Minnesota Feminists Speak Out!

The unofficial blog of Minnesota NOW


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We’re disappointed with Minnesotans United PAC

Minnesota NOW and the Pro-Choice community as a whole contributed significant resources to the fight for marriage equality here in Minnesota. That is why we at Minnesota NOW were very disappointed to hear that the Minnesotans United PAC screens their candidates focused singularly on the issue of marriage for same-sex couples and that they will be providing funding to several legislators who have a history of voting for anti-choice legislation. We were told the Minnesotans United PAC will raise and spend resources to support legislators who voted for same-sex marriage – they have no other screens and are aware this model won’t work for all donors. We are truly saddened that the Minnesotans United PAC does not have our back when we need them. We are not equal until we are ALL equal.

We encourage you to direct your financial support to the Minnesota NOW PAC which screens candidates on all of our six core issues:  LGBTQ rights, reproductive rights, economic justice, racial equality, constitutional equality and freedom from violence. This will ensure your money is supporting a candidate that acts on all of your values, not just one.

The following 11 legislators are being made a priority by the Minnesotans United PAC and had a less than 100% rating from NARAL Pro-Choice Minnesota last session:

Representative Joe Radinovich (DFL)

of Crosby, Minnesota – District 10B

 Representative Tim Faust (DFL)

of Hinckley, Minnesota – District 11B

Representative Roger Erickson (DFL)

of Baudette, Minnesota – District 2B

Representative John Ward (DFL)

of Brainerd, MN – District 10A

Representative Pat Garofalo (R)


of Farmington, MN – District 58B

Representative Paul Marquart (DFL)


of Dilworth, MN – District 4B

Representative Jenifer Loon (R)


of Eden Prairie, MN – District 48B

Representative Jay McNamar (DFL) 


of Elbow Lake, MN – District 12A

Senator Branden Petersen (R)


of Andover, MN – District 35.

Representative Andrea Kieffer (R)

of Woodbury, MN – District 53B

 Representative David FitzSimmons (R)


of Albertville, MN – District 30B

Again, we urge you to support a PAC who truly has your back. Donate to the MN NOW PAC here.


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Telling children the truth

By Andrea Sand, Affirmative Action Chair

After watching the immoral flood the capitol to protest equality, I feel it entirely appropriate to co-opt one of their signs:

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Don’t lie to children.

Really.  DON’T LIE TO CHILDREN.  Stop the hypocrisy now.

If we were truly concerned with children not having two parents of opposing genders, single mothers and single fathers would not be left in charge of their children. If we were truly concerned with the sanctity of marriage, we would not even entertain the idea of divorce being legal.

We are not talking of currency that will lose value from inflation and being over-printed–we are talking about the quality of life for our fellow Americans.

This is to the little girl who testified that same-sex marriage would take one of her parents away:

I’m so, so sorry your parents have brainwashed you. We are not trying to say your family is any less valid because it’s one man, one woman, and one precious little life, and we are not trying to remove any of your parents from your life; what we are asking is that we have the right to form our own families. I hope you never grow up to feel left out, that you never feel alone. I hope your days are long and full of joy; truly, I do. However, there are people out there, men who love men and women who love women, and in between that is a whole broad, beautiful spectrum of adults who love one another. THAT IS THE TRUTH.  All we want is the chance to commit to one another for the rest of their lives in the same manner your parents did.

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The need of the majority to discriminate should not be allowed to trump the rights of the minority who simply want to be given the same chance at having that white picket fence, three car garage, and two and a half kids. There are enough children waiting to find homes, literally starving with the hope that one day, someone or a pair of someones will love them just for existing. These children are tired of looking in through the windows at the happy family sitting down to dinner by the fire; they deserve the right to be welcomed in out of the cold. How dare these falsely pious call themselves followers of God or Christ if they are comfortable allowing innocent children to suffer needlessly because they as adults cannot accept people who are different from them.

Marriage is not just the act of having a ceremony presided over by a holy man, it is the union of two individuals in the eyes of a greater, more earthly power: a court of law. We do not live by the holy code of Leviticus, and we do not live under Sharia law. We live under the Constitution and Bill of Rights. We live under the Declaration o f Independence, independent of religious law and in  the good graces of secularism. Nobody is going to force any religious institution to do something that violates their beliefs; just as no religion should be allowed to violate the rights of a person not of their belief. You can keep us away from the altar of the falsely pious, but you cannot keep us away from the altar of love.

