Sunday, April 14, 2024

Join the Impact

Activism Rooted in the Internet

Unfortunate News – We Must Respond

Posted by amy On December - 23 - 2008

Join The Impact is about visibility. It’s about showing this country that if you mess with one of us, you have to face ALL of us. It’s about uniting as one strong and fierce community to gain the basic human rights that EVERY HUMAN BEING DESERVES. It’s about coming together to celebrate, and coming together to mourn.

On December 13th, a woman in the San Francisco Bay area was brutally beaten and gang raped for being a lesbian. The news just broke a little under 9 hours ago. We need to let this woman know that she is not alone. We need to let her know that our ENTIRE community is there for her. For her safety, her name has not been released. I have spoken with the Richmond, CA police department and learned that there are some initiatives already underway to support her. Soon, a trust will be setup where people can donate directly to her, which will help her get on her feet and feel more secure. I will keep everyone posted when that is set. Also, the Richmond PD is checking to see if we can send letters and holiday cards to any specific destination that can then deliver those letters to her.

First we must show her that she is not alone. Next, we must show the nation that we will not stand for this! On January 10th we are having national rallies to protest DOMA and remind President-Elect Barack Obama of the promises he made in his Open Letter to the Gay Community. We must also focus on stronger hate crimes legislation and use this time as an opportunity to bring attention to this horrible crime, and the 1400 hate crimes that occur each year against the LGBTQ community. We will work with you on ideas to ensure this happens.

From my conversation with the Richmond PD, it is clear that they are taking this issue to heart and working hard on behalf of this woman. Not all cities and towns are like this. We need to work together as a community to ensure that atrocities like this do not go unnoticed, or unpunished. We need to make it harder for someone to hurt another just because they are LGBTQ. We need to show the nation that hatred toward our community is NOT ACCEPTABLE.

While you celebrate your holidays, I encourage you to start the conversation of equality by making everyone aware of this horrible atrocity. Share her story with friends and family. Tell allies, and tell those who do not yet understand. In a world where the government does not see us as equal, an expectation is set for everyone, and it is a low one. If our government does not see us as worthy, why should others? The final quote in the article sums it up perfectly: “Anytime there is an anti-LGBT initiative, we tend to see spikes both in the numbers and the severity of attacks… People feel this extra entitlement to act out their prejudice.”

People NEED to learn about this event. Too many people think that Matthew Sheppard was the last to be attacked (as crazy as that sounds, it’s true). We need to be visible in EVERY WAY and, too often, events like this go unnoticed. Too few people understand how the treatment of our community under the law, drives “extra entitlement” for those that hate us. We are better than this! Our country is and should be better than this! NO MORE SILENCE!

UPDATE – the JoinTheImpact Alliance Coordinator created an event on Facebook to raise money:
Event: Help A Sister Out
“Benefit for Hate Rape Victim”
What: Fundraiser
Host: Matt Flanders
Start Time: Tuesday, December 22 at 5:00pm
End Time: Thursday, December 31 at 5:00pm
Where: From Your Heart

To see more details and RSVP, follow the link below:

Make an IMPACT in the White House

Posted by amy On December - 14 - 2008

So what are you up to this week on December 17-19? How about helping to shatter a glass ceiling? This week, EQUAL REP was formed calling on people across the nation to urge President-elect Obama to appoint Mary Beth Maxwell the next Secretary of Labor.

In more than 200 years, the United States Cabinet has never included an openly gay member. Growing national focus on GLBT civil rights has therefore made the Secretary of Labor appointment a national issue in the struggle for equal representation.

Maxwell is being closely considered for the position and she is highly qualified. She is the founding Executive Director of American Rights at Work, a national advocacy organization launched in 2003 whose mission is to modernize and reform the labor laws of our nation to better meet the needs of 21st century employers and workers. She is a longtime activist for better collective bargaining rules and a big proponent of the Employee Free Choice Act. She’s a vocal progressive and would make a fantastic Secretary of Labor.

In a short amount of time, Maxwell has also earned the endorsements of the AFL-CIO, Change to Win Federation, the CEO and President of American Income Life Insurance, and the Human Rights Campaign just to name a few.

There is a special significance to this moment as we mark the thirtieth anniversary of Harvey Milk’s assassination. It is both a reminder of how far we’ve come as well as the work that remains to be done.

Join the facebook event, invite your friends, and plan on giving the Obama administration a friendly nudge to put his call of change into action. Here’s to hoping that Mary Beth Maxwell is the next Secretary of Labor!


On December 20th, we will come together to Light Up the Night For Equal Rights and hopefully enter into the new year a bit early – moving from a time of no LGBTQ representation in the White House, to a new era in the movement for FULL EQUALITY. So let’s prepare for our National candlelight vigil with a week of change. Let’s make an IMPACT in the White House!