Monthly Action: November 2017

mailmorethanksStamp Out Hate has always been a positivity-focused mailing initiative. Being gracious and respectful of my fellow humans is at the core of my values, and I don’t have it in me to promote a different philosophy. This doesn’t mean that I don’t get angry or frustrated. I attempt to channel that negative energy into something useful and productive instead. Sure, an angry letter may be cathartic, but why focus on only making yourself feel better when you could be making someone else feel good too?

To this end, I’d like to spend November thanking people and organizations. It’s what we do every month here at Stamp Out Hate, but this month, there’ll be a new address everyday. I welcome your suggestions for places to send thanks. I love hearing about people doing good in the world.

Let’s start out with Kinbrace. I found out about Kinbrace through a penpal. They help refugees in Canada with financial and emotional support through the citizenship process. Their address is:

Kinbrace, PO Box 21732–1424 Commercial Drive, Vancouver BC, V5L 5G3, Canada

Looking forward to your suggestions and seeing your letters on social media. Our hashtags are #stampouthate #mailmorethanks

And thank you. Be kind. Try hard. Send thanks.

Monthly Action: October 2017

Gun control. Gun control. Gun control. Gun control. Gun control. Gun control.

This is not about statistics. This is not about “the right time.” This is not a debate.

Give thanks to those individuals and organizations who work hard every day to cure our collective conscious of the terrible disease of guns.

Coalition to Stop Gun Violence / 805 15th St. NW / Washington, DC / 20005

Everytown For Gun Safety / P.O. Box 3886 / New York, NY / 10163

Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence / 840 First St. NE, Suite 400 /
Washington, DC / 20002

Newtown Action Alliance / P.O. Box 3325 / Newtown, CT / 06470

Violence Policy Center / 1025 Connecticut Avenue, NW, Suite 1210 /
Washington, DC 20036

Americans for Responsible Solutions / P.O. Box 51196 / Washington, DC / 20091

States United to Prevent Gun Violence / P. O. Box 1359 / New York, NY / 10276-1359

The good people at Let’s Go Postal have shared this link that catalogs those elected officials who claim to care about the lives of human beings all while accepting money from the NRA. Put them on notice. Maybe they aren’t your senator or representative, but they may have aspirations beyond their current borders. We see through their shallow rhetoric.

People contain multitudes. Mistakes can be made. Hearts can be changed. You can tell these people you appreciate their job is difficult, and also still hold them accountable. Additionally, if you see people doing good (shout out to Rep. Robin Kelly, just as one example) remember to say thank you.

As a bonus assignment for October, will you please send a nice note or letter to Weiss Kosher Bakery in Brooklyn. They got hate mail from some jerk. Let’s wash that nastiness right out of their mailbox. Write to them at:

Weiss Kosher Bakery / 5011 13th Ave. / Brooklyn, NY / 11219

Thank you all. Be kind. Try hard. Send hope.

{Picture of Let’s Go Postal cards}

Monthly Action: September 2017

Time to defend DACA, folks! Also, time to send thanks to those people and organizations who are supporting the Dreamers through this blatantly racist action by our current president and his spineless supporters. If you are at a loss for words, consider these from the open letter at the Protect DREAMers :

“Out of concern for children and the strength of our nation, we respectfully call on officials at the highest levels of power to address this issue in an urgent way. Students must be able to attend school and graduate with a clear path toward a productive future, and teachers who were brought here as children must be able to continue to strengthen our schools and our nation.”

Deportation of DREAMers is an offense to our humanity. In the words of Elie Wiesel, “No human being is illegal.” And to quote Ijeoma Oluo, “I will not exceptionalize our immigrant friends and family. I will not tell you about all the amazing things they bring to our society… I will simply remind you that they are human beings. That should be enough.”

United We Dream, 1900 L St NW #900, Washington, DC 20036

National Immigration Law Center, 3435 Wilshire Blvd., Ste. 1600, Los Angeles, CA 90010

Border Angels, PO BOX 86598, SAN DIEGO, CA 92138

Immigrant Defense Project40 W 39th Street, Fifth Floor, New York, NY 10018

THE YOUNG CENTER FOR IMMIGRANT CHILDREN’S RIGHTS
UNIVERSITY OF CHICAGO LAW SCHOOL—-MAIN OFFICE
6020 SOUTH UNIVERSITY AVENUE, CHICAGO, IL, 60637

Families for Freedom, 35 W. 31st Street #702, New York, NY 10001

As always, thank you for your support and compassion. Remember to write to those senators and representatives who are champions of DREAMers in thanks and to those who would dismiss them to urge them to change their minds.

