The Amp

March 1, 2021

Upcoming Media Hooks & Events

During the Month of March

Valiant Women of the Vote: Refusing To Be Silenced 2021

This year’s Women's History Month extends the Covid-affected centennial celebration of women's suffrage, "Valiant Women of the Vote" through 2021, and adds the theme "Refusing to be Silenced." The National Women’s History Alliance chose this to honor "the brave women who fought to win suffrage rights for women, and for the women who continue to fight for the voting rights of others." Use this hook to discuss the vital role that women have played in the struggle for racial and economic justice. Be sure to cite the values of Equality and Voice. 

Social Workers Are Essential

It’s also National Professional Social Work Month, when social workers and their supporters educate the public about the invaluable contributions of the profession. The National Association of Social Workers will also use the month to push for better pay for social workers, which continues to lag behind that of other helping professions. The theme this year is “Social Workers Are Essential.” Use this hook to discuss the values of Community and Economic Security.

March 1

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The U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) was created on this day in 2002. Use this anniversary to take stock of an agency that has deported millions of people and separated thousands of families in the process. Cite the values of Community, Family Unity, and Economic Security.

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East LA Walkouts: On this day in 1968, students walked out of their high schools in East Los Angeles to protest the quality of their education and in support of civil rights for Mexican Americans. The protest was the first of many and inspired later protests that used similar tactics. To talk about this anniversary, use the values of Voice and Equality.

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On this day in 1872, President Ulysses S. Grant signed the Yellowstone National Park Protection Act into law and the world’s first national park was born. This anniversary is particularly relevant because in 2019 Trump signed The Natural Resources Management Act into law. The act not only protects millions of acres of land and miles of rivers, but it also contains provisions for Native Americans and African Americans. When discussing this anniversary and recent legislation, cite the values of Community and Economic Security.

March 2

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On March 2, 1955 (nine months before Rosa Parks’ act of civil disobedience), 15-year-old Claudette Colvin was arrested for refusing to give up her bus seat to a white passenger. She became one of four plaintiffs in Browder v. Gayle, which ruled that Montgomery's segregated bus system was unconstitutional. When discussing this anniversary, cite the values of Equality and Voice as well as the importance of youth voices in social justice activism.

March 3

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On this day in 1991, officers with the Los Angeles Police Department were captured on camera beating Rodney King during a traffic stop. This anniversary offers the opportunity to discuss police accountability and over-policing in communities affected by poverty. Cite the values of Community and Redemption.

March 4

Rise Up For Justice

On Thursday, March 4th at 5pm ET, the Othering and Belonging Institute presents the next installment of its #RiseUpForJustice livestream series. Experts will discuss how the far-right has used the pandemic to exacerbate racial othering and undermine democracy. They will also consider strategies to counter these narratives and organize for racial justice. Register here.

First weekend in March

I unplug to _____

National Day of Unplugging takes place from sundown Friday to sundown Saturday during the first weekend of March. People around the globe are invited to take a 24-hour respite from technology. The event “highlights the value of disconnecting from digital devices to connect with ourselves, our loved ones and our communities in real time.” Cite the value of Community when talking about this day.

  • Resources: Register at National Day of Unplugging’s website to unlock a graphics toolkit, downloadable posters, and buy a "sleeping bag" for your phone designed by artist Jessica Tully.  
  • Hashtag: #NationalDayOfUnplugging

March 7

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The first march from Selma to Montgomery for voting rights in Alabama took place on this day in 1965. Use this anniversary to talk about the renewed need to protect voting rights and fight racial injustice - particularly as its made its way to the Supreme Court this week. Cite the values of Equality and Voice.

March 8

IWD 2021

International Women’s Day: Women across the world will raise their hands up in response to the 2021 theme #ChooseToChallenge. Use this event to discuss the intersectionality of gender and poverty. Cite the values of Voice, Equality, and Economic Security.

