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NYRA Freedom Volume 11, Issue 9

Written by Bill Bystricky Dec 15, 2011

Contents

Montgomery Curfew Law Called Off
Taking Action on Plan B
Lerner Launches New Book on Ageism
Testimony on Student Parking in D.C.
Time Magazine Names NYRA Pres. as Person of the Year
Your Mission – Build NYRA’s War Chest
Calendar
News
NYRA in the News
Other News

Montgomery Curfew Law Called Off

Last month, NYRA Freedom introduced a new feature: Your Mission. We’re pleased to announce that already you have made it a success.

Montgomery County, MD — part of the larger Washington, D.C. area — was threatening to impose an age-based curfew law. In the Summer, NYRA Executive Director Alex Koroknay-Palicz and other activists gathered signatures and testified against the proposal, but several members of the Council were still vowing to vote for it.

Last month, Your Mission was to email those Council Members and urge them to call off their threatened curfew, and you did it. Last week, the Council voted 6-3 to table the bill, effectively scrapping it. And several Council Members said their reason was the growing voice of opposition they were hearing. People signing petitions, people testifying, people emailing: the voices of youth and of youth-advocates spoke loud and clear, and the Council heard. Teenagers in Montgomery County remain free of curfews, thanks to your efforts.

We cannot promise all of Your Missions will go this smoothly, but when they do, young Americans will have reason to rejoice.

Taking Action on Plan B

The voices of youth have not yet been herd by everyone. President Barack Obama needs to hear them right now.

When Obama began his presidency, he promised health and safety decisions would be “based on facts, not ideology.” Researchers at the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) examined the facts regarding emergency contraceptive pills (known by the brand name Plan B), and determined this birth control should be available over the counter to everyone. Yet in a stunning turn, the Obama administration declared they will ignore the facts, overrule the FDA, and continue the Bush policy of selling it over-the-counter only to women older than 17, while requiring a prescription for younger women. This decision was not based on any scientific fact. The drug is as safe for a 14-year-old as it is for a 35-year-old. The decision was purely political.

This is not even about abortion. Plan B does not terminate a pregnancy, it prevents one from occurring. But it must be taken soon after intercourse, which is why requiring a prescription is not just nonsensical, it’s dangerous.

It is time once again for young people and youth-advocates to make their voices heard.

NYRA is asking everyone to sign an online petition telling Obama to call off his betrayal and allow young women the same freedom enjoyed by older women: the freedom to avoid becoming a parent.

Sign the petition right now at:
http://www.change.org/petitions/the-president-of-the-united-states-dont-play-politics-with-the-health-of-women-and-young-people
Go ahead. We’ll wait.

Lerner Launches New Book on Ageism

Venture capitalist Andrew Lerner has released his new book. Thank You for Being Young So We Can Dump Our Problems on You! examines how ageism keeps young adults from succeeding in the modern work place and throughout society.

Lerner understands the need to fight ageism. He understands it so well he has generously agreed to give all his proceeds from the sale of this e-book to NYRA. So buy all the copies you can. At only $9.99, it makes a great gift for all your friends and family members.

“But how do I know it’s really that good?” you ask. “Just because everyone else is raving about it doesn’t mean they’re right.”

OK. Want to read it for free? We have now arranged to make this book available free at NYRA’s website. Our gift to you. Read it yourself, and when you see how powerful it is, you’ll agree it’s worth buying for your friends and family.

Testimony on Student Parking in D.C.

In the nation’s capitol, local lawmakers are trying to make it more difficult for students to park their cars. Many areas of Washington, D.C. allow parking only for those with permits. A special class of permits is currently offered to three groups: students, military personnel, and government officials. The new proposal would end such permits for students while continuing them for others.

“If you’re not willing to end these permits for public officials, then you shouldn’t be doing it to students,” said NYRA Campaign Director Bill Bystricky, who joined other activists to testify against the proposal this week.