We have come so far in nearly 400 years, and yet we seem to still be right where we were when we came here. Howdare we call ourselves a civilized nation when we treat our own so barbarically. How dare we.

 

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TAKE ACTION TODAY!  Tell your legislators, your governor, and everyone in your community that the time for marriage equality is NOW!

 Do it for the children!


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Love starts here!

This week, Minnesota made HISTORY by being the first state to vote down a constitutional amendment banning same-sex marriage.  While this is not the complete victory toward equality that occurred in Maine, Maryland, and Washington state (where voters approved legal marriage between two adults, regardless of gender!) it’s an amazing first step.  This is a watershed moment towards a Minnesota united by love, not fear.  

Minnesota NOW was one of the first coalition partners in Minnesotans United for All Families, the group the spearheaded the amendment defeat, and we were proud to have Richard Carlbom, MN United’s Executive Director,  as one of the speakers at our 2012 State Conference.  We are so proud of the work that MN NOW members, coalition partners, and community friends put into this important election effort!  THANK YOU!

With LOVE as our inspiration, we’ve designed a gorgeous new T-shirt that we hope will inspire you to join our Feminist Action Network.  When you sign up to be a FAN, you pledge to contribute as little as $10 a month to ensure that our small but efficient organization works toward our feminist future–and you’ll get our new shirt as our thank you gift!  The shirts are 100% cotton, deep purple, with “Love starts here” on the front and “Love starts NOW” on the back.

Visit our donation page here to set up a secure online account, set up your “MN NOW FAN Payment” option, and get started!  If you have any questions, feel free to contact our office at info (at) mnnow (dot) org, or call 651-222-1605.

 


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We Have Just Begun To Fight!

Chair of Minnesota NOW’s Political Action Committee, Gordy Gustafson, filed this report from the capitol on Saturday:

That’s Gordy, obscuring himself with our Equal Marriage NOW round, at the capitol on OutFront MN’s LGBT Equality Day, April 14 2011.  Photo by Anne Hobson.

“The battle cry at this time is ‘We Have Just Begun To Fight!’ which was chanted late last night and early this morning after we lost the battle to stop the State Constitutional Amendment banning marriage for same sex couples from going on the 2012 ballot on a 70 to 62 house vote…. 3 Democrats voted for the Amendment – Dittrich, Stumpf, and Koenen, and 4 Republicans voted against the Amendment — Kelly, Kriesel, Murray, and Smith.  For the next 18 months there will be a campaign from the opponents of equality to vote YES with millions to potentially billions of dollars coming into the state of Minnesota from outside organizations.  We have to start planning and supporting the vote NO campaign.

A discussion of this 18 month campaign will be a part of the Minnesota NOW State Board meeting agenda on June 4, 2011.  We have to make history by being the first state to vote down this type of State Constitutional Amendment!”

ALL Minnesota NOW members, as well as interested friends, are welcome at our spring meeting.  We convene at 10 am that day at the Minnesota Women’s Building, 550 Rice Street St Paul MN 55103.  For further information, or to RSVP, please see our Facebook invitation:

https://www.facebook.com/event.php?eid=183049658413195


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Our friends need to hear from us, too!

If you’re like us, you’re subscribed to 7823863 different action alerts, all of which fill up your inbox with outraged calls to DEMAND one vote or another from legislators who need to be HELD ACCOUNTABLE for all kinds of HORRIBLE THINGS…..and you call and you e-mail and you vent accordingly.  But  in all our righteous fury, we tend to forget that our allies sometimes like to hear from us, too.  In fact, now is a critical time to give our support, encouragement, and to the Minnesota legislators who are speaking up so eloquently for equality.  They need to hear that Minnesota NOW members are watching, listening, and fighting right beside them in spirit.

Here’s a sampling of what’s being said at the Capitol, courtesy of The Uptake:

Sen. Ron Latz, speaking out against cutting Medicaid funding for women seeking abortions:

Sen. Barb Goodwin, wondering why the state is sticking its nose into other people’s private lives:

Sen. Linda Berglin, who points out that the poorest Minnesotans can’t afford the deductibles & copays proposed in new health care bills:

And the gone-viral superstar,  Sen. Steve Simon, who asked “how many gays does God have to make before we accept that he wants them around?”

It’s time to send words of gratitude to these four and the many, many others at the capitol who are fighting for justice for ALL Minnesotans at the capitol, bot just a lucky few.  You can search for these folks’ contact information via this link, where you can search by legislators’ names or by their districts: http://www.leg.state.mn.us/leg/geninfo.aspx.

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