The shootings can be stopped

I couldn’t write to you about gun control last week, because it was much too close to home. My older daughter is 15 years old, the same age as many of the victims of last week’s school massacre in Parkland, FL. As it happens my younger daughter, then 7, was the same age as many of the victims of the 2012 school massacre in Sandy Hook, CT. That’s not as much of a coincidence as it sounds, because there are so many school massacres in the USA.

We can’t afford despair. Our Senator, Dianne Feinstein, deserves our gratitude for her unceasing efforts to ban bump stocks and assault weapons. Survivors and newly minted student activists like Cameron KaskyDavid HoggEmma González, and Sarah Chadwick, are harnessing Twitter to express their grief and outrage. Let’s amplify their brave, irreplaceable voices. They are behind the March for Our Lives – nationwide, co-ordinated protests planned for Saturday, March 24, 2018. Sign up for San Francisco’s event here.

The USA is the only developed nation that suffers from this scourge. There is hope. In 1996, my home country of Australia suffered a shockingly brutal atrocity in Port Arthur, Tasmania. In becoming the springboard for sweeping, highly effective gun control, Port Arthur was the last massacre of its kind. May the legacy of Parkland be the same.


At our February meeting, after substantive and thoughtful discussion, Stand Up SF members voted overwhelmingly to focus on our existing activities – Member of Congress meetings and Get Out The Vote efforts with SwingLeft – rather than endorsing candidates in the 2018 elections.We can revisit this decision at any time, but for now, it frees up our scarce time and resources.


Senator Feinstein Office Action
Friday, March 2, 12noon – 1pm
560 Mission Street Plaza

Tracy Grassroots Organizing (GO) Team
Saturday, March 17, 11am – 3pm
902 N. Central Ave. Suite 201, Tracy CA

Stand Up SF February Meeting
Sunday, March 18, 2pm – 4pm
Noe Valley Library

Focusing Our Work

I’m just coming out of our monthly all-group Stand Up SF meeting, impressed by the vigor, resolve and vision of our members. We discussed policy, group process and the national political landscape, and have emerged with a strong sense of direction that I’d like to share with you.
One of our members at today’s meeting referred to us as the “Citizens’ Conscience.” I couldn’t agree more.
Endorsement Decision
After a vigorous and thorough debate, the membership voted overwhelmingly to refrain from making candidate endorsements in 2018, favoring a renewed commitment of time and energy to our essential goals and activities: to resist the toxic Trump agenda by 1) expressing our constituent will to our elected representatives; and 2) working to take congressional majorities away from the Republican party in the 2018 midterm elections.
Tracy GO Team
Stand Up SF members Rachel, Kathleen and Troy participated this weekend in Swing Left’s GO Team in Tracy to help flip California’s 10th congressional district blue, and described the experience as gratifying, informative and effective. You can sign up for the next round below!
This week’s Stand Up SF actions:
Our members spoke eloquently and passionately today about the horrifying circumstance in the United States that an American terrorist can acquire a military assault rifle with no impediments, and proceed to take innocent lives — while Congress takes no action to protect lives.
  • Call Senator Feinstein and Senator Harris and encourage them to redouble their efforts to promote and pass the Assault Weapons Ban that Senator Feinstein introduced last November and that Senator Harris co-sponsored.
  • Call Senator Feinstein and Senator Harris and demand that they vocally oppose the Concealed Carry Reciprocity Act that would would allow people who are granted a license to carry a concealed firearm in their own state to do so everywhere in the country. This bill has passed in the House, has 39 Senate co-sponsors, and needs to be stopped NOW.
  • Make plans to participate in and publicize the March 14 national walk-out to protest gun violence.
Actions with other groups:
Brown Bag Lunch with Feinstein staff
Friday, March 2
12pm – 1pm
560 Mission Street Plaza
Tracy GO Team
Saturday, March 17
11:00 AM – 4:00 PM
902 N. Central Ave. Suite 201, Tracy

Thanks for all that you do,