Monday, June 24, 2013

You Win Some and Hope You Win More

I hope this ends up amounting to something.

Thank you.
You made a difference

The G8 Summit just ended, and thanks to you and the 350,405 ONE members who called
for action, we're one step closer to ending extreme poverty.
Our leaders agreed to help 20 million children avoid chronic malnutrition and took
real steps forward in opening up secret data on taxes, aid and natural resources.
Whether you signed our petition or spread the word about agit8 and the power of protest
- this success is yours. So thank you.
ONE petitions get delivered around the world.
We've still got lots to do to keep the progress coming - so what can you do right
Connect with ONE on Facebook or Twitter at
When you connect, your actions will automatically be shared with your networks and
you'll be able to instantly invite friends and family to ONE. This is an easy way
to amplify your voice, bring in lots of new people to the fight, and make our actions
impossible to ignore.
Get connected at right now.
Thanks so much for everything you do.
Laurie Moskowitz
US Campaigns Director, ONE
Our mailing address is:
ONE Campaign
1400 Eye Street, Suite 600
Washington, DC
-Jenelle Embrey witnessed a mother and a teenage boy survive a rear-end collision
and then burn to death moments later when their Jeep burst into flames.
After the accident, Jenelle was devastated to learn that for years advocates had
been calling for a recall of Jeeps that have their gas tanks in the crush zone but
Chrysler -- the owner of the Jeep brand -- had fought those efforts while dozens
of people died. Jenelle knew that lots of other petitions on had held
big corporations accountable to the public before so she created her petition demanding
a recall of "dangerous Jeeps."
Great news: After a huge outcry in support of a recall, including you and more than
125,000 people who signed Jenelle’s petition, Chrysler announced Tuesday they are
recalling Jeeps that according to the government are prone to fires after rear end
When the recall was announced Jenelle said:

Thank you to the more than 127,000 people who signed my petition and helped
to show Chrysler and the nation’s top auto safety officials that these dangerous
Jeeps should be recalled. 

It's a bittersweet victory, but after over three years
of delays, I’m glad that Chrysler is doing something to prevent the deaths of any
more victims of rear-end accidents in Jeeps.
I’m going to continue to fight to make sure that the repair that Chrysler applies
is effective and push Chrysler to recall the Jeep models that are still under investigation
by the government.

Thank you for being a change-maker, Team
P.S. If you are concerned about the safety of your Jeep call Chrysler at 1-877-426-5337.
Victory! 10-year-old Sarah received a lung transplant! --
To all of you who have taken up Sarah’s cause and signed this petition to change
the Under 12 Rule – thank you!  Your incredible efforts have helped change policy
and save lives.
On June 10, the Organ Procurement and Transplantation Network (OPTN) board unanimously
passed a resolution to allow children under 12 to be considered for the adult lung
transplant list on a case-by-case basis by OPTN’s Lung Review Board.
Three days before, a federal judge had granted Sarah and another boy - Javier Acosta,
who is also in Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia with end-stage cystic fibrosis
- a temporary restraining order that allowed them to be considered for an adult lung
transplant based on their Lung Allocation Scores (LAS).
On June 13, we received news that adult donor lungs became available and Sarah received
a lung transplant.
Sarah got lungs quickly after going to the adult list because her LAS finally mattered
and she was the sickest one on the list. She had an LAS of 91 out of 100 when transplanted.
We are in the early stages of recovery and Sarah’s battle has been rough, but we’re
continuing to fight.
As difficult as this process has been post-surgery, we appreciate that OPTN has now
opened the door for other children in Sarah’s unique position to become eligible
for adult lung transplant.
The OPTN’s decision does not mean that children under 12 will automatically go to
the front of the transplant line. They will not receive special treatment, but they
will now be placed on the waiting list based on the severity of their illness the
same way people 12 and over are listed.
We hope Sarah’s story moves people to become organ donors, because more than any
ruling, it is the heroes who donate their organs that save lives.
God bless you all for standing by Sarah.  Thank you to Congressman Pat Meehan, Senator
Pat Toomey, Senator Bob Casey, Congressman Lou Barletta, Governor Tom Corbett and
all of the other elected officials who fought to change the Under 12 Rule. To all
of Sarah’s supporters who signed this petition, we thank you and ask for
your continued prayers in support of Sarah and all people waiting for organ transplants.
Janet, Fran, Sarah, Ella, Sean and Finn Murnaghan
Mailing Address: · 216 W 104th St., #130 · New York, NY 10025

Saturday, June 22, 2013

About the book "Flight Behavior" and more

About the Book "Flight Behavior" and more.

There is a way in which politics becomes identity.  I don't know what to do about this but I think it is dangerous.

In Barbara Kingsolver's book, "Flight Behavior" she deals with this subject, among others, well.  I am only paraphrasing one of the main characters who said something like, "If I'm already judged as the dumb red neck in the pick up then what the hell.  I might as well go on and burn a little more gas."  This is Not an exact quote. 

The Ozarks region of the U.S. is basically an extension of Appalachia.  It was settled by the same group of Scottish, Irish, and Scotch-Irish mixed with Native American who settled the Appalachians.  So the same attitudes prevail.  The Ozarks is basically land too rough for big spreads, big farms, or agribusiness.  People run cattle, rent out their pastures to those wealthy enough to buy horses, and if they have some river bottom land or a couple of fields to grow food they work Very hard to do so.  The deer here who feed many are smaller than in the flat land or gentle hills of Northern Missouri.  In the Northern part of the state soy beans and corn can be grown on a large scale and the deer eat the often genetically modified crops. 

