President’s Day Protest

Today there were protests all across America.

Donald Trump declared a #FakeNationalEmergency, an illegal power grab from an unhinged man to push his racist, dangerous policies and his vanity wall.  After his announcement of a “national emergency” Donald left for Mar-a-lago to play some golf.

Together with about 50 protesters, I attended a rally in Bridgehampton in the rain.  Many cars passing by, honked their horns and gave us a thumbs up sign.

Take a look at this great video https://www.facebook.com/watch/?v=747733232276274

Here are some pictures:

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Posted in bigotry, family separations, immigration/deportation, Trump, Trump atrocities, Uncategorized, Zeldin | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

East Hampton Holocaust Survivor At School Fighting Anti-Semitism

East Hampton Holocaust Survivor At School Fighting Anti-Semitism

Photos courtesy of the Mattituck-Cutchogue School District.

 

MATTITUCK, NY — A school district that has pledged to take a strong stand in the fight against anti-Semitism welcomed a Holocaust survivor to speak to students.

As part of the district’s ongoing efforts to expand students’ awareness of cultural diversity and the importance of acceptance and inclusion, students from Mattituck Jr./Sr. High School participated in the Springs School Cultural Diversity Institute.

Students had the opportunity to deepen their understanding of cultural diversity and to engage in a meaningful dialogue on the negative impact of bias, prejudice, discrimination and stereotyping with a diverse group of community members, the district said.

Holocaust survivor Judy Sleed, who lives in East Hampton, shared the “moving and memorable” story of her past and encouraged the students to be accepting of all cultures in schools, the community and the world. Sleed lived under German occupation in Budapest, Hungary, in March, 1944, with the worst of her ordeal taking place on Oct. 20 to 24, 1944, she has said.

The Springs Union Free School District’s Diversity Institute was formed for sixth graders and their families with an eye toward focusing on tolerance and inclusion, something the Mattituck-Cutchogue Union Free School District administrators have pledged to put an increased focus upon.

Mattituck Junior-Senior High School Principal Shawn Petretti sent a letter home to parents in January discussing concerns over “several incidents that have occurred this year in regards to individual students joking about their support and admiration of Nazism and Adolf Hitler.”

There have also been incidents involving “language and acts” associated with anti-Semitism, he said, which have taken place primarily in the 7th to 10th grade population.

“We take all of these situations very seriously and have handled them as acts of bias, resulting in a combination of discipline and counseling,” he said.

With an eye toward proactive solutions, the Mattituck-Cutchogue Union Free School District has also invited the Holocaust Memorial and Education Center of Glen Cove to come to Mattituck High School later in the month to speak to students, Petretti said.

He added that he would begin immediately to have grade-level discussions with students to discuss the “impact and severity of any acts of bias” and said that any such future acts would be dealt with swiftly and in compliance with school code.

“As educators, when we see trends in negative behaviors and habits, we look to find the cause as a means of addressing the issue,” Petretti said. “One of the things we have discovered is that the recent increase in incidents of anti-Semitism is not isolated to Mattituck but is happening in junior and senior high schools across New York. Another thing we have discovered is that an app, very popular with adolescents, called TikTok, is littered with videos containing messages of pro-Nazism as well as anti-Semitism. Much of the content is targeted to children and teens and is delivered through comedic videos clearly sending the wrong message to our children,” Petretti said.

Petretti asked parents to speak to their children and explain the “harmful impact and severity of words,” so that they and the district can work together to put an end to the behavior and ensure the Mattituck Junior-Senior High School is a respectful and safe environment.

Parent Lauren Gilbert said she was happy that parents had been notified. “I think that this generation is highly unaware of the severity of these things. Whether they are learning it at home or from some social media app, I don’t believe for a second that in 2019 our middle and high school students are making foul remarks about the Holocaust and supporting Hitler while also knowing all the facts, as well as being aware of what their words and actions have the power of doing,” she said. “It’s extremely unfortunate to see some students take such a large step back in time. I hope that the disciplinary actions as well as counseling and educational actions the school is taking will have a lasting impact on the ones who need to hear it most.”

