A city’s budget can tell you exactly where the city’s moral compass lies!

Providence Finance Committee holds meeting on calls to 'defund ...  by Cesar Aguirre
image61   Casa Maria and Catholic Workers have always been anti-war. Some  of my favorite stories to hear Brian talk about are the protests against war and nuclear weapons. Stories of him and others camping at Davis Monthan Air Force Base for more than five months. Or of Dorothy Day and other Catholic Workers throwing blood on bombs.

     It is our duty, not only as Catholics but also as decent human beings, to speak out against all destruction of life. War and the militarization of our police force is exactly that, the destruction of life. 

      People of color are dying by the hands of the police every day. Since the beginning of America’s modern policing the “criminal justice” system has been used to destroy the lives of the poor and enslave our bodies (which is explained in great detail in this new Netflix Documentary called The Thirteenth https://www.netflix.com/title/80091741).

     Now with more and more police killings coming to light and the video of George Floyd being killed slowly by a police officer kneeling on the back of his neck for more than 8 minutes, people are fed up and demanding change. There have been more and more calls to defund and abolish the police. The argument of good cop bad cop holds no water when the entire system they work for is continuing to do exactly what its meant to do, destroy and consume the lives and the bodies of poor people and people of color (especially our black brothers and sister) for the profit of a few rich white guys. 

    Some people think defunding the police is impossible but its not, and we need to support it. Just like Casa Maria and Catholic Workers speak out against militarization and war we must do the same thing and speak out against the militarization of our police and the war they are waging against its own citizens. 

     This idea to defund police and move the funding to more social programs, such as education and job training, affordable housing and preventing gentrification, public transit, addiction support, and other programs that are proven to reduce crime and poverty, is not a new one. It is something activists and community leaders have been advocating for a long time but with what is happening today it has become a very tangible goal that is gaining more and more  steam in the mainstream (in Tucson a petition to defund TPD gained more than ten thousand signatures in less than 48 hours https://www.tucsonweekly.com/TheRange/archives/2020/06/08/petition-to-defund-tucson-police-garners-thousands-of-signatures ). 

     Someone once told me that a city’s budget can tell you exactly where the city’s moral compass lies. And Tucson’s city budget shows we care more about militarizing our police than we do about providing much needed services to the community. Let’s change that and defund the police and redirect those funds to the community.

En Español:

     Casa Maria y los Trabajadores Catolicós siempre han estado contra la guerra. Las historias que me gustan escuchar mas del Brian son de las protestas contra la guerra y armas nucleares. Las historias de el y otros compañeros acampando en frente de la base de Fuerza Aérea de Davis Monthan por mas de cinco meses. O de Dorothy Day, y otros trabajadores católicos, bañando bombas en sangre.

      Es nuestro deber, no solo como católicos sino también como seres humanos decentes, luchar contra toda destrucción de la vida. ¡La guerra y la militarización de nuestra fuerza policial es exactamente eso, la destrucción de la vida!

     Las minorías mueren a manos de la policía todos los días. Desde el comienzo de la vigilancia moderna de los Estados Unidos, el sistema de “justicia penal” se ha utilizado para destruir las vidas de los pobres y esclavizar nuestros cuerpos (lo cual se explica con gran detalle en este nuevo documental de Netflix llamado The Thirteenth https://www.netflix.com/title/80091741).

      Ahora, con mas y mas asesinatos grabados en video que se están haciendo publico, junto con el video del asesinato de George Floyd por un oficial de policía que estaba arrodillado en su nuca por mas de 8 minutos, la gente esta harta y exige un cambio. Ha habido mas y mas petición pidiendo desembolsar y abolir la policía (y la polimigra y ICE). La discusión del policía bueno y el policía malo no tiene valor cuando todo el sistema para el que trabajan continua haciendo exactamente lo que debe hacer, destruir y consumir las vidas y los cuerpos de las personas pobres y las minorías (especialmente nuestros hermanos y hermanos africano-americanos) para el beneficio de unos pocos hombres ricos.

      Algunas personas piensan que eliminar la policía es imposible, pero no lo es, y debemos apoyarlo. Al igual que Casa Maria y los Trabajadores Católicos luchan contra la militarización y la guerra, debemos hacer lo mismo y luchar contra la militarización de nuestra policía y la guerra que libran contra sus propios ciudadanos.

     Esta idea de desembolsar a la policía y trasladar los fondos a más programas sociales, como educación y entrenamiento de habilidades laborales, vivienda accesible y prevención de la gentrificación, transporte publico, tratamiento de addiction y otros programas que han demostrado reducir el crimen y la pobreza no es nueva. Es algo que los activistas y los líderes de la comunidad han luchado por hace mucho tiempo, pero con lo que esta sucediendo hoy se ha convertido en un objetivo muy alcanzable que esta agarrando mas fuerza en las ideas populares (en Tucson, una petición para desembolsar TPD gano mas de diez mil firmas en menos de 48 horas Petition To Defund Tucson Police Garners Thousands of Signatures).

