Monday, January 30, 2017


Over 25,000 people RSVP’d for this call. As the call was in session, Trump fired Assistant Attorney General Sally Yates for not defending the Muslim Ban.

There are over 5,000 local Indivisible groups nationwide. The activism at airports has made a huge difference in just a few days.

What you can do to stand against the Muslim and Refugee Ban: (Ezra Levin with Indivisible Project) Empowering local activists and groups using their constituent power. Theory of change: Donald Trump’s agenda depends on your Members of Congress (MoC) rubberstamping.

Indivisible recommends these “asks” regarding this federal policy issue. There are a lot of actions that can be taken at the state and local level, plus pressuring corporate entities (Wall of Us).

A Senator simply saying he/she opposes the ban is not enough. Senators need to do these things, ensuring that Congress takes no action until this ban is eliminated. These two things can be asked of all Senators, whether Democrat or Republican.

Withhold Consent. Any single Senator can ‘withhold consent’—a procedural maneuver that puts Senate business on pause for days at a time. When Senate Leadership asks for “unanimous consent” to move forward with business as usual, your Senator should say “I Object.” This will dramatically slow (for days, perhaps) Trump’s other priorities from moving forward until he lifts this odious ban. A meaningful tool to encourage Senators to use. #WithholdConsent
No Justice, No Bills. Your Senator should commit to filibustering EVERY bill that comes up in the Senate until Trump’s illegal, unconstitutional Executive Order is rescinded. By filibustering, your senator can stop all of Trump’s future legislative priorities. The ONLY bill that should be allowed to come to a vote is a bill ending the Muslim and refugee ban. (Note that Cabinet nominations can’t be filibustered) #NoJusticeNoBills

Hundreds of MoCs have not been taking positions on this ban. Don’t allow them to stay silent! If they oppose the ban, they should do everything they can to withhold consent and filibuster. Don’t just believe that because you have a progressive Senator that they’re doing everything possible.


Indivisible co-hosted this call along with Asian Americans Advancing Justice (AAAJ), American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), International Refugee Assistance Project (IRAP), National Immigration Law Center (NILC-IJF).

Spokesperson for International Refugee Assistance Project (IRAP): Among those barred are individuals who have worked sacrificially for the US government and who have family in the US. We’re facing the largest refugee crisis since WWII. 50K will be the smallest number of refugees settled since the program was founded in 1980.

Spokesperson for American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU): Multiple lawsuits filed raising various legal claims. The biggest picture legal problem is that the Constitution prohibits religious discrimination. In December, Trump called for a total and complete shutdown on Muslims entering the US. The executive order discriminates against Muslims in two respects: denied passage on airplanes and detained upon arrival under great duress. Lawsuits filed on emergency basis, asking judges for a temporary restraining order. All preliminary rulings have found that the executive order is likely unconstitutional. One injunction forbids the government from sending people back; the other forbids the US from detaining people until Feb. 5 (court expected to rule on whether to extend). New arrivals are covered by these injunctions. Many other lawsuits have been filed and will be filed in the coming days to deal with problems of people stuck abroad, etc. 16 AGs have declared executive orders unconstitutional. Acting US attorney general Sally Yates has issued order to US officials not to fight injunctions b/c she believes the executive order is not defendable under the Constitution. She has now been fired for refusing to defend this ban.

Spokesperson for Asian Americans Advancing Justice (AAAJ): Fielding phone calls from affected travelers and families. “Immense amounts of fear and confusion.” Green card holders now (at least in San Francisco) are being let in, but they are still undergoing over-screening and extreme vetting. Example: an older couple in their seventies was retained for over 30 hours yesterday. Hours of pressure were required to release this couple. “Egregious noncompliance is requiring that we monitor the situation.” Attorneys posted at airports aren’t allowed into “secondary inspection” to talk with detainees. (This is an ongoing policy, not a new one.) Protests at airports have been very meaningful. Detainees and attorneys feel empowered by the public outcry; hope that it continues. We need to keep the pressure on to ensure that rights litigated in court are implemented.

