Fight Supremacy 2.0

About three months ago, a group of "alt right" white supremacists took over the streets of Charlottesville, Virginia, as a show of their "strength" — carrying tiki torches, chanting "Jews will not replace us" and "white lives matter", and whipping themselves up into a wild frenzy. It all culminated in the murder of Heather Heyer, a young activist who was there to counter their hate.

The following weekend, a similar group with similar aims descended on Boston. But Boston was ready, and over 40,000 people rose up in response. Finding themselves vastly outnumbered and surrounded on all sides, the reactionaries retreated.

However, they did not surrender. Tomorrow, they plan to come back. And therefore, so do we.

There won't be a march this time, but there will be a rally on Boston Common, dubbed Fight Supremacy 2.0. As was the original Fight Supremacy march and rally, tomorrow's event is being spearheaded by the Boston and Cambridge chapters of Black Lives Matter. Indivisible Somerville and Indivisible Mystic Valley have not been involved in organizing this event, but we stand in full solidarity, and plan to join in. To join us, come to the carousel next to the Boston Common Frog Pond at 11:30, and look for someone holding an Indivisible Somerville sign.

Because Charlottesville is more distant in people's memories this time, we want to make sure that everyone who can come, does come tomorrow. It is absolutely critical to demonstrate that our resolve remains as firm as ever. We may not outnumber them 40,000 to 100 this time, but we must outnumber them. Your presence tomorrow is crucial. Commit to going now, at Indivisible or Facebook. See you there!

Take a survey, win a dinner at True Bistro

Indivisible Somerville will be a year old on January 6th. As we plan ahead for the new adventures and challenges of 2018, we want to hear from you, our community, what programs you want to see in your city. We've created a short survey that's 10 questions long and takes about 3 minutes to complete. Your responses will help us immensely as we prepare for the next year of activism.

Ready? Take the survey.

BUT WAIT THERE'S MORE.

As a thank you, we'll randomly select one participant to win a fancy dinner for two at True Bistro in Teele Sq. We'll announce the winner at our 1 year celebration party on January 6th (don't worry if you can't attend, we'll email you).

Interested? Check out their menu:

(Oh, did we mention that True Bistro is donating the dinner? They're great. Take your date there this weekend).

Thank you so much for all the work you do, and we can't wait to hear from you.

Take the survey.

The first events post of the next election cycle of your life

Last week

So, Election Day happened. And as we all know now, it was a huge victory across the country for progressive candidates and causes. What we're doing is working. The challenge before us is daunting, but we are rising every day to meet it. Keep it up.

To name one example of what we're up against: there's a well funded ballot initiative being put forth for next year, which would repeal anti-discrimination protections for trans people. On Friday, the Action Lab was visited by David Topping of Freedom For All MA, who described his organization's efforts to defeat this initiative. He was a great guest, engaging and knowledgable, and we all look forward to fighting at his side in the year ahead. Keep watching this space for more info on how you can get involved.

As we fight that good fight, we'll have one weapon that's new to our arsenal, but which was deployed against Democrats in 2016, to devastating effect: Twitter bots. Indivisible Somerville hosted its first (but definitely not last) Twitter Bot Hackathon on Sunday, focused on building Twitter bots to fight on behalf of truth and justice. The day generated some fabulous, creative projects, and we're just getting started.

Last but not least, we're happy to report that Massachusetts's second-ever statewide Indivisible Conference was amazing. Since the first iteration of the conference (just this past spring!) Sunday's gathering was leagues better by every measure, from attendance (about 600 activists, from every part of the Commonwealth), to the breadth and depth of workshop offerings, to an ineffable feeling of energy and momentum that suffused the whole event.

Regarding that last thing: certainly, some of the vibe was a residual high from those election results of the Tuesday before. But it didn't hurt one bit to have the conference bookended by electrifying speakers, including Senator Elizabeth Warren, who revved up the crowd like nobody's business, and our own Zayda Ortiz, whose emotional closing remarks powerfully drove home the importance of our continuing efforts.

And speaking of continuing efforts — without further ado, here's what's on tap for the week ahead.

This week

Tonight, Wednesday 11/15, Creative is having its second installment of creative working hours. The fun and games and disciplined productivity go from 7 to 9, at the Canopy City conference room (14 Tyler St, 3rd floor).

On Thursday, 11/16, the Evening Action Lab will be meeting once again at 7, but in a new location: Diesel Cafe in Davis Square. Same great Intelligentsia coffee as Bloc Cafe, but with a key advantage of being open past 7 pm. This will be this lab's first meeting since the election, so there will be much to celebrate and talk about — you should definitely come!

On Friday, 11/17, the classic morning version of Action Lab meets at the Somerville Library at 10 am.

Finally, here's the big event we want to push for this week. Remember a few months back, when the weekend after Charlottesville, those same white supremacists tried to take their hateful road show, under the guise of "free speech", to Boston Common? Remember how Boston responded by rising up, 40,000 strong, making a peaceful but forceful statement that Nazis and their cronies have no place in our city? Well, those same reactionary bozos are coming back to town on Saturday. So we're coming back too. Welcome to Fight Supremacy 2.0.

Unfortunately, this time their event, because it's not in the immediate wake of Charlottesville, has received much less advance publicity. So it is absolutely crucial that everyone who can, does go to Boston Common to counter protest. We need to show once again, beyond a doubt, that we are still many, and they are still few. Indivisible Somerville will gather at noon at the carousel by Frog Pond. Join us.

Oh, and though I did use the word "finally", there is one more thing. Our next monthly New Member Orientation is happening from 2:30 to 4 pm at the Somerville Public Library. This is exactly what it sounds like: a place for anyone new to our organization to learn the ropes and find out how to get involved. If you want to go to the rally but also want to go to the orientation, we're happy to offer you a ride: contact us at outreach@indivisiblesomerville.org, and we'll work things out.

Give

If you like the work we do, please consider setting up a small recurring donation to IS. Sustaining donations are what keep us afloat and able to pay for meeting space, web hosting, coffee, poster supplies, etc. You can set one up in less than 2 minutes on our donation page.

If there's something you think we should know, drop us a line via the anonymous feedback form. We read each and every response.

ACTION: Oppose the wiretap amendments

Find your state rep's phone here.

The MA house is voting today on a huge criminal justice bill, and we need to call NOW and oppose several amendments to it that would increase wiretapping and surveillance of MA residents.

From the ACLU:

The wiretap amendments (53, 105, 115 & 174) would hugely expand invasive government surveillance of residents’ phone and online communication. The worst among them target people with substance use disorders, allowing prosecutors to listen in on the private conversations of not just alleged drug sellers, but also users—who themselves often “distribute” drugs among friends. And they would undermine the Massachusetts high tech industry by expanding law enforcement’s reach into the Massachusetts tech and digital security sectors, threatening customer trust and adoption of new technologies that are the lifeblood of the tech sector – without even bringing tech leaders into the public conversation.

Please use this script (also courtesy of our friends at the ACLU):

SCRIPT: Hi my name is _____________ and I am a constituent of Representative _____________. I am calling today to urge the Representative to oppose all amendments to the criminal justice reform bill that would expand our wiretap statute. [If asked, the amendments are #53, #105, #115 and #174]

Wiretapping is a complex and complicated issue. Changes to our wiretap statute should be carefully considered and crafted, not added as an afterthought to a major criminal justice bill. These amendments would have serious unintended consequences for Massachusetts, from harming the high tech companies doing business in Massachusetts to allowing prosecutors to conduct invasive surveillance of drug users with substance use disorders. Again, I urge Representative _____________ to oppose the wiretap amendments. Thank you for your time.

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