Theme parks have stupid hillbillies and stupid hillbilly themes.  Is there truth behind the stereotype?  Yes, but it is constantly reinforced.  People come from all over the world to here hillbilly humor about people so backward they can't tell an indoor toilet from a water fountain.  This Isn't true! 

People with money come here to retire from big cities and build beautiful large homes in the woods.  They shake their heads at the "stupidity of the locals" who smoke, talk funny, use poor grammar, and eat junk.

I'm not defending any of these things.  What I'm saying is that when you have no hope of changing your situation for the better this is often what happens.  Similar things happen in big cities where poverty is intergenerational, just like it is here.  But wealthy retirees don't go their because the prices aren't so low, the land isn't so pretty or valuable, and crime is more likely to effect them.  Of course, with the growth of methamphetamine labs. And hidden marijuana plants, crime is everywhere. 

Am I painting a stereotype of my own?  Yes.  Not all Ozarks settlers came from Appalachia, just most of the original settlers among whom there were some English and some German people.

Not all retirees humiliate and demean "the locals".  Some share and some volunteer to teach literacy or in other ways.

But I honestly believe there is a Core of truth in what I'm saying.  Like many stereotypes, there may be Some seed of truth in them, with the Reasons for that seed of truth being Completely misunderstood by those not from the area.  Not politically correct?  Oh well.

I admire the work of blues artist J. J. Gray, to whom I apologize, if I have misspelled his name.  His songs tell the political truths of his home, Mississippi.  In his song "Life in a Country Ghetto" he talks about being judged as "Poor white trash" and being called by a vicious name beginning with N.  Then he sings "We're black and we're white, we're living side by side".  He refuses Both stereotypes in favor of common living conditions and humanity.  Talk about scaring politicians!

Let me tell you a story about one of my heroes.  It's one of my sisters.  She worked her way through college.  Then while getting her masters she worked six and a half days a week for a retired couple as a maid, physical therapy assistant, party producing helper, and whatever was wanted.  Sometimes her employers felt free to comment about her personal appearance, though she is a scrupulously clean person with perfect hygene. 

Now she works for the state as an archivist, has taught history classes at a local community college, and has used her degree in art history to do research for the National Historical Society.  She worked at a hillbilly theme park for a while and some of it sickened her.

She has many survival skills that people who are younger and live in the city of Springfield lack.  She gardens, growing vegetables and flowers, she can rewire a lamp, build an outdoor arbor, make clothing, cook great food, can food, if she has to, and more.  She knows how to shop to pull quality out of a second hand store or flea market.  Her I.Q. was once measured at 140 or higher.  She will always have my respect and admiration for those seven years as a maid-plus, and taking care of a husband, And going to school for her Masters Degree.

I know a young, very intelligent man who wants to go to college.  He wants to work on making cars, designing cars, which run on available bio. Fuels like old filtered cooking grease.  He knows his grammar is bad and that he'd need help in English and literature courses.  But he works fixing transmissions and can't afford college. 

He believes that if he were Afican American or Latino or maybe even a Woman, he might get in on a scholarship.  Do I agree with him?  No, I think there are probably Lots of African American, Latino, and female students who would love a shot at college and have none.  But the way to change his hopelessness and beliefs is Not to humiliate him as white trash who works on cars and drinks beer with his buds.  The way to change them is to test him and work with his strengths.  He pays his bills, helps his sister raise her kids and is a soft spoken, very bright man.  I would like to See him in college, as I believe he is smart enough to put his education to use for the benefit of All of us.  I think he has given up on this dream.

This man is already benefitting society.  He has switched from a transmission mechanic to working for a nonprofit corporation set up many years ago when poverty was a thing to be Fought in our country, insulating and weatherizing the homes of low income people of all races.  I hope this job hasn't been cut.

In Springfield, Mo. 53% of the children live below the Federal Poverty Level.  But in the U.S. Senate the school-based feeding program may be cut out of the newest farm bill.  Is there more poverty than 53% elsewhere in the U.S.?  Of course!  All I am saying is that you don't change the beliefs of poor people  of Any race by labeling them.  Whatever beliefs about others are encouraged by the media, politicians, supposedly "funny" comedians who thrive on humiliating others, and local religious leaders, when combined with poverty and despair, will become a part of that group's identity.  Once this happens it is Very hard to change.  The only reason I found out about the proposed cuts to school-based food programs for kids is because I seek out those kinds of emails.  I have no children in school.  But I will live in the world children help create as I age.  It's the only insurance policy with meaning, now that Ann is gone.  And it is a way I can hopefully benefit my and other communities.

If you have the time to read, check out Barbara Kingsolver's "Flight Behavior" and also  the music of J. J. Gray.

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Environmental Warning and Yet Another Attempt to Ban All Abortion