Spokesperson for National Immigration Law Center (NILC-IJF): Trump has impulsively and recklessly turned the immigration system on its head. Trump agenda to demonize and criminalize immigrants. This is what he’s been about all around. Wants to build this symbol, the wall, that says that Americans don’t want you (immigrants) to be here. With the Muslim ban, we saw the impact immediately. Spontaneous outpouring of support, immediate legal challenge that resulted in a temporary legal win. Other executive orders signed last week will inflict pain and panic for immigrants. One essentially bullies local police into becoming immigration officers plus supersizes border agents while freezing immigration judges. This will cause chaos in the courts and will cause immigrants to stop asking for help from local police. Border wall: net migration from Mexico has been zero over the last couple of years. Huge cost plus environmental impact plus cuts across territory of indigenous tribes. “We expect other attacks on immigrants from this administration.” Attorney General Jeff Sessions supports the Muslim ban and would likely defend it. Now is a potential turning point and rallying point for slowing the momentum of the Trump agenda, but still receiving reports from immigration agents who are threatening to turn people back. “This is all rooted in an extremist agenda that is hostile to all immigrants and refugees.”

Q & A

Q: Seems like a Constitutional crisis seems to be looming. What happens then?

A: Trump has not instructed agencies to ignore the court orders (injunctions). However, there has been enough noncompliance at individual borders that there may be a need for Federal Marshalls to enforce. The firing of Sally Bates is very, very serious. Seems to harken back to Saturday Night Massacre of 1973, Richard Nixon. Expect this to set up quite a battle on Jeff Sessions vote.

A: Department of Homeland Security is trying to issue guidance to officers, but it took a while to get there. Announcements from White House have said they’ll comply but then include defiant language. Definitely have seen officers at airports not complying with judicial orders. How is this administration going to hold officers accountable? Congressional reaction: on both sides, feeling uncomfortable, expressing concern and opposition to what this President is doing. A clear opportunity to get MoCs to be even bolder, along the lines of what Indivisible advises, to keep this administration from rolling over the other two branches of government.

Q: After Trump announces his Supreme Court nominee, how will we keep focused on this ban.

A: It’s been a dark time, but everyone on this call is in awe of the public response. Show up at public events. This is a crucial time right now. Get out there. Join your local group. We’re going to get through this. We’re seeing victories. It’s not hopeless if we stick together. Resist and we’ll win.

A: The organizations represented here will continue working on this issue.

A: Get involved. Volunteer with issues that you’re passionate about.

Q: A lot of judge appointments blocked by Congress during the Obama administration. Rumors about anti-LBGT executive order?

A: For judgeships that need Senate confirmation, we need to keep pressure on MoCs. These are lifetime appointment. Moderates just going along to be collegial – can’t afford that. At some level, may have to create delay. Not good for system but may be our only chance at this moment.


From the national INDIVISIBLE team. Note that you need to RSVP to participate:

