Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Bury my heart at Wounded Knee - Walela

Images twenty-one and a hundred and twenty-one years old....and still familiar. Print Friendly and PDF

Transgender Equal Rights bill signed today!

Governor Deval Patrick Expected to Sign Transgender Equal Rights Bill Today, Public Signing To Be Held in Near Future

Today, Governor Deval Patrick is expected to sign the Transgender Equal Rights Bill privately, as he has just a 10-day window in which to sign bills into law. The bill was passed by the legislature last week. A public signing ceremony will be scheduled for a future date. The law will take effect on July 1, 2012.

“Governor Patrick has been a vocal supporter of the Transgender Equal Rights Bill since the bill was first filed in 2007” said Gunner Scott, executive director of the Mass. Transgender Political Coalition. “We applaud the Governor because he has been a staunch advocate in recognizing the transgender community and leader in getting this bill passed.”

Gov. Patrick was a vocal proponent of the Transgender Equal Rights Bill, advocating, he has submitted written testimony in support of the bill at all three public hearings. Last February, he signed an executive order prohibiting discrimination against transgender people in state employment, which reaches 43,500 executive branch employees and 13,500 state contractors.

In 2008, Gov. Patrick appointed the first transgender person, Diego Sanchez, to a Democratic National Committee standing committee. Diego Sanchez is a former co-chair of MTPC and has since gone on to work as the first out transgender legislative staffer for Rep. Barney Frank (D-Mass.).

MTPC thanks the members of the Transgender Equal Rights Coalition for all of their efforts in passingAn Act Relative to Transgender Equal Rights.” Some of the 104 members of the coalition include  MassEquality, MassNOW; ACLU of Massachusetts; Jane Doe, Inc., The Massachusetts Coalition Against Sexual Assault and Domestic Violence; National Association of Social Workers, MA; Mass AFL-CIO; Gay & Lesbian Advocates & Defenders; Mass Gay and Lesbian Political Caucus; Jobs with Justice; the Interfaith Coalition for Transgender Equality; and Massachusetts Transgender Political Coalition.

The House voted 95-58, and the House vote tally is here: The Senate passed the bill on a voice vote (see MTPC Senate co-sponsor list).

MTPC encourages all community members to thank the Representatives and Senators that voted for the bill and most especially, the lead sponsors, Representative Carl Sciortino & Byron Rushing, and Senators Ben Downing, and Sonia Chang-Diaz; the legislature's leadership House Speaker Robert Deleo and Senate President Therese Murray; and especially, Governor Deval Patrick.

MTPC will alert community members to the date and location of the public signing ceremony so community members may attend and MTPC plans to hold an additional community event on or about the same day to share in this historic moment.
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Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Today's march: young people fight foreclosure

Much more to say about today's Springfield No One Leaves and Bank Tenant Association's march against the banks, but this video by Kelly Creedon taken at the morning rally tells us why we fight and why, with youth like these, we can have hope.

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Sunday, November 20, 2011

March on Wall St. Banks omorrow! Right here in Springfield!

From the Springfield No One Leaves Coalition: 



We’re gearing up for the biggest action yet here in Springfield. Along with our brothers and sisters in 9 different cities throughout New England join us to march on the Wall St. Banks in downtown Springfield! Folks have committed to turning out from all over the region – from hartford to providence, and Boston to the Berkshires! We can’t sit on the side while banks continue to destroy our communities — its time to STAND UP & FIGHT BACK! 
This action will culminate in a non-violent peaceful act of civil disobedience in downtown Springfield – please respect the guidelines of Springfield No One Leaves & the Regional Bank Tenant Alliance


11 AM - Gather & Training for March Peace Keepers (if your interested in volunteering, please e-mail us)
11:30 AM - Rally in front of foreclosed & vacant homes w/ Bank Tenant Speakers, Springfield Youth and more!

