Weekly Email Update 6.27.22

“There's a level of violence that comes from forcing people to be pregnant. The tactics that we're seeing on the attacks of abortion care, are the same tactics we're seeing with gender-affirming care, and access to gender-affirming care, (the same as) the attacks on our health care providers, and (on) our vital body autonomy.”
D. Ojeda
a Senior National Organizer with the National Center for Transgender Equality
  

     Words fail us, friends. Next week, we'll have resources and actions to take galore...but, for this week, when words fail, we turn to images. 


If you or someone you know is in need of healthcare in the form of an abortion in Vermont, head here for more information: https://www.abortionfinder.org/abortion-guides-by-state/abortion-in-vermont/providers.
Donate here, if you are able: https://abortionfunds.org/fund/vermont-access-to-reproductive-freedom/.
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WeCAN WEDNESDAYS

     Exciting news: WeCAN is co-sponsoring a series of events this Summer with Brattleboro Democrats and Rep. Emilie Kornheiser! The series continues on June 29th, 2022 and runs through August. Join us at the Brattleboro Town Common where we will celebrate politics, get to know candidates new and old, and maybe even throw ourselves a 5 year birthday party...we can't wait to see you there!
You can find more information below in this email or go to https://www.wecantogether.net/wecan_wednesdays_2022, where these events will have a dedicated space on our website. 
Upcoming Schedule
Wednesday, June 29th, 2022 at 5pm: Meet the Candidates: Play Political Jeopardy
Wednesday, July 13rd, 2022 at 5pm: Meet the Candidates: Sit at the Long Table
Wednesday, July 27th, 2022 at 5pm: Meet the Candidates: Policy Huddles
Tuesday, August 9, 2022 at 5pm: Primary Day Celebration/ WeCAN's 5th Birthday Party!


If you would like to volunteer or set up a table for your organization, please use the following links:

Click here to volunteer: https://www.emiliekornheiser.org/volunteer/
Click here to sign up to table or represent a candidate: https://forms.gle/4JuNT7Uw1hwQkHGp8

If you would like to sign up to help at the WeCAN table, please email us at [email protected] Thank you!

 

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RAPID RESPONSE: SCOTUS Overturns Roe v. Wade 6.24.22

“It is American States that will become the international outliers after today.”
US Supreme Court Justices Stephen Breyer, Sonia Sotomayor, and Elena Kagen, in their scathing Dobbs v. Jackson dissent. 

 

     By now, you have all heard the SCOTUS decision regarding abortion rights today, friends. Now, it is time to mobilize. Here are three local events where you are welcome to hold space, rally, and plan. We hope to see you there. Remember: we are all in this together. You are not alone. 
     If you need immediate mental health assistance, please text "VT" to 741741; workers at the VT Crisis Text Line will be available to assist you. In VT, abortion is and will remain legal. If you or someone you know needs an abortion, please go HERE for more information. Thank you!

HAPPENING TODAY,
FRIDAY, JUNE 24th, 2022

Planned Parenthood Rally for Abortion Rights
Friday, June 24th, 2022 at Plaza Park (at the intersection of VT Routes 5 and 142, across from the Brattleboro Food Coop). 4pm-6pm.

Bring signs, noise makers, words to share, comfort to spread, or just yourselves.
We’re going to keep fighting and we’re going to pass this amendment to protect long term access in our state. We’re going to be holding rallies in each county tonight and we want to encourage you to all show up in our communities to show your support for abortion access. Information about the Reproductive Liberty Amendment in VT

Here are the locations of tonight’s rallies:

  • Bennington: Four Corners, 5:00pm-6:00pm
  • Brattleboro: Plaza Park, 4:00pm-6:00pm
  • Rutland: Sidewalk at Main Street Park from 6:00pm-7:00pm


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HAPPENING OUTSIDE WINDHAM COUNTY: KEENE, NH
All Out for Abortion Rights: Day of SCOTUS Decision
Friday, June 24th, 2022 in Central Square in Keene, NH. 6pm.

Come out tonight at 6pm Central Square in Keene to make your voice heard! We won’t go back, we will fight back!
With a Supreme court decision on the future of Roe V. Wade set to be announced any day now, we know the only way to protect our right to abortion and reproductive freedom is to rely on the way we won it in the first place; by fighting for it!
Join us in Keene Central Square the day of the SCOTUS decision to come out resistance and say WE WON'T GO BACK WE WILL FIGHT BACK!!
We hope to see you there! 

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HAPPENING TOMORROW,
SATURDAY, JUNE 25th, 2022

Protest the Supreme Court Overturning Roe v. Wade
Saturday, June 25th, 2022 in Downtown Brattleboro. 12pm.

On Friday, June 24th, the Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade. There is no longer a federal constitutional right to an abortion. Let’s let our voices be heard. Downtown Brattleboro, Saturday, beginning at noon/12pm. Bring signs, noisemakers, megaphones, ovaries, and let the world know Brattleboro doesn’t stand for this, and remind them that they are only succeeding at banning SAFE abortions. We are expecting to have a *peaceful* protest to form a united front. Please remember to be respectful of local businesses and be safe!!

