Move to Amend Volunteer Since 2014

Will you join me in recruiting our Congress member to co-sponsor the #WeThePeople Amendment?

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Why I support Move to Amend

I support Move to Amend because it addresses a root cause of so many problems—the excessive influence of big money and corporate power in the halls of government. In addition to volunteering, I support MTA with a monthly donation. You can help by donating today. Thank you.

Move to Amend seeks a 28th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution that makes clear constitutional rights belong to human beings only—not corporate entities—and money spent on elections is not protected speech and shall be regulated.

I've been involved with MTA since 2014. An interest in economic justice and peace prompted me to join the Greater Dayton MTA affiliate. I want to see people thrive and prosper, and that takes living wages and safe communities. What I learned after getting involved with MTA is that large corporations influence policies that allow them to profit from low-wage workers and from war.

Whatever our cause—economic justice, racial justice, environmental justice—you can pretty much bet that big money and corporate power get in the way of solving the problems we're trying to solve. It's not just that the ultrawealthy and large corporations have the money to bankroll the campaigns of politicians who will return the favor. It's also about so-called "constitutional rights" that the U.S. Supreme Court has granted to corporations over the course of many, many years.

I'm not against corporations. They play an important role in society and should be protected from government overreach. But they are state-chartered entities, not human beings. They warrant statutory protections, but they should never be on equal footing with you and me—and they sure shouldn't have greater power over you and me than we have over them. Early in our nation's history (and in Ohio's history), people had sovereignty over corporations. But today, corporations have sovereignty over people because the Supreme Court has given them not only 1st Amendment rights, but also 4th, 5th and even 14th Amendment rights. Without a constitutional amendment that makes clear corporations are not people with constitutional rights, the Supreme Court may very well continue to rule in favor of corporations when they raise objections to legislation designed to remove injustices.

Another reason I support MTA is its emphasis on solidarity organizing, that is, standing with groups that have been marginalized or oppressed and working together to move our nation in the direction of an authentic democracy, one that values human rights and gives voice to those who have gone unheard for far too long.

I continue to volunteer with Greater Dayton MTA, and I'm also active in an ad hoc working group called We The People Miami County, based in Troy, Ohio.

I hope you will join me in supporting MTA by making a donation today. Thank you.


How I've supported Move to Amend

  • Local volunteer addresses Troy City Council re: corporate personhood

    Heather Sturgill, a volunteer with Move to Amend Miami County, Ohio, made the following statement at the May 6 Troy City Council meeting:

    So I haven't lived here long, but one of the things that I really like about the people that I've met so far, is the strong sense of fairness. If people recognize that something seems unfair they want to get involved and make it right. 
    And I know this isn't a specific local city issue. But, here's where people go to learn about things and get involved in things. So, I want to draw your attention to the fact that some companies are exploiting something called "corporate personhood."
    Back on May 10th of 1886 the Supreme Court established that, under the 14th Amendment, a corporation is a person with “equal protection of the laws” in the case called Santa Clara County v. Southern Pacific Railroad. 
    Since that time corporations have pushed that concept to the point that they're now getting all of the Rights and benefits of "personhood." But, my problem is that they're not having to face any of the consequences.
    The biggest case in point is First Energy (now called Energy Harbor). The actions of people on behalf of that company caused the biggest bribery scandal in Ohio history. And, only flesh and blood people have faced the consequences of that; a couple of employees and some elected officials have gotten, or might get, some jail time. 
    But the company has still been free to operate business as usual, and even be awarded sweetheart aggregation contracts ...including from Troy.
    There isn't corporate jail, or corporate death penalty, anything like that. The most that ever happens to corporations is a fine, and quite frequently that's just rolled into the cost of doing business, and sometimes even taken off of their taxes as an expense. 
    And while this isn't directly a city issue, we can spread the word about supporting the “We the People Amendment.” At the Federal-level it's House Joint Resolution 54, and at the State level it's called House Resolution 56.

  • donated 2024-07-05 14:49:25 -0700

  • Letter to the Editor: Move to Amend Miami County Shares Responses

    To the editor:

    People are increasingly concerned about big money in politics and the influence large corporations have on policies that affect us at the local level, such as rail transportation safety and toxic substance disposal.

    In advance of the March 19 primary, members of Move to Amend Miami County surveyed candidates on the ballot for Congressional Districts 8 and 15 and Ohio House District 80. We asked candidates to answer “yes” or “no” to this question: “I support amending the U.S. Constitution to make clear that corporations and other artificial entities do not have constitutional rights and that money is not speech and campaign spending should be limited through regulation.”

    Here are the responses:

    • Congressional District 8, Republican race: Kay Rogers answered “yes.” Incumbent Warren Davidson did not respond.

