Protecting our democracy. On Monday, and every day.

Protecting our democracy. On Monday, and every day.

We are living through a time when the basic features of our democracy feel under threat.

When the former FBI director reports that he wrote memos after every meeting with the President, because he expected him to lie. When the evidence is mounting that the President obstructed justice, to prevent an investigation into whether his campaign colluded with a foreign country to undermine our election.  

Like me, I’m guessing many of you tuned in to watch James Comey’s testimony. Whatever you think of Comey, it was clear that he had a sense that the rule of law, and the institutions of our democracy, are more important that the whims of the President.

One other thing I was struck by: how critical media reporting has been over the past few months. We have been worried -- as a result of Trump’s media-bashing, polarization, and a general decline in trust -- that the media would find itself under severe threat. That’s why members of the #GetOrganizedBK “Free Press” working group organized a rally earlier this year. I can’t remember a time when a vibrant free press was more important.

On Monday night, we will reflect on some of these issues, at a full-group #GetOrganizedBK meeting, with a panel on what we can do -- as media consumers, producers, and citizens -- to protect the fundamental freedom of the press in this ‘age of doubt.’

Monday, June 12, 6:30 PM-9:30 PM
Congregation Beth Elohim (Garfield Pl & 8th Avenue)
#GetOrganizedBK Full Group Meeting

6:30 PM Doors Open
7 PM Panel: Protecting a Free Press in the Trump Era
8 PM Working Groups (and Bystander Intervention Training, RSVP here)

 You’ll hear from:

  • Brian Vines, Senior Correspondent, BRIC TV (Moderator)

  • Joaquin Alvarado, CEO, Center for Investigative Reporting/Reveal

  • Susan McGregor, Assistant Director, Tow Center for Digital Journalism

  • Ujala Sehgal, Director of Communications, NY Civil Liberties Union

  • Julie Walker, President, NY Association of Black Journalists

  • Michael Winship, Senior Writer,

After the panel, our working groups will meet as usual. In addition to protecting a free press, there’s much to do protect the planet, our immigrant neighbors, health care, women’s rights, and our democracy itself.

If you need a little inspiration to keep your own resistance going strong, one great place to look is some of our own #GOBK leaders. This week’s “#GetOrganizedBK Leader Highlight” features Jen Friedlin, the fearless facilitator behind our Free Press group. Read more about Jen here.

Finally, a note to let everyone know that #GOBK’s Civic Festival is postponed until later this summer. We learned our initial June 25th wasn’t a date that worked for a lot of folks and we wanted to be responsive to everyone. The festival is still on! Just be on the lookout for a new date to come in future days.

See you on Monday,


P.S. While we’re focused on Comey, the Senate GOP are continuing to deal behind closed doors to take away healthcare from millions of Americans. We must demand the GOP to show us the bill before they vote on it. Stay focused. 

#GetOrganizedBK Community Board

ONGOING: Brooklyn Deep Community Journalism Project, Brooklyn Movement Center is a tremendous local partner working on racial justice and social justice, recently launched a kickstarter to support their Brooklyn Deep project focused on community journalism. They’ll make sure communities are able to tell their own stories and will tackle uncomfortable, complicated topics like gentrification. Learn more here.

ONGOING: Safety Net Defense Group needs your help to support the New York Health Act, a bill creating a single-payer, universal health care system that would guarantee coverage for every New Yorker (medical, dental, vision, mental, reproductive care, and prescriptions, with no copays or deductibles, lowering costs in 98% of households). The bill has passed the Assembly and is only ONE Senator away from a majority in the state Senate. To endorse the bill and learn how you can help it pass the Senate before the legislative session ends in late June, visit To contact your NY State Senator & other key legislators, go to

And to get more information about planned Brooklyn-area call-ins, rallies, canvassing and other actions relating to the bill in the coming weeks, contact group facilitator Morgan Moore at certifiedmorganic [at] gmail [dot] com (certifiedmorganic [at] gmail [dot] com).

SATURDAY, JUNE 10th, ALL DAY: Brooklyn Pride, support our LGBTQ+ community in Brooklyn with a full day of festivities and fun. Let’s all come together to support equal rights for all, and to stand in solidarity while also bringing visibility to the multicultural gay community in the borough. Check out more here.

SATURDAY, JUNE 10th, 10 AM: NYC Loves Muslims Rally + March, Manhattan City Hall Park (Broadway Side), let’s prove that the opposite of hatred isn’t tolerance, it’s love. New Yorkers of every faith, race, and background will come together to showcase our city’s unshakable commitment to pluralism, highlighting the best of who we are and what we believe. At this troubling moment, when the voices of hate are growing stronger, New Yorkers will not stay silent. RSVP here.

SATURDAY, JUNE 10th, 7:30 PM: NYC Interfaith IFTAR Break Fast with our Muslim Neighbors for Religious Freedom Against Hate & Violence, Building a Resilient NYC, Cadman Plaza Park North by Gaylor Memorial, alt-right nationalism, antisemitism, hate, homophobia, islamophobia, and more are a common threat to our democracy, freedoms, & human rights. This Ramadan, alt-right groups have taken aim at us, the Muslim communities, and their allies. We call upon on New Yorkers and our communities of faith to show their love and visible support for our Muslim neighbors -- IFTAR & interfaith prayers, free halal dinner, and all are welcome to this family-friendly event. Learn more here.

MONDAY, JUNE 12, 6:30-9:30 PM: Full Group Meeting, Protecting a Free Press in Trump Era, Congregation Beth Elohim, join us for our next full group meeting as we focus on what we, as media consumers & producers & citizens -- to protect the fundamental freedom of the press in this “age of doubt. Working groups to follow after. RSVP here.

MONDAY, JUNE 12, 8 PM: Bystander Intervention Training, Congregation Beth Elohim, after the Free Press Panel, join the Center of Anti-Violence Education, as they teach you how to respond to the increase of harassment and actual hate crimes seen in New York. Limited to 40 people. RSVP here.

WEDNESDAY, June 21, 7 PM: Countering Democratic Rollback, Brooklyn Society for Ethical Culture, a talk with Lincoln Mitchell (writer, scholar, & expert on democracy & democratic rollback) hosted by our Indivisible Nation BK working group. Lincoln will draw on his work and proposed strategies for defending American democracy in the Trump era. RSVP here.

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