more renewable energy, not dirty fossil fuel projects.

Congresswomen Ilhan Omar (D-MN) and Pramila Jayapal (D-WA) introduced an amendment that would require the Department of Energy to only back energy projects that address and mitigate climate change.

The amendment passed out of a House Committee last week, and it’s headed to the Floor. Make sure your representative is on board!

What would this amendment do? Energy companies would have to demonstrate how proposed projects would meet heightened standards. One affected project is the proposed massive petrochemical build-out in Appalachia. This enormous network of infrastructure is intended to store and process dirty fossil fuels in order to churn out more plastic. This amendment would effectively hold back the Department of Energy from quickly deciding to financially back the project.

Ultimately, we need comprehensive legislation that would move us to 100% clean, renewable energy on a swift timeline, but this amendment is a great step in the right direction.

Officially, it’s called Amendment 105 to Rule 2 on HR 2740, the Omar-Jayapal Amendment. Here at Food & Water Watch, we're calling it what it is — a really big deal and the result of hard work by activists around the country.

We got this far, but now we have a small window of time to urge the rest of the House to stand in support.

Our allies and activists fighting back against projects like the Appalachia petrochemical hub need your support at this critical moment. Tell your representative to support the amendment and stand against a fossil fuel future.

Thanks for taking action,

Amanda Byrnes
Online Organizing Manager
Food & Water Watch

From the United Church of Christ:

Stop the Detention of Children

Mark 9:37 tells us that “Whoever welcomes one such child in my name welcomes me, and whoever welcomes me welcomes not me but the one who sent me.” As people of faith we are called to care for, welcome and cherish all humanity. The children who come to our border are often fleeing violence and poverty and have endured a long and dangerous journey. They should be met with care and kindness. Once here, every measure should be made that they be placed with family and community sponsors. Instead, as of now, more than 2,500 children are being held in a “child detention facility” in Homestead, Florida.

Contact your members of Congress to let them know this is no way to treat anyone, especially the most vulnerable among us, children. We need to invest in ways to unite families and ensure the best continuum of care for children. Please urge your member of Congress to support the “Shut Down Prison Camps Act” and the “Families Not Facilities Act.” These legislative measures make sure that the government can’t house children in substandard “emergency influx shelters” like Homestead. They also make sure that it’s easier to place children with sponsors by prohibiting the sharing of information with the Department of Homeland Security that could be used to detain and deport family members who come forward to sponsor children.

Everytown for Gun Safety

Wednesday, June 17, 2015, is the day that my life changed.

As a hospital trauma chaplain I have experienced grief, tragedy, pain, and loss as I worked to comfort patients and families in their time of need. But that night four years ago, I was the person in need of comforting when I received a telephone call that no American should get: My mother and two of my cousins had been shot and killed in church along with 6 other parishioners at the Emanuel AME Church in Charleston, South Carolina. A white supremacist shot and killed 9 churchgoers as they prayed.

I lost so much in that senseless attack. And since then, hate crimes have been on the rise, resulting in more people being targeted simply because of their identity.

When hate-filled individuals are armed with a gun, their actions often become deadly.

The shooter targeted parishioners at Emanuel AME simply because of the color of their skin. Along with so many Americans, I was baffled at how such a hate-filled man was able to get his hands on a gun. That's why today I ask you to join me and support federal legislation to keep guns away from people convicted of a hate crime. It's one important step we can take to end hate-fueled gun violence. Add your name to ask the U.S. House of Representatives to pass the Disarm Hate Act of 2019.
  Thank you for being with me in the movement against hate and gun violence,
Reverend Sharon Risher
Everytown Survivor Network

P.S. If you are a survivor of gun violence or have a loved one who has been wounded or killed by gun violence, you can share your story on our Moments That Survive Memory Wall with the stories of other survivors of gun violence.

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