If you are interested in setting up for the march or being a peacekeeper for the march, please arrive by 10:30 AM
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Friday, November 18, 2011

Tea Party, Scott Lively picket Arise while Occupy Springfield pickets them right back!

Today the Stop the Hate and Homophobia Coalition, along with Occupy Springfield, spoke out against homophobia in Springfield with a march up State St., a stop outside Commerce High School for a "people's mic," and a demonstration outside Scott Lively's Holy Ground Coffee House, only a few doors down from Arise.  .  But before our folks got up to Lively's, I looked out the storefront window to see three or four Tea Party members picketing in front, carrying American flags and holding signs that said "Trust Jesus" and "Arise Lies!"

Tea party members have shown up at every Occupy Springfield event but I wonder if today they found themselves with strange bedfellows.  Are Tea Party members homophobes?  I wouldn't have automatically thought so...

Lively's group was handing out flyers to passerbys with big red letters at the top and bottom saying, "Arise Lies" and "Tell Arise to Apologize!"  I won't type the whole thing, but a few lines should give you the feel and I'll add a few comments (and the bizarre punctuation, which I will replicate, is theirs, not mine):

Arise for Social Justice is a Marxist Front Group that Hates Biblical Truth and Persecutes Bible-Believing Christians.  (I wonder if the Christians in Arise feel persecuted?)

Like the Communists of Soviet Russia, and their Fellow Traveler Saul Alinsky, Arise uses Lies and Deceptive Propaganda to Destroy Their Enemies.  (Wow!  Didn't know we had that much power!  Usually we just go for the systemic change approach.)

Arise has Promised to Drive Pastor Scott Lively Out of Springfield because he Holds to Biblical Truth About Homosexuality.  (Completely wrong on this one.  Just like the radioactive material in a decommissioned nuclear power plant, we would much prefer for Lively to remain in our community where we can keep an eye on him.)

Arise LIED to Portray Pastor Lively as a Heartless Monster and put his personal Safety At Risk.

So let me stop right here on this line because while today's event had its humorous moments, homophobia is deadly serious.  Lively's safety at risk?  The hate crime statistics for 2010 were released just three days ago, and according to the figures, " roughly 1.5% of all hate crimes in the United States in 2010 were against Christians while 19% were against gays. That means that lesbians, gays, and bisexuals were more than twelve times likely to be the victim of a hate crime than a Christian."  LezGet Real.  And of that 1.5% of hate crimes committed against Christians, how many were perpetrated by gays?

Homophobia's effects don't stop with hate crimes, of course.  Nearly 400,000 gay and transgendered youth in this country are homeless. Gay youth attempt suicide three times more often than straight youth.  Joblessness is higher.  Discrimination is still a daily experience.  Just whose personal safety is at risk?

But OK.  Today wasn't about being a victim.  Today was about facing down hate and homophobia and taking back our power.  We WILL not live in fear, we will not fail to confront hate.

Springfield's own Joe Olivero took this great video that says it all.
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Don't let the 1% pollute our air in Springfield!

"Artist's rendering" which fails to show nearby houses

Please forward this to your friends and coworkers! 

Springfield residents should contact their city councilors to  support these resolutions and contact Governor Patrick to urge him to  uphold state law.

Springfield, MA - November 17, 2011 - Members of Stop Toxic  Incineration in Springfield (STIS), a volunteer group opposed to the  building of the Palmer Renewable Energy (“PRE”) biomass incinerator, are  outraged at the issuance of the building permit by Springfield Building  Commissioner Desilets that would allow construction to begin on the  incinerator.  According to Lee Ann Warner, STIS spokesperson, "This  permit flies in the face of the Springfield City Council's 10-2  revocation vote of PRE's special permit.  It sets a very dangerous  precedent for Springfield to allow utility-scale incinerator development  within the city limits without any special permitting.  This  effectively eliminates the public’s voice in decisions that affect our  health."

Patrick Markey, concerned Springfield citizen and attorney,  states, "The city’s issuance of a building permit for the PRE  incinerator is contrary to the requirements of the City’s zoning rules.   The facility lacks a necessary special permit."

