frank reps

A guide to being a vocal citizen

For people wondering how to take action post-election of a racist demagogue (pulled from Twitter and cleaned up):

Make a spreadsheet or a file for your representatives with names, addresses to their offices, phone numbers, and contact forms. Put everyone there. Make a note in your calendar app to check in on issues once a month.

Pay attention to news. If you get angry, upset, or worried, seek support from friends but ALSO shoot these reps an email, too. Be courteous but firm and blunt. It’s a numbers game. Often we remain invisible because we don’t go to events and rallies and can’t be physically present. But we can attach our names to emails, we can write letters, we can be vocal. We don’t have to be invisible.

You can do this with your national reps, state reps, and local reps. If someone reps you anywhere, note them. Open a line and revisit it. It’s hard work and slow. One email at a time. One letter at a time. One call at a time. Emails are easy these days, so splurge every few months on a stamp and send a letter if you can. Put your humanity in front of these people. Flout it. Some won’t care, but others will. Change ONE mind and results can cascade.

Rural areas are bubbles full of bigotry and now it’s newly revealed. But we white people who live here have the clout and power! We can speak up when our reps say terrible things, and do terrible things, and vote terrible ways. We can go “I am disappointed in you.” It’s work, but as we’ve seen the last six months, it’s time for us to do that work. If someone goes “who are your reps” you gotta know. If you don’t know and you’re mad about this election, it’s time to create that file and keep it with you and use it.

The time for social media rants only is over. Or, do those, but maybe pull those threads out into a paragraph and send them to your reps. And don’t ONLY email or contact when things go badly. Also reach out when things go right. Even if they voted AGAINST something. Treat them like you would want to be treated if you were wrong or mistaken. But we’ve gotta reach out and let them know we’re here.

Anyway, I know this is hard work. If you need help collecting your reps, give me a ping via DM and I’ll help you get started.

This lawmaker wants to make it illegal for transgender people to use the bathroom 

Rep. Frank Artiles. is a Miami Republican in the Florida legislature who thinks that using a restroom is a choice — especially if you’re transgender. That’s why he feels no compunction about his introduction of the Single-Sex Public Facilities Act, a law which would make it a crime for transgender people to use single-sex public bathrooms that correspond with their gender identity in restaurants, workplaces and schools. “Violators” face a $1,000 fine and up to a year in jail.

Utterly absurd logic he’s using to hide his transphobia
The New Republican Congress Is Wasting No Time Restricting Abortion

On the first day of the 114th Congress, the newly ascendant Republican anti-abortion zealots in control of the House and Senate didn’t waste any time proposing draconian new restrictions on women’s rights.

ThinkProgress reports that Reps. Trent Franks (R-Ariz.) and Marsha Blackburn (R-Tenn.) already reintroduced the Pain Capable Unborn Child Protection Act on Tuesday. The proposed bill would ban abortions after 20 weeks, in contradiction with the rights afforded women by the 1973 Supreme Court decision in Roe v. Wade.

No, actually, I think it’s Franks that has read and doesn’t understand the bible. Remember the story of the sheep and the goats Rep. Franks - if you do NOT do it unto the least of these you have not done it unto me now depart from me, you evil doers and hypocrites! Remember this story? Ringing any bells?

Happy Birthday, Harry Houdini!

In 1926 the great illusionist conjured up one of the most entertaining congressional hearings in history. Testifying on a bill making it a crime to be a fraudulent fortune teller in the nation’s capital, Houdini castigated the mediums and vociferously defended their victims. Calling witnesses (including his wife!), producing a “sucker list” and other evidence, accusing audience members of fraud, Houdini enthralled some of members of the House Committee on the District of Columbia, such as Rep. Frank R. Reid of Illinois who kept asking the chairman for more time for Houdini to speak. Others he seemed to have angered or confused. Nevertheless, the bill did not pass.

Hearing Testimony from From Harry Houdini on HR 8989, a Bill to Impose a Fine on Fraudulent Fortune Tellers in the District of Columbia (HR 69A-D7), 3/20/1926, Records of the U.S. House of Representatives