Alguien me dijo una vez que el presupuesto de una ciudad puede decirle exactamente donde se encuentra la brújula moral de la ciudad. Y el presupuesto de la ciudad de Tucson muestra que nos importa mas militarizar a nuestra policía que asegurar que nuestra comunidad tiene los servicios sociales que tanto hace falta. Tenemos que cambiar eso. Ay que desembolsar a la policía y dirigir los fondos a la comunidad. 

 

 

!!!ACTION ALERT!!! The People’s Bailout

!!!ACTION ALERT!!!

You can take real action NOW!
Update on the People’s Bailout

The U.S. House of Representatives has passed the HEROES Act; a sweeping, three-trillion dollar proposal that addresses many of the issues called for in the People’s Bailout. However, senators are saying the bill will be “dead upon arrival” when it comes before the Senate. We CANNOT let this bill for the people be crushed. Act now! Use the links below to send a simple message to Senator McSally and Senator Sinema. All you have to say is:  “I am a constituent and I urge you to Please vote YES! on the HEROES Act!”

https://www.mcsally.senate.gov/contact_martha

You can also call the senators and deliver the same message:  “I am a constituent and I urge you to Please vote YES! on the HEROES Act!”  885-912-2982
Please take this easily accomplished yet significant step toward helping the millions of real people adversely affected by Covid-19.
Do it right now!

Bail out!A STIMULUS PACKAGE ROOTED IN JUSTICE

The coronavirus has had a worldwide impact like nothing we have ever seen. However, it has also created an unprecedented opportunity for positive change, if we take action now. Decisions are being made in Washington, D.C. that will determine the course of our society for decades to come. YOU can have a direct influence on those decisions.

As the U.S. government puts together another “stimulus” package, there is a strong grassroots movement rising to demand a just and equitable package focused on the people, not just corporations. Seven congressional Democrats have joined with over five-hundred groups nationwide to let federal lawmakers know we want a People’s Bailout that prioritizes public health and economic relief for workers over corporate profits.

The proposed People’s Bailout is based on these five principles:

  1. Health is the top priority, for all people, with no exceptions –

Free and widely available testing, treatment and protective equipment, paid sick leave and expanded federal funding for Medicaid.

These and other health protections cover all people, including low-wage earners, family farmers, black and Latinx communities, undocumented immigrants, indigenous peoples, the incarcerated and the homeless.

  1. Provide economic relief directly to the people –

Broaden unemployment insurance, increase food aid programs, extend housing assistance, halt evictions and foreclosures.

  1. Aid for rescue workers and communities –

Financial aid directed at specific industries must be channeled to workers, not shareholders or corporate executives.

  1. Make a down payment on an environmentally friendly, sustainable economy and infrastructure.

In addition to short-term emergency action, a large long-term plan must be put into place. By focusing on combating the climate crisis and the unfairness built into our economic system we can create millions of good, family-sustaining jobs with high labor standards. This long-term package must include and invest in working families, communities of color and indigenous communities.

  1. Protect our democratic process while we protect our health –

Ensure the Covid19 crisis does not prevent people from being able to exercise their right to vote by expanding vote by mail, online or automatic registration, extending voting deadlines and increasing early voting days.

This grassroots movement for a People’s Bailout is happening right now. The demand of the people is taking hold. This week, the House of Representatives passed a stimulus package directed at helping people and small businesses. Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., said “There will be a big, broad COVID 4. For anyone who thinks this is the last train out of the station, that is not close to the case.” So now is the time to act; Congress is debating these issues even as we speak. You can take real action to impact the course of our society toward a people-oriented, environment-oriented national community rooted in justice. In this critical situation, your voice can truly matter. Go to thepeoplesbailout.org for detailed information and an immediate, easy-to-use link to send a letter to your senators and representative. Use your voice and make it heard!

“When we are united, we are powerful. Let’s come together – black, brown, white, native and newcomer, from big cities and family farms, and demand a People’s Bailout.”

https://thepeoplesbailout.org/home/#petition

“We cannot wait any longer to deal with the structural causes of poverty, in order to heal our society from an illness that can only lead to new crises.” -Pope Francis

Submitted by Dennis Shannon, volunteer, Casa Maria

Dennis has been interested in social justice for decades

and has been a volunteer at Casa Maria Tucson for over fifteen years.