Sue Reid, Director of Conservation Law Foundation –  Massachusetts, added "The issuance of a building permit to PRE is  directly at odds with the City Council’s revocation of PRE’s Special  Permit.  In addition, PRE’s rush to secure an unlawful building permit  is baffling:  state law prohibits PRE from beginning any construction  because it does not have a final air permit.”

On Monday, November 21, at 6:30 pm in City Hall, the  Springfield City Council will meet and vote on two resolutions  concerning the PRE biomass incinerator.  Michaelann Bewsee notes, "The  first resolution would reaffirm City Council’s finding that the PRE  Biomass plant is an incinerator that requires a special permit on land  zoned Industrial A.  The second resolution calls on the state to enforce  its rule of no construction of a polluting facility prior to issuance  of a final, non-appealable state air permit.  The people of Springfield  spoke loudly and clearly that they do not want – and should not have to  tolerate – any more pollution in our already overburdened city.  We  commend the city councilors for acting on behalf of the people and  support them in passing these resolutions."

Thank you from the volunteers at STIS,
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Monday, November 7, 2011

Veteran's Perks for Veteran's Day

Photo from

No matter how you feel about the war, the government or military service in general we all know that the men and women who have served and are serving this country do/did so at risk of their lives and deserve so much more than they ever get.
This list of V's. Day meals and discounts comes from a friend.
Nia:wen GhostDancer.

2011 Veteran’s Day Free Meals and Discounts
Two notes before jumping in:
  • Proof of Military Service. First, most companies require some form of military ID – including a U.S. Uniform Services ID Card (active/reserve/retired), Current Leave and Earnings Statement (LES), Photograph in uniform, be wearing uniform (if your service permits), Veterans Organization Card (e.g., American Legion and VFW), DD214, discharge paperwork, or other form of identification. Other restaurants and companies may only require a photo of you in uniform, or go by the honor system.