Sonia Spar, co-chair of the Southold Town Anti-Bias Task Force, said she feel it is troubling to see that disseminating hate has increasingly become mainstream and school children are using hateful and bigoted language.

“It is very important that school officials are clearly stepping up to denounce the hateful message, are bringing this situation to the attention to the entire school community and are sending the clear message that this kind of rhetoric and behavior is totally unacceptable,” Spar said. “Education and leadership are our best hope for eliminating hate. The rise in hate and anti-Semitism across New York State and in the country is of great concern. We — as a community — must do all we can to prevent that this kind of hateful language becomes normalized.”

Spar added that the ABTF, together with Greenport, Southold and Mattituck schools are coordinating a cross district peer to peer leadership anti-bias in-depth training for students in grades 7 to 11. “We believe this is a very important effort,” she said.

It’s not the first time schools on the East End have had to face anti-Semitism in recent months: In April, anti-Semitic graffiti was spray painted at Westhampton Beach High School.

A company spokesman for TikTok responded: “Hate speech is not permitted on TikTok. We make this very clear in our Terms of Service and Community Guidelines, and we remove inappropriate content and terminate accounts that violate our policies. We are committed to promoting a safe and positive app environment for our global community and there is absolutely no place for discrimination, including hate speech, on this platform. For more, please visit our Safety Center.”

(Reprinted in it’s entirety). David P

 

Posted in immigration/deportation, Religion & tolerance, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

First Hand Report on Immigrant Families in Tijuana

24553351168_e926311cc9_nFriendship Park, along the United States-Mexico border in San Diego–Tijuana

 

By Lisa Votino Tarrant (Southampton)

Down in Tijuana, I befriended a 5yo little girl whose family was awaiting turning themselves over to US authorities to claim asylum. All I kept thinking was how much her and Lily would be besties. Her parents and little brother slowly grew to trust me. Me and my buddy played for hours. I waited with them every morning to see if their number was called. I was both happy and sad when it wasn’t. When my little buddy saw me she ran and hugged me as tight as she could. She was mischievous and probably one of the cutest kids I have ever seen.

Then one day their number was called. My little buddy was inconsolable and honestly if I didn’t have to convince her that this was good, I would have been a mess. I finally calmed her down and told her I needed to draw a picture on her back so she could remember me. What I was actually doing was writing her parents info and phone numbers as well as their contact in the US. She asked if I could draw a heart on her hand, so I did. And then she jumped in my arms and in English whispered in my ear “I love you Lisa.” Until that moment I had no idea she spoke any english and turned to look at her mom and saw tears in her eyes. I knew she taught her how to say it to me and we will share a bond for the rest of our lives because of that one beautiful moment. I stayed with them until they were loaded into the van to be taken away. My buddy held my hand through the fence until she had to be loaded in. Her mom ran over and asked if I would find my little buddy and help her if her and her husband are deported. All I could say was I would do my best and I loved them.

ICE has a locator website. I have the entire families’ info. You cannot look up minors under 18. I have yet to find the mother or father. As of tonight, I have no way to know where they are, if they are together or separated or how any of them are doing. It keeps me up at night. When I watch Lily fall asleep, I imagine my little buddy’s mama doing the same. We are both mothers that love our children. We both want our children to be happy and safe. I have to imagine it, because thinking of it being any other way has left me vomiting. I hope one day I find them and my little buddy and Lily can have a beach day or a city trip or anything as long as they are happy and safe.

 

Originally posted on FB on February 11 at 9:35 PM

Posted in Uncategorized, immigration/deportation, Zeldin, Trump atrocities, family separations, ICE | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Happy Valentine’s Day, Dear Earth, #LoveOurPlanetNotPollution

Some of us have been meeting at the Southampton library to discuss ways we can scale up existing efforts that draw down carbon from the atmosphere, based on the top 100 solutions outlined in the New York Times bestseller Drawdown: the most comprehensive plan ever proposed to reverse global warming.  

