Dear Greylock Together,
“We showed that we are united and that we, young people, are unstoppable,” says Greta Thunberg. “We can no longer look away from what our society has been ignoring for so long whether it is equality, justice or sustainability.”
We’re witnessing something mighty, folks.
We witnessed it in the spring of 2017 after the massacre in Parkland, FL at Marjory Stoneman Douglas HS, when students like Emma Gonzalez spoke up, stood up, and organized for the national March for Our Lives in DC; the tragic moment grew into a sustained movement, fueled by our youth, now 300 chapters strong. We witness it every Friday as Swedish activist Greta Thunberg, now 17, strikes for our climate; she has reached week 72, never missing a Friday, having spent 18 months of her young life changing the lives of millions across the globe. We witness 17-year-old Indiginous teen activist, Helena Gualinga, as she fights to protect the forests in Ecuador because, “It’s about my home.” We witness young BLM activists fighting tirelessly for racial justice as it intersects so many of their daily spaces—from gun violence to educational access to representation to the planet they have inherited. Zee Thomas, 15 (Nashville, TN), Tiana Day, 17 (San Roman, CA), Shayla Turner, 18 (Chicago, IL) and Brianna Taylor, 19 (Olivette, MO) are four of the young women leading the BLM youth revolution for racial justice. We’ve witnessed this before. John Lewis was just 23 when he delivered this speech at the March on Washington in 1963 as the youngest civil rights activist to deliver an address to the crowd that day, and he has left a legacy of good trouble in his wake. We are now the beneficiaries of this new, compassionate and spirited generation bringing truth to power. It is OUR job as voters, to listen and learn from these brilliant young folks, to amplify their calls, and to do all that we can to be sure that their hard work is answered this fall. “Young people are raising their voices and proving to everyone that there’s no age limit for social change.” Greta’s clarity reminds us that, “Humanity has not yet failed.” Therein lies the hope we are all invited to put into daily action. Our local youth right here in Berkshire County use their voices and their activism in astounding ways, every day.
NAACP Student Day of Action. This Saturday (July 25th) is the Student Day of Action at Common Park in Pittsfield from noon to three. We are co-sponsoring along with Berkshire Pride and the MWPC. Stay socially distanced and wear a mask as you show up to this day of action!
- Musical protest in honor of Elijah McClain – PHS orchestra members
- Voter Registration
- NAACP Membership Drive
We will be tabling at this event and will NEED VOLUNTEERS, since our contribution will be to sell BLM signs (all proceeds going to NAACP). Contact Liza B if you can help.
GT Team Leader for Markey. Meet Owen-Tucker Smith and commit to helping him as we re-elect Senator Ed Markey!
“For those of you who don’t know me, I just graduated from Mt. Greylock this spring, and this summer I have been spending time working as a fellow for Ed Markey’s senate re-election campaign! Ed is not only an original co-author of the Green New Deal, but he’s been fighting for progressive climate legislation all throughout his career. He’s also fought for Medicare for All, legislation combating qualified immunity for police officers and the Black women’s maternity crisis, and most recently bills to respond to the catastrophic impacts of COVID-19: paid sick leave, expanded unemployment insurance and food security programs, and moratoriums on evictions and mortgage payments. If you want to learn more about what Ed’s all about, click here!
Basically, Ed is the most progressive US senator currently serving. Losing him would mean losing a ton of momentum in his fight for environmental justice, which we cannot afford right now. Good news – you can help Ed stay in the senate! In addition to regular county-wide Markey volunteering events, there are now weekly phonebanks specifically for Williamstown and Northern Berkshire County! We have been holding them on Thursdays from 5:30-7 pm, each beginning with a training to get you comfortable with making calls. Even if you’ve never made calls for a campaign before, we would love to have you—no experience required. If you’re interested in volunteering in any capacity with the campaign, whether it be coming to a Williamstown phonebank or one of the other Berkshire County events (there are a ton of opportunities, so if you’re busy on Thursday evenings there will be many other options!) please email me at email@example.com or text me at 413-884-5359 so I can get you info and get you connected with the right people! We’d love to start a team of Greylock Together folks who are interested in keeping this progressive champion in the senate.”
- You might not be surprised to know that Owen and Maddy (our #TeamGideon captain) have done amazing work throughout their time at MGRHS leading the REV student group (Register Educate Vote); both worked as Fellows for Elizabeth Warren’s presidential campaign. Now as MG graduates, they are representing the voices of our youth progressive activists to ensure we turn Washington BLUE and put our most promising, progressive candidates in office this fall!! Greylock Together is grateful for their work and leadership.
- Let’s flood the area with Markey signs! Thank you to GT leader Arlene Kirsch who is our local sign distributor. Want a lawn sign? Contact Arlene with your address and contact info: firstname.lastname@example.org and 508-615-1056
GT Fundraiser: Cocktails and Conversation with Jon Lovett. Our next fundraiser will beTuesday, August 25, 2020 at 5:00 pm with Jon Lovett, former presidential speechwriter, as well as a TV writer, podcast, host, and straight shooter widely respected on both sides! In 2017, he founded Crooked Media with Jon Favreau and Tommy Vietor to build a progressive media network with shows, analysis, and content that informs, entertains, and inspires action. There, he co-hosts “Pod Save America” and hosts “Lovett or Leave It.”
100% of funds raised will go toward flipping Senate seats in the swing states of Maine, Colorado, North Carolina, Iowa, and Montana. This event is a collaboration between Greylock Together and Force Multiplier.
Inclusive Food in the Berkshires. Wendy P sends along this invite to an event from her team at NBCC:
Please join the Berkshire Food Access Collaborative and the MA Food System Collaborative in a virtual community conversation that will focus on: “A Resilient, Inclusive and Sustainable Local Food System”. This will take place on July 28th, from 10:00am-11:30am. Please register here.
BLM Vigil Every Friday in Williamstown. The vigils continue every Friday from 5:00 to 5:30 pm in Williamstown. Facebook event here.
Planning Board Meeting Williamstown. They’re holding a hearing on Wednesday (July 22nd) at 7:00 pm on allowing weddings and other events on farms, marijuana cultivation, and nonconforming dwelling rules. Zoom link here.
ANTIRACISM IN ACTION… THIS WEEK’S RESOURCES:
- Why are all the Black Kids Sitting Together in the Cafeteria? Beverly Daniel Tatum, PhD
- Stamped: Racism, Antiracism and You (Remix) by Jason Reynolds and Ibram X. Kendi
- The Life and Legacy of John Lewis – The Daily Podcast, 7/20/20
- Bryan Stevenson on how America can heal: A conversation about truth and reconciliation in the US. The Ezra Klein Show Podcast, 7/20/20
- Reparations for Aunt Jemima! Still Processing Podcast, 7/16/20
- Just Mercy – Film based on the life work of civil rights attorney Bryan Stevenson, founder of the Equal Justice Initiative
- Anguish and Action – Obama Foundation, Town Hall with John Lewis, 6 weeks before his death; “President Obama recently joined Congressman John Lewis, founder and executive director of the Equal Justice Initiative Bryan Stevenson, writer and survivor of police brutality Leon Ford, Jr., and youth leader LeQuan Muhammad, in an intergenerational panel moderated by activist and author Darnell Moore, to discuss the mental toll racism takes on people of color.”
- John Lewis: Good Trouble – Extended through 7/30 at Images Cinema!
Check out more news from this week at Muckraker Farm.
NAACP Day of Action
Common Park, Pittsfield
July 25 @ 12:00 to 3:00 pm
Greylock Together Meeting via Zoom
August 9 @ 3:00 – 4:30 pm