Posts filed under ‘Politics’

Top 5 Laws That Changed the Lives of Women in 2014

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The Women’s Foundation of California is an organization working toward a just and equitable California, in which all people and communities, in every region of the state, thrive. As 2014 draws to a close, here are the Foundation’s top five laws they helped pass.

FIVE: Our Women’s Policy Institute fellows helped pass the Healthy Baby Act, which will help over 3,000 pregnant women every year have healthier pregnancies and births. Importantly, it will benefit women facing domestic violence because abuse often starts or escalates during pregnancy.

FOUR: We joined the movement to pass a groundbreaking civil rights law: Now, thousands of women and men who had served their sentences will qualify for food stamps and basic cash assistance. Instead of turning its back to their suffering, our social services system will now help them rebuild their lives.

THREE: Our Women’s Policy Institute fellows helped pass an important law that limits the number of students who are suspended or expelled for the so-called willful defiance. This offense was used disproportionately to discipline and expel minority students.

TWO: We helped pass Proposition 47, which will improve the lives of thousands of women who had been incarcerated for non-violent, low-level offenses. After serving their misdemeanor sentences, the women will be better poised to apply for work and housing and mother their children with dignity and pride.

ONE: The Domestic Worker Bill of Rights went into effect on January 1, 2014. Now 100,000 domestic workers, a majority of them women, will finally start earning overtime pay. Our grant partner Mujeres Unidas y Activas worked for seven years and through two vetoes to pass this bill. We take pride in knowing that our Women’s Policy Institute trained these women and gave them the skills and the resources they needed to make this great victory possible.

Help them keep up the good work and make a gift of any size today. All donations will be pooled together and will go to the same place—toward changing the lives of low-income women in California. They are only $12,000 short of making their 2014 goal, and we have until midnight, December 31st  to help them achieve it. Give what you can today.

December 29, 2014 at 6:38 pm Leave a comment

The Power of Peace

Several years ago, Kit Cummings was going into prisons with a Christian prison ministry trying to change the hearts and minds of prisoners.  There was some success, but a couple of years into working with that group, Kit realized that he could affect more change by creating a program based around the principles of peace using people who lived by example like Martin Luther King, Jr. and Nelson Mandela, and Mahatma Ghandi, and Sister Teresa, etc.  He went into Georgia’s Hays State Prison – one of the most violent prisons in the country – and talked to them about what really commands respect and pride – PEACE. 
Hope-300x200On January 18, 2011 he convinced 12 men – some former gang members serving life sentences – to take the Seven Steps of Peace Pledge based on principles of non-violence and peace (see attached for pledge) for 40 days and journal about it.  They were sworn to secrecy, but the word spread like wildfire in the prison anyway because their behavior was so different.  Other men became curious and inmates began to talk about the 40 Days of Peace. Instead of being labeled as ‘weak’, these men gained a new kind of respect among the prison population.  More inmates at Hays State Prison underwent the program and the prison violence dropped to it’s lowest point ever with so many men living The Power of Peace program.  Additionally, men getting out of the system were going back to their old neighborhood and exerting positive change, becoming the ‘anti-virus’ to gang warfare and setting examples to command respect in a different way in some of the roughest parts of cities around the nation.
About a year into working his prison program, Kit realized these inmates could have a huge impact on the troubled teens that looked up to them on the streets before they went behind bars.  And the same principles that worked to change these criminals could be used to inspire tough teens to take a different path.  The POPP has expanded to include community development programs and anti-bullying campaigns in alternative high schools.  In the Michigan Dept. of Corrections along, nearly 1,000 inmates have committed to peace and to becoming role models — not only to inmates across the country, but to a young generation that is losing its way.  Kansas prisons have also adopted this program where it’s taking hold.  
40Days-300x200Whether someone is a tough kid from an inner city school, or a college-prep kid living in the suburbs, it no longer matters — this is not a rich or poor, black, white, Hispanic issue – because believing in the power of peace is a common bond that we all share — and now POPP is collectively putting that belief into action.  Their 40 Days to Freedom is a seven step program designed to create a “new normal” for teens and their community.  The Power of Peace Project changes what “cool” looks like — the bully is no longer cool, now the peacemaker is. Bullies and victims of bullying learn about peace, non-violence and conflict resolution — seeking first to understand, finding common ground, walking a mile in another’s shows, learning to pause before responding, and learning to express what they are feeling – even to their parents!
So besides telling you a great uplifting story about some people making big changes in the world, why am I telling you this?
Because The Power of Peace Program needs your help.
Here is their goal:
To raise $10,000 in 30 days, which will allow us to sponsor 100 teens in our Power of Peace Program. As little as $100 takes one teen through our Ten Week Inspired Straight  training course. The result: a decline in bullying, truancy, expulsion, alcohol/drug use, disciplinary reports, and dropout. POPP teen participants/graduates see an increase in healthy behavior, attendance, good grades, productivity, and positive attitude. Dreams are born, gifts are uncovered, and young minds come alive! Please click the link below, watch a short clip and donate (no amount is too small).  The impact you make will last a lifetime with these kids.  
inspired-300x200Please consider donating to this impactful, non-profit organization and SHARE this with family, friends, even your enemies, to inspire them to bring about PEACE – one person at a time.
YOU can help bring about change and impact in people’s lives who don’t have many (if any) positive influences.  They are 64% of the way to their goal, let’s put them over the top!
Times are tough for many people I know…but these are street kids with no support system that they are helping to become productive citizens, young adults that will make a difference in their communities down the line.
Please do whatever you can…even if it’s simply sharing this information with others that may be able to donate!
Thanks SO much for your support.  For more information on The Power of Peace Project please visit their site and follow them on social media:
Twitter: @PowerofPeace88
Peace, love and joy to you all!