 

How Liberation Theology and the Empowerment of Poor Communities Threatens the U.S. by Citlali Ramirez

   

cardenal

Pope John Paul II chastising Father Ernesto Cardenal for practicing Liberation Theology on his visit to Nicaragua, March 1983.
     The Catholic Church has a long and complex history, especially in a Global context. In the mid 20th century, Catholic groups in Latin America began preaching for and practicing what is considered Liberation Theology. Liberation Theology sought to shift the alliance of the Catholic Church away from the military, elite and, corrupted and turn its advocacy and efforts towards the poor. Brazil is one of the several countries in which this new ideology began to gain traction in the 1960s.
     Brazil’s engagement with Liberation Theology took root when Joao Goulart was elected as president in 1961. After years of U.S. economic, military, and political intervention in Brazil for U.S. profit, the rise of Liberation Theology and Goulart’s presidency threatened what Noam Chompsky called the U.S.’ “subfacist state” in Brazil. Goulart worked empowered labor movements and left wing activists in striving to make Brazil independent from the U.S.’ grasp of regressive economic pressures. As a 1979 ​article, ​“​Brasil & CIA”​, explains, “the Goulart regime of 1961-1964 represented the ‘fundamental contradiction between a government’s responsibility to the citizens who elected it, and the obedience to the demands of foreign creditors expressed in the IMF stabilization program’”. The US government then instigated counterinsurgency measures to overthrow president Goulart by sending additional CIA members to Brazil and channeling funding to politicians, media companies, and police groups to carry out their efforts, according to records from the NACLA.
    In the U.S., both federal and local governments employ similar tactics of silencing the voices of poor black and brown people in order to continue to profit off of our labor, resources, art, and lives in ways in which the effects are less tangible. We can see this in the way that neighborhoods are gentrified on the basis of “improving the neighborhood”; there are always outsiders looking to profit off of black and brown labor without providing the community or employees with any significant benefits, not even a living wage. Communities must empower their own residents to do good for their own communities, keeping the fundamental basis of Liberation Theology in mind and providing the “preferential option for the poor”, ensuing that our labor and resources work for us, not the elite.
En Español:

     La Iglesia católica tiene una historia larga y compleja, especialmente en un contexto global. A mediados del siglo XX, los grupos católicos en América Latina comenzaron a predicar y practicar lo que se considera la Teología de la Liberación. La Teología de la Liberación buscó apartar la alianza de la Iglesia Católica de los militares, los ricos y la corrupción, y dirigir su defensa y esfuerzos hacia los pobres. Brasil es uno de los varios países en los que esta nueva ideología comenzó a ganar fuerza en la década de 1960.

El compromiso de Brasil con la Teología de la Liberación echó raíces cuando Joao Goulart fue elegido presidente en 1961. Después de años de intervención económica, militar y política de los Estados Unidos en Brasil para obtener ganancias de los Estados Unidos, el surgimiento de la Teología de la Liberación y la presidencia de Goulart amenazaron lo que Noam Chompsky llamó a los Estados Unidos. “Estado subfacista” en Brasil. Goulart trabajó en movimientos laborales empoderados y activistas de izquierda en su esfuerzo por hacer que Brasil sea independiente del alcance de las presiones económicas regresivas de Estados Unidos. Como explica un artículo de 1979, “Brasil y CIA”, “el régimen de Goulart de 1961-1964 representó la ‘contradicción fundamental entre la responsabilidad de un gobierno hacia los ciudadanos que lo eligieron y la obediencia a las demandas de los acreedores extranjeros. expresado en el programa de estabilización del FMI ‘”. El gobierno de los EE. UU. Instigó medidas de contrainsurgencia para derrocar al presidente Goulart enviando miembros adicionales de la CIA a Brasil y canalizando fondos a políticos, compañías de medios y grupos policiales para llevar a cabo sus esfuerzos, según los registros de la NACLA.

En los EE. UU., Tanto los gobiernos federales como los locales emplean tácticas similares para silenciar las voces de los pobres negros y marrones para continuar beneficiándose de nuestro trabajo, recursos, arte y vidas de manera que los efectos sean menos tangibles. Podemos ver esto en la forma en que los vecindarios se gentrifican sobre la base de “mejorar el vecindario”; siempre hay personas ajenas que buscan beneficiarse del trabajo de personas de raza negra y latina sin proporcionar a la comunidad o empleados beneficios significativos, ni siquiera un salario digno. Las comunidades deben empoderar a sus propios residentes para que hagan el bien por sus propias comunidades, teniendo en cuenta la base fundamental de la Teología de la Liberación y proporcionando la “opción preferencial por los pobres”, asegurando que nuestro trabajo y recursos trabajen para nosotros, no para los ricos.

by Citlali Ramirez

 

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Sacrificing the Many for the Privilege of a Few

On Russell Brand, Voting & How Not to Start a Revolution | the ...

by Gene Martinez

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Historically, crises have consistently exposed deeper realities of power and inequity that have always been present but are either disregarded or otherwise hidden during ordinary times. The COVID -19 pandemic has done just that. It is not just a health crisis; it is a crisis rooted in our very system of capitalism.

A capitalistic system, especially the one practiced in the United States, promotes the concentration of money, resources and power in the hands of a few by exploiting the work of the large working class. In the United States, the powerful few are the leaders of corporate America, and the exploited many are the marginalized brown and black populations, the working class and the poor.

The first cases of the coronavirus were diagnosed back in late January and early February. The Trump administration downplayed the risk posed by the virus and left the country open. “We have it totally under control,” Trump said in January, “It’s going to disappear.”