Friday, January 27, 2017

Dear organizers, group leaders, and resisters

Dear organizers, group leaders, and resisters,

The first week of Donald Trump’s presidency has confirmed our worst fears. Donald Trump intends to act on his most radical, racist, and sexist promises.
Six weeks ago, we published the Indivisible Guide based on a simple idea: Donald Trump’s agenda doesn’t depend on Donald Trump. It depends on your elected members of Congress and whether they go along with him—or whether they fight back.
When we put the Indivisible Guide online as a poorly formatted, typo-filled Google Doc, we never imagined how far and fast it would spread. Since December, the guide has been downloaded over a million times. More than 4,500 local groups have signed up to resist the Trump agenda in nearly every congressional district in the country. What’s more, you all are putting the guide into action—showing up en masse to congressional district offices and events, and flooding the congressional phone lines. You’re resisting—and it’s working.
We are absolutely floored. It may have started as a tweeted Google Doc, but now (and sorry if this sounds corny) we feel an extraordinary sense of responsibility to help this movement as best we can. To do this, the Indivisible Guide team is starting a (nonprofit) organization, and we want to tell you why.
Bottom line, we want to do two big things better:
  1. Demystify congressional advocacy. We get hundreds of questions every day about what Congress is doing, how to organize locally (see the toolkit!), and how to advocate in different situations. We’re going to start sending out timely updates and resources on what’s going on in Congress and how you can best organize, make your voice heard, and influence your members of Congress.
  2. Support the community of local groups putting the Indivisible Guide into action. We want to provide shared tools to help groups organize events, communicate with each other, and share best practices and resources. This also means spotlighting local successes and supporting a sense of a shared purpose. You can see that shared purpose already forming—just look at this beautiful movement on Rachel Maddow.
We are already doing some of this! We now have over seventy (70!) volunteers working early mornings, late nights, weekends, and sick days on everything that you see the Indivisible Guide team do—email responses, congressional updates, the group directory, the website, our social media, and a bunch more. It’s been an amazing labor of love by a stellar group of, yeah we’ll say it, patriots. But we want to do more.
As we form a nonprofit, we want to make something clear: we're not the leaders of this movement. The last few weeks have made it abundantly clear that local groups are taking ownership of the resistance to Trump’s agenda themselves. You all are the leaders—we’re just here to help.
We’re still developing our long-term strategy, and we want to hear from you about what you need and want. But going forward, you’ll see a lot more from us in those two buckets of work above—we want to demystify the hell out of Congress and build a vibrant community of angelic troublemakers.
As a means to this end, you’ll now see a donate button on our website. So far, we’ve been relying on free help from partners and footing all the other costs ourselves. But we know that’s not sustainable on its own, and we’re in this for the long haul. So if you’d like to pitch in a few bucks to support the activities described above, we’d be very grateful.
But to be clear, donating is the last thing we want you to do. If it’s a choice between going to your local group’s meeting or donating to us, go to the meeting! Really.
We’re proud to be in this with you. This week, we partnered on a national day of action that saw thousands of you in hundreds of local groups from communities across the country stand up. In groups of a few or a few hundred, you exercised your constituent power in person at your own congressional offices. You braved the cold, the rain, the sleet, the snow to make your voices heard. You stood together and for each other.
This is the end of Trump’s first week--and we’re just getting started. Stand indivisible with us, and together we will win.
In solidarity,
Ezra Levin
President of the Board
Leah Greenberg
Vice President of the Board
Angel Padilla
Secretary of the Board
Sarah Dohl
Board Member
Matt Traldi
Treasurer of the Board
P.S. We’ve also fixed all the typos in the Guide now. Thanks to those well-wishers who emailed with corrections—you know who you are.


"This is not going to be an easy four years. We’re going to be subjected to constant gaslighting by the President and his administration. We’ll be dealing with a ferocious, multi-front attack on the entire progressive agenda, without exception, and a lot of it is going to succeed. We’re going to helplessly watch institutions we care about and depend upon destroyed. The Trump years are going to be emotionally exhausting and deeply traumatic for all of us, but particularly to those dedicated to protecting the vulnerable and preserving democracy.
"Most of us are not ready to take on the mantle of the resistance. There are things we can do now to get ready, but if we don’t, the ranks of would-be activists and resisters are going to thin out very quickly.
"Professional organizers and veteran activists have strategies for staying sane during a long fight. If you’re serious about sticking it out in the picket lines for the duration of the Trump presidency, you’re going to have to learn these strategies or else burn out in the first six months."

Wednesday, January 25, 2017

TAKE ACTION on alarming developments

Alarming developments yesterday and today: Your tax dollars at work, building a wall. An announcement forthcoming that visas of people from Syria and six Muslim countries will be suspended. Gagging of environmental agencies (Source: The Guardian US briefing…/series/guardian-us-briefing)

Contact your Members of Congress NOW. Tell them that We the People need their help in standing against these actions. Democratic Members of Congress have been publicly stating that they welcome this pressure from their constituents. They want us to stay fired up.

On a positive note, scientists are mobilizing. You can sign up here: Be ready to discuss whether this should be our next march.

  1. Forward this URL/information to like-minded friends and encourage them to take action. 
  2. Share on social media among your friends, but be prepared with a pat response to trolls and haters who aim to distract and detract. #TheResistance #Indivisible.

Tuesday, January 24, 2017

NATIONAL DAY OF ACTION on Tuesday January 24th

From the INDIVISIBLE GUIDE newsletter:

On Tuesday, January 24, local groups across America are visiting their senators’ offices and demanding that they reject Trump’s unqualified, corrupt Cabinet nominees. 

