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Hey, friends. You may have heard our new President-elect is planning to appoint a literal, actual, real-in-every-sense white supremacist, racist, anti-semite and misogynist to one of the top posts in the White House. Don’t believe me? Take it from his fans! The KKK and American Nazi Party are celebrating.
I’m going to spare you the alarmism and hand-wringing and just say: please help me (and your other non-white/protestant friends) oppose this, right now. There are many battles to fight, but this feels like an important early one, and one that we might be able to win.
Good news! There’s something really easy that you can do, that we can all do: call your two Senators and your Representative’s offices and tell them to publicly and vigorously oppose the appointment. Don’t email. Don’t tweet. Don’t fill out the online form. Call. Calling works best. Especially if a lot of us do it.
You should do this whether your representatives are Democrat or Republican. In fact, it’s probably more important to do it if your representative is a Republican, because they need more pressure to oppose their own party (even if it’s for the right reasons). Here’s the site to look up the phone numbers.
This is where, like me this morning, you’re probably hesitating. You worry that whoever picks up the phone is going to be grumpy or yell at you. You’re feeling a little nervous as you start to type in the number on a cell phone that, let’s be honest, you had kind of forgotten actually makes calls. You start mentally running down a list of small excuses, like, “I don’t have time for this right now, I’ll put it off until lunch.” Or, “I only have two bars of service right now and I want my voice to be crystal clear.” Or, “I never really liked Gabe anyway.”
I was feeling and thinking all of that this morning. I almost backed out. I almost pulled all of my classic procrastination tricks, like getting in the shower, doing laundry, and alphabetizing books. And then I read a terrifying thread about someone whose name rhymes with, uh, schmitmer, and I realized the least I can do is get over the fear of calling a number which is expressly set aside for this exact purpose.
And guess what? It was super easy, and felt great. I live in New York, so I called Chuck Schumer’s office first. He has a switchboard that features an hilarious recording of him assuring you that your call is important to him in his nebishy Brooklyn accent. You should call his office just to experience that recording. (Side note: he should voice all call-in lines. That would really piss off Bannon.)
Anyhow, I waited about 2 minutes. Then a staffer picked up. I gave my spiel (see below) in a calm, confident, friendly voice. The staffer didn’t have much to say, but was pleasant enough. Done. Breathe. Move on.
Next, I called Kirsten Gillibrand. Surprise: she doesn’t have a switchboard! The phone rang for about a minute, and then a human picked up. He was super friendly! I told him why I was calling and he said they had gotten a lot of calls about it. I said that’s great, and gave my take. He said thanks for calling, he’d make sure to pass my feedback on to the Senator.
Finally, I called my representative, Yvette Clarke. I didn’t know much about her, so I googled her first. She seems pretty awesome (this is her Facebook cover photo), and it turns out she had already made a statement about Bannon. So when I called, I made sure to thank her for the statement, and urged her to continue.
Now, it’s your turn. You promised you would get active. This is something simple you can do that’s real. If nothing else, it’ll get you off the 🔥💣😭 that is social media right now and talking to real people.
It’s easy, quick and feels surprisingly good.
Look up your representatives’ phone numbers here. OR call this number, enter your zip code, and it will automatically connect you to them, one-by-one: 1-844-872–0234 (yes, it is that awesome, h/t to my friend Steven for letting me know).
(Optional) See if they’ve made any statements about Bannon yet. Just google their name and Bannon. If you find something, it’s appropriate to praise them and ask them to continue making statements.
Use this template (or a version that better fits you):
Hello, I’d like to make a comment to [Senator/Representative X] about the appointment of Steve Bannon to Senior White House Strategist.
[short pause, then the staffer will tell you to continue]
This is not a partisan or political issue. It’s a moral issue. Steve Bannon is a dangerous man whose anti-semitic, misogynistic and white supremacist views represent a clear danger to a large number of constituents. His appointment is being celebrated by the KKK and American Nazi party. His presence in the White House is unacceptable. I urge [Senator/Representative X] to publicly, forcefully and continuously oppose the appointment.
[The staffer will thank you and ask for your address or zip code, so they know you’re a constituent. Give it to them.]
Thank you, have a great day.
4. Hang up. Realize how quick and painless and actually even a little fun it was. Smile and feel good about yourself. Okay not that good, it was just a phone call.
5. Repeat for all of your representatives.
6. Tell all your friends how easy and fun it was and do the same. Feel free to send them this article.
7. Do it again tomorrow.
Exported from Medium on October 22, 2020.