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Worker-owner at Agaric web development collective, co-author of the Definitive Guide to Drupal 7, and person who gives a damn about justice, liberty, and gaining the most power possible for all people over our own lives.

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benjamin melançon

benjamin melançon

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers is threatening to shut down Oceti Sakowin, the largest encampment of water protectors and allied protestors opposing the Dakota Access Pipeline. Late last week the Corps issued notice to Dave Archambault II, the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe chairman, that on December 5th they’ll close public access to the land where the encampment is set up, and threatened “prosecution under federal, state, or local laws” of those who remain. Public pressure matters— let the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers know you won’t stand for shutting down protesters: https://www.aclu.org/ArmyCorpsStandingRockTAF

May i humbly suggest that the text i put in to the Commanding General and Chief of Engineers is closer to what the ACLU should have had as their default text:

"The United States of America *is* a free speech zone, and I stand with the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe in their peaceful protest to stop the poisoning of their water and the destruction of the planet's ecosystem. The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers proposal to destroy the camp will silence free speech. Please rescind your plans to shut down the public use of the Oceti Sakowin encampment, where water protectors stand in opposition to the Dakota Access Pipeline."

And for further, more effective actions to take, see https://actionnetwork.org/event_campaigns/nodapl-solidarity-week-of-action (now a month of action— December is critical to stopping this pipeline of destruction).

benjamin melançon

Reminder that many, many facets of the systems that are supposed to protect us are corrupt, and need rebuilding https://theintercept.com/2016/11/25/did-the-epa-prosecute-and-jail-a-mississippi-lab-owner-because-of-her-activism/

benjamin melançon

With Republicans' widely hated nominee set to be president thanks to suppressing votes, North Carolina doubles down on the strategy: Make it hard for people to vote. Criminally prosecute anyone who helps disadvantaged people to vote. Make registering and voting a hellish experience for anyone the people in power don't want deciding who will be in power. This is happening many places, but an election is still in the balance in North Carolina. https://theintercept.com/2016/11/23/gop-fraud-claims-in-north-carolina-governors-race-reflect-a-strategy-to-suppress-black-votes/

benjamin melançon

benjamin melançon

North Dakota sheriffs dept endangers lives of peaceful protestors with fire hose in subfreezing night https://theintercept.com/2016/11/21/medics-describe-how-police-sprayed-standing-rock-demonstrators-with-tear-gas-and-water-cannons/

benjamin melançon

Best daily cartoonist working in US covers our national disaster— with strips filed weeks before the election!? http://candorville.com/2016/11/16/votingrights/

[At a run-down bar in Canada, Lemont runs into himself from an alternate reality.]
"In 2013, the Supreme Court gutted the Voting Rights Act... ...because racism was over. Three years later, America elects a white supremacist for president."
"On the bright side, now I don't feel so bad about MY America electing president Kardashian."
"Trade?"

benjamin melançon

benjamin melançon

Welcoming more and better suggestions for groups to support to fight for liberty and justice for all and, honestly, individual people to support— as per my previous re-post of a friend's invite to contact her, local radical organizing is likely to be far more effective. But, however we do it, as has always been the case, it is vital that we direct our efforts in ways that help people. If you're concerned about the national electoral results and so want to reach the 40% of adults in the United States who did not vote—many because they weren't allowed to, which is one of the obvious organizing fights we need to engage in (Trump won the electoral college because of voter suppression, certainly in Florida and Wisconsin), but many more could have voted with enough effort—then there needs to be civic engagement before voting, and there are endless opportunities for this. Some White people who voted for Obama's Hope and Change decided to take a chance on Trump's vapid guarantee that he'll force U.S. corporations to keep jobs here— a golden opportunity, starting with the hook of insisting that Trump keep his promises, to turn people who lent support to a vainglorious racist kleptocrat into supporters of economic democracy. And those are the hardest cases. There's much easier organizing to do among people who feel disconnected from the establishment, but didn't choose to throw in with a con man declaring his intention to throw people out of the country. An active, positive agenda is needed, grounded in reality. To take one example, with suicide surpassing car crashes as a cause of death for young people, we need to be funding queer organizers to go everywhere to support isolated youth, radical economic and labor organizers whether socialist or communist or not to provide some hope for an economic future to all, anti-bullying organizers, and yes common-sense gun control. And how do we connect diverse movements, so we can come together and support one another on regional, national, and international matters? A network of all people who give a damn ... connected by democratically moderated mass communication. Sign up, please, so i'll be forced, after a couple decades of deciding the world needs it, to actually build it: http://visionsunite.org/

benjamin melançon

Upset that a vocal opponent of human rights is set to take power? Donate to http://aclu.org & https://www.nlg.org