  • Participation. Second, always call ahead to verify locations, times, and participation. Many of the listed companies are franchises and may have different policies. We will do our best to keep this page updated as we find new info.
2011 Free Veterans Day Meals
Applebee’s – free meal, Friday, Nov. 11: Last year, Applebee’s served 1,024,000 million free meals to military veterans and active service members. Applebee’s is again offering a free meal to military veterans and active-duty service members on Veteran’s Day, Friday, Nov. 11, 2011. There will be 7 entrĂ©es to choose from. Military ID or proof of service required. Find locations at
Chili’s – free meal, Friday, Nov. 11. Chili’s is offering all military veterans past and present their choice of one of 6 meals. This offer is available during business hours on November 11, 2011 at participating Chili’s in the U.S. only. Dine-in from limited menu only; beverages and gratuity not included. Veterans and active duty military simply show proof of military service. Visit their website to find locations.
Golden Corral – Free meal, Monday Nov. 14: The 10th annual Golden Corral Military Appreciation dinner will be held on Monday, November 14, 2011 from 5 pm to 9 pm in all Golden Corral Restaurants nationwide. The free “thank you” dinner is available to any person who has ever served in the United States Military. If you are a veteran, retired, currently serving, in the National Guard or Reserves, you are invited to participate in Golden Corral’s Military Appreciation Monday dinner. For more information visit
Special thanks to Golden Corral: To date, Golden Corral restaurants have provided over 2.5 million free meals and contributed over $4.3 million to the Disabled American Veterans organization.
Hooters – Free Meal, Friday, Nov. 11. Hooter’s is serving up a free meal to military veterans all day on Veterans Day. Offer good for all veterans and active duty military personnel. Choose one of the new specialty items on the Hooter’s menu. Offer valid at participating Hooters only; open to all active duty and military veterans with valid military ID or proof of military service. Drink purchase required. For more information, visit,
Krispy Kreme – Free doughnut. Available only at participating Krispy Kreme stores. Offer available to all active-duty, retirees & veterans on Friday November 11th. Be sure to call ahead to verify your local Krispy Kreme is participating.
McCormick & Schmick’s Seafood Restaurants – free lunch or dinner, Sunday Nov 13, 2011: McCormick & Schmick’s is celebrating their 13th annual Veteran’s Appreciation Event on Sunday, November 13th. Veterans will be able to choose a complimentary lunch or dinner entrĂ©e. Veterans must provide proof of military service. Be sure to contact your local McCormick & Schmick’s as this is valid at participating restaurants only. Also, Space is limited and reservations are highly recommended. For more information visit: M&S Veterans Appreciation Event.
Outback Steakhouse – A week of Free Bloomin’ Onions and Cokes Monday Nov. 7 – Friday Nov. 11. Outback Steakhouse is honoring America’s military veterans by offering active duty military and veterans a free Bloomin’ Onion and a Coca-Cola product during the week leading up to Veteran’s Day. This offer is available to Military Personnel who have one of the following forms of identifications: U.S Uniform Services Identification Card, U.S Uniform Services Retired Identification Card, Current Leave and Earnings Statement (LES), DD form 214 Veterans Organization Card (i.e., American Legion and VFW), Photograph in Uniform, Wearing Uniform. For more information, visit,
The Outback understands commitment. For the past two years, The Outback, with the help of their patrons, has donated $2 Million to Operation Homefront, a non-profit organization providing everyday and emergency support for active troops, wounded warriors and their families.
Subway – Free Six Inch Sub. Select Subway locations offer a FREE six inch sub to military veterans on Veteran’s Day. However, Subway restaurants are franchises, so this offer may not be available everywhere. Please call ahead.
Texas Roadhouse – free meal, Friday, Nov. 11. Offer varies by location; our local Texas Roadhouse is offering a free meal from opening until 4pm. Other locations may vary in offer, hours, or availability. Call ahead to your local restaurant for more information.
T.G.I. Friday’s – Buy one get one free Nov 11-14. At participating locations for anyone with an old or current military ID. November 11-14.
Uno Chicago Grill, Friday, Nov. 11. Uno’s is offering a free entree or individual pizza with a purchase of an entree or pizza of equal or greater value. Offer good for all military for veterans and active duty military. ID or proof of service required: Show up in uniform (if your service permits), provide military ID, show a picture of yourself in uniform, or have other ID showing proof of service. More info here.
Home Depot and Lowes Coupon Updates
Update: Home Depot and Lowes 10% Military Discount Available Everyday.
