This weekend marks the beginning of a new presidency — one that includes a vice-president who's hostile to LGBTQ rights and reproductive justice, plus a Cabinet filled with people who share equally troubling views. So what are we to do? We do what black folks did to get President Johnson to protect their rights as voters. We do what queer people did when President Reagan let homophobia stand in the way of fighting HIV/AIDS. We do the very thing this nation is built upon: We organize, we rise, and we claim our freedom. A storm is coming. It just happens to be you.
If there’s something on the horizon in your area that you’d like to see featured in the MTV News Social Justice Forecast, email us at firstname.lastname@example.org!
All Month Long:
Everywhere: Organize wherever and however you can.
Since the election, a few organizations have popped up to help folks work against the oppressive ideology of President Trump's administration. We've featured a couple of them here before, but this is the perfect time for a reminder that these resources are out there.
On Wall-of-Us, sign up to get a weekly email outlining four actions you can take to stand up for the rights of the people. Ranging from signing online petitions to joining national protests, the Wall-of-Us newsletter offers options that can fit nearly any level of engagement. Make sure you follow Wall-of-Us on Facebook and Twitter.
Serve 306 asks people to pledge 306 hours of community service over the next four years. That's one hour of dedicating yourself to a good cause for every electoral vote Trump won. Not only can you take the pledge at the Serve 306 site, but they also have the Opportunity Finder database to help you track down where you can volunteer. Whether you take it to the streets or only have time to support from a computer screen, Serve 306 will help you find where you can have the greatest impact. Follow Serve 306 on Twitter for updates on various causes.
And don’t forget: We need to be strategic and principled in our work, not like the crew who thought donning Klan hoods and Trump masks would do anything but confuse and anger people. We all want to do something, but we have to make sure what we’re doing is effective.
The Women's March in D.C. is this weekend and we're looking at one of several ways you can continue supporting women after it ends: There's a workshop for transgender people who need to update their ID in Memphis, Tennessee, and a training for straight cis white allies in Louisville, Kentucky.
Saturday, January 21
Washington, D.C.: Speak up against harassment at the Bystander Intervention Skillshare & Feminist Social.
The Codmother, 1334 U St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20009
Following the massive Women's March on Washington, there will be additional events in and around the city. Collective Action for Safe Spaces will teach attendees how they can work to end harassment, especially for the most vulnerable among us. In response to rising reports of intimidation and assault, we can learn how to de-escalate hostile situations and organize against these behaviors in our communities. There is a suggested donation of $10.
Sunday, January 22
Austin, Texas: Commemorate reproductive justice at the 44th Texas Roe v. Wade Celebration Rally.
Texas Capitol, 1100 Congress Ave., Austin, TX 78701
On January 22, 1973, Roe v. Wade became the cornerstone of reproductive justice in America. To celebrate that momentous anniversary, there will be a rally at the Texas state capitol. This year's theme is, appropriately, #HandsOffMyUterus. Even though absurd restrictions on abortion clinics in Texas were overturned by the Supreme Court, the fight over abortion access is far from done. Along with powerful speakers and live music, there will be representatives from several Texas-based organizations which support the cause. Head over to the website and Facebook page for more information.
Monday, January 23
Memphis, Tennessee: Learn how to update your documents at the Trans ID Workshop.
892 Cooper St., Memphis, TN 38104
Having proper identification can be both life-affirming and lifesaving for transgender people. This free workshop will walk attendees through the steps of updating their name and gender on government-issued IDs. If you cannot attend, you can look up requirements for your state through the National Center for Transgender Equality. Reach out to supportive organizations in your state if you need assistance.
Tuesday, January 24
Seattle, Washington: Stand as one at Solidarity Trumps Hate.
Common Good Cafe, 1415 NE 43rd St., Seattle, WA 98105
Seattle International Socialist Organization is putting out a call for all marginalized and oppressed people to show up and stand up for each other. Recognizing that the policies and prejudice being fostered under the Trump administration are dangerous for many groups, speaker Wael Elasady will lead a discussion on how people can unify on the left for the greater good of all. Join the conversation and stand together. It's one of the best things any of us can do.
Thursday, January 26
Louisville, Kentucky: Learn how to de-escalate hate at the LSURJ Bystander Training.
Bardstown Road Presbyterian, 1722 Bardstown Rd., Louisville, KY 40205
Louisville Showing Up for Racial Justice (LSURJ) is hosting a training for allies on how to diffuse situations in which others are being harassed or threatened. Rather than simply witnessing hateful acts, allies can learn to intervene appropriately and safely. This training is free and co-sponsored by Black Lives Matter Louisville and the Fairness Campaign.
Friday, February 24 to Saturday, February 25
Norman, Oklahoma: Build strategies for reproductive justice at Take Root 2017.
The University of Oklahoma, Thurman J. White Forum Building, 1704 Asp Ave., Norman, OK 73072
Activists, advocates, scholars, and students will be gathering for the annual Take Root Conference in February. This conference focuses on working for reproductive rights in the most hostile of red states, utilizing experience and knowledge that can be valuable to folks anywhere. If you want to connect with people from across the country who are defending reproductive choices, you should register ASAP. Early-bird registration is $25 for students and $60 for non-students, but is only available until February 3. After that, registration cost goes up. Make your travel plans now and keep us moving forward for reproductive justice for everyone.
As Trump's presidency begins, it's clear that people are not going to stand aside and let their rights and safety be dissolved. We are pulling together and resisting with everything our hearts, minds, and bodies can muster. We'll still claim our freedom: Whether that means bringing out the sun or calling down a storm, we need you!