We are sending this on a Tuesday since the Progressive Maryland offices were closed yesterday in recognition of Juneteenth, a day celebrating the end of slavery that also happens to be a day in the midst of Pride Month. Following the Congressional vote to make June 19th a federal holiday, the PM Justice Task Force issued this Statement on Juneteenth 2021 that we encourage you to read.
There is much going on this week as we continue the fight for Medicare For All, Police Reform, and The THRIVE Act. You will find PM staff and leaders at the #WeCantWait Rally & March in DC this Thursday as we advocate for climate, care, jobs and justice. This and much more in the Memo.
The establishment of Juneteenth as a national holiday has energized civic consciousness in Maryland and throughout the US -- more truth spoken about the past. The future? In Maryland, one of the nation's most affluent states? New research finds the general well-being of children here has fallen from 21st among the states to 24th, with 157,000 children living in households with income below the poverty line. And that was before the pandemic. Access to the full report is included in the article from Maryland Matters.
More than 150 years after abolishing chattel slavery in the Confederate States, we join the United States of America as it celebrates what has always been an important tradition for Black Americans.
As we celebrate, we understand that being 150 years removed from a 400 year institution of depravity means that the fight for the real liberation of Black Americans is not over -- especially here in Maryland, where slavery did not end until November 1, 1864 and forced apprenticeships and property requirements for voting kept those formerly enslaved in a posture of subordination.
The Progressive Maryland Justice Task Force is appalled and disgusted to witness the violence and excessive use of force displayed in the viral videos that ended with the arrests of five young men in Ocean City on June 6th and June 12th, 2021.
In two now-viral videos, a young man with his hands up is tased and hog-tied; another young man, already handcuffed, is tased, held down by almost a dozen officers, and kneed in his torso at least five times, all in the act of enforcing compliance.
The JTF demands that this appalling abuse of police powers get a response from legislators beyond the predictable tsk-tsk -- that our elected representatives enhance this Session's watered-down version of police reform with provisions for community oversight in policing to ensure that police are held accountable for such heinous actions.
Our opportunities for activism are ranked around Juneteenth, a Saturday of celebration anchoring a week that’s also at the heart of Pride Month, including our PM Pride Logo which you may notice across our website and social media.
Our gains in health and safety in Maryland, plodding but real, bring us closer to the wider organizing options we’ve been waiting for. We will increasingly find our fulfillment in high-impact mobilizing for progressive change. THAT’s the new, better normal. This and much more in the Memo.
A high school history teacher who attended a recent rally in Prince George's against gun violence found himself "discouraged that some of the speakers at the gun violence event seem to blame Black people for gun violence without addressing the root causes of the violence." As he points out, the historic wealth gap between Black and White households has meant a lack of good-paying jobs, affordable health care and mental health access, and other evidence of disparities. "What good is it to have Black men 'checking' other Black men’s behavior when the real problem is a lack of resources?"Read more
Progressive Maryland continues to celebrate and advocate for the LGBTQ+ Community, this month and always. We are proud to honor the progress flag in our new PM Pride Logo which you may notice across our website and social media.
Also, as our scope and capacity are amplified by the (too-slow) gains in health and safety in Maryland, we will increasingly find our fulfillment in high-impact organizing for progressive change. THAT’s the new, better normal. This and much more in the memo.
A new law gives tenants threatened with eviction a right to a lawyer -- but the companion bill funding the law failed to pass in the 2021 Session.
Lawmakers and tenant advocates urge the governor to fund the law, leveling a playing field in which landlords generally, but tenants seldom, have representation. Maryland Matters has the coverage.Read more
Though he was late to the game, Gov. Hogan's attempt to drive workers back to possibly unsafe jobs has galvanized the state's Dems. They were looking the other way from his outrageous late vetoes of progressive measures, but may have to focus on them after all. Lawmakers are reportedly asking about a special session.
It's the first day of "Meteorological Summer" and a great one to launch purposeful organizing. Oh, right, you were already doing that...
Happy Pride Month! 🌈 Progressive Maryland continues to celebrate and advocate for the LGBTQ+ Community, this month and always. We are especially lifting up Queer and Trans people of color. We are proud to honor the progress flag in our new PM Pride Logo which you may notice across our website and social media.
Thank you for being part of this movement.