Environmental Warning and Yet Another Attempt to Ban All Abortion

Firefighter with breast cancer needs your help to stop dangerous chemicals in homes
By Janette Neves Rivera and the Center for Environmental Health
Oakland, California
Sign the Petition
I was diagnosed with an aggressive form of breast cancer last year. The news was
a really big shock considering I have no family history of the disease.
It got even worse when the doctor told me the cancer is most likely related to my
job and environment as a firefighter. Later I learned that most women with breast
cancer have no family or other known risk factors.
Did you know that couches and other common household items including many children’s
products contain harmful flame retardant chemicals? I didn’t have any idea about
this health hazard until I started doing some research.
The Chicago Tribune
 has extensively reported on flame retardants and about how these chemicals “migrate
out of products into household dust ingested by people, especially young children.”
They also reveal that there are studies showing “some flame retardants can make smoke
from fires even more toxic.” Numerous scientific studies have shown that many flame
retardant chemicals can cause cancer, reproductive difficulties, developmental problems
and other serious health issues.
I found out that firefighters are at such high risk from dangerous chemicals that
women firefighters in my city are diagnosed with breast cancer at 6 times the rate
of other women.
The Consumer Product Safety Commission has the power to help put an end to unnecessary
flame retardants in furniture and other everyday products. But instead of taking
strong action, they may be moving to obstruct vital health protections. Please sign
my petition to show them that people like us matter!
The Commission has a July 1 deadline for comments, and this is our best chance to
have a real impact on this public health issue.
I know that my children are proud of the work I do, and I strive to be a good role
model for them. But I never expected that giving back in this way would expose me
to cancer-causing flame retardant chemicals that are threatening my life and  the
future I’m trying to build for my family.
Fire safety experts are on record testifying that these dangerous flame retardant
chemicals do not even effectively prevent fires in furniture and many other products,
but huge chemical companies are behind efforts to keep their products in household
items despite what’s happening to people like me.
As I have traveled through my cancer journey, I have asked myself, how I can be a
catalyst for change? I want my story to help bring about change and slow the rate
of cancer and exposure to toxins, not just for firefighters but for our children.
The chemical industry is well-funded so I decided to work with the Center for Environmental
Health on this campaign because I believe our health is the most important gift we
have for ourselves and our families.
The Consumer Product Safety Commission has until July 1 to hear from you on their
current comment period. Please sign to ask that they prioritize public safety over
chemical companies’ bottom lines. Tell them to put a stop to dangerous flame retardant
Sign the Petition
The person (or organization) who started this petition is not affiliated with did not create this petition and is not responsible for the petition content.

Mailing Address: · 216 W 104th St., #130 · New York, NY 10025

Ultra Violet
Equality at a Higher Frequency

Personal comment: Not from Ultra Violet.
In general I do not favor abortions after 20 weeks of pregnancy.  But if a woman's health is in danger:  Examples:  She has a family and her pregnancy may permanently disable or kill her, she is a suicidal victim of rape or incest who is in total denial about her pregnancy, she is pregnant and has cancer and needs chemotherapy to have a chance of taking care of her children, in such situations NO legislator has the Right to demand that a woman dies by Not having an abortion.  This Must be left between a woman and her doctor.

I've noticed that not many legislators who would legislate against All abortion are adopting the children of rape or incest, some of whom will have disabilities from the incest,  or caring for families who have lost their mothers.

Speaker Boehner and Majority Leader Cantor are pushing an unconstitutional bill through
the House that would ban abortions after 20 weeks of pregnancy--without any exception
for the woman's health.
Sign the petition to tell them to drop this bill and stop attacking women.
click here
Click Here

Remember Todd “legitimate rape” Akin? And Richard Mourdock who said pregnancy from
rape is "gift from God"?
Well, they’re back--or at least their policies are. Trent Franks, a tea party Republican
Congressman from Arizona, said last week that "the incidence of rape resulting in
pregnancy are very low."2
 The truth: at least 30,000 women become pregnant from rape each year.
What’s even scarier?
The House is set to vote on Rep. Franks's proposal to criminalize abortion nationwide
after the 20th week of pregnancy this week.
Republicans in Congress are using this bill to score political points with their
conservative base, but after the 2012 election, they're also desperate to appeal
to women voters.
 Now, it’s up to all of us to send them a clear message: Women are watching and we
are speaking out. Stop attacking our rights. Can you sign the petition telling Speaker
Boehner and Majority Leader Cantor to drop this bill now?
 We’ll deliver your signature and comments before the vote.
Tell Congress: Drop the 20-week abortion ban.
Attempts to ban abortions after 20 weeks aren't new--extreme conservatives have been
pushing similar legislation through state legislatures for years now. Nine states
have all passed similar laws, including Indiana, Louisiana and Nebraska.
But the bill is unconstitutional, and it directly contradicts Roe v. Wade.
 Just last month, Arizona’s ban was thrown out by the federal appeals court. Courts
have also overturned similar laws in Idaho and Georgia.
It’s also dangerous.
If it’s passed, doctors who perform safe abortion care could be tried and imprisoned--even
if a woman was at risk for severe, permanent health problems.
Not all Republicans are on board with their party’s latest extreme attack on women.
Republican Rep. Charlie Dent even said of his own party’s leadership, "Clearly the
economy is on everyone’s minds... and now we’re going to have a debate on rape and
abortion… The stupidity is simply staggering."
If we all speak out now, we can show Speaker Boehner and Majority Leader Cantor that
pushing this bill through the House--and continuing the Republican war on women--is
not only wrong, it’s going to cost them politically.
Sign the petition.
Thanks for speaking out.
--Nita, Shaunna, Kat, Malinda and Karin, the UltraViolet team
Rape remarks sink two Republican Senate hopefuls
, NBC News, November 7, 2012
Trent Franks: 'The Incidence Of Rape Resulting In Pregnancy Are Very Low'
, Huffington Post, June 12, 2013
3. Ibid.
House GOP Set To Vote Next Week On 20-Week Abortion Ban
, Talking Points Memo, June 12, 2013
Abortion Bans at 20 Weeks: A Dangerous Restriction for Women
, NARAL Pro-Choice America
House Republican Calls Nationwide Abortion Ban Vote ‘Staggering Stupidity’
, Think Progress, June 13, 2013
Trent Franks, Abortion Bans, and the Fetal Pain Lie
, RH Reality Check, June 13, 2013
House Republican Calls Nationwide Abortion Ban Vote ‘Staggering Stupidity’
, Think Progress, June 13, 2013

Monday, June 17, 2013

Waiting for Physical Therapy

Waiting for Physical Therapy

I sit in the loby cacooned, in a shroud of meaningless noise.  It's all loud, incomprehensible as sounds blend.  There's applause, must be the TV game show.  And more voices than I can possibly count.  Occasionally one stands out for a moment, then submerges into the senseless, frightening rushing.  I can't stand it, so bring an audio book with headphones on maximum.  That doesn't change the situation, but it makes me Feel better.  There is One thing in my environment which I can understand and even Control.   


