Our biweekly lists lay out notable issues in the news and tell you what you can do about them.
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Hi Teen Resisters! As a brief interlude between our July and August lists, we're including this little activist guide from one of our favorite activists on Earth, the incomparable Maya Brady-Ngugi (she's also our Teen Resister of the Month). Her approach to activism is holistic, strategic, productive, and often takes inspiration from history. Her 5 step guide (which she says is "kind of like making a cake"), plus extra tips and recommendations, will have you thinking and planning all summer long (at your own pace!).
5 Step Guide to Becoming an Activist:
"Those are some principles that I find really helpful to activism. The Learn, Gather, Plan, Act and Share... are the bare bones, and activism gets a lot more complicated than that, but those are the things that I have learned," Maya said.
Top Activist Books:
Favorite Documentary: Eyes on the Prize
Maya's Teen Resister of the Month Bio:
Meet our July Teen Resister of the Month, the amazing Maya Brady-Ngugi.
Maya is 18 and an experienced and passionate activist based in NYC, but is moving to Atlanta for college later this summer. She has been working in activism for years. She’s planned teach-ins at her high school in 2015, 2016 and 2017, and planned Black History Month events in ’17 and ’18. She’s run an academic and social mentorship program that connects high school students with struggling elementary school students. On the protest front, Maya has planned walkouts and rallies for Black Lives Matter, following Trump’s election, and for the March 14th ENOUGH Walkout. She also was a co-organizer of the April 20th NYC Says Enough rally in Washington Square Park, and currently serves as the NYCSE Head of Community Outreach. Maya also worked on a Dakota Access Pipeline divestment plan and raised money for protesters there. On top of that, she is on the Sexual Health Education Committee for the mayor’s office in New York City. If her credits weren’t enough, people who’ve worked with Maya know that she is constantly thinking and learning about activist theory, and that she tangibly applies the wisdom she has learned and thought of to the work she does.
Check back for her forthcoming TR list on solutions to police brutality.
Hey Teen Resisters!
A lot has happened in the past few weeks! We've decided to focus on two main, longer topics for this list--updates on family separation and the possible dissolution of ICE, as well as a breakdown of everything that is currently happening with the Supreme Court.
Recently, however, a lot has happened with primaries for the midterm elections. Specifically, the victory of Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez in the 14th House District in the New York Democratic primaries was incredibly telling of the direction that the Democratic party seems to be going in. Ocasio-Cortez, a former campaign manager for Bernie Sanders, beat incumbent Joseph Crowley by about 15 percentage points. Read more about Ocasio-Cortez’s victory here, and get an overview of what has happened and what is coming up in terms of the midterm primaries as a whole here.
We are also honored to have the chance to feature the June 2018 Teen Resister of the Month, Gaia Gamboa! Gaia is a member of NYC Says Enough and an immigrant herself. The recent detainment and separation of thousands of children at the U.S. border is an issue that she has a personal connection with--in the near future, Gaia and her family hope to foster a child that otherwise would be detained. She also marched with Gays Against Guns at the Pride parade, as one of the 104 'Humans in White' which commemorates those who lost their lives to gun violence, specially the victims of the Pulse nightclub shooting. Gaia lives in Brooklyn, and in her free time loves swimming and reading quality books.
Educate, involve yourselves, and resist!
WHAT WENT DOWN
Family Separation, Immigration, and ICE
Perhaps the most pressing issue of right now is family separation at the border. We’ve all seen the photos of the babies crying as they are torn from their mother’s arms, heard the testimonies from parents not knowing where their children are, and many of us marched at one of the hundreds of rallies across the country. But what exactly is the current situation on immigration? Here, we break it down:
But the reunification process is very complicated and will not be an easy fix:
After all this, will Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) be abolished? The idea of ending ICE has become very popular among activists, but politicians’ views are mixed. Many Democrats do indeed support the abolishment, such as Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (see __!), New York Senator Kirsten Gillibrand, and Massachusetts Senator Elizabeth Warren, but key leaders such as Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (N.Y.), Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders, California Senator Kamala Harris, and New Jersey Senator Cory Booker support reforming the agency instead.
As for Republicans, Trump and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell have tried to argue that support for ending the agency equates to support for open borders, though Customs and Border Protection is tasked with monitoring the border, not ICE. This distinction is part of why many support eliminating the department.
What can you do?
Supreme Court-- Kennedy's Resignation, Muslim ban, and more
The Supreme Court recently ruled to uphold Trump’s Muslim ban. “Taking all the relevant evidence together,” wrote Justice Sonia Sotomayor, “a reasonable observer would conclude that the Proclamation was driven primarily by anti-Muslim animus, rather than the Government’s asserted national-security justifications.” The ban itself “indefinitely suspends the issuance of immigrant and nonimmigrant visas to applicants from the Muslim-majority countries Libya, Iran, Somalia, Syria and Yemen — plus North Korea and Venezuela.” Throughout his campaign, Trump thrived creating fear and bigotry. Assaults against Muslims in 2018 have surpassed levels seen in the past, and with this ban those numbers only stand to increase.
More worrying news came out of the Supreme Court recently in the resignation of swing vote Justice Anthony Kennedy. On Wednesday, June 27th, the justice announced that he would retire, giving President Trump the chance to nominate a new, most likely conservative, justice to fill the bench. Justice Kennedy, 81, has acted as a swing vote for nearly three decades. He showed liberal views on gay rights, the death penalty, and abortion, and conservative views on voting rights, gun control, and campaign spending. Filling his vacancy with a conservative would not only lead all future cases in a conservative direction but also endanger many landmark Supreme Court precedents where Justice Kennedy voted on the liberal side.
Roe v. Wade specifically was the landmark 1973 ruling that legalized abortion nationwide, protected under the Fourteenth Amendment right to privacy. If it were overturned, regulation of abortion would revert to state legislatures. Four states would immediately ban abortions when the Supreme Court makes their decision; Mississippi, Louisiana, North Dakota, and South Dakota have “trigger laws” in place. Ten other states still have pre-Roe abortion bans that were never repealed. Trump is currently meeting with candidates, and said he would announce his nominee early next week.
What you can do:
And, finally, the puppy video.
These lists include featured organizations, scripts, numbers, news updates and inspirational activists.