A Look Back at the Past Week & Commentary on US Gun Violence

A look back at how NY ousted 6 of its 8 State Senate DINOs a lesson to NM, to oust 8 NM State Senators , a lively debate about troubling electric vehicle & battery storage supply chains for and commentary on gun violence in the US.

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We only ask when our balance drops to a critical low and guess what? We need an influx of donations this week to meet our basic costs. If you believe in what we do, can you help with either a modest monthly donation or a one-time donation?

Actions & Events

In Memory of Mitch. Mitch Buszek was a lifelong activist who showed up time and time again. On Monday, we come together to honor his life of commitment. Funeral services will be held on Monday, August 5, 2019 at 10:30 am at the Rivera Family Funeral Home located at 417 Rodeo Road in Santa Fe.

A potluck luncheon in celebration of Mitch’s life will be hosted by the Santa Fe County Democratic Party on August 5, 2019 at 2:00 pm at the Center for Progress and Justice located at 1420 Cerrillos Road in Santa Fe, Mitch’s family is kindly asking for donations to help defray funeral costs. Donations can be made at the following Go-Fund-Me page: https://www.gofundme.com/funeral-services-for-mitch-buszek

Tuesday, Aug. 6, 6:30-8:30pm Retake Our Democracy Organizing Meeting, 1420 Cerrillos Rd, Santa Fe, The Center for Progress & Justice. Join us as we begin with a short presentation on how to contribute to the NM Democratic Platform. We will also have a discussion about the Sept. 20 Climate Crisis General Strike and how to plug in. EarthCare has assembled a tremendous youth-developed and youth-led plan with training coming in civil disobedience being offered by Rainforest Action Network. There are lots of other ways you can plug in and help make Santa Fe’s General Strike and the subsequent 7 days of disruption the kind of response to climate change we have been longing for. Time to follow our youth.

Please RSVP by email: Paul@RetakeOurDemocracy.org

Reaction to US Gun Violence

Again we are utterly horrified. But what is actually more horrifying is that despite an ongoing slaughter in America, we have politicians who unable to act. The US House passed background checks in January but the Senate has done nothing with the bill, no hearings, no vote, no debate, just silence.

During the last Democratic Party debate, Mayor Pete made the comment of the night when speaking about getting money out of politics. It has application to the long overdue passage of substantive gun violence prevention.

“[This is] the conversation that we have been having for the last 20 years. Of course, we need to get money out of politics, but when I propose the actual structural democratic reforms that might make a difference — end the Electoral College, amend the Constitution if necessary to clear up Citizens United, have DC actually be a state, and depoliticize the Supreme Court with structural reform — people look at me funny, as if this country was incapable of structural reform.

This is a country that once changed its Constitution so you couldn’t drink and changed it back because we changed our minds, and you’re telling me we can’t reform our democracy in our time. We have to or we will be having the same argument 20 years from now. “

In Australia a major gun massacre in 1996 killed 35 people and generated discussion and debate. But the discussion was brief because there was really only one side to the debate. In a matter of 12 days a ban on civilian possession of assault weapons was passed. Twelve days. They also initiated a buy-back program resulting in the smelting of one million weapons. To read about the Australian action, click here.

We are not Australia. We dawdle over climate change, we debate gun control, we’ve talked about immigration reform, healthcare reform and we get zero for all the talk.

I was pretty down on Sunday, but I reflected back on last week’s blog about NY and about what can happen if people align behind common goals. As we’ve reported many times here and as is captured in the 2019 Legislative Report Card, most Americans and most New Mexicans want safe schools and communities and seek stronger gun violence prevention, most want women to have the right to choose their own healthcare choices; most want to address the climate crisis; most want to invest in early childhood; most would dance in the streets if the state and the Feds significantly raised taxes on the rich and corporate. Aligned behind those kinds of goals, NY wrested control of its State Senate and passed a raft of great bills addressing different social and environmental justice issues. We can do that here. But we need to get started now.

So that line of thinking helped jolt me out of my self-pity and I pulled out the laptop and forged on. If the weekend horrors and the latest climate crisis news leave you bewildered, distressed or depressed, activism is an antidote for politically-induced depression. It is also a way to surround yourself with others who have had enough and want to take hold of this wayward ship and help steer it to sanity and justice.

So, please consider joining us tomorrow for an evening focused on creating change in NM.

A Look Back at Last Week

While the debate about the environmental and human consequences of the production of electric vehicles and energy storage was very compelling and drew an unusually large number of insightful perspectives, if I had time to go back to just one of last week’s posts, it would be the one focused on NY and its successful ousting of six Senate DINOs. With that under my belt, I’d watch the six minute Rachel Maddow video to get angry and the Valarie Kaur video to become motivated and inspired.

The Environmental and Human Cost of Electric Vehicles and Renewable Energy Storage

Congolese adults and children sorting through cobalt with their bare hands.

Tuesday, July 30. This post generated more discussion than any post in recent memory with many pointing to the absolute priority of electrifying our transportation options ASAP. While not dismissing the concerns about environmental and human degradation, they pointed to the need for a vast expansion of ownership of electric vehicles. Others pointed toward the need for an electric transit system freeing as many as possible from auto dependence. It was a good discussion, so I strongly recommend those who missed this, to first read the post and then the comments that followed. Click here to read the post and comments.

Moral Choices Posed by Electric Vehicles and Battery Storage

Thursday, Aug 1. We opened up the discussion begun on Tuesday. If you read the Tuesday post and the comments that followed, you won’t really need to review this, too, although there is some amplifying discussion that does not appear above. Click here to review this post.

DINOs In NM, DINOs in NY. But NY Had a Plan & It Worked

Saturday, Aug. 3. New York had eight DINOs who caucused with the GOP to dominate the State Senate and prevent a litany of good bills, including ironically, a key abortion protection bill that had floundered for years. Sound familiar? The post features an examination of exactly how the NY Working Families Party formed a broad coalition, identified eight progressive candidates and ousted six of the eight DINOs….and in the next session, passed the abortion protection bill and 20 other long-stalled bills. A very important post as it provides a roadmap for NM. Click here to review the post.

Rachel Maddow Connects the Dots & Valarie Kaur Inspires

A total of 12 minutes of video and WOW did this go viral with the largest open rate outside of the release of the Report Card. Maddow takes six minutes to present an absolutely astonishing bit of corruption that has been done right out in the open. So worth your review. And then Valarie Kaur. If you haven’t ever seen her talk, you really must. No matter how down you are about life in the US, she brings you back up. Awesome. Click here to review the post.

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