Round Up

This one is important.  I am no scientist and cannot verify the facts.  But it makes good sense that just as the overuse of antibiotics has led to drug resistant strains of TB. And an increase in infections in hospital patients which are hard to treat, an over use of a weed killer which kills Everything on which it is sprayed will lead to Round Up "super weeds" resistant to any herbicide now known.  Some researchers say they have found "Round Up" Ready bacteria in the intestines of people.  Butterflies and bees are pollinators of food crops, we Need them.  I worry for my friends who use lots of Round Up and for the farm laborers who have to work around this and other hazardous chemicals all day, Every day.

A friend of mine is an "over the road" long distance trucker.  She says that all across parts of Ohio, for one example, there are pro-Monsanto bill boards proclaiming the benefits of genetically Modified crops sold by Monsanto.  If something happens to wipe out the GMO corn, soy beans, and wheat, what will replace them?  How will poor people afford food?

I'm reading Barbara Kingsolver's book "Flight Behavior" and it's ironic because yesterday parts of this local area received nine and a half inches of rain, in One Day!  Talk about Flooding! That is the most rain in one day ever recorded for the area.    It has been too wet to plant some crops, others have rotted, waterlogged in the fields.  Last year it was a drought and temperatures of 108 with dry hot winds.

You don't have to be a climate scientist to know the weather has become more weird and inconsistent.  You just have to be a farmer or even a Gardener.

Monsanto's top herbicide, Roundup, is wrecking our environment, poisoning our bodies
and driving whole species to extinction.
Tell Monsanto to provide more information about the deadly effects of Roundup. Limit
amounts sold until the real effects of product are understood.
Sign the Petition
Monsanto has spent the past three decades wrecking our environment, poisoning our
bodies, and pushing species of crops to the verge of extinction with a wide array
of toxic products. And Monsanto's signature herbicide, Roundup, does all these things
at once -- but
Monsanto has lied over and over
 and said that the product is perfectly safe. Yet independent research has found
the chemical is
creating herbicide-resistant superweeds, making a species of butterfly extinct, and
disrupting normal human body functions.
Monsanto has inflicted awful damage upon the Earth and its inhabitants, but
the company is finally facing significant blowback.
Now, while the tide in
the ongoing war of consumers vs. the agriculture giant is swinging our way
, it is the time to call on Monsanto to tell the truth about the effects of Roundup.
Tell Monsanto: Stop ignoring the deadly effects of your top herbicide. Provide more information about the real effects of Roundup.
After years of lobbying European governments to allow the cultivation of Monsanto
GMO plants and seeds,
Monsanto finally quit lobbying because the company could not gain support on the
 This week, an American appeals court has
prevented Monsanto from suing farmers
 that might inadvertently grow Monsanto laced crops.
We're standing as consumers, shareholders and citizens of the world to say “enough
is enough” and
demanding Monsanto stop lying that Roundup is safe and start putting strict limits
on the amount of Roundup it sells to any one area until we know more.
 Every day we delay is another species near extinction, another superweed created,
another child who falls sick. But every signature we get brings us one step closer
to stopping Monsanto from destroying our planet with Roundup -- and showing Monsanto
that we won't let it continue leading us down that path of destruction.
Monsanto: Stop lying that Roundup is safe and put strict limits on its use.
Thanks for all you do,
Angus, Martin, Kaytee and the rest of us.

More Information:
How Monsanto Went From Selling Aspirin to Controlling Our Food Supply
, AlterNet, 18 April, 2013
Heavy use of herbicide Roundup linked to health dangers-U.S. study
, Reuters, 25 April, 2013
Monsanto’s Roundup Shown to be Ravaging Butterfly Population
, Natural Society, 6 March, 2012
 SumOfUs is a world-wide movement of people like you, working together to hold corporations
accountable for their actions and forge a new, sustainable path for our global economy.
You can follow us on
, and like us on

Thursday, June 13, 2013

Mining in Burma, Do We Need these Jewels for the Price?

If the US. Campaign for Burma had Not spoken out and urgeed actions to help stop violence against that country's Muslim minority I would have been angry.  But they did.  And now the mining practices described below remind me of the old system in S. Africa, (which I Pray is changing) and actions still taken in the Democratic Republic of the Congo.

There Is something to do about it.
Sounds Like Mining Was in S. Africa and still Is in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. 

They are Beautiful, but do we Truly need these things to be Happy?