March 10

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Today is Abortion Provider Appreciation Day to recognize staff who work every day to ensure that patients have access to the full range of reproductive health care options — including safe and legal abortion.  Use this day to talk about the intersectional issues of reproductive justice and economic opportunity. Cite the values of Voice, Equality, and Community.

March 12

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On March 12, 1912, the Bread and Roses strikers in Lawrence, MA successfully won their demands. The Zinn Education Project notes, “This was an historic strike that united workers across many traditional barriers including language, nationality, gender, and age.” Cite this anniversary and cite the values of Economic Security and Community.

March 14

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On this day in 1990, at least 16 activists were arrested in Washington, D.C. during a protest where people were demanding that the federal government pass the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). Today, activists are pushing back against the “sub-minimum wage” for disabled people. Discuss this anniversary and current activism by citing the values of Voice and Equality.

March 15

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Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg was born on this day in 1933. Before becoming the second woman on the Supreme Court, the late Justice had a long legal career as an advocate for gender equality and women's rights. Discuss her legacy by citing the values of Economic Security and Voice.

March 17

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St. Patrick’s Day provides an opportunity to talk about the Irish immigrant experience with the American social construction of “whiteness” and how its boundaries shifted over time. Since many Irish people were fleeing state-sponsored famine, it’s also possible to make connections with refugees today. Cite the values of Voice, Equality, Economic Security, and Community.

 

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Civil rights leader Bayard Rustin was born on this day in 1912. As a gay black man who helped plan the 1963 March on Washington, Rustin’s life illustrates the reality of intersectional struggles. In February 2020, California Governor Gavin Newsom posthumously pardoned Rustin for a 1953 conviction under laws that targeted LGBTQ people. Cite the values of Equality and Voice when talking about Rustin’s life.

March 18

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Public Defense Day commemorates the Supreme Court's 1963 ruling that states must provide free legal counsel for people living in poverty. The case, Gideon v. Wainwright, was spurred by Clarence Earl Gideon who was charged with a felony in Florida state court and denied a court-appointed lawyer. The Supreme Court's decision extended the right to counsel to state courts across the country. Discuss the importance of public defense by referring to the values of Voice and Equality.

March 19

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Ricardo Levins Morales

On this day in 1917, the Supreme Court upheld the Eight Hour Act, the first federal law regulating the work hours of private companies. The law was passed by Congress after nationwide industrial strikes. Unions have also been instrumental in fighting for worker rights but fair scheduling and overtime are still issues for many Americans. Discuss this anniversary citing the values of Community and Economic Security.

March 20

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The United Nations declared today the International Day of Happiness. It’s meant to recognize that ending poverty, reducing inequality, and protecting our planet are three key aspects that lead to well-being and happiness. According to the UN, "the resolution was initiated by Bhutan, a country which has recognized the value of national happiness over national income since the early 1970s." When talking about this hook, cite the values of Economic Security and Community.

March 21

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Today is the International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination. Discuss racial justice by citing the values of Voice, Equality and Community.

March 22

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March 22 is World Water Day to focus attention on the importance of universal access to clean water in developing countries. In the U.S., the issue of water as a right was brought to light by the crisis in Texas last month and in Flint, Michigan, before that. Use this hook to discuss clean water infrastructure, citing the values of Economic Opportunity and Community.

March 23

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President Barack Obama signed the Affordable Care Act (ACA) into law on this day in 2010. More than 20 million people gained health coverage through the act. Though Congress and former President Trump attacked the requirement that all Americans have health insurance, voters in several states chose to expand Medicaid under the ACA in 2018. Despite advances in coverage under the ACA, the United States continues to have one of the most expensive and least equitable health care systems among developed countries. To discuss the anniversary and current healthcare debate, cite the values of Economic Security and Community.

March 24

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ACT UP (AIDS Coalition To Unleash Power) held its first-ever demonstration on this day in 1987. The protest on Wall Street targeted pharmaceutical companies that were profiteering from the epidemic. ACT UP brought widespread attention to the AIDS epidemic and helped make significant advances in AIDS research. Discuss this anniversary and the on-going need for healthcare and LGBTQ activism. Cite the values of Voice, Equality, and Community.