However, early cases of the virus, tied to international travel, affected mostly members of the powerful few: celebrities, political leaders and those close to Trump himself. On March 16, Trump and his administration declared a national emergency. It seems this was in response to the impact the virus was having on the ‘elite.’

As the pandemic now stretches into its fifth month, data gathered by the Atlantic shows that communities of color are being disproportionately affected by COVID-19. Black and brown communities account for more than half of coronavirus cases and nearly 60 percent of deaths.

According to the New York Times, the disproportionate burden that black, brown and poor communities are experiencing is a direct result of:

A) Their over-representation in professions where they are more likely to be exposed to the virus. And,

B) The income gap in the U.S. that has left these communities more vulnerable to being laid off.

The coronavirus is largely infecting, and affecting, members of disenfranchised communities of color who cannot afford to miss work and are not able to telecommute: meatpackers, those required to be in warehouses, loading food trucks, transportation workers, grocery clerks, etc.

Once this disproportionate impact of the epidemic was revealed to the powerful few, many began to regard the rising death toll as less of a national emergency and more of an inconvenience. Now, although the COVID-19 has taken the lives of more than 96,000 people, our country has recently lifted the national emergency. It would appear that as long as the lives being lost and adversely affected by this disease are the disenfranchised, reviving the economy is more important than saving lives.

It’s no coincidence that since the demographic data of COVID – 19 victims surfaced, conservative broadcasters decried the restrictions, people protested, and the president called for people to return to work.

Trump said, “Will some people be affected? Yes. Will some people be affected badly? Yes. But we have to get our country open and we have to get it open soon.”

Lifting pandemic related restrictions on businesses and reopening the country – as many U.S. states are now doing – exposes what we’ve already known, the powerful few who control

the empire known as ‘the United States of America’ will not hesitate to sacrifice the lives of the disenfranchised (black, brown and poor) for their personal gain.

According to the World Economic Forum, there has been 2,450 coronavirus deaths per day in the U.S. Amid this deadly condition which our marginalized population has been forced to face, Walmart’s stock has grown 2% and Jeff Bezos, CEO of Amazon is now projected to become a trillionaire by 2026.

The U.S. continues to have the largest coronavirus outbreak in the world, with nearly 1.64 million people infected so far, and a Johns Hopkins University model projects deaths reaching 3,000 per day now that the country has lifted the shutdown.

We cannot let the powerful few remain secure and profitable at home while exploiting and forcing the many to risk their lives.

This is how we must emerge from this crisis: We must look critically at our current system, then enact real policies that are transformative for workers. Policies that invest in compassion, and that ensure better economic resiliency and greater accountability when it comes to the needs of the people. At Casa Maria, we believe in the works of mercy and the works of justice. We believe in a moral vision of a just, inclusive society that advances the emancipation of those minority groups from the deadly and destructive system of capitalism; one that secures the freedom for all of us to thrive.

 

En Español:
Históricamente, las crisis han expuesto constantemente realidades más profundas de poder e inequidad que siempre han estado presentes, pero que no se tienen en cuenta o se ocultan durante los tiempos normales. La pandemia COVID -19 ha hecho exactamente eso. No es solo una crisis de salud; Es una crisis arraigada en nuestro propio sistema de capitalismo.

Un sistema capitalista, especialmente el que se practica en los Estados Unidos, promueve la concentración de dinero, recursos y poder en manos de unos pocos al explotar el trabajo de la gran clase trabajadora. En los Estados Unidos, los pocos poderosos son los líderes de las empresas estadounidenses, y los más explotados son las poblaciones marrones y negras marginadas, la clase trabajadora y los pobres.

Los primeros casos del coronavirus se diagnosticaron a fines de enero y principios de febrero. La administración Trump restó importancia al riesgo que representa el virus y dejó abierto el país. “Lo tenemos totalmente bajo control”, dijo Trump en enero, “va a desaparecer”.

Sin embargo, los primeros casos del virus, ligados a viajes internacionales, afectaron principalmente a miembros de unos pocos poderosos: celebridades, líderes políticos y personas cercanas al propio Trump. El 16 de marzo, Trump y su administración declararon una emergencia nacional. Parece que esto fue en respuesta al impacto que el virus estaba teniendo en la “élite”.

A medida que la pandemia se extiende hasta su quinto mes, los datos recopilados por el Atlántico muestran que las comunidades de color están siendo desproporcionadamente afectadas por COVID-19. Las comunidades de Afro y Latino Americanos representan más de la mitad de los casos de Coronavirus y casi el 60 por ciento de las muertes.

Según el New York Times, la carga desproporcionada que sufren las comunidades negras, marrones y pobres es el resultado directo de:

  1. A) Su sobre representación en profesiones donde es más probable que estén expuestos al virus. Y,
  2. B) La brecha de ingresos en los Estados Unidos que ha dejado a estas comunidades más vulnerables a ser despedidas.