Home Depot: The Home Depot(R) is offering all active duty personnel, reservists, retired military, veterans and their families a 10 percent discount off their purchases in honor of Veteran’s Day. The offer is valid on purchases of up to $2,000 for a maximum of $200 and is available at The Home Depot stores, The Home Depot Design Center locations, Yardbirds and EXPO Design Center(R) locations. The 10% discount is available everyday for active duty and retirees, but not all veterans. Home Depot makes this offer available to all veterans on most military holidays. You can also find Home Depot discounts online.
Lowes: Lowe’s Companies, Inc. will offer all active, reserve, honorably discharged, retired military personnel and their immediate family members a 10 percent discount on in-store U.S. purchases made during the Veterans Day holiday. The discount is available Nov. 7 – Nov. 11. The discount is available on in-stock and special order purchases up to $5,000. To qualify, individuals must present a valid military ID or other proof of service. Excluded from the discount are sales via, previous sales, and purchases of services or gift cards. Like Home Depot, Lowes offers this discount daily to active duty military members, but not to veterans. However, they extend the offer to military veterans on military holidays. You can also find exclusive discounts at Lowe’
Free Park Admissions for Veterans Day
Here's to the Heroes
Anheuser-Busch Parks. Anheuser-Busch Parks offers Active Duty Service Members free admission for them and up to 3 dependents to any of their parks once a year. Throughout 2011, members of the military and as many as three direct dependents may enter SeaWorld, Busch Gardens or Sesame Place parks with a single-day complimentary admission. The Here’s to the Heroes program is only available to ANY active duty, activated or drilling reservist, or National Guardsman. Eligible parks include: Adventure Island, Busch Gardens (Tampa Bay or Williamsburg), SeaWorld (Orlando, San Diego, or San Antonio), Sesame Place, and Water Country USA. Not valid at Discovery Cove and Aquatica. Christmas Town at Busch Gardens in Williamsburg, Va. is not included as part of this program. For more information and to register, visit: Free admission summary, and ticket application.
Colonial Williamsburg Free Admission. Colonial Williamsburg offers free weekend-long admission tickets to active-duty military, reservists, retirees, veterans, and their immediate dependents from Friday, Nov. 11 through Sunday, Nov. 13th. The complimentary ticket includes admission to Colonial Williamsburg exhibition sites, art museums, and most daytime programs, as well as free parking and use of the shuttle bus system. Tickets are only available at on-site ticket sales locations. Tickets are also available to families of deployed service members. Tickets available on the following dates: Nov. 11-13.
Historic Jamestowne – Free Admission. The National Park Service commemorates Veterans Day with Fee Free days at Historic Jamestowne November 11-13. Free admission for everyone. See events calendar.
Knotts Berry Farm Military Tribute Days – Free Admission. Knott’s Berry Farm has an annual Military Tribute event in which they offer military members past and present by offering free park admission. This year the Military Tribute Days run from November 1 – 24 November (Thanksgiving Day). Veterans or current serving military personnel plus one guest get in FREE with proper ID presented at Knott’s turnstile (DD214, Veterans Administration Hospital ID or Active Military Service ID). Purchase up to six additional tickets for just $17 each.
More info.
Fee Free Day at National Parks. To honor America’s service men and women, Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar announced that areas managed by the National Park Service would not charge entrance fees for Veteran’s Day weekend – November 11-13, 2011. Over 100 national Parks will be participating in this event.
San Jacinto Monument and Museum (La Porte, TX). November 7-13: Free admission to the theatre, Observation Floor, and (on November 12-13) the special exhibit to all veterans and their families.
More info.
Bed and Breakfast for Vets:
In the third year of the program, B&Bs for Vets has organized over 485 (and counting) participating Bed and Breakfasts and Inns across the US and Canada which will be offering veterans a free night’s stay on November 10th, the night before Veterans Day. This offer is available to both active duty military members and veterans with ID, but space is limited. Each Inn and B&B has at least one room available for this promotion and reservations must be made directly through the participating Inns and B&Bs. For more information visit B&Bs for Vets.
Free Hugo® Canes for Veterans:
Sam’s Club® locations nationwide will distribute 36,000 Hugo® canes free of charge on November 9th, 10th, 11th, 2011 to U.S. military veterans in need of mobility assistance. Limited quantities available, while supplies last. Sam’s Club® Membership is not required, but proof of military service may be required. For more information, visit
Other Veteran’s Day Discounts:
Here are some additional Veteran’s Day Discounts. In all cases, be sure to provide proper ID or proof of service. In addition, some of these stores are franchises, so verify participation before assuming the discount is in place.
  • Free Car wash. Thousands of car washes around the country are offering vets a free car wash on Veterans Day. Find a list at Grace for Veterans, which helped veterans receive 101,537 FREE Washes on Veterans Day in 2010.