November 2, 2014 at 3:58 pm Leave a comment

Global Learning XPRIZE & Roddenberry Foundation Team Up

The Roddenberry Foundation contributes $100,000 to the Global Learning XPRIZE Indiegogo campaign!

The Roddenberry Foundation, founded by Rod Roddenberry, son of Star Trek creator Gene Roddenberry, inspires efforts that create and expand new frontiers for the benefit of humanity. It funds innovative solutions to critical global issues in the areas of science and technology, the environment, education and humanitarian advances.

Rod creates a short video to share his passion for innovation and the Global Learning XPRIZE:

Get More on Indiegogo

The wonderful contribution from the Roddenberry Foundation has inspired us to seek new frontiers and raise our overall goal for the rest of the 14 day campaign to $750,000.

Raising this extra money will provide an opportunity for us to take this innovative learning technology to even more kids in more parts of the world, and put further community collaboration tooling and infrastructure in place to build this global movement to end the chronic lack of literacy in the world.

We need your help!

To achieve our stretch goal of $750,000 we need your help to help spread the word and raise awareness of the campaign!

GLEXP_160x600_Reading_v4Here are five things you can do today to help:

  1. Contribute! – a great place to start is to buy one of our awesome perks. Scroll up to find out more!
  2. Join the Community – come and meet the new XPRIZE community at http://forum.xprize.org and share ideas, brainstorm, and collaborate around new projects.
  3. Show Your Pride –  go and download the Street Team Kit and use the images and avatars in there to change your profile picture and banner on your favorite social media networks (e.g. Twitter, Facebook, Google+).
  4. Put Posters up in Your Community – go and download the Street Team Kit, print the posters out and put them up in your local coffee shops, universities, colleges, schools, and elsewhere!
  5. Organize a Local Event – create a local event to share the Global Learning XPRIZE. Fortunately we have a video on our Get Involved page that explains how you can do this, and we have a presentation deck with notes ready for you to use!
Thanks to every one of you for your continued support!

Visit the ‘Global Learning XPRIZE’ campaign.

Comment on or view this announcement here.

Respond directly to the campaign owner here.

Help spread the word about the campaign!

October 28, 2014 at 4:25 pm Leave a comment

Eradicate Illiteracy, Really? Yep! Pass It On

For those of you who are passionate about kids and education, I wanted to share something I believe is an amazing mission and goal that XPRIZE launched this week.

XPRIZE strives to make the impossible possible and have tackled some of the world’s grandest challenges. This includes private spaceflight, 100 MPGe cars, oil-cleanup technology and most recently, competitions to go back to the Moon, address ocean acidification, and revolutionize healthcare.

This week a “Global Learning XPRIZE” was launched. This is a $15 million competition to create Open Source software that will teach a child to read, write, and perform basic numeracy within 18 months without the aid of a teacher. (This is not designed to replace teachers, but to provide an educational solution where little or none exists.)

According to UNESCO figures, 250 million kids in the world today lack basic literacy skills. As you can imagine, this XPRIZE could have a profound impact on these kids and bringing nations out of poverty.

