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I thought long and hard about what my technology column was going to say in a post-Trump world. Plenty of people who write about technology have done a bang-up job writing about security now that our government is set to become, like the rest of 2016, a garbage fire. If you don’t know that you should download Signal by now, then here’s Signal.
Today I want to talk about how, using only the power and technology of PayPal and online billing, you build a subscription service of sorts. It’s the same kind of subscription you might have for Treehouse or Skillshare or those fun box services like Art Snacks. Except this subscription service helps funnel money into the widest gaps that will yawn open when our new White Nationalist President takes his oath this coming January. Setting up a small recurring donation at one or more of the following organizations may help mitigate some of the rampant Hades-ness of the next four years. Jezebel has also thought in this same vein, and you will see some overlap in these lists. I’m focusing on the technology of recurring donations because that allows you to make a small donation that amasses over time—kind of like putting coins in a piggy bank.
The ACLU gets its own category because they’ve promised that they will see Ivanka’s Dad in court if he enacts any of his flagrantly illegal and unconstitutional policies. This legal organization fights human rights abuses with the power of law and lawyers. They allow monthly recurring donation. Donate here.
Environment and Climate Change
The Sierra Club
The Sierra Club is already looking at ways to safeguard our environment from Ivanka’s Dad (by the way, got the idea never to say his name from Ann Friedman on Call Your Girlfriend). They’re the largest grassroots environmental organization in the country. There are a whole bunch of different ways you can give, including joining. But they also have a recurring monthly gift, which is what this post is focusing on.
National Resources Defense Council
The NRDC, aside from being Marshall on How I Met Your Mother’s dream job, works to protect us from climate catastrophe by fighting fossil fuel projects and a whole host of other stuff. They litigate, build partnerships and support science. And you can donate monthly.
“Our mission is to ensure the political, educational, social, and economic equality of rights of all persons and to eliminate race-based discrimination. And we’ve been doing it since 1909.” Need I say more? When you first hit up their donate page, it isn’t immediately apparent that they have a monthly recurring option. But they do—fill out the form and then check the box for monthly recurring at the end of the form.
This is the Mexican American Legal Defense and Education Fund, because our Mexican American community deserves something better than a President who thinks…you know what, I’m just not gonna repeat it. Much like the NAACP, MALDEF doesn’t look like it has a recurring option, but it does. Check the box at the bottom.
Southern Poverty Law Center
The best pitch for the SPLC comes directly from their website:
With your help, we’re standing up for the most vulnerable people in society – those who have no other champion. We’re exposing hate and injustice, fighting discrimination, and providing award-winning anti-bias materials – free of charge – to schools across America.
We never take legal fees from our clients, and we accept no government funding. Rather, we rely on the compassion and generosity of people like you.
They’re going to have their work cut out for them. They accept monthly recurring donations.
I am furious at the mainstream media for how this election turned out. On the whole, they paid attention to a nonstory in order to gain clicks. The way to stop clickbaity articles and encourage responsible journalism, however, IS TO PAY FOR JOURNALISM. That helps divorce the profitability of reporting from how popular something is. Here are some ways to do that
Autostraddle A+ Membership.
You can keep us running in this horrific time by joining A+, which starts at just $4 a month. Hell, $2.50 if you bill that yearly! But I encourage you to join at a higher level if you can. Join here.
Your Local or State Paper
I wrote a post in 2014 about paying for journalism. Mostly it still holds up. Pay for journalism. Stay engaged. Read that post and subscribe to your local paper. Mine happens to be the New York Times, which is, like, not a helpful thing to call out. But do it. Get the news, and if you don’t want to waste paper, pay for news posted digitally.
This might go without saying, but supporting local goes for everything on this list, not just media. These organizations are, for the most part, national ones. Even as you’re donating to the ACLU and The Sierra Club, make sure to research local organizations that could use your help. The burden is going to be shifted down into States and counties.
The Trevor Project
This is a suicide hotline for LGBT youth. There have already been an uptick in suicides and attempted suicides. Our children are scared. This is one organization that can help with that. You can make a monthly recurring donation.
Transgender Legal Defense and Education Fund
For those who are looking to change their names in the next 70 days before this toadstool of an administration takes over, TLDEF does, among other things, name change work. And they do a ton of other things. This one REALLY looks like it doesn’t take monthly donations, but I super promise that if you enter an amount and click donate, you can make a monthly donation when it takes you to the next form.
Sylvia Rivera Law Project
“The Sylvia Rivera Law Project works to guarantee that all people are free to self-determine gender identity and expression, regardless of income or race, and without facing harassment, discrimination or violence.” Need I say more? Also in high school, a workshop run by Sylvia Rivera Law Project was one of my awakening moments, so I have a personal love for them too. Their form is unique in that you can make a monthly recurring donation, but you can also do weekly or yearly.
Women in Politics
“We ignite change by getting pro-choice Democratic women elected to office.” I’m here for this. And you can be too, with either a monthly recurring donation or by becoming a Friend of Emily, which is essentially the same thing.
She Should Run
This is an incubator to get women involved in running for public office. They have tools if you’re planning to run yourself (you should. Local government is always important, but it’s even more important in times of extreme crisis) but they also have this handy form that allows you anonymously ask women who you love and admire to consider running. Here’s the monthly recurring donation page, which is different from the regular donation page.
And Finally, Planned Parenthood
Planned Parenthood also gets its own heading because you may have seen that article run round, that Obama has protected Planned Parenthood forever. I’m pretty sure that’s untrue; I’m pretty sure it can be overturned. There’s very little a president can do that’s truly permanent, which is good most of the time. You can absolutely make a monthly donation to Planned Parenthood; the minimum is $5.
It’s pretty fucked up that people are gonna try take away what should be basic rights. We cannot count on federal funding for any of these things anymore. It is 100% fucked that we, a group of often broke marginalized people, are on the hook for paying for these very basic services, for lawyers and lobbyists to defend what should be common sense. But that’s what reality is right now. In this capitalist system, we have to vote with our money as well as our actual vote. So. What else? I’m only one person — what other worthy organizations are going to help us stay resilient for the next four years (and beyond, should the Supreme Court be devastated). Let’s build a list together in the comments.
A brief note: I’ll be on a panel next weekend on November 19th at Out in Tech. If you’re in New York City, consider attending!