Be kind. Try hard. Send hope. Live dreams.

(Picture by @designsponge, print by Grapheme)

Monthly Action: August 2017

This month’s action was going to be support for the Trans members of our military given the disparaging statement by the President via Twitter. However, I was pokey about posting and the tragedy in Charlottesville has revealed a clear and present need for support to the following persons/organizations working against white supremacy. They need our help. They need our support.

Life After Hate, 917 W. Washington Blvd. Suite 212, Chicago, IL, 60607

Southern Poverty Law Center, 400 Washington Ave., Montgomery, AL, 36104

Albemarle-Charlottesville NAACP, P.O. Box 1522, Charlottesville, VA. 22902

Stop Hate Project, c/o Lawyer’s Committee for Civil Rights Under Law, 1401 New York Avenue, NW, Suite 400, Washington, D.C. 20005

Additionally, I encourage you to write notes of thanks to any of your legislators who have spoken out condemning this hate crime. If your representative hasn’t made such a statement, send them a letter asking why. If they made a statement, but it wasn’t nearly good enough, they should be told that as well. Silence is violence.

Speak up. Be kind. Try hard.

Monthly Action: July 2017

This month, I’ve decided to tackle the hate mail problem a little more directly. I searched for “hate mail in the news” and was disheartened to get multiple hits. These people are dealing with hate mail right now. It affects them all differently; some are even channeling it into positive works. I think it’d be great if they got some good mail to encourage them, to wash away those bad feelings from checking the postbox.

First off, we have Zaman International. They are a non-profit organization committed to addressing the basic needs and empowerment of marginalized women and children. In May, they got a series of hateful letters alarming enough for them to call the FBI. That’s horrible. Send them a card or letter thanking them for their kindness and compassion. They are trying to make this world a better place and deserve our gratitude. If you have the means, they could also use your donations.

Write to them at:

Zaman International Administrative Offices
26091 Trowbridge
Inkster, MI 48141

 

Then there’s Özlem Cekic. She is one of Denmark’s first female Muslim MPs and is subject to a lot of vitriol. She’s taken confrontation of hate mail to a positive place and I find myself really inspired by her. I think you’ll be inspired to. Join me in sending her some accolades.

Write to her at:

Özlem Cekic
c / o Ubuntu
Købmagergade 43, 1st floor.
1150 Copenhagen K. DENMARK

Finally there is Keeanga-Yamahtta Taylor. She is an assistant professor of African American Studies at Princeton University. Since her keynote speech at the Hampshire commencement in May, she has been hounded by hateful people; so much so that she has had to cancel appearances due to death threats. This is unacceptable. While a card expressing thanks and support is nowhere near enough, I will still be sending her one. I hope she gets many more than just mine.

Write to her at:

Keeanga-Yamahtta Taylor

c/o Haymarket Books

P.O. Box 180165

Chicago, IL 60618

Monthly Action: June 2017

June 1st is International Child Protection Day. In that spirit, this month’s action is to support immigrant and refugee families. There are numerous, heartbreaking reasons why children and families need to leave their homes in search of safety and continued survival. No one chooses that path without great care and the loss of their other options. It is up to us to open our hearts and minds, understanding that giving to someone does not take away from someone else. This is not the country I want to be, and that is not who I am.

Let’s support those children and families and say thanks to the organizations and people who are working everyday to help them. A quick Google for “immigration support services” will give you links to organizations in your area. Try also “refugee support services” and “child immigrant support” plus your ZIP code.

Some suggested addresses:

GirlForward, P.O. Box 607516, Chicago, IL 60660

KIND Headquarters, 1300 L St. NW Suite 1100, Washington, DC 20005

Iraqi Mutual Aid Society, 2600 W. Peterson Ave, Suite 100, Chicago, IL  60659

Centro Romero, 6216 N. Clark St., Chicago, IL 60660

HIAS Chicago, 216 W Jackson St, Suite 700, Chicago, IL 60606

THE YOUNG CENTER FOR IMMIGRANT CHILDREN’S RIGHTS
UNIVERSITY OF CHICAGO LAW SCHOOL—-MAIN OFFICE
6020 SOUTH UNIVERSITY AVENUE, CHICAGO, IL, 60637

THE YOUNG CENTER FOR IMMIGRANT CHILDREN’S RIGHTS
1700 WEST IRVING PARK ROAD, CHICAGO, IL 60613
773.360.8920 | mwitters@theyoungcenter.org

