Like a lot of people, I've been looking for ways to channel my emotion into productive action. As part of that, I've been reading a lot of advice from people wiser than I am. I wanted to gather all that I've bookmarked or favorited in one place. I'll update it with more as I have time. Suggestions welcome: tweet me @tweetsofneets.
Here are a few perspectives that I have found helpful in understanding what's happening and what is yet to come.
1. Call your representatives. Get all your friends to call, too.For more depth on this: How to Effectively Lobby Your Congressperson
To make it easier to make a habit of doing this, put your federal, state, and municipal representatives in your phone's contacts. Then share those with your family and neighbors. If you're not sure who represents you, you can look up their names here. NYC residents can find all their elected representatives with contact information at mygovnyc.org.
2. Contact your local and state representatives. What you say and what you need from them will vary depending on where you live, so you'll need to figure this out. But demand that they get the ball rolling. My city council member is holding a strategy meeting with his constiutents this weekend—is yours? Has your mayor, your police department, your governor, issued any kind of statement?
3. Keep in communication with your friends, your neighbors, your local business owners, and local organizations. Gather the skills, resources, and influence you have and figure out how to leverage that to help the most vulnerable. Be there for each other. Offline is better.
If you see someone being harassed or targeted, don't stay silent. Here are some tips on how to intervene:
This illustrated guide is by Maeril, an art blogger living in Paris. It was intended for instances of Islamophobic harrassment but applies equally to other situations: What to do if you are witnessing Islamophobic harrassment
An example of intervention @RealAvocadoFact
Find a cause you believe in, and dedicate your time and/or money to it. Below is just a handful of national organizations. Do seek out local groups that need your help and your skills (legal expertise, language/translation, counseling, computer skills, organization, etc.).
The non-partisan ACLU works "to defend and preserve the individual rights and liberties guaranteed by the Constitution and laws of the United States." You can read or download their Constitutional analysis of the policy statements and proposals of the Trump campaign here. To contribute your time, become a member of your local ACLU affliate and sign up to be an "on-call" volunteer. (CharityNavigator rating: 4 stars)
The National Immigration Law Center is "dedicated to defending and advancing the rights of low-income immigrants" through litigation, policy analysis and advocacy, and other methods. (CharityNavigator rating: 4 stars)
The Southern Poverty Law Center monitors and exposes hate groups across the United States and seeks to promote equality and defend civil rights through education and litigation. Their work in 2016 included a report on the damaging effect of the presidential campaign in classrooms. They are collecting and document hate crimes, which can be reported here. (CharityNavigator rating: 3 stars)
Planned Parenthood is the country’s leading sexual and reproductive healthcare provider and works to protect reproductive rights. (CharityNavigator rating: 4 stars)
Climate change was depressingly absent from the presidential debates. We are running out of time (seriously, folks). The NDRC's lawyers, scientists, and policy advocates work in a dozen program areas to safeguard clean air, water, and the wild. (CharityNavigator rating: 4 stars)
The NAACP Legal Defense Fund employs litigation, advocacy and education to fight for racial justice. (CharityNavigator rating: 3 stars)
The Trevor Project is "the leading national organization providing crisis intervention and suicide prevention services to lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and questioning (LGBTQ) young people ages 13-24." (CharityNavigator rating: 4 stars)
The non-partisan Brennan Center works "to hold our political institutions and laws accountable to the twin American ideals of democracy and equal justice for all. The Center’s work ranges from voting rights to campaign finance reform, from ending mass incarceration to preserving Constitutional protection in the fight against terrorism." (CharityNavigator rating: 4 stars)
We need strong, independent journalism willing to give up access if that means being free to provide honest reporting. Subscribe to your local newspaper (if you still have one). Here's some reporting this year that I found worth supporting: