Monday, March 06, 2017

Tools for resistance: Daily Action

Erik Loomis worries:

I’ve been a little bit concerned in the last couple of weeks that things seem to be going back to normal for a lot of liberals, who are horrified but moving on with their lives.

I get that, though I'm perhaps not quite as worried as he is, because I am fortunate to live among groups who are both trying to find ways of leaping into resistance and of building toward the far better society we want to birth out of this ghastly regime.

If the Great Tangerine's antics have got you down, your best chance of feeling better is to do something. And we live amid technological aids that make doing something remarkably easy. Here's one option.

If you have a smart phone, sign up with Daily Action. Every day you'll get a text with a phone link that will fill you in on what the day's target is and give you short, simple prompts about a message. Targets are your Senators, your Congressperson, and sometimes other government officials. In most cases, after you enter your zip code, the message will also offer to put the call through for you.

I've been using Daily Action for about two weeks. Calling Congress is not natural behavior for me. Mostly I find the idea of politely asking the unfortunate staffers who have to take these calls pretty feeble stuff. Protests and loud eruptions are closer to my natural style. But I also believe we have to keep our political time-servers aware that we've got them in our sites. We're pissed, we're not going to take it, and we expect them to do the right thing.

Congressional staffers say phone calls do make their bosses take notice. No other form of contact (except turning up at representatives' offices) does more to get their attention. So on that level, this is effectual, so long as enough of us bother to keep it up.

And, so far, the folks putting out the Daily Action have been imaginative. The GOPer/Trump regime spews out outrages as fast as it can; we'll have no want of targets.

This kind of action isn't going to win any battles right now, but right now what resistance is doing is simply trying to throw as much grit as we can into the machine before it grinds up everything (and every one of us) that makes for what's good about the country.

Here's Loomis again:

The reality is that you never know what is going to lead the spark for massive change. Maybe none of this does. But maybe it does. And if you don’t keep trying to organize actions that empower yourself and your friends and family, the spark never happens.

In preparing to write this, I did a low-key search for other systems that send prompts for phone calls to influence the powerful. I didn't find any. They must exist. If anyone reading this has suggestions/experience with some other system, please leave a note in comments. I'm not particularly endorsing one system, just passing along that I've found this one something that I will do.

1 comment:

Hattie said...

We have the tools to fight back and are winning. How I wish we could have been on it this way before the election. But now we know what to do.
In my current state of health, online activism is all I'm up to. I do read a lot and try to think things out on my own, and write about them if I think I have any insights. Best I can do right now.
Thank god for the active activists like you!

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