Thousands of local activists like you have already committed to opposing this cast of racists, cronies, and kleptocrats by taking this in-person action. Join us, #standindivisible, and send the videos, pictures, and stories from your actions to

Three Indivisible Actions This Week

1) Keep the Heat on Trump's Divisive Cabinet Nominees: Hearings for many of Trump’s cabinet nominees may have occurred last week, but the fight is far from over. Ethical scandals, financial conflicts, and outstanding questions plague many nominees. We’ve got to keep the heat on the disastrous nominees coming up this week:

Urge your Senators to oppose the confirmation of Jeff Sessions for Attorney General.

Tuesday, January 24th: Confirmation hearings continue for Rep. Tom Price to be Secretary of Health and Human Services. Rep. Price is a radical conservative who wants to destroy the Affordable Care Act, eviscerate anti-poverty efforts, and undermine women’s health, reproductive rights, and LGBTQ rights. There are also unanswered ethical questions about profits Price has made trading health care stocks during his time in Congress where he worked on health care legislation.

Urge your Senators to oppose the confirmation of Rep. Tom Price for HHS Secretary.

DELAYED! Trump's controversial and unqualified nominee to be Secretary of Education, millionaire Betsy DeVos, was supposed to get a vote on Tuesday, the 24th. But in the wake of her poor performance in Congress last week and release of a report on her ethical conflicts, Committee Chairman Grassley has delayed that vote until January 31st.

Let's delay this permanently! Urge your Senators to oppose the confirmation of Betsy DeVos for Education Secretary.

2) Tell Your Representative, "Vote No on HR 7, Yes for Women's Healthcare": You would think, in the wake of Saturday's monumental Women's March that Congress might show some respect for women's rights. You'd be wrong. Instead, on Tuesday, January 24th, the House has scheduled a vote onHR 7. This unnecessary and intrusive legislation meddles with the private insurance marketplace and attacks women's reproductive rights. It’s not the first time Republicans have tried to pass this anti-woman bill.

Call your Member of Congress and tell them to vote No on HR 7.

3) Keep the Pressure On: Tell Congress to #ProtectOurCare. One of President Trump’s first acts in office was to sign an Executive Order that could threaten essential components of the Affordable Care Act. But to dismantle the ACA, Trump will need to get repeal legislation through Congress. Keep the pressure on your members of Congress! Tell your Representative and two Senators that you won’t stand by and let 30+ million people lose their healthcare -- and that you expect that they won’t either.

Americans are ready to fight back, and we know that when we stand indivisible, we will win.

In solidarity,
The Indivisible Guide Team

P.S. We want to spread the word about your group’s Day of Action! Take pictures and videos and share them with us at Or, use #indivisible and tag @IndivisibleTeam on Twitter or post them to

Monday, January 23, 2017

On Saturday, we marched, and the world took notice. We’re a grassroots movement, and we won’t be stopped.

Today we march forward together with a commitment to action:
1.      Wherever you’re involved in civic-minded organizations that embrace the call to activism, keep at it! In the days ahead, much will be required of us. Now more than ever, we support the good work of all.
2.      Save the date for the kickoff meeting of Indivisible North Coast Oregon: Wednesday, Feb. 1, 5 – 6:30 pm at the Blue Scorcher in Astoria. A two-week young movement with over 3,000 groups nationwide, Indivisible promotes grassroots activism to resist an agenda built on racism, authoritarianism, and corruption.
3.      Download and read the Indivisible Guide in preparation for the kickoff meeting.
4.      Program contact details for your Members of Congress into your phone or note them in your address book.

THIS WEEK’S CALL TO ACTION: Instead of acknowledging the powerful messaging of the Jan. 21 Women’s Marches, Trump and his press secretary Sean Spicer turned their attentions to berating the media. Seize this opportunity to affirm the importance of honest journalism and reject attempts from the White House to create their own versions of truth.

ACTION: Write letters, sent via email or snail mail (or both), declaring your opposition to Trump’s berating of journalists and your support of honest journalism. If you can afford it, subscribe to a newspaper that you support, and let them know why you’re subscribing.

