THE ACTIVIST CARTEL
a written challenge to a duel
ACTION LETTER #8: February 23rd, 2017
Dear Activist Cartel,
I have mind-scrambling frustration when I hear repeatedly the words "fake news" coming from our President. No Donald, the media is the not the "enemy of the American people," it's vital to democracy (and yes I just sourced our President to his Twitter account). A leader attacking the free press is a classic move by authoritarian regimes in their first year of power (and yes I just sourced John McCain explaining this). We simply cannot take action on the issues that we care about without being properly informed. The free press is absolutely critical as we work toward equality and progress.
Considering our President seems to only watch one news source, I would like us to start engaging with that news source more actively...
You might be surprised to learn that I watch Fox News a lot. It's in the effort to live outside my "bubble." That said, it may or may not make me want to tear my hair out on a regular basis.
Fox News is NOT a friend to women: You can watch 70 sexist Fox News clips for verification. Or read about extensive sexual harassment by Fox News's Bill O'Reilly and former CEO Roger Ailes who was forced to resign.
I'm not sure if Fox News is particularly open to changing their sexist ways, but a slight opening has appeared in their staunch, conservative bias, and I will jump on whatever we can get. I had a glimmer of hope when recently Fox News anchors, Shep Smith and Chris Wallace, both spoke out against Trump's efforts to delegitimize the media. I urge you to watch Shep Smith unravel about Trump's press conference of "demonstrably, unquestionably, 100% false" statements.
1.) Email and Call Fox News with your comments & suggestions.
--Email firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com
Leave a voicemail on their comment line: 888-369-4762 (option 3)
--I've officially added this action item to my daily routine of calling representatives, and it's been quite satisfying. This network is influencing our President, and they know it. Do this, at least weekly, so Fox News can be hearing the resistance outside of their bubble.
--Tips: Always be polite and brief. Say you are a viewer and don't tip your hat to any overt liberal leanings because I don't want them to write you off. Say you're going to watch other news networks if they don't stop stroking Trump's ego. They are concerned with losing journalistic respect and regular viewers. Focus on a specific topic: I recommend Trump's obvious lying, living/travel expenses that's costing taxpayers millions, or his Russian ties because they seem like the most vulnerable coverage holes to point out hypocrisy for the network. You can also email firstname.lastname@example.org for story suggestions on topics you care about.
2.) Take Trump's Mainstream Media Accountability Survey that's full of leading questions. Trump is going to use this survey as a source, and he's made great efforts to make sure that only his supporters take it (because biased surveys are so scientific). He actually sent out a brand new survey when he found out that liberals (American citizens) had also taken the survey. So, let's keep making sure that our voice is a part of this "survey" and protect the media.
3.) Subscribe, Gift, or Sponsor a Student's Subscription to the New York Times, one of the main news sources under attack. Certainly, a pretty rad birthday gift to give or receive.
--NYT is my favorite because they're particularly brave and well-sourced in their investigations, but they also employ my favorite journalist, Nicholas Kristof, whose recent article "Husbands Are Deadlier Than Terrorists" is a must read.
--Always be reading varied news sources. Washington Post, The Wall Street Journal, and Time are among others to subscribe to.
4.) Track politicians' voting records rather than their press statements. Sure McCain and Lindsay Graham are thankfully speaking up, but their voting records are still almost, if not 100% in support of Trump.
--The website, Tracking Congress In The Age Of Trump, monitors all of Congress's votes.
5.) Attend Town Hall Meetings with your representatives!
--If your reps are avoiding bad publicity and aren't holding one, then visit Resistance Recess which is organizing many town halls that will be videotaped and sent to reps.
--You can use Indivisible's tips to get the most out of the town hall.
--Coverage of the Town Halls has been so inspiring! If people are rising up in the small conservative towns across America this week, then we can too!
Please feel free to send me photos of your Town Hall Meetings. They motivate and inspire me. And please continue to share the subscriber link for The Activist Cartel so that we can do even more good together.
We can't move forward without an empowered free press, so let's take action.