No time to wait for D.C, we're ready for 100: VICE Impact is proud to support the Sierra Club in their national initiative, Mayors for 100% Clean Energy Program. They are encouraging all mayors — regardless of political party — to move their cities and towns to 100% clean and renewable energy. Bottom line: this is a great way to address climate change in your community, right now.
Why is this still a thing? In 2017, conversion therapy, the act of converting a person's sexual orientation or gender identity, is still legal in 44 states. Despite being denounced by reputable psychiatric organizations, it's basically a form of legally sanctioned trans and homophobia. On April 25, Senate Democrats reintroduced legislation for a federal ban on the practice. Given the current administration's anti-LGBTQ platform, the activist community will be watching very closely.
Too little, too late: One of the officers involved in the death of Tamir Rice, Frank Garmback, recently said that he didn't know the victim "was a kid." Law enforcement shot Rice, a 12-year-old boy from Cleveland, Ohio, after mistaking him for an adult and his toy gun for a real one. The officer who shot Rice was not even charged with a crime. The family won a $6 million settlement from the city, but it's small consolation for the loss of their son.
Preach! On April 25, Pope Francis gave a TED talk with an encouraging message of tolerance and cooperation. "How wonderful would it be if the growth of scientific and technological innovation would come along with more equality and social inclusion," he said. The Pope's words of wisdom are prescient in light of the populist movements across the globe that have made some wary of embracing people who are not like them.
Listen up: Prominent Black Lives Matter activist, Deray McKesson, announced the launch of his new podcast on Twitter. McKesson was on the frontline in Ferguson, MO after the death of Michael Brown and has taken up the sword in the fight for equality. We'll be sure to tune in.
C.A. Leading the Way: A single-payer for all healthcare bill passed through a big hurdle yesterday in Sacramento. The bill, SB 562, still has a long way to go, but if legalized it would essentially cover everyone living in California. While Congress continues to threaten to repeal the ACA and put millions of people's healthcare at risk, more and more states are moving forward to ensure coverage for their residents. One of the groups supporting the bill, the California Nurses Association is determined to do push it through. The group identifies as both a workers union and an activist group.