Tell Congress: No Burmese Blood Rubies

Last week, we wrote to you about the ongoing suffering of the Kachin people. Now
the Kachin need your help to make sure Congress doesn’t lift the ban on importing
Burmese rubies and jade.
Tell your Representative to cosponsor the renewal of the Burmese Freedom and Democracy Act.
Rubies and jade are mined in northeastern Burma where the Burmese military continues
to wage war against the Kachin ethnic group. Control of the mines and labor exploitation
fuel the war against the Kachin, to whom the rubies are known as blood rubies – not
because they are the color of blood, but because of the blood spilt in mining them.
The Burmese government uses child labor and forced labor in the ruby and jade mines,
which are highly lucrative moneymakers for the Burmese government and its business
We visited Kachin leaders, human rights organizations, relief workers, and internally
displaced persons earlier this year. They expressed their frustration at how ignored,
betrayed, and abandoned they feel by the international community. They want the United
States to keep some sanctions in place to pressure the Burmese military to stop attacking
them, to stop abusing them, to stop exploiting their natural resources, including
the rubies and jade mined on their land, and to guarantee their rights, and let them
return home in safety.
The gem ban in the Burmese Freedom and Democracy Act is one of the last pieces of
leverage the U.S. has to push the Burmese military to meet the Kachin concerns and
pursue rights-respecting reforms. If Congress does not renew the gem ban, the ban
is automatically gone.
Please take a minute to send an email to your Representative to renew the Burmese Freedom and Democracy Act before it expires.
Don’t let the Burmese government profit off the sale of these rubies and jade in
the U.S.
Email your Representative today
 and let him or her know that the gem provision is essential for keeping pressure
on the Burmese government if we want to see the end of human rights abuses.
Help us not fail the Kachin when they need us most.
Have time to send more than an email?  Email for instructions
for calling your Representative.

In solidarity,

USCB team
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Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Opinions Wanted: How to Stop Sexual Assault of Servicewomen

A Chance to be Heard, Strategy for Stopping Sexual Assault of Servicewomen

What you think we should do next in our campaign to end sexual assault in the military
and demand justice for the survivors?
In the past 48 hours, nearly 50,000 people have signed our petition demanding that
the U.S. Senate invite servicewomen who have survived sexual assault to testify.
It's an incredible start--but petitions alone won't be enough.
That's why we're planning our next steps to keep the media spotlight on this crisis,
and keep the pressure on Congress to act. But we want your input before we decide
what we do next.
 Can you tell us what you think UltraViolet should do, and which actions you would
be interested in participating in?
 The survey is short and only takes a minute.
Tell us what you think.
Thanks for your input.
--Nita, Shaunna, Kat, Malinda and Karin, the UltraViolet team
You can unsubscribe from this mailing list at any time.

Monday, June 10, 2013

How Can I Ignore This One with Zero Signers?

How can I Not sign this petition?  Ann and I Did lose our home even though all credit card and mortgage payments were current.  I bought it in May and a string of Very early tornadoes came through the next Jan. causing so much camage the insurance company didn't want to pay for it.  I hadn't paid premiums long enough is my guess as to why.

I am a renter who has declared bankruptcy.
Hurricane Sandy destroyed my home and now I could lose it to foreclosure. Sign my petition asking Wells Fargo to comply with federal orders and help all Sandy victims with mortgage payment extensions.
Sign My Petition
When Hurricane Sandy hit my home, it sustained so much damage we almost had to tear
it down and start over. My family and I could have lost everything.
After the hurricane the federal government agreed to allow homeowners to temporarily
suspend mortgage payments without being threatened with foreclosure in order to rebuild.
When I called Wells Fargo in April they said everything would be fine, and we were
hopeful for the first time in months.
But last week I learned that Wells Fargo went back on their word and might foreclose
on my home.
Wells Fargo is defying the federal government and unfairly targeting my family and
other Sandy victims who have already suffered so much.
I started a petition on asking Wells Fargo to obey the federal mandate and provide me and all homeowners affected by Sandy a payment extension. Click here to sign.
After Hurricane Sandy our home was unlivable, and my family and I spent the rest
of winter living in a trailer in our front yard. Our water froze and we lost heat.
But we stayed because we wanted to save and rebuild our home, and the extension of
mortgage payments made it possible for us to do that.
Not only is Wells Fargo refusing to comply with a federal mandate to protect all
homeowners affected by Hurricane Sandy, but they're jeopardizing my family's financial
security. Because of the extensive damage to our home caused by the hurricane, my
family had to take out a loan against my husband's 401k -- the only savings we have.
I've heard of countless other homeowners saving their homes from foreclosure by starting
petitions on I believe that with enough signatures, Wells Fargo will
do the right thing and suspend mortgage payments for homeowners affected by Sandy
instead of foreclosing.
Sign my petition asking Wells Fargo to comply with the federal government mandate and work with Hurricane Sandy victims like myself to save our homes.
Thank you for your help.
Kathleen Murphy
Brick, New Jersey
Sign My Petition
Mailing Address: · 216 W 104th St., #130 · New York, NY 10025

Sunday, June 9, 2013

The New South or the Wild West?

Trigger Warning for first email.  But it's Important!

Couldn't this guy have gone to Small Claims Court and gotten back his money instead of committing Murder?  But then That takes more time and requires Thought!

A jury in Texas just acquitted a man who shot and killed a woman for refusing to
have sex with him. No one should ever fear for their lives when saying no to sex.
Will you sign the petition to Texas Attorney General Abbott asking him to clarify
that nobody should be killed for refusing sex?
click here
Click Here

