NJSJR Thanksgiving Newsletter

As we approach another Thanksgiving… with the traditional sitting around the table reflecting on all of which we are grateful for having, we thought it timely to share a few Thanksgiving thoughts.

1. During the Holiday Season, beginning this Thanksgiving and extending into the new year, the National Institute for Civil Discourse (NICD) is inviting people from all over the country to take part in its Revive Civility Initiative by “Setting the Table for Civility.” NICD and more than 80 national and local partner organizations, including the Jewish Council for Public Affairs and the Nashville Jewish Social Justice Roundtable, urge you to make a special effort to pause and reflect this holiday season on the need to heal the divisions in our country and take action by asking each other the three questions highlighted below:


(More tools for group conversations can be found at http://www.revivecivility.org/)

2. Thank you to all who responded to our call for action to reach out to our two Senators on tax reform. With the House bill passed, and the Senate about to pass one of its own before reconciliation of both begins, your shout outs to Senators Corker and Alexander were timely given the threats tax reform in their current iterations pose to the critical safety net programs in place that help millions. If you haven’t made your calls (see our last newsletter) please consider doing so. Contact info for our Senators follows at the end of this newsletter.

3. While on the conversation about reaching out to elected officials, please consider making one more call… to our Senators again to ask them to please sign on to the Dream Act of 2017… a bipartisan legislation that would allow around 1.5 million U.S.-raised immigrant youth to earn lawful permanent residence and start on a path to American Citizens upon meeting a set of criteria. The Administration’s decision to end the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program has placed 800,000 Dreamers at risk of deportation. The Dream Act of 2017 would rectify this decision. Various versions of the Dream Act have been introduced at least ten times. They have passed either the House or Senate, but not both in the same Congressional session. The current version, while certainly not perfect, improves upon previous bills and is prudent legislation that creates a needed pathway. It is critical that Congress stand up for these youth and take swift action to replace fear and uncertainty with permanent protection!! It needs to be passed as a stand-alone bill. Contact info for our Senators follows at the end of this newsletter.

Please accept our wishes for a wonderful Thanksgiving holiday. In the weeks after we will be sharing more detailed information about our plans to engage members of our Roundtable more directly in social action.

— Avi Poster, Irwin Venick, and The Nashville Jewish Social Justice Roundtable Steering Committee


Sen. Lamar Alexander
https://www.alexander.senate.gov/public/index.cfm/email
Washington Office at (202) 224-4944
Nashville Office at (615) 736-5129
Also email David Cleary, his Chief of Staff, at David_Cleary@alexander.senate.gov

Sen. Bob Corker
https://www.corker.senate.gov/public/index.cfm/emailme
Washington Office at (202) 224-3344
Nashville Office at (615) 279-8125
Also email his Todd Womack, his Chief of Staff, at Todd_Womack@corker.senate.gov

Immediate Call to Action on Proposed Tax Reform Bill

There are a number of important issues in front of Congress that deserve our attention that the Nashville Jewish Social Justice Roundtable is carefully monitoring. The issue in front of Congress this week is tax reform, which is why we are sending out this action bulletin. Coming up swiftly behind tax reform are important decisions on DACA and the Federal budget.

We are asking that you join our Roundtable in raising your voice against the proposed tax bill. NJSJR stands in strong alliance with organizations with which we align including, but not limited to, JCPA, The Tennessee Justice Center, The Center for American Progress, Religious Action Center of Reform Judaism, Coalition on Human Needs, the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, A VOICE for the Reduction of Poverty in Nashville, Americans for Tax Fairness, and countless others. We rise against this proposed legislation because it would provide billions of tax breaks to wealthy individuals and corporations by cutting programs that help reduce poverty and make lives easier for many among us.

Congressman Cooper has weighed in on tax reform with reason. Unfortunately, to varying degrees, Senators Corker and Alexander have indicated support. As both are considered to be persuadable targets … especially Senator Corker … local and national advocacy partners have reached out to us urging us to connect with both.

Please take a few minutes to email and call both Senator Corker and Senator Alexander. Urge them NOT TO VOTE for the current iteration of tax reform as it serves no national purpose, will not create jobs as some profess it will, and will not provide relief across the middle class. The proposed tax bill will instead provide tax breaks for the wealthiest individuals and corporations based on the promise of trickle-down economics. Some low/middle-income individuals and families will actually pay more – especially people with high medical expenses or student loan debt, people who adopt children, and immigrant families. Remind our Senators that if this bill becomes law, low- and middle-income people will suffer for years to come. The proposed tax bill will add trillions to our deficit that will lead to future cuts in key federal programs such as Medicaid, Medicare, education, SNAP, housing, job training, and more.

In advance, thank you again for raising your voice in supporting issues of critical importance such as this one.

The Nashville Jewish Social Justice Roundtable Steering Committee


Sen. Lamar Alexander
https://www.alexander.senate.gov/public/index.cfm/email
Washington Office at (202) 224-4944
Nashville Office at (615) 736-5129
Also email David Cleary, his Chief of Staff, at
David_Cleary@alexander.senate.gov

Sen. Bob Corker
https://www.corker.senate.gov/public/index.cfm/emailme
Washington Office at (202) 224-3344
Nashville Office at (615) 279-8125
Also email Todd Womack, his Chief of Staff, at
Todd_Womack@corker.senate.gov