Potential recipients:
1.      Letters to the editor
2.      Media outlets and individual journalists whose work you support – basically, wherever you get your news. Express your gratitude and encouragement.
3.      The White House (Trump, Sean Spicer, etc.)
Talking points:
1.      You oppose Trump’s berating of the media and his attempts to manipulate facts and distort truth.
2.      You support the good work of journalists who seek facts and refuse to be intimidated.
3.      You are part of a movement represented by the worldwide Women’s Marches, and you won’t be silenced.
1.      Send this URL to like-minded friends and encourage them to take action. Even better, include a copy of one of your letters as an example.

2.      Share on social media among your friends, but be prepared with a pat response to trolls and haters who aim to distract and detract.


Sunday, January 22, 2017

Astoria Women's March: Deb Vanasse "Indivisible"

Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. said, “We cannot walk alone.” Surely, as evidenced by this crowd, we do not walk alone.

Dr. King also said, “As we walk, we must make the pledge that we’ll always march ahead.”
When today’s march is over, how will we march ahead? How will we channel today’s energy into sustainable, effective action?

Many of you are already involved in civic-minded organizations that embrace the call to activism. We applaud these efforts. In the days ahead, much will be required of us. Now more than ever, we need to support the good work of all.

One choice among many for marching ahead is Indivisible North Coast Oregon. A two-week young movement with over 3,000 groups nationwide, Indivisible promotes grassroots activism to resist an agenda built on racism, authoritarianism, and corruption.

If you’re interested in marching ahead with Indivisible, add your name to the sign-up sheet under the canopy. We’ll notify you via email of our upcoming kick-off meeting. You can also find us on Facebook as “Indivisible North Coast Oregon.” If you’re joining us from outside Oregon’s 1st Congressional District, visit to find a group in your area - and of course you can still sign up for notifications from our group!

To quote once more from Dr. King, “Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that.”
Today, we commit ourselves to being that light.

Astoria Women's March: Margaret Frimoth

          Here we are. Right here in Astoria, Oregon. Look at us! We are marvelous. We are powerful! And today, we honor those who struggled before us so that we have the glorious privilege to gather here today. We are grateful for the long arc of herstory, of progress, the arc of justice — that is the American dream. Those who believed that dream have given us words and songs and images that keep the dream moving forward — Just like a stream that’s standing by the water, We shall not be moved. 

          Because of those who steps we follow today, we know that the rainbow arc of justice does not yet embrace everyone. We know that there is a place at the table for everyone.  So, it becomes our duty to stand up, to speak out, to resist the forces that seek to dismiss, diminish or destroy the long and persistent arc of justice. This is our responsibility. This is why we march. But this is not the only reason we march.

          We also have a responsibility to spread this message, to help those who do not understand that the arc of justice includes them, even when we disagree. It is our task to remember that, as well. The arc is long. It can appear polarizing. But an arc, just like the rainbow, is a circle. When we bend the arc to complete the circle, the polarizing ends are next to each other.

          In these times which we are made for, we must discover ways to enact those lofty ideas cited in the Constitution and the Declaration of Independence. We need to practice being comfortable with the discomfort of these times. We need to practice taking to the streets when we’d rather stay home, or hang with friends. We need to practice seeing beyond our own lives so that we can see the connections that swirl around us, and touch us because that is what unifies us. Especially in times like these.

          So I want to practice. Here. Now. I ask that you practice with me. Let’s say these words with strong voices, speaking together:

I am a woman! I am a man.  I am queer.  I am transgender. I am black. I am brown. I am Native American. I am a water protector. I am Asian (and to the Supreme Court) I am Slant. I am an immigrant. I am undocumented. I am homeless. I am a prisoner. I am a guard. I am law enforcement. I am Jewish. I am Muslim. I am a Goddess. I am a child. I am the environment. I am history.
I am herstory!

          You see, we all matter, but only if Black Lives matter as much as everybody else. We all matter, as long as the water, our life-blood, matters as much. We all matter as long as the air we breathe matters as much. We are all of this and much more. This! This is who we are! And this marvelous diversity is exactly what makes us vulnerable to a straight-thinking, overlysimplistic, dualistic, either/or mind-set. We must embrace our complexities — our complicated and elaborate and convoluted lives. And to different degrees some of us relish the messiness of it all. What sets us apart from rigid authority is that we deeply believe that when our most basic rights — life, liberty, and the pursuit of justice — are supported, then our lives are freed up to risk creative innovation, experimental ideation, new possibilities, comingling and transformation. We see what we can become.