 

Your Friendly WeCAN Admin,
Joanna

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Weekly Email Update 6.20.22

"Slavery occurred at an intersection of racism, homophobia, and negative attitudes towards sexuality, largely influenced by Christian ideology. Juneteenth, therefore, celebrates the end of an inherently heteronormative, sexphobic system of racial oppression. There are intersections here."
Gabrielle Alexa Noel, 
author of "How to Live with the Internet", essayist, software developer, and sex-positive content creator

Editor’s Note: Sam and I (Joanna) are away this weekend celebrating Pride month with our respective friends and chosen families, so we would like to share these words that were originally printed in the Weekly Email Update sent out on June 21st, 2021. Have a great week, friends! 

   “As this Summer Solstice weekend unfolds, we mark the longest day of the year, the first time Juneteenth is federally recognized, and the continuation of Pride month... it's quite a weekend, WeCAN readers! We would like to share with you an enlightening excerpt from "Black & Queer: What It Means to Celebrate Juneteenth and Pride in the Same Month" by Gabrielle Alexa Noel, an author, essayist, and sex-positive content creator, who is also Black and Queer. We hope this piece helps all of us to better understand what it means to identify as both BI&POC and LGBTQIA2+ during the month of June and the social intricacies that are woven into the identity of any person straddling two communities. You can learn more about the author here: https://gabriellealexa.com.

     "Every year on June 19th, we celebrate the ending of slavery in the United States. Although the Emancipation Proclamation was signed on January 1st, 1863, it took more than two years for news to reach the enslaved in Texas. Juneteenth, aka Freedom Day, acknowledges that delay and is observed as a day of pride and reflection. Juneteenth also sits directly in the middle of LGBTQ+ Pride month, which was established in 1969 to commemorate the Stonewall Uprising. Both are celebrations of important milestones for Black and LGBTQ+ liberation. And yet, as a Black queer person, this overlap sometimes splits my identity in half.
     In Black spaces, where Juneteenth is primarily celebrated, there is a perception that being LGBTQ+ is antithetical to Blackness. Other Black people tell me all the time that queerness was constructed by white people, although there is so much evidence to disprove that, and that it’s an intentional endeavor to weaken Black families and communities. My celebration of Pride is met with scorn by other Black people who wonder why there is seemingly more support for LGBTQ+ liberation than for Black liberation. At the very least, I’m told I should endeavor to be Black “first.” Liberation movements do not occur in succession, and I don’t have to pick one aspect of my identity to focus on. They all simultaneously exist and inform how I am marginalized. And yet, as I’m fielding questions about why I gave up on Black men or why I’m actively going against nature, it does feel like they’re trying to incentivize me to choose a side.
     On the other hand, LGBTQ+ spaces can be notoriously racist, evidenced by the phrase that has decorated gay bars and dating app profiles alike: “No fats, no femmes, no Asians, no blacks.”
     I’m used to both rejection and fetishization. White queers have said everything to me from, “I’m not attracted to Black girls,” to “I just love Black skin, it makes you so attractive.” But there is also overt and systematic discrimination. Mainstream LGBTQ+ organizations have even advocated for policies that were ultimately harmful to QTPOCs. In that context, Pride feels more like a celebration of white queerness. When LGBTQ+ movements neglect to center or uplift Black and Brown people, they are centering white supremacy instead; their silence creates some of the problems we see today, like the severe rates of poverty and homelessness amongst Black queer folks.
     It’s also ironic that we neglect to center QTPOCs when the Stonewall riots were incited by Black and Brown drag queens and trans women as a reaction to police violence. Considering the particular way in which the police harass, assault, and re-victimize Black trans women, it is impossible to extract race from our conversations about Stonewall. But, somehow, we ended up with a historical Stonewall film that follows a white, cis gay man in their place.
     Similarly, when we talk about slavery, it’s important to note the presence of Black queerness and its impact on perceptions of Black bodies. When the Portuguese arrived on the continent of Africa, representations of queerness and gender fluidity reified ideas that Black people were inferior and sexually indiscriminate. Slavery occurred at an intersection of racism, homophobia, and negative attitudes towards sexuality, largely influenced by Christian ideology. Juneteenth, therefore, celebrates the end of an inherently heteronormative, sexphobic system of racial oppression. 
There are intersections here. And in not talking about them, homosexuality has been reframed as un-African and a “white disease,” even though there are countless examples of homosexuality across cultures.