A court in Texas just exonerated a man who shot and killed a woman who had refused
to have sex with him. She's dead, and he will serve no time at all.
We have to speak up to make sure this never happens again anywhere in the U.S.
Here’s what happened: Ezekiel Gilbert shot and killed a Craigslist escort after she
left without having sex with him. His lawyer argued that since he had paid her $150
for the evening, he was justified under Texas law in shooting her because state law
allows people “to use deadly force to recover property during a nighttime theft."
The precedent this case sets is dangerous. A woman is NEVER required to have sex
with a man if she doesn't want to. Ever.
Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott can issue an opinion clarifying that nobody can
be shot for refusing to have sex.
As the state’s chief legal official, his opinion will influence elected and legal
 In Texas and across the country, making this clear is incredibly important to saving
lives in the future.
Yesterday's verdict has generated a national firestorm of headlines that are making
their way across social media. If we can focus the national spotlight on Abbott,
the pressure could force him to act.
Will you sign the petition asking AG Abbott to clarify that women always have the
right to say no to sex, no matter the circumstances?
Add your name.
It’s horrifying that we have to clarify that a woman’s consent is hers to give, regardless
of the circumstances. But if we don’t speak out, this sexist mentality and its sad
results will only continue.
This story has already gotten the attention of national blogs. Both
Gawker and Think Progress
 have written about the jury’s decision.
 Local Texas outlets are also seeing lots of online outrage. Commenters at
My San Antonio
 have weighed in saying things like “I don't even know what to say, I'm speechless.
That's not what this law is in place for” and "this is not the Bexar County I want
to live in, where women can be murdered for not giving someone the sex they believe
they're owed."
We can make sure this doesn’t happen again. We need AG Abbott to speak out and issue
an opinion making it perfectly clear that nobody should be killed for refusing sex,
no matter what the circumstances.
Sign the petition.
Thanks for speaking out.
--Nita, Shaunna, Kat, Malinda and Karin, the UltraViolet team
Jury acquits escort shooter
, My San Antonio, June 5, 2013
2. Ibid.
About Attorney General Opinions
, Attorney General of Texas, March 1, 2012
Texas Says It's OK to Shoot an Escort If She Won't Have Sex With You
, Gawker, January 6, 2013
Jury Acquits Texas Man For Murder Of Escort Who Refused Sex
, Think Progress, January 6, 2013
Jury acquits escort shooter: Comments
, My San Antonio, January 6, 2013

Glade stinks --
and it's not just the smell. SC Johnson, Glade's parent company, is refusing to disclose
the chemicals in each of its products.
Tell Glade to stop hiding chemicals in its products.
Sign the petition

Something about the massive fragrance brand Glade stinks. Although Glade’s sprays,
candles, and air fresheners are marketed as clean and refreshing, independent investigations
have showed that
Glade products contain secret, potentially toxic chemicals.
When health advocates Women’s Voices for the Earth commissioned an independent lab
to test Glade for toxins, they found
chemicals that have been linked to allergic reactions
, birth defects, and increased risk of breast cancer
. We know Glade uses synthetic musks that build up in the body over time, and
ultimately show up in blood and breast milk.
Other companies, like Chlorox and the makers of Lysol have dropped these ingredients,
but not Glade -- and we don't even know what else might be lurking in Glade fragrances.
In the United States,
manufacturers aren’t required to label the ingredients
 of fragrances, so most don’t. That means consumers can’t avoid fragrances that contain
unhealthy chemicals and allergens, like those found in many Glade products.
Tell the makers of Glade to stop keeping secrets and let consumers know what chemicals are in its fragrances.
S.C. Johnson, the massive chemical conglomerate that owns Glade, likes to brag that
it’s committed to honesty and transparency. But
it only discloses the contents of its fragrances in a single online master list with
over 1,500 ingredients.
 That master list
includes scary ingredients like petroleum -- but it doesn't say which chemicals appear
in which products!
 Consumers have no way of knowing which products to avoid if they have allergies
or small children, or if they simply want to shy away from toxins.
In the European Union, where disclosure rules are stricter, Glade products already
have labels about their ingredients, so
we know that the makers of Glade could easily be more transparent.
 But it’s chosen to keep customers in the U.S. in the dark.
Glade recently responded to consumer complaints about its lack of transparency, but
it simply reiterated what its policies are. It didn't address the basic issue: when
we buy Glade products, we don't know what we're getting. Glade dodged a handful of
complaints, but if thousands of us speak out together, it will have to get serious.
 S.C. Johnson wants to be seen as a leader on transparency,
 and this is its chance to live up to that billing. By labeling potentially harmful
ingredients in Glade products, it can help set a new standard in the fragrance industry.
Click here to demand that Glade disclose its fragrance ingredients.
Rob, Kaytee, and the rest of us
More Information:
Women's Voices for the Earth,
Dirty Secrets test results
 SumOfUs is a world-wide movement of people like you, working together to hold corporations
accountable for their actions and forge a new, sustainable path for our global economy.
You can follow us on
, and like us on
It's the law in Alabama that teachers must tell kids that being gay is a criminal offense, even though that's not true. I want the state legislature to repeal this hurtful, outdated law.
Sign My Petition
 -As a teenager, I expect my teachers to tell me the truth.
So why does my state, Alabama, require by law that my teachers tell me that being
gay is a criminal offense?
The Supreme Court ruled in 2003 that being gay is not a crime -- it's incredible
that happened so recently. But it's even more incredible that in Alabama, the law
requires sexual education teachers to emphasize that
"homosexuality is not a lifestyle acceptable to the general public and that homosexual
conduct is a criminal offense."
I'm a queer teen in Alabama, and I don't think it's acceptable for the law to force
my teachers to tell me I'm a criminal.
A bill has been introduced in the Alabama state legislature to repeal this hurtful, outdated law. My friend Adam and I started a petition on calling on the legislature to repeal the law -- will you click here to sign?
It's bad enough to be a gay kid and hear from your teachers that your identity is
invalid. But what's even worse is the way this school forces teachers to sanction
anti-gay bullying, even if they don't want to.
Queer kids are significantly more likely to attempt suicide than straight or cisgender
kids, partly because society teaches us to think awful things about ourselves --
that we're weird and abnormal and not okay. But we are okay, just the way we are.
We need for our teachers and the people in our lives to be able to tell us that we
It's been ten years since the Supreme Court ruled that it's not a crime to be gay.
It's time for Alabama to stop forcing teachers to lie to students -- and I know that
if enough people sign my petition the state legislature will do the right thing and
take this hateful law off the books.
Click here to sign Adam's and my petition calling on the Alabama state legislature to repeal a law that forces teachers to tell students that being gay is a crime.
Thank you,
Sarah Noone, age 16
Birmingham, Alabama