March 25-31

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The last seven days of March are National Farmworker Awareness Week. Since 1999, Student Action with Farmworkers has coordinated this week of action to “raise awareness about farmworker issues, honor their everyday contributions, and gain more allies to help advocate for better living and working conditions in the fields.” Farm work is the third most dangerous job in the United States and has few federal labor protections such as overtime, unemployment insurance, and protection when joining a union. Talk about the farmworker rights citing the values of Voice, Economic Security, and Community.

March 25

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On this day in 1911, the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory fire in Manhattan killed 146 immigrant garment workers (predominantly women). Use this anniversary to discuss the concerns of immigrant workers, particularly workplace safety. Cite the values of Economic Security and Community.

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On this day in 1931, nine young African American men (The “Scottsboro Boys”) were falsely charged with rape in Alabama. Despite lack of evidence, eight of them were convicted and sentenced to death by an all-white jury. The trial has particular relevance since the Supreme Court ruled in 2019 that there was racial bias in the jury selection for the case of Curtis Flowers. Use this anniversary to discuss the continued need for criminal justice reform, especially as it affects people of color living in poverty. Cite the values of Equality and Voice.

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Today is also the birthday of Aretha Franklin in 1942. Use the anniversary of her birth to talk about the role of influential artists in fighting for the values of Voice, Equality and Community.

March 26

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On this day in 1839, Cherokee Indians reached the end of the “Trail of Tears,” a forced death march from their ancestral home in the Smoky Mountains to the Oklahoma Territory.

March 27

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Muslim Women’s Day is a celebration of Muslim women on which advocates “flood the Internet with positive representations of who Muslim women are.” Also use this day to talk about how Trump’s Muslim Ban (now repealed by President Biden) affected Muslim women and their families, and how Biden's repeal is a positive move for our country. Work remains to remedy the harm to immigrants over the past four years. The law that permitted this discrimination must also amended by passing the No Ban Act. Talk about this day using the values of Voice and Equality.

March 28

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On March 28, 1898, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in the case of United States v. Wong Kim Ark that under the 14th Amendment of the U.S. Constitution, children who are born in the United States to non-citizen parents are indeed U.S. citizens. Wong Kim Ark had been born in San Francisco to Chinese immigrants who were barred from ever becoming U.S. citizens under the Chinese Exclusion Act. He was denied re-entry to the United States after a trip to China and sued the federal government. During his term as President, Donald Trump suggested that he could end “birthright citizenship” by executive order, though constitutional law scholars disagree. Discuss this anniversary citing the values of Equality and Community

March 30

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On this day in 1870, the Fifteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution was formally adopted. The last of the three Reconstruction amendments, it gave black men the right to vote by declaring that this right could “not be abridged or denied by any state” on account of race, color, or previous condition of servitude. Over time, loopholes in the amendment would allow states to implement restrictions such as poll taxes and literacy tests that did not mention race by name, but effectively prevented most African Americans from voting. The Voting Rights Act of 1965 was passed to outlaw these practices but it was recently gutted by the Supreme Court, and voting rights are again being discussed by the Supreme Court. Discuss this anniversary by citing the values of Voice and Equality. 

March 31

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Today is labor leader and civil rights activist Cesar Chavez’s birthday (1927) and a state holiday in California. Discuss the ongoing issues faced by farmworkers and the importance of unions, citing the values of Economic Security and Community.

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Today is also the International Transgender Day of Visibility, a day dedicated to “celebrating the accomplishments and victories of transgender & gender non-conforming people while raising awareness of the work that is still needed to save trans lives.” When talking about this day, cite the values of Voice and Equality.

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On this day in 1933, President Franklin D. Roosevelt and Congress created the Civilian Conservation Corps, a public work-relief program to combat unemployment. The corps provides historic precedent for proposals like the Green New Deal. Use this anniversary to discuss the values of Opportunity, Economic Security and Community.

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