THE YOUNG CENTER FOR IMMIGRANT CHILDREN’S RIGHTS AT HARLINGEN
806 MORGAN BOULEVARD, SUITE K, HARLINGEN, TEXAS 78550

THE YOUNG CENTER FOR IMMIGRANT CHILDREN’S RIGHTS AT WASHINGTON D.C.
1342 FLORIDA AVENUE NW, WASHINGTON, D.C. 20009

THE YOUNG CENTER FOR IMMIGRANT CHILDREN’S RIGHTS AT HOUSTON
1303 SAN JACINTO STREET, 9th FLOOR, HOUSTON, TX 77002

THE YOUNG CENTER FOR IMMIGRANT CHILDREN’S RIGHTS AT NEW YORK
85 BROAD STREET, 29th FLOOR, NEW YORK, NY 10004

THE YOUNG CENTER FOR IMMIGRANT CHILDREN’S RIGHTS AT SAN ANTONIO
300 CONVENT STREET, SUITE 1330 SAN ANTONIO, TX 78205

THE YOUNG CENTER FOR IMMIGRANT CHILDREN’S RIGHTS AT PHOENIX
7227 NORTH 16TH STREET, SUITE 236 PHOENIX, AZ 85020

As always, Be Kind. Try Hard. Send Hope.

Monthly Action: May 2017

For May, I would like to encourage everyone to send cheer to centers that support women, women’s health, and a woman’s right to chose. Mother’s Day is May 14th for those of us based in the U.S.A., and I think it’s an appropriate time to take a moment to support the people and places that help women become mothers when the time is right for them. I include an adoption service among my addresses because I believe in choice without demonizing abortion or idealizing adoption. Women deserve the truth and access to all options. That’s the definition of freedom. Let’s celebrate it for everyone. Let’s remind those fighting for us that we care about the hard work they are doing.

Here are some suggested addresses:

Chicago Women’s Health Center, 1025 W. Sunnyside, Suite 201, Chicago, IL 60640

GROUNDSWELL FUND, PO Box 71642, Oakland, CA 94612

Chicago Abortion Fund, 333 W. North Avenue, Ste. 267, ​Chicago, IL 60610

Adoption Center for Illinois, 5828 N. Clark St, Chicago, IL 60660

FPA, 659 W. Washington Blvd., Chicago, IL 60661

FPA, 4341 N. Milwaukee Ave., Chicago, IL 60641

Women’s Medical Fund, Inc., P.O. Box 248, Madison, WI 53701

National Network of Abortion Funds, P.O. Box 170280, Boston, MA 02117

Planned Parenthood of IL,Administrative Headquarters
18 S. Michigan Ave., 6th Fl., Chicago, IL 60603
As always, a Google search for “women’s support health centers” and “planned parenthood” in your area will give you addresses more local for you. Thanks for your help in stamping out hate.
Featured image credit to @adamihasegawa
Be kind. Try hard. Send hope.

Monthly Action: April 2017

Stamp Out Hate continues to send out messages of hope this month. We’re focusing in April on groups that support our LGBTQ community. Let’s make sure they know how much we appreciate what they do for all of us. Here’s some example organizations who could use a nice note from you:

The Center, 208 W 13 St., New York, NY 10011

Out Miami, 1521 Alton Road #787, Miami Beach, FL 33139

Center on Halsted, 3656 N. Halsted St., Chicago, IL 60613

GLSEN, 110 William Street, 30th Floor, New York, NY 10038

PRIDE Institute, 14400 Martin Dr., Eden Prairie, MN, 55344

Rainbow Serenity, P.O. Box 9221, Highland, IN 46322

Finding mailing addresses for centers is a little challenging, but I had good luck through this site. I also recommend just searching “LGTBQ” in Google Maps and seeing what’s near you.  Unfortunately, it’s far too easy to understand why it’s a bit difficult to find the addresses.

If you wish, please share your letters on social media with the hashtag #stampouthate

As always, thank you for your support and keep writing happy letters.

Be kind. Try hard. Send hope.

Monthly Action: March 2017

Stamp Out Hate was born from a letter. My friend Milly wrote to me that she had seen a report of hate mail being sent to mosques and Islamic centers around the country. She wondered if there was a way to help. Well, I think sending letters of hope and support is the best counter to that. I suppose it’s like fighting fire with fire, but our fire is the good kind of fire. Mail shouldn’t be used for hate.

As our first action, I ask you to join me in sending joyful mail to your local (or as local as the internet can find for you) mosque or Islamic center. I got my addresses by typing in “mosque” and my ZIP code into Google search. I also searched around the ZIP code of where I grew up in rural South Carolina. I figured the more letters to send, the better.

If you wish, please share your letters on social media with the hashtag #stampouthate

As always, thank you for your support and keep writing happy letters.

Be kind. Try hard. Send hope.