The book’s 100 best practices and technologies measure and model ways we are already substituting fossil fuels with renewable clean energy, being more efficient, conserving, and even sequestering CO2 emissions.  It is a matter of scale.  The science reveals if we scale up our best practices, big-time, we can roll back greenhouse gas emissions — reverse the buildup of CO2 — reverse global warming by 2050.

There is much laughter at the meetings, and sometimes I tear up.  So, we can actually cut the gloom and doom, and see our reality as an invitation to build, innovate and effect change?  A pathway for creativity, an opportunity for an economy humming with innovation, for a renewable energy future with cleaner air, better health, more involved communities?

I share this 3 minute video, a positive hi-tech and low-tech overview.

Reading Drawdown I was surprised to learn that top solutions (#3 and #4) have to do with food —what we eat, what we throw away, where we buy our food.  Individually, in our families, and as a community, we can make choices that have huge impacts in reducing greenhouse gas emissions (GHG).  

Food waste alone is big (#3), generating 4.4 gigatons of CO2 into the atmosphere each year (8% of GHG emissions).  Food waste from farm to fork generates emissions at every stage.  We Americans throw out 1/3 of our food.  If 50% of food waste is reduced by 2050, 26.2 gigaton emissions could be avoided, also avoiding deforestation needed for additional farmland.  How?  Willful food waste dominates at the consumer level.  So then, eat what you buy, make delicious “leftover” soups, buy “ugly” produce, enjoy kitchen creativity — all big CO2 reducers and money savers.  I can do that.

On a community level, buying locally and encouraging markets and restaurants to reallocate unpurchased food for reuse by farmers, entrepreneurs, food banks, even business or community composting efforts will reduce GHG.  Can’t we do that?

Composting, by the way, is the CO2-smart way to handle any food waste.  From backyard bins to commercial operations, composting creates an incredibly valuable fertilizer.  Allowing your organic waste to end up in a landfill, absent oxygen, produces the potent GHG methane (34x more powerful than CO2).  Note: Copenhagen has not sent any organic waste to landfills in 25 years, reaping savings, fertilizer production and carbon mitigation.  Can’t we do that too?

Perhaps the healthiest lifestyle change you can make is not-doing something — what I call the Fish+Farmstand Diet, or Once A Week Red Meat.   Surprise: beef cattle are 1/5 of global emissions.  Eating the Mediterranean diet, more fish, fruit, veggies, grains, will keep you from heart disease, stroke, diabetes and you will feel great.  Source your red meat from silvopasture farms, which reduce methane emissions 10x more than treeless farms (storing carbon in the trees and soil and 0 fertilizer use).  From enriching a pasture with trees for shade to grazing in relatively dense wooded areas, Cornell Extensions across the state are helping expand silvopasturing to economically benefit farmers — a win, win, win.  Why not silvopasture here? 

Finally, the big accelerator for drawing down carbon from the atmosphere, the top #1 solution, is a national effort.  Rather than have government subsidize oil companies as we do now, a 2019 bi-partisan bill would provide an economic incentive to substitute fossil fuels with clean renewable energy.  Wouldn’t that jump-start be terrific?

Updating here from a previous blog, the bill’s full name is H.R.763 – To create a Carbon Dividend Trust Fund for the American people in order to encourage market-driven innovation of clean energy technologies and market efficiencies which will reduce harmful pollution and leave a healthier, more stable and more prosperous nation for future generations. It is sponsored by Rep. Ted Deutch (D-FL), and co-sponsored by Rep. Francis Rooney (R-FL) and 11 Democrats, including most recently Yvette Clarke of New York.

Carbon emissions would reduce 90% by 2050 exceeding the Paris Climate goals and the Clean Power plan.  American households would receive monthly dividend checks increasing from $600, $1,400, and $2,600 for each household in the first, fourth, and ninth years of policy implementation.  Yes, gas would go up 19 cents a gallon, and a Yale study found that seniors, lower and mid-income and small towns benefit the most financially.  The bill is transparent, market-based, does not enlarge government, leaves energy decisions to individual choices, provides thousands of clean energy jobs, cleans the air, and gives us a dividend check, each month, for 30 years.  A healthier you chooses how you spend it. 