A final vote on the bill is not yet scheduled.

Time Magazine Names NYRA Pres. as Person of the Year

Time magazine has named as their Person of the Year NYRA President Usiel Phoenix! Okay, technically their Person of the Year is “The Protester,” but tell me Usiel Phoenix isn’t the person they had in mind.

In the heart of America’s biggest protest, Phoenix has been working to rally Wall Street Occupiers around lowing the voting age. When police raided Zuccotti Park, she suffered a cracked rib and a dislocated elbow, but that hasn’t slowed her protesting. She continues occupying and continues spreading the youth rights message. She takes a hard knockin’ and keeps on rockin’. That’s the NYRA spirit!

While Time shied away from naming “The Protester,” Sure, Why Not? was much quicker to name names. Check them out:
http://www.eightminefortress.com/surewhynot/index.php/2011/12/03/usiel

Your Mission – Build NYRA’s War Chest

No one likes to talk about it, but movements, to succeed, need money. Like a church, NYRA survives on the tithings of our members to pay our bills. The more resources we can afford, the more powerfully we can fight for youth.

So Your Mission this month is to bring NYRA the funds to remain strong and to build up a war chest for youth rights.

“But I don’t have any money,” you say. “I just spent all I had buying Andrew Lerner’s new book for everyone I know.”

That’s okay. You don’t need to have money. We’re asking you to *raise* some for us. Walk down the halls of your office building or schoolhouse with a jar, asking for donations. Hold a garage sale or a bake sale to raise funds. When friends and family ask what gifts you would like this holiday season, tell them you want a NYRA donation in your name. There are dozens of ways to raise money for this cause.

The free NYRA Chapter Handbook offers a whole section on fundraising. Our online Activist Toolkit offers a downloadable guide to holding a silent auction, just one successful fundraising method.

Once you’ve gathered the funds, mail a check or money order to:
National Youth Rights Association
1101 15th St., NW
Suite 200
Washington, DC 20005

You can also use a credit card to give online.

We all give something to the cause. Some give their money. Some give their time and effort. Some give both. The important thing is that we all give what we can because the more we give, the more our movement grows. Let’s charge into 2012 with a stronger youth movement than we’ve ever had, empowered by the largest war chest we’ve ever enjoyed, winning more victories for youth than we ever imagined. Making that happen is Your Mission this month. Let’s do it.

Calendar

December 16 – #16toVote on the 16th
All Day – Tweet about the voting age and include the hashtag #16toVote

December 20 – Informal Chapter Chat
8 pm – 10 pm Eastern
In the New NYRA chatroom
Join the chat online here: http://www.youthrights.org/community/chat
Or with an IRC client, go here: irc.geekshed.net:6667 room: #nyra

January 2 – Informal Chat
8 pm – 10 pm Eastern
In the New NYRA chatroom
Join the chat online here: http://www.youthrights.org/community/chat
Or with an IRC client, go here: irc.geekshed.net:6667 room: #nyra

January 16 – #16toVote on the 16th
All Day – Tweet about the voting age and include the hashtag #16toVote

January 17 – Informal Chat
8 pm – 10 pm Eastern
In the New NYRA chatroom
Join the chat online here: http://www.youthrights.org/community/chat
Or with an IRC client, go here: irc.geekshed.net:6667 room: #nyra

News

NYRA in the News

D.C. college students may lose access to residential parking

Study: Phased-in teen driving privileges could save 2,000

Study suggests tougher teen driving laws in Indiana will save lives

Other News

Council Balks on Curfew Vote

Student arrested for burping, lawsuit claims

Students hit by voter ID restrictions

Governor Apologizes In Teen Tweet Uproar
http://www.youthrights.org/community/forum/youth-rights-news-wire/governor-apologizes-in-teen-tweet-uproar/

South Korea pulls plug on late-night adolescent online gamers

Texas’ top court suspends judge in beating video

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