     When I hear people refer to the LGBTQ+ community and the Black community as two separate entities, black queer folks like me learn that we cannot belong in either camp. “Safe spaces” are never quite safe for us. We forfeit safety from homophobic violence in exchange for safety from racial violence and vice versa. White LGBTQ+ people and cis Black folks do not have to make the same critical decisions. And this complicates my celebrations of both.
     The LGBTQ+ community and the Black community have intentionally been positioned as rivals, even though their liberation movements overlap. During the Bush administration, government funding was intentionally diverted to Black religious organizations that were most likely to vote against same-sex marriage. Meanwhile, in the 1960s, a lot of LGBTQ+ advocacy groups referred to gay as “the new Black.” Gay right’s activist Frank Kameny even stated, “Now that it is becoming unfashionable to discriminate against Negros, discrimination against homosexuals will be on the increase.” He considered homosexuality to be the last major area where prejudice and discrimination were prevalent, minimizing the struggle for Black liberation in this country.
     In the quest for stricter anti-discrimination laws, LGBTQ+ organizations failed to realize how the criminal justice system was harming the exact people they had set out to protect via mass incarceration.
     Recognizing how Black issues in this country are often sidelined, celebrating our collective freedom on Independence Day—and not Juneteenth, when all ethnicities were freed—is off-putting. But to also share a month with LGBTQ+ Pride, which started a hundred years after Juneteenth, has drawn the ire of the Black community. By commemorating important days in our history, it keeps us educated about this country’s mistakes. Otherwise, those mistakes end up happening again. The fact that so many people are aware of Pride but don’t have the same energy for Juneteenth reflects the role of white supremacy in the structure of this country.
     These are the issues that complicate my experience as a queer Black woman. I want to celebrate all of the facets of my identity. I want to recognize the struggles my many communities have had to overcome and not be forced to pick between marginalized communities. The quote “Until we are all free, we are none of us free” by poet Emma Lazarus rings true.”

Gabrielle Alexa Noel”*

*https://www.wecantogether.net/weekly_email_update_6_21_21

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WeCAN WEDNESDAYS

     Exciting news: WeCAN is co-sponsoring a series of events this Summer with Brattleboro Democrats and Rep. Emilie Kornheiser! The series continues on June 29th, 2022 and runs through August. Join us at the Brattleboro Town Common where we will celebrate politics, get to know candidates new and old, and maybe even throw ourselves a 5 year birthday party...we can't wait to see you there!
You can find more information below in this email or go to https://www.wecantogether.net/wecan_wednesdays_2022, where these events will have a dedicated space on our website. 
If you would like to volunteer or set up a table for your organization, please use the following links:

Click here to volunteer: https://www.emiliekornheiser.org/volunteer/
Click here to sign up to table or represent a candidate: https://forms.gle/4JuNT7Uw1hwQkHGp8

If you would like to sign up to help at the WeCAN table, please email us at [email protected] Thank you!

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Weekly Email Update 6.13.22

"I guess you'd call me an independent, since I've never identified myself with one party or another in politics. I always decide my vote by taking as careful a look as I can at the actual candidates and issues themselves, no matter what the party label."
-Jackie Robinson b.1919; d.1972
Jack Roosevelt Robinson was an American professional baseball player who became the first African American to play in Major League Baseball in the modern era. Robinson broke the baseball color line when he started at first base for the Brooklyn Dodgers on April 15, 1947.


     This week's email is chock full of new events, listings, and goings-on in and around Windham County, fellow activists. We encourage you to take a moment or two out of your busy day and look through this email to see how you can best get involved this week and beyond...

WeCAN WEDNESDAYS

     You will notice too, dear Reader, that WeCAN is co-sponsoring a series of events this Summer with Brattleboro Democrats and Rep. Emilie Kornheiser! We are SO EXCITED! The series starts this Wednesday, June 15th, and runs through August. Join us at the Brattleboro Town Common where we will celebrate politics, get to know candidates new and old, and maybe even throw ourselves a 5 year birthday party...we can't wait to see you there!
You can find more information below in this email or go to https://www.wecantogether.net/wecan_wednesdays_2022, where these events will have a dedicated space on our website. 
If you would like to volunteer or set up a table for your organization, please use the following links:

Click here to volunteer: https://www.emiliekornheiser.org/volunteer/
Click here to sign up to table or represent a candidate: https://forms.gle/4JuNT7Uw1hwQkHGp8

If you would like to sign up to help at the WeCAN table, please email us at [email protected] Thank you!

Editor's Note: All WeCAN Weekly Email Update submissions for next week's email will be due on Thursday, June 16th, 2022 (to [email protected]) as I am taking the weekend to go to the first annual Pride celebration in my hometown of Hamden, CT! Thank you, too, to all of you who expressed such kind words upon the passing of my Grandmother last week. I am so thankful for such a wonderful, caring community of fellow activists. Until next time...
-Joanna 

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LEAN LEFT ACTION OF THE WEEK

New Hampshire

In our small towns, elections are won or lost by a very few votes. In 2020, the closest races for the NH House of Representatives were determined by just 754 votes, an average of 53 votes per race. What this means literally is that every single vote counts. The far-right will try to intimidate voters or cause confusion at the polls. 

  • Help the NH Voter Protection team recruit poll inspectors and poll observers, staff the hotlines, and get out the message about how voters can vote safely.SIGN UP HERE!

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