[READ - Natalia & Kyle's 8/15/12 article on Huffington Post, America's Student Loan Debt]
Student Debt Jubilee & Why Higher Education Ought to be Free.
PART II, July 17, 2012
Prezi - visual accompaniment by co-host Glenn Daniels Jr.
PART I, Dec. 22, 2012
We are excited to share with you this podcast and resource page built from the information gained and resources assembled for and from our recent interviews to propel this movement forward:
For EXTRA fun and effect consider staging a Backbone Patrol visit to the office or event of your elected official. Our Backbone Patrol Action on January 29, 2007 was featured in the March 2007 episode of LibertyNewsTV (minute 9-28). Don't miss the especially entertaining song and dance routing dedicated to Senator Joseph Lieberman found below.
|"Thank" = Spine "Thank You" Cards
One page Faxable form
Spine Postcards (2-per page) mail or hand deliver.
Bi-fold Spine Cards (2-per page)
Large Format Spine Cards for office visits and special occasions.
Use Spine Cards to encourage and thank your representatives. It is often most effective to thank them for one action/vote, and follow that with a request. Print Spine Cards on cardstock or normal paper then mail, fax, email or hand deliver them to your elected representatives. Urge them to demonstrate the strength of their backbone and their commitment to progressive values. Remember These are the "Carrot," and the Spineless Citations the stick, so please keep these positive.
You can look up the address for your current member of Congress at Project Vote Smart: http://www.vote-smart.org/.
Be sure to send all "snail mail" to their LOCAL OFFICES due to the (still unsolved???) Anthrax scare, mail to DC can take a VERRRY long time to arrive.
This Backbone Campaign "Spine" cards are a reproduction of a linoleum print by Vashon Island, WA artist Kim Newall. Thank you Kim!
|"Spank" = Spineless Citations
See other side
One page Faxable form
Emailable Word.doc form
2-per page postcard for reprinting on cardstock front and back.
Directions for Issuing "Spineless Citations":
The Backbone Campaign and progressives around the country work hard to get progressive language into local, state, and national platforms and candidates often run as progressives to get grassroots support. The Spineless Citation is a tool to help citizens hold elected officials accountable to their platforms and promises.
Also, please encourage your friends and the progressive organizations you belong to use our creative accountability tools as well.
The Backbone Campaign would like to thank Shanna and Jason Sawatzki for the Spineless Citation idea and design and Cathy Fulton for her many alterations. These citations are fun, attention-getting, and demonstrate the creative expansion of citizenship that we hope to foster through the Backbone Campaign.
Full Show Widows Media version
Full Show Real Media version
|Another Model Action:
Help the Backbone Campaign Hit the Airwaves in Hawai'i!
Hold Senators Akaka & Inouye accountable for their Spineless Vote to Drill in ANWR
Listen to the Backbone Patrol Radio Ad for Hawai'i
These two senators disregarded the platform resolution of the Hawaiian State Democratic Party, and undermined an important amendment to save the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge. That's not O.K. We've thanked Senator Cantwell for her efforts, now it's time to spank these guys for putting big oil and Alaska Republicans ahead of the wishes of the rank and file in their state. We want to flood their offices with Spineless Citations from constituents and get them to reverse the damage they've done.
PLEASE TAKE ACTION:
What is "Bird-Dogging" & How to Do It
Your member of Congress spends much of his or her time in their home district. They often meet with constituents and special interest groups, or hold community open houses, town halls or when running for re-election candidate forums for the public.
Going to an event where your member of Congress is speaking and asking questions is an excellent way to thank your member in public, call them to action on a particular issue or ask them to take a leadership role on one of our issues. Using our Thank-N-Spank lobbying tools can add an effective element of theater and humor to your actions
The media is often at these events and covers the questions asked of the member. A prop like this is often a nice way to focus ones request, symbolize ones sentiments, and provide the press with a photo or soundbite. This media coverage will help influence your member of Congress, educate the community in the room and have it covered by a local paper "a super triple whammy!"
Here are some tips for ensuring your success in delivering your message clearly and amplifying your action beyond the event.
Tips on Attending a Town Hall or Candidate Forum:
Backbone Campaign in collaboration with MovetoAmend.org and others to amend the Constitution to make clear that corporation are not persons, and have no claim to the inalienable rights meant for human beings. To assist and encourage effective grassroots efforts around the country we are assembling this Action-in-a-Box toolkit to help make local efforts fun and effective.
These tools come from a variety of sources besides the Backbone Campaign and we will attempt to give credit to their creators whenever possible.
Freeway Bannering Is An Easy & Effective Way to Spread Your Message!
Freeway bannering is a powerful tool for activists. It's inexpensive, most of the required materials are reusable, and it's an effective way to reach thousands, even tens of thousands, of people in a short period of time. It is also a powerful way to literally stand by your message.
Be safe! Never attach it to or drape it over an overpass - or in any other way endanger trafic.
Good luck and have fun!
Backbone Activists Defy State Patrol & SPD Effort to Stifle Free Speech Over Freeways
By Bill Moyer
This was given to two Backbone activists on Wednesday 4-25
The image to the right shows the warning given to Backbone Campaign affiliated activists who were preparing to resume a Wednesday morning vigil in Seattle that they kept faithfully for eight months in 2006 on the Yesler overpass. The same notice was delivered to AM 1090, Seattle's popular progressive talk radio station that had joined activists during the 2006 vigils.
"What's strange is that they seemed to know that we were going to begin again, and they were ready for us," said Jayn Foy an unassuming mother of two and resident of the Leschi neighborhood. "1090 had emailed that they received a warning and we thought it was strange, but ignored it - but then when the police arrived before we even were able to unroll our banner - handed us the same note - and said they'd arrest us for trespassing if we came back...well that's when it got a little spooky," Foy concluded.
(Click here for TV Coverage)
Freeway bannering was the first tactic adopted by the group of artists that preceded what later became the Backbone Campaign. Similar efforts to intimidate people using bannering as a communication method failed in 2002. At one point the activists used a non-functional Walkman to convince the police that their efforts were being recorded and they'd be held accountable. The face-off lasted for more than an hour and by the end the Yesler overpass had seven SPD and State Patrol vehicles and more officers trying to convince those bannering to leave - but who refused until they were shown an actual law that they were violating and given a ticket to dispute in court.
In the end it was the police who had to do an about face while the Sergeant in charge agreed with the demonstrators that it was a freedom of speech issue and that as long as nothing was attached to the overpass or draped over the overpass - that they could set up their banner and continue their vigil.
"These threats will be couched in language of public and traffic safety. These are issues we take very seriously and would never do anything to endanger passers by" says Bill Moyer, Executive Director of the Backbone Campaign. "The fact is that we also take our Bill of Rights quite seriously. There are many distractions while driving including giant sexy billboards, bumper stickers, cell phones, children and more, but none of those are going to be made illegal. There is a tradition of this kind of speech by candidates, businesses, and demonstrators of all types. The fact is that our activities are legal, and the only reason we are being confronted is the nature of our message. Well folks, regular people don't have access to Clear Channel billboards, the corporate media ignore the messages we are delivering, and even the political parties have so constrained debate that there are very few venues for us to reach each other. The overpasses are one of the last and we plan to stand firm as long as there are people that love what America claims to stand for- Freedom."