  • – Discount “Veterans Day Honor” MP3 album download. This downloadable album includes 12 songs as performed by the military bands and ensembles of the U.S. Armed Forces. Visit Amazon on Veteran’s Day to download the album.

  • Netflix – One Month Free Trial.

  • Sport Clips – FREE haircut to active-duty military & veterans. Offer only available at select locations. Please call to verify local participation.

  • Tim Hortons – all US locations are offering a free donut to all veterans (check out the Star Spangled donut!).

  • $100 for opening new Chase Freedom VISA.
Jos. A. Bank Veteran’s Day coupons:
  • All Executive suits $177, 2nd $57 – Lowest prices this year for suits! You save $866 when you buy 2!
  • All Traveler and Signature Suits $377, 2nd $97
  • All Joseph & Signature Gold Suits $577, 2nd $197
  • Valid: November 11, 2010
Regional Veteran’s Day Discounts:
There have been multiple request to include local and regional Veteran’s Day discounts. We are happy to include these in our list. Please use our Contact Page to send us the information. Please be sure to include a link to the website so we can verify it and share it with our readers. If a website is not available, then please use the company e-mail address so we can verify the offer.
  • America’s Incredible Pizza Company (St. Louis and St. Peters, MO). Free meal Nov. 11th. Call ahead to verify hours and locations.

  • Aquarium of the Pacific (Long Beach, CA). Free admission for veterans, military personnel, police officers, and firefighters who show valid service ID on November 11, 2011. More info.

  • Brevard Zoo (Melbourne, FL), Nov. 11-13. Free Admission to military veterans with proof of service. More info.

  • Des Moines Botanical Center. Free admission November 11, 2011 for Veterans and their families. More info.

  • San Antonio Symphony and the United States Air Force Band of the West. Free Veterans Day Concert November 13, 2011. More info.
2010 Veterans Day Deals:
The following is a sampling of some deals from last year. We are working to confirm any discounts or freebies for 2011. At this time please use the following entries only as reference until current deals can be confirmed.
  • Abuelo’s Mexican Food. Offers vary by location. Be sure to verify in advance.

  • Barmuda (Iowa) – free meal. Barmuda is offering a free meal to all active duty members and veterans in all restaurants. More information.

  • Big Lots – 10% off your entire purchase with valid military ID. more info.

  • Boston’s Gourmet Pizza (Denver area) – Free individual pizza. All military veterans and active duty military personnel can enjoy an FREE individual one topping pizza this Veteran’s Day 5-7 PM! There are two Boston’s Gourmet Pizza & Sports Bar locations in the Denver area. The Highlands Ranch location is just off of C-470 and Broadway, at 53 W. Centennial Blvd. The newly re-opened Parker location is just off of C-470 and Parker Road at 19340 E Cottonwood Dr.

  • Cabela’s. Cabela’s is giving their standard employee discount to all US military veterans, active duty military, Guard/Reserves, law enforcement, fire and EMS personnel on Nov. 11-12. Discount varies from 5% to 50%, depending on the item. (I received this information from an active duty military member who forwarded an e-mail that was distributed base wide, however, I have not been able to confirm this; please contact Cabela’s before assuming this offer is in place).

  • Dollar General. 10% discount on entire purchase on Veteran’s Day. Offer good for all active-duty military, retirees, veterans, Guard/Reserve, & immediate family members. The coupon can be found in the store circular, or by asking an employee. More info.

  • Meineke in (Salem, MA). Free Oil Change – Friday Nov 11. U.S. Military Veterans and active duty personnel will receive a Free Oil Change that includes standard oil and filter and a complete courtesy check at one of the two participating locations: 462 Highland Avenue, Salem, Massachusetts (978) 741-0335 ; 4 11 Broad Street – Route 1A, Lynn, Massachusetts (781) 592-0001 .

  • Sears 10% discount Thursday and Friday, Nov. 11-12. Sears is offering a “Salute to Local Heroes” discount to all military, veterans, police, firefighters, teachers, and hospital staff. Offer is good for 10% of regular, sale, and clearance prices. See this store flyer for more information.

  • Sleep Number Stores. Free travel pillow to all active duty military & retirees now through Nov. 14. Find your “sleep number” setting, and get a free pillow – easy!

Gail E. Cheatham
Kickapoo Tribe in KS
2314 SW Burnett Rd
Topeka, KS 66614-1204
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