Interestingly, the Green New Deal does not include carbon pricing.  As Josh Siegel of the Washington Examiner, noted in “Republican lawmakers face pressure to propose ‘Green New Deal’ alternative” this leaves an opening for Republicans like Mr. Rooney and other Floridians who have taken the lead in co-sponsoring carbon tax legislation.

https://www.washingtonexaminer.com/policy/energy/republican-lawmakers-face-pressure-to-propose-green-new-deal-alternative

More movement is taking place in Washington, as Madame Speaker Pelosi has reconstituted the Select Committee on Energy Independence and Global Warming, which she had created as speaker in 2007-2011.

H.R. 763 is a well-researched bi-partisan jump-start to reverse global warming and importantly gets our economy humming with innovation.  The timing is good now to make it happen and Senators/Congressman needs to hear from you.  Call.  Write a post card. Write a letter to the editor. 

More information on our local Drawdown East End effort to be posted soon!

Mary Foster Morgan  

Co-Leader  

Citizens Climate Lobby NYS – LI East

Posted in Air Pollution, climate change, Congress, economy, long island, Paris Climate Accord, science, sustainable energy, wind energy, Zeldin | Tagged , , | 2 Comments

Trump (and Zeldin) are creating MS13’s across America

On Feb 5, 2019, at 7:36 AM, Judith Hope wrote:

“It’s all about spotlighting MS13 to inflame support for his Wall. It needs to be said (often & loudly) that gang violence is largely a result of young people who have been separated from parental influence.  Trump and the GOP have separated thousands of young children & youths from their families at the border, and LOST TRACK of them! They are responsible for creating future MS13’s all over America.”
I don’t know many gang members!  But I know of one example (hear say info). They are a set of brothers.  The younger one was born prematurely because his mother was beat up by his dad when she was 26 weeks pregnant.  The mother later died of unknown causes and the father was essentially absentee, siring many children from different partners.  He was a wife beater.  The 2 boys (both born in this country) were picked up by the Latin Kings and taught how to become car thiefs.  They both spent time in jail.  They can be violent.  They never had parents…

 

Relevant posts:
1) From Perry Gershon’s FB page:
3) Livestream congressional hearing “Examining the Failures of the Trump Administration’s Inhumane Family Separation Policy” – TODAY

4) Feb 10, Sunday at 12:30: Where Are The Children Protest RallyRt 110 and Jericho Tpke Huntington

Posted in Family Issues, family separations, gangs, ICE, immigration/deportation, perry gershon, Trump, Uncategorized, Zeldin | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Racist Dog Whistle from Lee Zeldin

The Huffington Post reports: GOP Congressman Spent His Week Harassing a Muslim Colleague On Twitter!

“Rep. Lee Zeldin’s Twitter attack against Rep. Ilhan Omar is a classic racist dog whistle.”

 

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Rep. Ilhan Omar’s opponents have looked for every opportunity to portray the Somali-born Muslim lawmaker as a threat to Jewish Americans.

 

 

The response:

United Grassroots Coalition of Long Island rebukes Rep. Lee Zeldin in response to hateful and dehumanizing remarks to MN Rep.Ilhan Omar on official Government Twitter account, demands immediate apology.

As Long Islanders, as neighbors and allies of the Muslim community, we stand in direct opposition to the hateful and dehumanizing statements of Representative Lee Zeldin. Rep. Zeldin’s rhetoric and bullying of MN Representative Omar on his official government Twitter account was abhorrent. Rep. Zeldin has long touted his bipartisanship and zeal in being an ethical elected official, but these remarks are neither bipartisan nor ethical.  Mr. Zeldin represents a diverse, multinational district, as well as the regional interests of all Long Island residents in Congress. However, his comments represent the worst divisions of our country. We would like to remind him that as the elected representative of Americans from Minnesota she deserves his full respect and courtesy, as does every Muslim in his own Congressional District. We demand that he end the use of this official social media platform to spew hatred, racism, and sexism.