El Coronavirus está infectando y afectando en gran medida a los miembros de comunidades de color privadas de sus derechos que no pueden permitirse perder el trabajo y no pueden teletrabajar: empacadores de carne, aquellos que deben estar en almacenes, cargando camiones de comida, trabajadores de transporte, empleados de supermercados, etc.

Una vez que este impacto desproporcionado de la epidemia se reveló a unos pocos poderosos, muchos comenzaron a considerar el creciente número de muertos como una emergencia nacional y un inconveniente. Ahora, aunque el COVID-19 ha cobrado la vida de más de 96,000 personas, nuestro país recientemente levantó la emergencia nacional. Parecería que mientras las vidas que se pierden y se ven afectadas negativamente por esta enfermedad son privadas de sus derechos, revivir la economía es más importante que salvar vidas.

No es coincidencia que, dado que surgieron los datos demográficos de COVID – 19 víctimas, las emisoras conservadoras denunciaron las restricciones, la gente protestó y el presidente pidió que la gente volviera al trabajo.

Trump dijo: “¿Algunas personas se verán afectadas? Si. ¿Algunas personas se verán gravemente afectadas? Si. Pero tenemos que abrir nuestro país y tenemos que abrirlo pronto”.

Levantar las restricciones relacionadas con la pandemia en las empresas y reabrir el país, como lo hacen muchos estados de EE. UU., Expone lo que ya hemos conocido, los pocos poderosos que controlan.

El imperio conocido como “los Estados Unidos de América” ​​no dudará en sacrificar la vida de los marginados (negros, marrones y pobres) para su beneficio personal.

Según el Foro Económico Mundial, ha habido 2.450 muertes por Coronavirus por día en los EE. UU. En medio de esta condición mortal que nuestra población marginada se ha visto obligada a enfrentar, las acciones de Walmart han crecido un 2% y Jeff Bezos, CEO de Amazon, ahora se proyecta que se convierta en un trillonario para 2026.

Estados Unidos continúa teniendo el mayor brote de Coronavirus en el mundo, con casi 1.64 millones de personas infectadas hasta el momento, y un modelo de la Universidad Johns Hopkins proyecta muertes que alcanzan las 3.000 por día ahora que el país ha levantado el cierre.

No podemos permitir que los pocos poderosos permanezcan seguros y rentables en casa mientras explotan y obligan a muchos a arriesgar sus vidas.

Así es como debemos salir de esta crisis: debemos mirar críticamente nuestro sistema actual, y luego promulgar políticas reales que sean transformadoras para los trabajadores. Políticas que invierten en la compasión y que aseguran una mejor capacidad de recuperación económica y una mayor rendición de cuentas cuando se trata de las necesidades de las personas. En Casa Maria, creemos en las obras de misericordia y las obras de justicia. Creemos en una visión moral de una sociedad justa e inclusiva que promueva la emancipación de esos grupos minoritarios del sistema mortal y destructivo del capitalismo; uno que asegure la libertad para que todos prosperemos.

IT’S ALL POLITICAL!

by Cesar Aguirre

cesar aguirre

A few months ago, before the pandemic hit, I got together with the family to watch the super bowl. My brother-in-law was sitting next to me when he received a text. Out loud he read the message, “‘Do you support Bernie?’ Oh hell no!” I leaned over curiously, hoping to spark meaningful discourse (sports just don’t do it for me anymore, I need substance). Instead of discussion I got shut down with the most politically charged statement that one can make, “I’m not political, I don’t do politics bro.”

Anyone that knows me knows I wear my politics on my sleeve. I’m proud to say that I’m for healthcare and education for all, affordable housing, environmental protection, and an economy that puts people and the their needs before profit (not this capitalist system that puts profit over people. Even with COVID-19 there are many that feel it more important to open up the economy regardless of the lives that will be lost in doing so).

When he first said that he is not political I had some respect for him. See, we must understand that that is a political statement in itself. It can mean many things but it is political. I used to choose not to participate in a system that A) was not made, designed, created for me to participate in and B) I felt I had no real voice, influence, or choice that could help improve my quality of life. It was my political stance to not participate. It can also be a way to cop-out of having meaningful discourse (or even an argument as tempers can flare when talking politics). I thought maybe he chose not to participate in the system, but it was really a cop-out. A few weeks later I found out that he and my sister went to march at the state capitol to protest a gun control law. I’m sure that he felt our politics wouldn’t align and it could turn ugly, so instead of discussion and an opportunity for critical thinking we just continue to assume what we each believe in politically.

A friend was telling me a story that a friend of ours told him about when he was a teenager and left his parents home to live with a friend because he got into with his dad.

Family dynamics are political too. Some families are run conservatively, one could say militant, or like a dictatorship, where one parent has the final say and obedience and harsh discipline or punishment are the result of disobedience or “talking back”. Other families are run more liberal and open minded, where children are allowed to have opinions and argue their point of view, shaping their own beliefs and “misbehavior”or bad/negative choices are an opportunity for reflection, discussion and growth.

