It’s Valentine’s Day next week. How’d that get here so fast?!? This might be a nice chance to send some love letters. Instead of sending angry emails and persuasive postcards, you could take a break and send some missives with more affectionate and supportive messages. We know one group who could use a little extra love—the students and faculty at Montpelier High School in Vermont. They recently had the courage to be the first school in the nation to raise the Black Lives Matter flag at their school, and they’ve been getting some negative attention for their efforts. They were featured in Breitbart and on other hate group websites, and they have been receiving hate mail and threatening phone calls. If you’d like to send them a Valentine, you can mail it to Racial Justice Alliance, c/o Montpelier High School, 5 High School Drive, Montpelier, VT 05602. We’re sure they’d appreciate a little love.
In local good news:
- The Joint Committee on Election Laws has voted favorably on Automatic Voter Registration, meaning #AVRinMA is ready for a vote. Time to get in touch with Speaker DeLeo and tell him it’s time to get it done! ACTION: You can reach DeLeo at 617-722-2500 and tell him to bring Bill H2091to the floor for a vote. You can also join the Lift Every Vote Facebook group to stay on top of what’s happening with this important issue.
- Organization Behind Charter Push In Mass. Will Close Amid Scandal
- ACLU sues to release mother of two from ICE detention
- Dunkin’ Donuts Will Stop Using Foam Cups
- Mass. plastic-bags ban inches closer to law
- MassDPU orders electric, gas, and water companies to cut rates to reflect federal tax windfall (Thank you, again, Maura Healey.)
- And, a little to our north: Through her eyes: Civil rights icon Ruby Bridges speaks before 2,000 at Smith College, thanks to 10-year-old’s invite
Trump’s Arctic Oil, Gas Lease Sale Violated Environmental Rules, Lawsuits Claim: “The December lease sale, though unprecedented in scale, was far from a success. Of the 10 million acres offered for oil and gas development, just 80,000 acres were leased, raising questions about the economic viability of Arctic drilling at the same time the Trump administration is pushing to open up more of Alaska, including parts of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge and federal offshore waters, to oil and gas development.”
- Asia’s Energy Revolution Could Kill Trump’s Coal-Powered Dreams
- White House withdraws controversial nominee to head Council on Environmental Quality
There’s also some good news on the elections front.
- Supreme Court Won’t Intervene In PA Gerrymandering Case – The U.S. Supreme court has rejected a request from PA Republicans to intervene in the state court’s ruling on the gerrymandering case. (More on this story from NPR)
- An End to Gerrymandering in Ohio? A bipartisan compromise that just passed the state Senate would require minority-party support for political maps, and would limit the number of communities that could be splintered.
- North Carolina Supreme Court Strikes Down GOP Attempt to Control Elections Board
- For Once, Devin Nunes Could Face a Bumpy Election Season (More from Politico)
- Dems pick up deep-red legislative seat in Missouri
- Trump Accuser Rachel Crooks Is Running for the Ohio State Legislature
- The Next Special Election Is Flying Under the Radar. That’s Just Fine for Democrats. The congressional race in Pennsylvania has drawn scant national attention but major Resistance-style organizing.
- The Largest Number Of Scientists In Modern U.S. History Are Running For Office In 2018 – This comes at a time when there’s only one Ph.D. scientist in Congress.
And here’s what’s happening on the social, civil, and economic equality and justice front:
- 2 Vets Celebrate Love: ‘If You Came To See The Bride, You’re Out Of Luck’
- Pelosi Held House Floor in Advocacy of ‘Dreamers’ for More Than 8 Hours
We’re also hearing some promising news on the Russia investigation front:
- Despite what 45 and his minions would have you believe, a recent poll conducted byMarist College indicates that a majority say Mueller’s Russia probe is fair.
- Not that we want to see his face in the headlines, but we’d be interested to hear what he might have to say, and rumors are that Steve Bannon is likely to meet with special counsel Robert Mueller
- Bob Mueller’s Investigation is Larger—And Further Along—Than You Think
And in miscellaneous, fun, and slightly snarky good news:
- Mister Rogers Is Coming Back To Your Neighborhood, On A Stamp
- “It was the worst hair day of what has been a bad hair life. And it may seem cheap and low to mock Trump’s absurd efforts to conceal his hair loss. But Trump is a man obsessed with image in ways that go beyond the normal human concern with looking presentable.” – New York Magazine
- Reflecting on the fact that the Berlin Wall has now been down for longer than it stood: ‘Let there be light’: The fall of the Berlin Wall and how fear dies
- Gullah Geechee community finally credited with song “Kumbaya.” Researchers state that the song was first recorded by descendants of slaves in the Gullah Geechee community of Darien in Southeastern Georgia.
- See Fallon Sing a Trumpy Rework of Bob Dylan’s “The Times They Are a-Changin’” – “For weak is the man who calls truth “fake news”/ Time’s up, our silence we’re breaking / And even though Mel Gibson was in Daddy‘s Home 2 / Well, the times they are a-changin’.”
“Mass State House Dome”: Photo Credit: twiga_swala Flickr via Compfight cc“Planet Earth”: From Morguefile
“Planet Earth”: From Morguefile
“I Voted”: standing8 Flickr via Compfight cc
“Blind Justice”: Government of Prince Edward Island Flickr via Compfight cc
“Russia Sickle”: AK Rockefeller Flickr via Compfight cc
“Snark Kitty”: Gratisography