IC-SS Weekly News: October 2, 2023
We’re Back & We’re Busy
Indivisible Chicago-South Side has stayed busy while our newsletter was on break. We’re glad to be back in your email every Monday and hope you’ll share any news with us. Let’s catch up!
Come Write with Us: Oct 5, 11, 24
Thanks to all who turned out in September to write letters with us to Virginia voters. Virginia General Assembly elections are in early November — control of the state legislature will affect democracy in that state and across the country. Won’t you join us to write more letters this month? (Sign up.)
Our next letter party dates:
- Thursday, October 5th (this week!)
- Wednesday, October 11th
- Tuesday, October 24th
From 6:00-8:00 pm on each of the above evenings, we’ll meet at the Nile, 1162 E. 55th. If you’re writing Vote Forward letters on your own, bring them along, but not necessary — our letter leader Steve Kagan will bring letters for all. Note: We’ll be working on letters to voters in Virginia, and we may add in Ohio. (Sign up.)
At our gatherings, we encourage you to order your own food to support the Nile, which has been such a friendly host (note: the Nile is BYOB). If you can, bring postage stamps to donate — we also welcome stamp donations from folks not able to attend. But the most important thing is to bring yourself! Sign up for Oct. 6, 11, or 24 or all three.
Thank you to all our September letter writers: Barb Schmidt, Esther Peters, Kathleen Atlass, Mary Naftzger, Sarah Rubin, Sarah Lincoln, Sheron Shapiro, Steve Kagan (letter leader), Tara Maguire, Teri Watkins. Thanks also to folks who wrote Vote Forward letters at home!
Oct 17: The Case for Ranked Choice Voting
What’s Ranked Choice Voting (RCV), and should it come to Illinois? On October 17th, come hear the executive director of Fair Vote Illinois make the case.
On Tuesday, Oct. 17th, our sister group Indivisible Downtown Chicago will hold an in-person informational event on Ranked Choice Voting. The guest speaker will be Andrew Szilva, executive director at Fair Vote Illinois.
WHAT: Ranked Choice Voting info session
WHEN: Tuesday, October 17th, 7:00 pm
WHERE: Grace Place, 637 S. Dearborn
DETAILS: This event, hosted by Indivisible Downtown Chicago, will feature a presentation by Fair Vote Illinois, with time for Q & A. The info session will be followed by IDC’s regular member meeting and social time.
RSVP: Register here
See Fair Vote Illinois’s explainer for a quick intro to Ranked Choice Voting.
Phone, Canvass, Donate for Democracy
We’ve said it again and again: democracy in the United States depends on what happens IN the states. What will you do to resist authoritarianism and protect our rights and freedoms?
The Blue Beginning chapter of Indivisible Chicago shares this call to action:
We’ve scored some impressive wins in 2023. After reducing last year’s predicted “red wave” to a puddle, we helped to elect Judge Janet Protasiewicz to the Wisconsin Supreme Court, by a huge margin, and to defeat the Republicans’ sneak attack on abortion rights in Ohio, by an even bigger margin.
So why do things seem so scary as we enter the 2024 election season? Because the more we win, the more desperate and outrageous the Republicans get. As soon as Wisconsin voters expressed a clear preference for a liberal-leaning Supreme Court, the fringe right began promoting a scurrilous plan to nullify the vote by impeaching Justice Protasiewicz before she heard a single case. Similarly, after getting thumped in their attempt to keep Ohio’s abortions rights initiative off the November ballot, Republicans conspired to put it on the ballot in a deceptively worded and politically loaded summary.
It’s become a familiar pattern: Republican extremists overreach. Voters resoundingly reject them. Extremists reach further. Instead of trying to persuade their voters or propose policies that voters will support, they try to win by changing the rules.
Many of us were hoping for a respite this fall, a chance to relax and regroup before the 2024 shitstorm. Sorry, but the vacation is over. We may be seeing a party in its death throes, but while it thrashes around we have to be vigilant. Here’s what we can do:
Phone bank with the Democratic Party of Wisconsin. They’re asking voters to call their state reps and senators and warn them off the far right’s extreme impeachment scheme.
Donate to the WisDems Defend Justice Campaign. Help get the word out to Wisconsin pols: don’t you dare!
Phone bank with the Democratic Party of Ohio. We spent weeks asking Ohio voters to “Vote No on Issue 1.” Now we have to get them to vote yes!
Phone bank with the ACLU for Ohio. Sign up to phonebank to help spread the word and make sure every Ohio voter knows to Vote Yes on Issue 1.
Donate to Ohioans United for Reproductive Rights, a coalition of abortion-rights organizations fighting to protect abortion rights with a constitutional amendment.
Organizations and Opportunities
Indivisible Chicago-South Side shares information and actions from other organizations on issues important in our country, state, city, and communities
Tomorrow: 5th Ward Town Hall with Ald. Yancy
Tomorrow, Tuesday, October 3rd, 6:00-8:00 pm, Ald. Desmon Yancy will hold a 5th Ward town hall meeting at Nichols Park, 1355 E. 53rd. For more information, email Ward05@gmail.com or call 773-324-5555.
Updates from 4th Ward Ald Lamont Robinson
Fourth Ward Ald. Lamont Robinson has released his First 100 Days report – read it here.
Ald. Robinson will soon open a 4th Ward office in Kenwood, at 948 E. 43rd St. See this Block Club Chicago story.
Online Fundraiser for Pretrial Freedom
From Chicago Community Jail Support: Now that people won’t be jailed pretrial because they’re poor, we need to support them as they leave Cook County Jail. Chicago Community Jail Support and the Coalition to End Money Bond are raising money to provide care kits for people returning to their communities. To provide 100 of these kits (which will include toiletries, hand sanitizer, a bus pass, and a grocery card), it costs almost $4,500.
Here’s how you can help:
Make a donation at bit.ly/BringingOurPeopleHome
Purchase a t-shirt or sweatshirt at bonfire.com/pretrial-fairness-act-support-fundraiser. All proceeds go toward this effort.
Generative AI & Impact on Democracy: Watch!
From Public Citizen: From deep fakes in election advertising, to threats to election administration, to the impacts on participatory governance in our rulemakings, AI is already having a vast impact on our democracy– and we know the potential harms and impacts are only going to increase.
Sample slide from the Public Citizen webinar on AI & democracy
Indivisible Chicago-South Side
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