Contact your U.S. Senators by mail, phone, or Web form. Check out the Senate Committees.

Identify and contact your U.S. Representatives by mail, phone, or Web form. Check out the House Committees. also contains this info on who the officials are and what the current activity is. Specifically contains some good tips on communicating with elected officials. Don’t just write asking for certain votes, also write thank yous when they take actions you support. lets you identify and find the contact info for your governor and state senators and representatives.

Use the ACLU Action Network. Read about current activity on issues ranging from reproductive and LGBT rights to national security and Guantanamo. Use their form letters (or edit them to your liking) to inform your Senators and Representatives about your stances on these issues. Join the Action Network and get email alerts when urgent action is needed.

There’s been a lot of talk lately about the United States’ standing in the world. A few examples: We’ve tortured prisoners, we didn’t sign the Kyoto Protocol, we’re one of six countries in the world where capital punishment is legal, and we’ve consistently fallen short on providing the international aid that we’ve promised. The sample letter below is from, asking our government to make a schedule so our country can give the 0.7% of national income that we agreed to in 2002 rather than the 0.16% we’re at right now.  Send this or a similar letter to the President, your senators, your representatives, members of the U.S. Senate Committee on Foreign Relations, and members of the House Committee on Foreign Affairs.  Don’t expect letters back from committee members because they can’t reply to correspondence from outside their constituency, but I think they can still be influenced by hearing from all Americans.

Specifically, we ask our country to honor the agreement it made and signed at the 2002 Monterrey Conference and again at the 2002 Johannesburg Summit to make concrete efforts towards giving 0.7% of our national income in aid to poor countries.

The United Nations estimates that when all 22 countries that signed the agreement meet the 0.7% goal, the resulting $195 billion each year will be enough to effectively end hunger and extreme poverty in the world.

We commend the countries that have already reached the 0.7% goal: Denmark, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Norway, and Sweden.

We also commend the countries that have set up a schedule to meet the 0.7% goal and encourage them in their efforts to reach it as soon as possible: Austria, Belgium, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Ireland, Italy, Portugal, Spain, and the United Kingdom.

We respectfully ask the six remaining countries to honor their agreement and set up a schedule to reach the 0.7% goal: Australia, Canada, Japan, New Zealand, Switzerland, and the United States.

Thank you.

2006 International Aid Donated
COUNTRY Aid as % of income How close to the
0.7% goal
Norway 0.95 Already reached goal
Sweden 0.93 Already reached goal
Luxembourg 0.90 Already reached goal
Denmark 0.81 Already reached goal
Netherlands 0.81 Already reached goal
Ireland 0.54 Scheduled for 2012
Austria 0.49 Scheduled for 2015
Belgium 0.43 Scheduled for 2010
Spain 0.41 Scheduled for 2012
Finland 0.40 Scheduled for 2010
France 0.39 Scheduled for 2012
Germany 0.37 Scheduled for 2014
Switzerland 0.37 No schedule yet
United Kingdom 0.36 Scheduled for 2013
Australia 0.30 No schedule yet
Canada 0.28 No schedule yet
New Zealand 0.27 No schedule yet
Italy 0.19 Scheduled for 2015
Portugal 0.19 Scheduled for 2015
Japan 0.17 No schedule yet
Greece 0.16 Scheduled for 2015
United States 0.16 No schedule yet
Source: OECD

Recent studies show that LGBT and questioning youth are four times more likely to attempt or commit suicide than their straight peers.  The Trevor Project is the only nationwide, 24hr helpline for crisis and suicide prevention focused on LGBTQ youth.  You can donate your time or money, attend their events, or call if you need help.

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One response to “Activism

  1. Pingback: added on the Activism page « Digital Notebook

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