Our friend was being raised in the former, the friend that he went to go live with was being raised in the latter. Our friend had never seen anything like it. His friend was actually allowed to talk back and voice his opinions to his parents. Right before his eyes was a whole new world, one where he could question what he is being told and there was real discussion, arguments, and it really changed the way he interacted with the world.

I’m not saying one way is right and the other is wrong. As a parent of two very different girls I can tell you that what works for one won’t always work for the other.

Politics affect so many parts of our lives. It’s way more than just gun control, or abortion (most Catholics voted for trump regardless of how evil he is). Everything from education to sidewalks and streetlights depends on the politicians that are supposed to represent us. So why are we not constantly engaged in meaningful discussion about politics?

If we are able to be open minded and have real discussions based in facts we could get a lot more done working together. I’m sure my brother-in-law and I have a lot more in common politically than not (we’re both working class brown men, and he’s a union rail worker). But somehow he’s been convinced that we are against each other because according to him and my sister the “Democrats are trying to take our guns away” and thats why they wont vote this year.

After some reflection I realize I do have some respect for my brother-in-law. Maybe he’s choosing not to participate in the elections because he feels he really doesn’t have a choice and isn’t represented by any candidate. But until we have that conversation I can only assume.

We all have things we feel strongly about but we cannot cling to one above all. My politics_edit-900x600passions are abolishing the criminal “in”justice system and supporting public education, but I engage in politics on all levels and try to stay informed. They want us to have tunnel vision, hollering back and forth about what matters most to us, or even better, refusing to even engage with each other at all!

But don’t forget, it’s all political!

 

En Español:

Hace unos meses, antes del golpe de la pandemia, me reuní con la familia para ver el Súper Bowl. Mi cuñado estaba sentado a mi lado cuando recibió un mensaje de texto. En voz alta leyó el mensaje: “¿Apoyas a Bernie? ¡Oh, demonios, no!” Me incliné con curiosidad, con la esperanza de provocar un discurso significativo (los deportes ya no lo hacen por mí, necesito sustancia). En lugar de debatir, me cerraron con la declaración con mayor carga política que uno puede hacer: “No soy político, no hago política, hermano”.

Cualquiera que me conozca sabe que llevo mi política en la manga. Me enorgullece decir que estoy a favor de la atención médica y la educación gratis para todos, viviendas asequibles, protección del medio ambiente y una economía que antepone a las personas y sus necesidades a las ganancias (no a este sistema capitalista que pone las ganancias sobre las personas. Incluso con COVID- 19 hay muchos que sienten que es más importante abrir la economía independientemente de las vidas que se perderán al hacerlo).

Cuando dijo por primera vez que no es político, lo respeté un poco. Mira, debemos entender que esa es una declaración política en sí misma. Puede significar muchas cosas, pero es político. Solía ​​elegir no participar en un sistema en el que A) no estaba hecho, diseñado, creado para que yo participara y B) Sentía que no tenía una voz, influencia o elección real que pudiera ayudarme a mejorar mi calidad de vida. Era mi postura política no participar. También puede ser una forma de evitar tener un discurso significativo (o incluso una discusión, ya que los ánimos pueden estallar cuando se habla de política). Pensé que tal vez él eligió no participar en el sistema, pero realmente fue una evasión. Unas semanas más tarde descubrí que él y mi hermana fueron a marchar al capitolio estatal para protestar contra una ley de control de armas. Estoy seguro de que sintió que nuestra política no se alinearía y que podría volverse fea, por lo que, en lugar de una discusión y una oportunidad para el pensamiento crítico, simplemente continuamos asumiendo lo que cada uno cree políticamente.

Un amigo me contaba una historia que un amigo nuestro le contó cuando era un adolescente y dejó a sus padres en casa para vivir con un amigo porque se metió con su padre.

La dinámica familiar también es política. Algunas familias se ejecutan de manera conservadora, se podría decir militante, o como una dictadura, donde uno de los padres tiene la última palabra y la obediencia y la disciplina o castigos severos son el resultado de la desobediencia o “respuesta”. Otras familias son más liberales y de mente abierta, donde se les permite a los niños tener opiniones y argumentar sus puntos de vista, moldeando sus propias creencias y “mala conducta” o elecciones malas / negativas son una oportunidad para la reflexión, discusión y crecimiento.

Nuestro amigo fue criado en el primero, el amigo con el que fue a vivir fue criado en el segundo. Nuestro amigo nunca había visto algo así. A su amigo se le permitió hablar y expresar sus opiniones a sus padres. Justo ante sus ojos había un mundo completamente nuevo, uno en el que podía cuestionar lo que le decían y había una discusión real, argumentos, y realmente cambió la forma en que interactuaba con el mundo.

No digo que una forma sea correcta y la otra incorrecta. Como madre de dos niñas muy diferentes, puedo decirte que lo que funciona para una no siempre funcionará para la otra.

