Jan 2009 KTA: Resolve to Make Change in 09

Endorse ROP’s Legislative Platform The ROP Legislative Platform represents the priorities of our member groups, the needs that our communities face, and the strategic opportunities for our human dignity movement. Since we shared our draft platform with you last month, many of you have written to share what you want to see on this platform. […]

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What do we want?!

We are for justice. We are against the war. We are in favor of human rights. We are opposed to corruption and brutality.

Progressives often talk about our missions in very broad terms, not surprising considering our 30-second spot culture. However, in these first months of 2009 and especially in these first days of January we have the opportunity to describe specifically what it is we want and when it is we want it. (JUSTICE! … NOW! Just kidding.)

There are many things that ROP will demand of our new national and state leadership. One thing is Comprehensive Immigration Reform. The National Council of La Raza and the National Immigration Fourm are circulating a sign-on letter for organizations that reminds our elected officials that we want a speedy and just resolution to the immigration mess. Add your organization to this national sign-on letter to push for Comprehensive Immigration Reform.

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Campaign to Keep National Guard in Oregon

Back in June of 2003, ROP coordinated a weeklong Walk for Truth, Justice and Community that involved thousands of Oregonians. Walkers and their supporters were outraged by current policies entrenching not just wars abroad but also wars at home. We marched from our starting point in Salem to take over the Governor’s office with veterans and military families at the front of the room. We were there to demand that the Governor show some backbone regarding the role of the Oregon National Guard and other Oregon resources being deployed in the war/occupation. Later that week, he delivered his strongest statement yet in opposition to the war in Iraq. The war has spiraled into an occupation with no sign of an end. Let’s turn up the heat in Oregon to prevent further deployments.

Oregon peace and justice groups in June of 2008 join with similar groups across the nation for parallel state efforts to reduce the flow of resources to the wars/occupations. Let’s gather signatures that show just how fed up Oregonians are with the so called war on terror. And then let’s plan a time to reconvene (with or with out a formal invitation) back in the Governor’s office in Salem.

Here’s what it says on the petition:

To the elected officials in the state of Oregon: We, the undersigned, urge you to take the steps necessary to prevent the further deployment of Oregon’s National Guard to Iraq and Afghanistan.

  • The Authorization for Use of Military Force in Iraq (2002) is based on Iraq having weapons of mass destruction, harboring Al Qaida members responsible for 9/11, and enforcing UN resolutions against Saddam Hussein’s regime, reasons which were never or are no longer valid.
  • The Authorization for Use of Military Force of September 2001, which launched the "War on Terror," is overly broad and has allowed the US to occupy Afghanistan and conduct airstrikes on other countries while chipping away Americans’ human, civil and constitutional rights.
  • Oregonians have shown a desire to bring the troops home: 61 elected officials from 27 counties signed a letter to President Bush in September, 2007; the Oregon State House and Senate passed resolutions in March and May, 2007; the cities of Corvallis, Portland and Eugene passed similar resolutions in 2006 and 2007; thousands of Oregonians have written letters, postcards and emails, made phone calls, marched and protested.
  • Governor Ted Kulongoski told the Oregonian in October, 2006 that he believes the continued presence of U.S. troops in Iraq "is making things worse" and that the U.S. should set a strict timetable for getting out.
  • Legislation to de-federalize the Guard due to the expiration of the Iraq AUMF has been introduced in Vermont, New Jersey, and several other states.
  • Oregon needs its National Guard to respond to forest fires and natural disasters and for search and rescue missions.

Download a copy of the petition to ciruclate in your community.

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Thank You, Dear ROPers!

Read ROP’s 2008 Letter to Members and our 2008 Annual Report. December 2008 Dear Friends and Supporters, The year 2008 has been full of hope, excitement, and change. But as our new president said on November 4th, “This victory alone is not the change we seek – it is only the chance for us to […]

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Oh, the Weather Outside is Frightful!

What a week it has been!  At the ROP office our highlights of the week include our pipes freezing and towing the ROP car from the ditch.  (Feel free to let that inspire you to get your much needed donation in the mail to us or at www.rop.org!)

Despite these challenges, we have been delighting at the winter wonderland outside of our windows.  But for many people in our communities, when you really have no place to go, it’s more of a nightmare than wonderland out there.  In Forest Grove, several area churches and community groups, including volunteers from ROP member group West County Council for Human Dignity have created their own Miracle on College Way…

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Dec 2008 KTA: Meet and Greet for a New Progressive Politics

Introducing your Elected Officials to your Human Dignity Group

After every election cycle, ROP encourages local groups to sit down with their newly (re)elected officials, orient them to your group, and initiate/deepen a relationship.  Even if your group knows your state legislators already, a formal meeting establishes a working relationship for policy decisions.  These gatherings can be as simple as one or two human dignity group leaders having coffee for 30 minutes with your newly elected official or setting aside time to meet with him/her during your group’s regular December or January meeting.  The goal is to get on the radar of your elected officials and to build a relationship that lasts through the legislative session.

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Challenging Measure 5-190

ST. HELENS, Ore. – A coalition of social justice groups and business owners is formally challenging Measure 5-190, an anti-immigrant law recently passed by voters in Columbia County. The ACLU of Oregon and Northwest Workers’ Justice Project, on behalf of the coalition, filed the complaint today in Columbia County Circuit Court…
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From Start to Finish

Rural Group Supports Voters from Start to Finish on Election Day
Building Relationships Translates into Voter Turnout
Scappoose, Oregon – In a year where much has been said about the value of community organizing and small towns, rural Oregon has a story of its own to tell about both…
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Nov 2008 KTA: Breathe & Debrief: Life after the election

This month’s Kitchen Table Activism is to relax, talk to one-another, celebrate, and think about this past year and what the future holds by hosting a post-election debrief.  The focus could be a small gathering for your core leaders, a party with the whole Human Dignity Group, or a special gathering to welcome those new faces you met this year into your group. Whether you were on the campaign trail 24/7, organized a ballot forum, or spent the last few months doing issue work – we all deserve some space to take notice of how things have changed since January. 

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Join ROPnet!

ROPNET is the official listserve of the Rural Organizing Project. It is a secure list to the extent that all names added are involved with the work of the ROP. Our email listserve was one of the first to use email to organize when it was launched in the early 1990s. ROPNET is intended first and foremost to break the isolation that rural human rights activists can experience.

By signing up for ROPNET you’ll get timely updates and action items for progressive issues relevant to rural Oregon communities.  We generally send two to three e-mails per week and promise not to share your e-mail or personal information.

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