Saturday, June 8, 2013

Dream About Ann

I read once in a book that there is a difference between grief and mourning.  Grief is experienced at the loss, especially the sudden loss, of a beloved person.  Grief is experienced when there is time.
     Mourning is longer and slower and is experienced when there are children to raise, or for some other reason, grief must be postponed.
     For the first time since Ann died I had a dream about her last night.  I was acting silly, we were talking together in the way we had, trying to figure out a possible motive for something.  I have felt very sad ever since.  But I have enough of a life of my own now to keep going.  But the hurt is a physical thing, making me feel like crying, but I never learned to do that or it was Unlearned long ago.

When I think of it, I was in shock and grief the night Ann died.  But by the next day there was so much Work!  I needed to call her and our close friends and tell them what had happened, continue taking care of pets and house, (the dog was sick then) wonder what had happened, Why she was gone, and I knew I would have to move.
     I had to put together a Memorial Service, find an honoring container for her ashes, Stop her Disability checks and Food Stamps, And go into her room to begin sorting through things I thought her family would want.  I Had to be numb to go into that room or outside in the snow near where she was found, frozen.

I had no Time to grieve.  There were boxes of print papers to sort through which were taller than me, about six feet tall.  With various friends and Wendi, the world's most wonderful friend, who could have split but stayed as my healthcare aide, we sorted into huge piles:  recycle, shred, send to Ann's family.  This went on for a couple of months.

Then I had to donate Ann's clothing, dishes, etc. to places around town which would give them to people free of charge.  Then there was packing to move.  Some things I had no time to sell I just let go.

Then I had to pack to move, What a nightmare, and look at cheaper rental houses to move into and clean the one we had lived in.  I had to keep in contact with the funeral home, put together a memorial book, etc.
     It was four months of slogging Work.
     Looking back I know I Never would have gotten through it without friends and Wendi.  I don't know how the hell we did it!  Food for the memorial gathering, then taking it Down, shocking, as it all came apart so Shockingly much faster than it went together.  That hurt!
     After moving there was rearranging furniture in the house, and Unpacking so I could live here.  Then there were guys showing up after dark getting mad because someone I'd never heard of was not here, an attempted break in, I actually did good, just getting Through it all.

But it led to what the book's author called mourning, long and slow, as I could deal with it.

I guess now my mind and body are strong enough now to remember Ann herself, enough to dream about her.  I am glad.  I miss her so very much!  She was the m  most Curious person I've ever met, except for me, when I'm feeling decent.  This meant she was Never borring.

We talked about the news and politics, her art, (I asked her to describe a painting then asked questions because I was interested.)  Ann was interested in my weaving, my doll clothes, (she helped me cut out the patterns I described which came from my mind) she liked dolls, blues, folk, classic rock, and Native American music.  We both found word games and Bopit fun, and we both liked getting presents for others (even if it was just a card) which the receiver would like.  We both worked at spiritual growth and prayed for others together as well as one another.  And we both read books like crazy, enjoying historical fiction which was well researched, Science Fiction, and many other books harder to classify.  Amy Tan, Barbara Kingsolver, John Grisham, some Lisa See, Maya Angelou always, Sarah Waters, Alice Walker, Salmon Rushdie, Isaac Asimov, Toni Morrison, so many old friends we shared.  And we both loved J. R. R. Tolkein.  We read E. M. Forster.  So many books while we ate dinner, Ann drew or painted, and I sewed or wove.  It was and still is wonderful to have known someone with so Many interests.  We gardened together and Ann taught me how to dig with a spade.  We planted fruit trees and cooking herbs everywhere we lived.

Years of good memories and sadness for Ann's loss and no more possibility of making more happy memories like those.

     Maybe I'll start a petition on Blogger to make is Accessible to assistive technology (screen readers and Braille displays and speech recognition software.)  I can't correct my spelling and I didn't type this out in Word first.  I think faster than I type which causes a lot of mistakes, I'm sorry.
     I cannot add labels to any post through Blogger anymore, or change the way my posts look.  Annoying!  But I just wanted to write a post down as it came out, thus, the mistakes.

Thanks for reading.

Friday, June 7, 2013

Personal then Political

After an ear infection I am left with constant dizziness.  Tiring, not fun.  But I'm coping, just resting when ordinarily I'd be sewing.

I served as the Chief Prosecutor for Terrorism Trials at Guantanamo Bay for ten years.
And it's because of that experience that I believe so strongly that the detention
center at Guantanamo Bay must be closed.
I started a petition on calling on President Obama to close Guantanamo,
and after more than 200,000 people signed -- including you -- he vowed to do just
This marks important progress on this issue, particularly since this is the first
time President Obama has made a real commitment including concrete steps to dismantle
Guantanamo Bay Detention Center. I'm especially pleased that President Obama lifted
the ban preventing many of the detainees from being transferred to their home countries.
I am so proud to know that my voice, along with all of yours, played a part in this
historic moment.
But there is more work to be done.
 President Obama's promise must be followed by swift action, and we must keep speaking
out to make sure he follows through.
Please consider sharing my petition with your friends and family so we can let President
Obama know that we thank him for his promise to close Guantanamo, and we want him
to do whatever it takes to keep that promise:
Thank you for your support,
Colonel Morris Davis
United States Air Force
Gainesville, VA
Start a petition on
Mailing address: · 216 W 104th St., #130, New York, NY 10025 USA