La política afecta muchas partes de nuestras vidas. Es mucho más que solo el control de armas o el aborto (la mayoría de los católicos votaron por triunfo sin importar cuán malvado sea). Todo, desde la educación hasta las aceras y las farolas, depende de los políticos que se supone que nos representan. Entonces, ¿por qué no estamos constantemente involucrados en una discusión significativa sobre política?

Si podemos ser de mente abierta y tener discusiones reales basadas en hechos, podríamos hacer mucho más trabajando juntos. Estoy seguro de que mi cuñado y yo tenemos mucho más en común políticamente que no (los dos somos hombres latinos de clase trabajadora y él es un trabajador ferroviario sindical). Pero de alguna manera está convencido de que estamos en contra porque, según él y mi hermana, “los demócratas están tratando de quitarnos las armas” y es por eso que no votarán este año.

Después de reflexionar, me doy cuenta de que respeto a mi cuñado. Tal vez está eligiendo no participar en las elecciones porque siente que realmente no tiene otra opción y no está representado por ningún candidato. Pero hasta que tengamos esa conversación, solo puedo asumir.

Todos tenemos cosas por las que nos sentimos fuertemente, pero no podemos aferrarnos a una sobre todo. Mis pasiones están aboliendo el sistema de justicia penal  y apoyando la educación pública, pero me dedico a la política en todos los niveles y trato de mantenerme informado. Quieren que tengamos visión de túnel, gritando de un lado a otro sobre lo que más nos importa, o incluso mejor, ¡negándose a relacionarnos entre nosotros!

Pero no lo olvides, ¡todo es político!

Medical care for all

      Last week I received a notification that El Rio Community Health Center would be doing free COVID-19 tests. I decided to set appointments for my mom and me. As I was making our appointments my mom stopped me to say she wasn’t going. Irritated I asked her why, she said, even if she were sick she couldn’t afford treatment anyway. I couldn’t believe that most of us are having to face this dilemma. The tests might be free but medical treatment can cost uninsured patients tens of thousands of dollars. According to the Census Bureau, the average South Tucson resident’s annual income is $23,603. DES makes it almost impossible to qualify for Medicare, leaving us with the existential choice of taking on overwhelming debt or assure our health care.
      Health care shouldn’t be a privilege, it’s our human right! We live in the wealthiest country in the world and yet over 30 million of the American population including over 750,000 in Arizona, do not have health care. It’s preposterous that the U.S stands entirely alone among developed nations that do not offer universal health care.
     Unfortunately, it took a pandemic for most of us to realize that the healthcare system is broken. We cannot allow our government to continue practicing inequalities by prioritizing private profit instead our citizens wellbeing. To take action against health disparities, we must hold our government accountable to immediately provide free Covid-19 testing and treatment for everyone. Most importantly, remember to elect the democratic candidates that care and will reform our privatized health care system.
Written by Roxanna Valenzuela
Casa Maria Catholic Worker

Gentrification Crisis

Our community needs to take on this attitude, no? That housing is a most basic human need just like health care.

My prayer is that the damned pandemic might slap into peoples consciousness the need for “a massive investment in public housing and anti-gentrification community land trust”, starting right here in South Tucson! Check out these articles! -Brian Flagg

 

 

 

 

 

 

¡Vamos Hachando le Ganas con Positividad!

Rose

Mi opinión del Covid-19 es que las personas de bajo recursos estamos batallando más por no tener el trabajo para poder llevar nuestra comida para casa. En algunas familias nomas están trabajando, mama o papa, solo una persona, y eso no alcanza para todas las necesidades. A mí me da mucha tristeza los niños cuando te piden algo y nos puedes complacerlos. Pero, si pudieras venir a Casa María todos los estamos abiertos de 8:30-11:00 A.M. Estamos para servir a todas las familias que necesitan comida. ¡Vengan por ella!

Me preocupa que las personas más vulnerables se puedan enfermar del Corona Virus por la falta de recurso y no estar bien alimentados. Es muy triste que muera la gente, especialmente por no tener seguro médico. Los hispanos y comunidades de bajo recursos somos los más vulnerables porque tenemos que trabajar porque a muchos de nosotros no nos quedan de otra. Vamos hachando le ganas con positividad y adelante que nuestro padre, Dios, nos proteja a todos. ¡Dios te ama!

Quisiera decirles a las personas que vean este mensaje que si usted tiene la oportunidad de ayudar al necesita puede hacerlo. Ay muchas maneras de ayudar al prójimo ¡Se necesita mucho de usted! Nos podemos ayudar unas ha otros, así como Casa María, estamos para servir. Tenemos que ser generosos con el prójimo, Yo pienso, ¡que el que no vive para servir no sirve para vivir!

Este artículo bilingüe fue escrito por Laura, quien ha dedicado su tiempo a los ministerios de Casa María más de 11 años. Podemos continuar sirviendo a nuestra comunidad gracias a nuestros voluntarios de buen corazón como Laura.

 

Let’s Move forward with Positivity!