The agreement to have a meeting will only be successful if Rep. Zeldin apologizes for his disrespectful and dehumanizing behavior and is willing to discuss the ending of all hatred and discrimination. He should agree to not limit his Resolution 72 to only anti-Israel and anti-semitism, but to include hatred against all religions, races, and genders.

In addition, we are calling on our elected officials on both sides of the aisle to denounce this public attack on his colleague. We ask that they join us in calling for Rep. Zeldin to apologize. We ask for every elected official to stand up for civil discourse and demand respect for the office and people Rep Omar serves.

 

United Grassroots Coalition of Long Island is a coalition of activist groups based on Long Island working towards creating a more just society by increasing civic engagement with government and politics.

Suffolk Progressives

Suffolk County DSA

Long Island Activists

Progressive East End Reformers/NYPAN

NY’s Second District Democrats

Huntington Young Dems

Latinos Unidos de Long Island

Together We Will LI

Resist & Replace

Long Island Inclusive Communities Against Hate

Flip Long Island

East End Action Network

Show Up Long Island

Muslims For Progress

Let’s Visit Lee Zeldin

Hon. Christine Pellegrino,

Fmr  NYS Assemblywoman, District 9

Perry Gershon,

Democratic Congressional Nominee 2018, NY-1

 

 

Posted in bigotry, Congress, GOP, long island, Religion & tolerance, Uncategorized, Women, Zeldin | Tagged , , , | 1 Comment

Greta Thunberg, What Can We Do? Individual + National Actions

Dear Friends,

David Posnett recently posted a compelling video of 16 year old Greta Thunberg reading a letter “Our House is On Fire” at Davos.  “I want you to panic” she says.

It is worth finding other news about her, and absorbing her clear, crystal clear, alarm bell.  In one, with her father on a science panel, an audience member asks what can be done?  They all agreed: nations can put a price on carbon.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GiD04TRwebQ

Many of us have been following and analyzing the two carbon pricing bills introduced this past December by the House and Senate.  This is excellent work.

There is news this week:  the 2018 bill has been reintroduced:  H.R.763 – To create a Carbon Dividend Trust Fund for the American people in order to encourage market-driven innovation of clean energy technologies and market efficiencies which will reduce harmful pollution and leave a healthier, more stable and more prosperous nation for future generations.

https://www.congress.gov/bill/116th-congress/house-bill/763/cosponsors?r=27&s=1

I have been active with Citizens Climate Lobby for four years, which has been working for over 10 years to establish a bi-partisan Climate Solutions Caucus to get the ball rolling on a carbon bill.  Co-sponsors of H.R. 763, Rep. Ted Deutch (D-FL), Rep. Francis Rooney (R-FL), say this week is a “soft roll out” and soon they will have a press conference. 

Now 16, Greta stopped eating at age 12 and basically had a nervous breakdown when she saw how we all, Swedes, Americans, everyone, basically ignore this climate disaster looming.  We do nothing. We don’t talk about it.  It’s not the daily headline.  

For Greta and her generation, for us all, we need to stop the cognitive dissonance.  We need to talk about this, we need tell our family, friends, neighbors, our community.  We need to tell Congress we want this bill passed!

1. Write our own members of Congress – use CCL’s easy tool:

https://citizensclimatelobby.org/write-congress-about-climate-change/#/7

2. Spread the word, through social media, over coffee. 

3. Write letters to the editor, and mention co-sponsors Rep. Ted Deutch (D-FL), Rep. Francis Rooney (R-FL) and our Rep. Zeldin who is a member of the Bi-Partisan Climate Solutions Caucus (if you mention them, they will see it!).  Ask Zeldin to sponsor the bill!

Friends, this is good news.  America has a bi-partisan plan.  A path to reverse global warming.  It is transparent, market-based, does not enlarge government, leaves energy decisions to individual choices, meets the goals of the Clean Energy Plan and Paris Climate.  

This is a game changer.  Greta, all of us, need your voice now. 

Thank you. 

Mary Morgan

Orient 

Posted in climate change, Congress, Zeldin | 4 Comments