Right now, while you’re reading this email on your phone or computer, you may have
a product of slavery in your hand.
The reality is that almost every electronic device we use in our everyday lives could
include conflict minerals mined by slaves in the Congo.
This week, we brought together some of the world’s leading experts to discuss slavery
in electronics - and right now, you can download the free podcast of that discussion
to learn a few simple steps you can take to prevent slavery from entering your pocket.
Download the podcast for FREE right now to stop supporting slavery
Many of the world’s major electronics companies fuel the demand for conflict minerals.
While companies like Intel, HP, Apple and Microsoft are taking concrete steps to
end the demand for slave-mined minerals in the Congo, there is one company that has
not – Nintendo.
As Sasha Lezhnev of the Enough Project explains in the podcast, "There are many things
that consumers can do to influence these companies, and whether these companies move
the needle on this issue is really up to us."
That’s why we need your help to put pressure on Nintendo to ‘level up’.
take the first step toward ensuring their products are free of conflict minerals mined with slavery
The greater the pressure from consumers, the more likely we are to make a real difference.
So once you’ve taken action, please forward this message to a friend and ask them
to join us in calling on Nintendo to take concrete steps to ensure slavery is not
in their products.
Yours in solidarity,
Amy, Kate, Debra, Mich, Jess, Nick and the Walk Free team
Walk Free is a movement of people everywhere, fighting to end one of the world's
greatest evils: Modern slavery.
Follow on Twitter
Friend on Facebook
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View this email in your browser

© 2013 | All rights reserved |
Tyson Foods: Stop pouring dangerous chemicals on chickens
By Sherry M.
Washington, Alabama
Sign Sherry's Petition
I didn’t expect to already be on disability, seeking early retirement. But I'm here
because of companies like Tyson which require the use of hazardous chemicals on poultry
in facilities like the one I worked in.
That's not safe for workers. And it's allowing companies to cut corners and put the
public's health at risk.
I want Tyson to be an industry leader and stop using these chemicals, especially
peracetic acid, which is poured all over these carcasses. Having well-trained experts
rather than an over-reliance on chemicals will help keep meat contaminated with feces
or pus or harmful bacteria off our plates.
I am proud of my work as a USDA poultry inspector where one of my primary duties
was to protect the public from foodborne illness. My parents and grandparents worked
in the industry and none of them have ever experienced the symptoms I'm having today.
But I became seriously ill as a result of heavy chemical use in the plant where I
was stationed and things have changed.
I'm suffering from health problems, including asthma attacks, sinus problems, and
even organ damage.
 My failing health has seriously impacted my lifestyle and may have ended my 16-year
career as an inspector. As highlighted in a recent
Washington Post
 article, chemical problems seem to be cropping up in plants all over the country.
In a Tyson plant I worked at in Alabama, the introduction of a chemical called peracetic
acid just made things even worse. I felt as though I couldn’t breathe in the plant.
One day I was coughing so hard that I broke two ribs.
 It was a nightmare. And as of the moment I am writing this, the USDA has not done
any formal evaluation of how these chemicals affect workers' health. Additionally,
there have been
no studies of how these dangerous chemicals, directly applied to the carcasses in
processing, affect humans' health
 other than directly from the very companies that profit from their sale.
There are a lot of questions. But no one has answers. I can tell you that the Tyson
Team Member Bill of Rights
 claim that there's a 'right to a safe workplace' but it certainly does not seem
like it's being followed.
Following a series of illnesses, including a serious asthma attack that sent
 to the emergency room in the fall of 2011, I was left with no choice but to leave
the plant and file for disability in December of that year. In addition to daily
medication, I now make regular doctor visits, including to a lung specialist who
advised me not to return to the plant.
My doctors told me they have witnessed an increasing amount of patients coming from
the Tyson plant with similar symptoms, including respiratory infections, eye irritation,
and the development of serious allergies.
Inspectors and Tyson plant workers are hesitant or even afraid to admit they’re becoming
ill. In particular, vulnerable company employees know they are expendable, and risk
termination if they speak out against the visible dangers of chemical use in processing.
I know there are methods to improve inspection by taking birds 'offline' if they
appear contaminated, so they can be cleaned up without the use of excess chemicals.
After feeling powerless for so long, I now know it’s my duty to speak out on behalf
of those inspectors and plant workers who fear retaliation for voicing their concerns.
Please join me in asking Tyson Foods to stop using peracetic acid in its poultry
processing and improve standards at facilities so inspectors, workers, and consumers
are safer.
Photo from USDAgov
Sign Sherry's Petition
The person (or organization) who started this petition is not affiliated with did not create this petition and is not responsible for the petition content.

Mailing Address: · 216 W 104th St., #130 · New York, NY 10025

Rebuild the Dream
If President Obama approves the Keystone XL pipeline, the first thing it runs over
is his credibility on climate.
To help him make the right decision, I made a quick video debunking the top three
Keystone myths.
Watch and share now:
We have been hearing a lot about scandals recently. But if President Obama approves
a pipeline equal to seven new coal-fired power plants? And does so just months after
promising to act AGAINST climate change?
Now THAT'S a scandal.
Watch now -- then share with your friends.
Rebuild the Dream is fighting for an economy that works for everyone -- especially
young people facing too few jobs, too much debt, and threats to survival from guns
to climate change. You can
follow us on Twitter
, and
like us on Facebook