NCAC is responding to inquiries from individuals concerned about the adminstration in Washington, DC proposed statements and policies by listing our partner organizations and others’ current action initiatives on free speech related issues. We invite you to send links to useful resources to [email protected]. Also check out our resources for opposing the ongoing challenges of censorship of art and threats to young people’s access to information.
- Support petition demanding information on President Trump’s conflicts of interest. The American Civil Liberties Union seeks all documents pertaining to President Trump’s actual or potential conflicts of interest. The petition can be found here.
- Preserve information on government websites. The End of Term Presidential Harvest is a collaborative project to preserve information collected on US government websites when the administration changes. Anyone can contribute to the project, which began in September 2016, by submitting a URL by May 01, 2017. An archive of previous harvests can be found here.
- Preserve federal climate and environmental data. Datarefuge, a project of the Penn Program in the Environmental Humanities, is a collaborative effort to safeguard federal climate and environmental data that may be at risk of deletion because of changes in federal policies and priorities. It invites volunteers, people with tech experience and without, to submit links of endangered websites, to scrape websites for data, and to help analyze and research scraped data. Also visit ThinkProgress’ Disappearing Data Project that seeks to Freedom of Information Act government websites and datasets as they go offline. The project relies on the public to report websites and data to ThinkProgress as they go down.
- Safely share sensitive information with the press. The Freedom of the Press Foundation offers guidelines for leakers and whistleblowers sharing sensitive leaks with the press, along with tips for analyzing newsworthiness and steps to minimize personal risk.
- Help document the invasion of privacy at the border. The Electronic Frontier Foundation is collecting information about border agents demanding access to private information, including confiscation of mobile phones and laptops and demands for social media passwords. Share your information here.
- Support protections for social media privacy at the border. The FlyDontSpy coalition have launced an online petition urging Department of Homeland Security Secretary to reject effort to collect US visitors’ social media passwords as a condition for entry. Sign the petition here.
Artistic and creative freedom
- Support the free circulation of creative ideas. Arts and human rights organizations can sign on to the joint statement opposing Trump’s Executive Order on immigration, which notes the implications of the blanket ban on immigration on artists at risk as well as on the free circulation of creative ideas.
- Support NEH and NEA funded programs. PEN America offers a toolkit to defend funding for the National Endowment for the Humanities and the National Endowment for the Arts and the local programs it supports. While funding cuts to the agencies may not appear as a direct free speech issue, such cuts would adversely affect the production, as well as access to creative ideas in the arts and the sciences.
- Protest the proposed axing of the NEH and NEA from the federal budget. The Authors Guild is collecting signatures for letters sent to the House and Senate Appropriations Committees objecting the Trump Administrations planned elimination of the National Endowment for the Humanities and the National Endowment for the Arts. It also provides guidelines for contacting local and state representatives to voice objections to the proposed cuts. A coalition of organizations, including PEN America and Dramatists Guild, are also collecting signatures for a petition opposing the proposed cuts to the NEA/NEH.
- Defend blacklisted professors. The Association of American University Professors (AAUP) invites university faculty and members of the public to support instructors who have been named on a “Professor Watchlist,” which targets professors for their political views. The AAUP claims the list is having “a chilling effect on academic freedom and free speech.”
- Support international intellectual exchange. The public is invited to join the AAUP in objecting to exclusion of foreign students and faculty, which it says will harm academic programs.
General resources for grassroots activism
- Capitalize on legislators’ agendas. Indivisible Guide explains how legislators think and work and how to use that to your advantage and offers procedures and tips for effective grassroots activism.
- Coordinate and mobilize group activities effectively. MoveOn is a guide to participating in legislators’ town hall meetings, conveying your message effectively, and reaching out to the media.
- Get mobile Alerts on urgent legislative issues. Daily Action offers phone alerts to people on the urgent issues of the day, and provides shortcuts for civic engagement, based on where they live. It allows users to listen to a recorded message about the day’s issue and then be immediately routed to your Senator, member of Congress, or other relevant elected official to express one’s opposition or support.