My opinion of the Covid-19 is that low-income people are struggling more with not having enough work to be able to take food necessities. In some families, only one person is working, mom or dad, and that is not enough for all needs. It makes me really sad when children ask for something and you are not able to provide. However, if you could come to Casa María we are all open from 8:30-11:00 A.M. We are here to serve all families who need food. Come pick up!

I am concerned that the most vulnerable people may get sick from the Corona Virus due to lack of resources and not being well fed. It is very sad that people die, especially because they do not have health insurance. Hispanics and low-income communities are the most vulnerable because we have to work, many of us have no other choice. Let’s move forward with positivity and have faith that our father God, protects us all. God loves you!

I would like to tell the people who see this message that if you have the opportunity to help, you can do so. There are many ways to help others, much is needed from you! We can help each other, just as Casa María, we are here to serve. We have to be generous with our neighbor, I think that he who does not live to serve does not deserve to live!

Este artículo bilingüe fue escrito por Laura, quien ha dedicado su tiempo a los ministerios de Casa María más de 11 años. Podemos continuar sirviendo a nuestra comunidad gracias a nuestros voluntarios de buen corazón como Laura.

 

!!!ACTION ALERT!!! The People’s Bailout

!!!ACTION ALERT!!!
You can take real action NOW!
Update on the People’s Bailout

The U.S. House of Representatives has passed the HEROES Act; a sweeping, three-trillion dollar proposal that addresses many of the issues called for in the People’s Bailout. However, senators are saying the bill will be “dead upon arrival” when it comes before the Senate. We CANNOT let this bill for the people be crushed. Act now! Use the links below to send a simple message to Senator McSally and Senator Sinema. All you have to say is:  “I am a constituent and I urge you to Please vote YES! on the HEROES Act!”

https://www.mcsally.senate.gov/contact_martha

You can also call the senators and deliver the same message:  “I am a constituent and I urge you to Please vote YES! on the HEROES Act!”  885-912-2982
Please take this easily accomplished yet significant step toward helping the millions of real people adversely affected by Covid-19.
Do it right now!

Bail out!A STIMULUS PACKAGE ROOTED IN JUSTICE

The coronavirus has had a worldwide impact like nothing we have ever seen. However, it has also created an unprecedented opportunity for positive change, if we take action now. Decisions are being made in Washington, D.C. that will determine the course of our society for decades to come. YOU can have a direct influence on those decisions.

As the U.S. government puts together another “stimulus” package, there is a strong grassroots movement rising to demand a just and equitable package focused on the people, not just corporations. Seven congressional Democrats have joined with over five-hundred groups nationwide to let federal lawmakers know we want a People’s Bailout that prioritizes public health and economic relief for workers over corporate profits.

The proposed People’s Bailout is based on these five principles:

  1. Health is the top priority, for all people, with no exceptions –

Free and widely available testing, treatment and protective equipment, paid sick leave and expanded federal funding for Medicaid.

These and other health protections cover all people, including low-wage earners, family farmers, black and Latinx communities, undocumented immigrants, indigenous peoples, the incarcerated and the homeless.

  1. Provide economic relief directly to the people –

Broaden unemployment insurance, increase food aid programs, extend housing assistance, halt evictions and foreclosures.

  1. Aid for rescue workers and communities –

Financial aid directed at specific industries must be channeled to workers, not shareholders or corporate executives.

  1. Make a down payment on an environmentally friendly, sustainable economy and infrastructure.

In addition to short-term emergency action, a large long-term plan must be put into place. By focusing on combating the climate crisis and the unfairness built into our economic system we can create millions of good, family-sustaining jobs with high labor standards. This long-term package must include and invest in working families, communities of color and indigenous communities.

  1. Protect our democratic process while we protect our health –

Ensure the Covid19 crisis does not prevent people from being able to exercise their right to vote by expanding vote by mail, online or automatic registration, extending voting deadlines and increasing early voting days.

This grassroots movement for a People’s Bailout is happening right now. The demand of the people is taking hold. This week, the House of Representatives passed a stimulus package directed at helping people and small businesses. Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., said “There will be a big, broad COVID 4. For anyone who thinks this is the last train out of the station, that is not close to the case.” So now is the time to act; Congress is debating these issues even as we speak. You can take real action to impact the course of our society toward a people-oriented, environment-oriented national community rooted in justice. In this critical situation, your voice can truly matter. Go to thepeoplesbailout.org for detailed information and an immediate, easy-to-use link to send a letter to your senators and representative. Use your voice and make it heard!

“When we are united, we are powerful. Let’s come together – black, brown, white, native and newcomer, from big cities and family farms, and demand a People’s Bailout.”

https://thepeoplesbailout.org/home/#petition

“We cannot wait any longer to deal with the structural causes of poverty, in order to heal our society from an illness that can only lead to new crises.” -Pope Francis

Submitted by Dennis Shannon, volunteer, Casa Maria

Dennis has been interested in social justice for decades

and has been a volunteer at Casa Maria Tucson for over fifteen years.