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To Stand Alone If Necessary, That's What COURAGE Is

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Even if you have already sent emails or made calls, the most powerful way for you to follow up is by calling and faxing the LOCAL district offices of your senators. You can get all their numbers in an instant with one click at

The national toll free numbers are 888-355-3588, 888-818-6641 and 800-426-8073, just ask for any senator by name.

From time to time people will arise with the vision and the passion to inspire other people, and the bravery to take a stand for justice even if they have to do it alone. Sometimes tyranny maintains its power only by a kind of mental intimidation, a threat that would collapse entirely if it were just challenged. And whether those people are celebrated or not, all who take a stand against tyranny, in any way they can, deserve to be recognized as heros.

So it was with Rosa Parks. She was a simple seamstress who did not set out to be a hero. While she worked as a volunteer secretary for the NAACP, she did not see herself as a national leader. But on that day in Montgomery, Alabama in 1955, she decided she would no longer suffer the humiliation and surrender her bus seat because of her race. In her own words, "The time had just come when I had been pushed as far as I could stand to be pushed I suppose."

That one simple act of resistance precipitated the Montgomery Bus Boycott, perhaps the key pioneering event in the creation of the whole civil rights movement.

Today we have a Congress controlled by a numerical majority who operate as bullies. They hold votes open for hours at a time while they browbeat and threaten even their own party members. They disrespect and disregard long established rules of procedure and decorum. They exclude the participation of those representing at least half of the American people from any kind of meaningful decision making. And if ever opposed, they threaten they will not hesitate to further abuse their power by moving to abolish the right to filibuster.

Do they not fear the American people? Thousands and tens of thousands and hundreds of thousands of our citizens are calling and emailing and faxing their senators right now to demand that Samuel Alito not be allowed to run our Supreme Court into some right wing ditch. And if you are asking, "Who will lead the filibuster that will stop this?". If you are asking yourself, "Who will stand up against the intimidation and the fear and expose those bullies for the fringe minority that they truly are?". The answer is . . . YOU are doing it right now.

With every personal message you send, you are telling our senators that it is time for we the people to take a stand. With every phone call you make, you are telling them it's time to take our country back. With every fax, YOU are a hero for democracy. The majority of the American people no longer believe in done deals. The other side has already lost, and the proof of it is that they are reduced to making empty verbal threats. They'll clean our clock one Republican senator was quoted yesterday as saying.

But privately the other side is telling its own few supporters that something dreadful has happened, that we actually think we can win, and that we will succeed unless they redouble their own lobbying efforts. And it's not working for them. On the Ed Shultz show yesterday, and Ed does not screen his calls, EVERY person who called in was demanding that there be a filibuster if necessary to save our Supreme Court from Samuel Alito.

There is only one way to deal with a bully. You must stand up to them. And we must keep standing up to them. We must keep calling our senators to tell them that the American people support them for taking a courageous stand. They must stand alone on the floor of the Senate, but we must continue rallying to their side. If the other side declares war on the filibuster we must call and call again to express our outrage. Each of us in our own way must find the courage to stand individually and declare, "The time has just come when I've been pushed as far as I can stand to be pushed."

As more and more of us raise our voices together we are seeing the dawning of a new political day. And on this day, no longer will we have to live under the tyranny of intimidation and fear. Indeed, we have nothing to fear but defeatism itself. It's up to us alone.
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