          Last night, I checked out the website I searched for LGBTQ information. Nothing. I searched for the Native News link. Gone. I searched for immigration issues and climate change. Nothing. Always the same message, “Sorry the page you’re looking for can’t be found.” I searched for Black Lives Matter. Nothing. When I searched for information on  “African Americans,” Obama popped up. When I searched for “Civil Rights”, Abraham Lincoln popped up, and James Buchanan, and several other interesting but historical findings…and a redirect to the Executive Branch of Government because the search engine found the words “civil” employees and “rights.” Most of the issues that I searched for no longer exist, or have been replace with a reference that incorporates a repetitive line, “trade deals working for all Americans.” This is not my America. This does not represent us. Nor does the website recognize Women’s Rights. And so, today we march. We march for the protection of our rights, our safety, our health, and our families. We march in unity with the DC Women’s March organizers who declare: "In the spirit of democracy and honoring the champions of human rights, dignity, and justice who have come before us, we join in diversity to show our presence in numbers too great to ignore. We send a bold message to our new government on this first day in office, and to the world, that women's rights are human rights. We stand together, recognizing that defending the most marginalized among us is defending all of us." This is why we march! We march together with a renewed and energized spirit. We march with protective anger and fierce love.          

Just as singer-songwriter, Melanie DeMore says, “You gotta put one foot in front of the other and lead with love.” Can you say that back to me?

You gotta put one foot in front of the other and lead with love.

Today. We are the Women’s Movement.  And we march together toward justice for all!

Astoria Women's March: Kit Ketcham "We Were Made for These Times"

WE WERE MADE FOR THESE TIMES:  the slow power of NO
Rev. Kit Ketcham, January 21, 2017
Women’s March, Astoria OR
            Our emphasis today is on the positive, what we want to achieve despite the challenges of our current national situation.  But the words of Clarissa Pinkola Estes , “we were made for these times” resonated with me and got me to thinking about just HOW we were made for these times.
We have indeed been training for these times all our lives, from the moment we discovered the power of the word NO, at age 2.   As we grew older and faced challenges we did not choose, we said NO over and over again.  As teenagers, we used NO to separate from our parents, well-meaning as they may have been.
            We have said NO to countless useless wars and our NOs have resounded down the halls of academia during VietNam, in the streets during the Gulf and Afghanistan and Iraq wars.  And some of us are old enough to have said NO to Hitler and his Nazis.
            We have said NO to offshore drilling, fracking, desecration of sacred land, and misuse of our waters and our beautiful natural lands.
            We have said NO to mistreatment of women, children, and men.  NO to sexual violence.  NO to illegal drugs and cigarettes.  We have said NO to unjust laws.  We said NO to HIV/AIDS and homophobia and transphobia.  We have said NO over and over again to gun and sexual violence.

            Sometimes our NOs seemed to fall on deaf ears, but every NO we said in an effort to maintain human rights, dignity and justice for all, and to stop offenses against the land fell upon those ears that could hear, opened pathways of YES as more came to join us in our cause.
            And the more times we said NO, the more YESES we heard from other people who felt the same way and came to join us.
            The Power of NO is a slow-moving power, whether we’re two years old, rebellious teenagers aching to be independent, or protestors in the streets.  It takes time for NO to become visible, to take shape in our national consciousness.
            And here we are, saying NO once again, because we have learned that NO has power, that NO brings change, that NO may take longer than we wish to bear fruit, but it does bear fruit.
            We have chipped away with our NOs steadily and determinedly at the world’s and our nation’s problems, even though sometimes the way was dark and many delays occurred.  In the process, we have turned many NOs into YESes. 
            For every time we stand up and voice our concerns and our hopes, we turn NO into YES.  We watch the foundations of oppression begin to crumble and fall, as NOs turn into YESes as the light dawns in human consciousness.
We can do this.  We were made for these times, we have honed our voices and our skills and our resolve.  And the world and our nation are watching.   YES!  Let me hear you say it:   YES!  YES!  YES!