An important part of this XPRIZE is a crowdfunding campaign that they are running to raise an additional $500,000 that will go towards furthering the impact and success of the prize. This money will go towards additional testing of the finalist’s technologies with more kids in more villages and towns, building infrastructure to help teams collaborative effectively, growing a global community of developers, designers, advocates and more, and investing in an open technology platform for society that will live on long past the conclusion of this XPRIZE.

I believe this is a tremendously valuable XPRIZE, and I would like to personally encourage you to go and contribute what you can at http://igg.me/at/learningxprize/x – there are a range of perks that might capture your interest too.

You can also get involved in this worthy project yourself; spreading the word, creating a team, sharing your knowledge, simply by going to http://learning.xprize.org/get-involved.

We can do this, and together we can achieve even more!

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September 24, 2014 at 7:23 pm Leave a comment

Peter Diamandis’ Truth About Global Violence

REPRINTED FROM MY MENTOR PETER DIAMANDIS (My favorite bits are in bold.)

I call CNN the Crisis News Network (or the Calamity News Network), delivering all crisis, all the time…

Today’s news media is a drug pusher, and negative news is their drug.

It might interest you to know that violence around the world has actually been going down, and has been for some time.

Your chances of dying a violent death are 1/500th of what they used to be during medieval times.

We’re blind to this fact, because our brains pay 10 times more attention to negative news than positive news. I wrote about these cognitive biases in Abundance: The Future Is Brighter Than You Think.

Deaths due to war graph

This graph shows deaths due to war between 1900 and 2005. You’ll notice clear spikes during World War I and World War II.

Check out this next graph.

Waning of War Graph

Here, you’ll see the types of battles fought since 1940, and every classification — colonial, interstate, civil, and civil without foreign intervention — has dropped off drastically over time.

But this isn’t the impression you get from watching the news every night, is it?

Today, every skirmish in every part of the planet is broadcast straight into your living room live, in HD… over and over again.

But when we look at the data, the amount of warfare and deaths by human hands are reducing globally.

What do I do to counter this barrage of negative news? I’ve stopped watching TV news. They couldn’t pay me enough money.

I get my news from selected Google News and my social feed. Try it. You’d be amazed at how much happier you’ll be.

Please send your friends and family to AbundanceHub.com to sign up for these blogs — this is all about surrounding yourself with abundance-minded thinkers. And if you want my personal coaching on these topics, consider joining myAbundance 360 membership program for entrepreneurs.
– Peter Diamandis

July 24, 2014 at 6:20 pm 2 comments

It is Your Gift

Favorite Patriotic Invite
As we celebrate our Country and our freedom at a time of such political unrest with our two-party system, I wanted to share a statement I heard recently from Derrick N. Ashong, aka DNA, that to me speaks to a growing need. A need for change.

He said:

“Making a change, making the world a better place is not only your responsibility, it is your joy, it is your blessing, it is your gift. It’s your opportunity to make your life mean something…so take it!

July 4, 2014 at 7:36 am Leave a comment

Who is Marianne Williamson?

“Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, ‘Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous?’ Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God. Your playing small does not serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won’t feel insecure around you. We are all meant to shine, as children do. We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. It’s not just in some of us; it’s in everyone. And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others.”

Have you read this before? It was written by Marianne Williamson more than twenty years ago.

Many know her as a best-selling author. Some as a phenomenal spiritual teacher. Others, like myself, as one of the thought-leaders for a new conversation in politics. Take 3 minutes to watch why Marianne is running for Congress. See why millions love her and why she is inspiring a movement for political change.

Congressman, Alan Grayson says, “Marianne Williamson has taught us that ‘playing small doesn’t serve the world.’  Every Member of Congress needs to hear those words.  We all need to ‘play big,’ and create a world where each one of us is free to – in Marianne Williamson’s words – ‘let our own light shine.’  In a nation where Marianne Williamson helps to make the laws, our differences will no longer divide us; they will be cultivated and nurtured and cherished, so that every one of us can be all that he or she can be.”

Vote June 3rd for Marianne. Or tell your District 33 friends to vote. Let’s be the next generation that rises up to say enough and restores to America her creed — a government of the people, by the people, for the people.

May 28, 2014 at 6:14 am Leave a comment

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Shelby L. Phillips

As an intuitive transformational messenger of hope, a communicative wife of 25 years, and an open-hearted mother of two, I take pleasure in telling good news stories, connecting people to the seven dimensions of well-being, and inspiring us to love ourselves and each other because life really is worth celebrating! Find out more about me at ShelbyPhillipsConnects.com

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