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Debriefer: March 15, 2017

What interfaith means in the time of Trump



Jewish cemeteries and community centers have been facing white-supremacist hate of late, and Trump's at it again with his second executive order aiming to ban Muslims from the United States, under the guise of counterterrorism.

In response, organizations around the country are stepping up their efforts at Muslim-Jewish alliances in these troubling times. Muslims have been scrubbing swastikas off desecrated Jewish tombstones, and Jews have linked arms in defense of mosques and against the anti-Muslim violence in Texas and Canada.

These efforts come to Santa Rosa today, March 15, as the "Of One Soul" campaign of the Interfaith Council of Sonoma County hosts an event with speakers of various faiths coming together on the steps of City Hall in Santa Rosa.

The Rev. David Parks-Ramage from the First Congregational United Church of Christ joins Aisha Morgan of the Islamic Networks Group and Reb Irwin Keller of the Ner Shalom Congregation. Local elected officials have also committed to the event, which was called by the organization Interfaith Witness in Support of Our Muslim Neighbors. Santa Rosa mayor Chris Coursey and councilmember Julie Combs have both committed to the event, along with Sonoma County Supervisor Susan Gorin.

There's music at 5pm and the speakers get going at 5:30. Organizers ask that attendees consider it a holy gathering. "Please let your signs and words be child-friendly," they say in a statement, "and reflect what we want to invite into the world at this moment."

In other words, leave the "Tuck Frump" signage at home, at least for now.


The Republican plan to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act has hit a few bumps on the road to throwing 24 million people off their insurance by 2026, as the Congressional Budget Office reported this week. Now the California Senate has unsurprisingly chimed in with Resolution 26 which calls on Congress to "reject the ACA repeal unless it's replaced with a plan that ensures that not one American will lose coverage and that coverage will be more affordable and of higher quality for all Americans."

State Sen. Mike McGuire noted in a statement that, contrary to Republican claims about Obamacare, "the Affordable Care Act is not failing, in fact it is succeeding wildly in California."

Some of McGuire's constituents will be headed to the Trump death panels if the ACA is repealed. "A senior resident in a small, rural California county will have to pay several thousand dollars more per year out of her own pocket under [Trumpcare]. This is unacceptable."

The uninsured rate in California was 17.2 percent in 2013. It's 7.1 percent as of 2016—"the largest percentage point decline in the uninsured rate of any state," reports McGuire. The Senate approved Resolution 26 on Monday.

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