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CFI Skeptics of Eugene Message Board › Political Activism for CFI Eugene?

Political Activism for CFI Eugene?

Ruth M.
Nice, FR
Post #: 308
Why the IRS targeted "Taxed Enough Already" groups

Ruth M.
Nice, FR
Post #: 312
Obamacare brings lower insurance rates to California, Oregon, Washington ...

“The premiums and participation in California, Oregon, Washington and other states show that insurers want to compete for the new enrollees in this market,”

Ruth M.
Nice, FR
Post #: 319

Oregon becomes 16th state to call for amendment overturning Citizens United

If it's going to take a constitutional amendment to overturn the Supreme Court's Citizens United decision, count Oregon in. On Monday, it became the 16th state to call on Congress to pass an amendment overturning that 2010 decision.
The bipartisan measure passed the state House by a 48-11 margin, with 14 Republican votes (the majority of state House Republicans), and the state Senate by a 17-13 margin, with one Republican, Senator Betsy Close (R-Albany), voting in favor. [...]
Oregon joins four other states – Delaware, Maine, West Virginia and Illinois – that have called for a constitutional amendment over just the past two months. All of the resolutions this year have passed with bipartisan support in at least one chamber. This is an issue that affects every American, regardless of political affiliation.

The other states that have called for an amendment to overturn Citizens United are California, Hawaii, Massachusetts, New Jersey, New Mexico, Rhode Island, Vermont, Connecticut, Maryland, Colorado and Montana. The Washington, D.C., Council has called for an amendment as well.

Getting corporate money out of politics is the key to restoring a healthy democracy, to electing public officials who care more about their voting constituents than their donating constituents, and to seeing nine Supreme Court justices who care more about the rule of law than the rule of the dollar. Most of Oregon's congressional delegation—U.S. Sens. Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley, and U.S. Reps. Earl Blumenauer, Peter DeFazio and Kurt Schrader—are cosponsoring resolutions to overturn Citizens United. Are your representatives?
Stand with Daily Kos and CREDO by signing our petition urging your members of Congress to pass a constitutional amendment overturning the Citizens United decision and ending corporate personhood.
Ruth M.
Nice, FR
Post #: 344

Homelessness - Utah is one of the states that recently began providing apartments for homeless people. From resolving the homelessness arose a group of people who could get jobs, take care of their health and need fewer and less expensive services than before.
Ruth M.
Nice, FR
Post #: 345

Freethought Equality Fund, a new atheist initiative that seeks to support nontheistic politicians

Today’s guest post is written by Seráh Blain, an atheist activist and former Executive Director of the Secular Coalition for Arizona

Why has Arizona become a hotbed of atheist political participation?

Arizona often makes national headlines for its extremely conservative political climate—but the Freethought Equality Fund, a new atheist initiative that seeks to support nontheistic politicians, may be set to change that.

The state of Arizona—notorious for laws that invite racial profiling, criminalize reproductive healthcare, and block gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender community members from full inclusion in social and civic life—is an unlikely home for visible atheist politicians.

All branches of Arizona’s state government have moved further and further right in recent years. But ironically, the power of the Religious Right in Arizona and the exclusion of all other religious and nonbelief perspectives has created a unique environment where voices of protest have become robust and collaborative—meaning that even atheists, who according to a recent study are still the least electable group in the United States, are being given a seat at the table.

It is in Arizona where atheist legislator Juan Mendez surprised the country by giving a Humanist invocation on the floor of the Arizona House of Representatives rather than a prayer. Where Representative Stefanie Mach introduced and celebrated the Secular Student Alliance (SSA) on the same floor, and assistant minority leader Ruben Gallego offered an inclusive invocation for theists and nontheists alike in honor of the SSA. Where Representative Mark Cardenas preceded his six-second Catholic prayer at the legislature with a 30-second disclaimer reassuring constituents from other religions and no religion that he represented them as well. And it is in Arizona where James Woods, a progressive atheist who also happens to be blind, is running for the United States Congress.

None of this is a coincidence. Targeted organizing efforts by the Secular Coalition for Arizona, combined with community development for nontheists in every region of the state, created an informed and engaged secular constituency. This forced elected officials and activists to take notice. And national organizations have provided strategic support for atheists in Arizona, radically changing the way the atheist community is viewed in the state. The atheist-run Freethought Equality Fund, which just announced its 2014 endorsements, is a powerful example of this national support.

The Freethought Equality Fund (FEF) PAC was formed in 2013 to increase the number of “open humanists and atheists in public office.” FEF’s mission states that “when people see respected ethical humanists and atheists serve in public office, this will begin to dispel many myths about nonbelievers.”

To the general public—which is frequently unfamiliar with the strength, variety, and organization of the Humanist movement—an atheist PAC may shift perceptions of atheism toward a more legitimate, realistic appraisal.

The political success of atheists in Arizona is still insufficient, especially considering that the Pew Religious Landscape Survey shows there are more atheists in Arizona than Mormons (6% and 4% respectively), while nearly 20% of the state legislature is made up of Mormons—and only one atheist. Still, Arizona’s openness of public discourse around atheism and its visibility of nontheists in the political process is perhaps the best developed of any state in the nation thus far.

The courageous public admission of Arizona Rep. Mendez’s atheism has allowed the nontheistic community to feel welcome in the political process. The media coverage of congressional candidate James Woods’ radical honesty regarding his Humanist values has helped put a face on Humanism in Arizona. And the endorsement of both Rep. Mendez and Mr. Woods by the Freethought Equality Fund adds a measure of legitimacy to the national organizing efforts of atheists in politics.

Could more states mirror Arizona’s rapid expansion of atheist participation in politics? The visibility, political cover, and financial support the FEF PAC seeks to provide are critical weapons in ensuring that the political power of atheists and religious minorities is not choked out by majority religious rule.

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