    • Congressional District 8, Democratic race: Dr. Vanessa Enoch and Nathaniel Hawkins both answered “yes.” David Gelb did not respond.

    • Congressional District 15, Republican race: Incumbent Mike Carey, running unopposed, did not respond.

    • Congressional District 15, Democratic race: Zerqa Abid answered “yes.” Adam Miller did not respond.

    • Ohio House 80: Johnathan Newman, running unopposed for the Republican nomination, did not respond. Melissa VanDyke, running unopposed for the Democratic nomination, answered “yes.”

    The candidates’ full responses can be found at www.movetoamend.org/pledge2024

    Move to Amend Miami County is an affiliate of the national, nonprofit, nonpartisan coalition of people and organizations promoting the proposed We the People Amendment, reintroduced last spring in the 118thCongress, to affirm that constitutional rights belong to natural persons only and money spent on campaigns at all levels of government shall be regulated. You can read the proposed amendment at www.movetoamend.org/amendment.

    Move to Amend neither supports nor opposes candidates, regardless of their response or nonresponse to the survey. Rather, volunteers work to educate the public about the need for the proposed amendment and explain what the amendment will and will not do.

    Thank you.

    Dede Wissman

    Troy


  • Greater Dayton Move to Amend Honors Young Artist

    Corinne Simpson, a 10th grader at Archbishop Alter High School in Kettering, was honored March 9, 2024 for her entry in the We the People Art Contest, presented by Greater Dayton Move to Amend in partnership with the Dayton International Peace Museum.

    Titled “We All Deserve to Be Heard,” Corinne’s submission captured the spirit of the contest theme, “The Democracy We Want,” and was beautifully executed using pen, alcohol markers and acrylic paint. She had entered the contest at the encouragement of her AP Government teacher, Brad Clough, who said Corinne routinely produces creative covers for assignments.

    Corinne said she enjoys class discussions about different forms of government and hearing different perspectives on what needs to change in society. As she thought about entering the contest, she considered what could be improved in our democracy.

    “Some people think they don’t have a voice in what’s going on,” she said. “I wanted to put that as the title because I don’t think everyone is getting heard.”   

    The art contest was open to Dayton-area students in grades 9-12, with cash prizes to be awarded in three categories: visual arts, performing arts, and political cartoons. Corinne’s artwork, however, was the only submission.

    “We were disappointed to find that our outreach to the schools fell short,” said Mary Sue Gmeiner, affiliate co-coordinator. “Fortunately, her entry is awesome, and so we are awarding her all of the prize money in the visual arts category and having her artwork framed.”

    Two local artists also provided written critiques of Corinne’s artwork, which will be on display at the Peace Museum through April 6.

    Although Corinne was unable to work art into her busy schedule this year, she intends to be back in the art room with art teacher Eric Hall, who, along with Clough, attended the reception held at the Peace Museum.

    Corinne is the daughter of Tania and Roderick Simpson of Miami Township. In addition to enjoying art, she runs track and cross country. She also plays the violin and is a member of the Miami Valley Symphony Orchestra Youth Strings.

    “Corinne, while our contest turned out not to be a contest, we consider you a winner,” said Deb Hogshead, contest coordinator. “And we want to remind everyone that change often begins with one person stepping up and taking action.”

    For more information about our pilot art contest and what we learned from the experience, contact Hogshead at [email protected].


  • signed up on Join 2022-04-28 14:57:23 -0700

  • signed up on Toward a People's Constitution 2020-10-27 18:33:58 -0700

    Toward a People's Constitution


    On October 2020 we held a participatory People's Movement Assembly (PMA) with over a hundred people from across the country who came together to discuss why and how we need to democratize the United States Constitution. 

    The 2020 People’s Movement Assembly was a catalyst -- the beginning of something big -- and we invite you to sign up below to stay up to date on all things related to this project!

    During the 2020 PMA we collectively identified that:

    • We are in a moment of converging crises - Climate collapse, global uprisings against state violence and police brutality, and a global pandemic when most are without access to healthcare.

    • What's happening now is rooted in the values defined in (or missing from) the US Constitution - An undemocratic and ultra-powerful judicial branch, lack of human rights protections, no right to vote, and a whole lot of racist language just to name a few.

    • Bold, systemic change is needed - We have to know our power and be able to think outside of what we’ve been told is possible. It’s going to take courage, audacity, and a whole lot of learning and conversations to make it happen. But the only thing we have to lose is our chains. 

    • We have to have a vision and a plan - We learned that when constitutions around the world are re-imagined (on average other countries rewrite their constitutions every 19 years!) they’re more democratic when the Movement has a clear vision of what they want in their constitution. We have been building this vision for over ten years, and we continued it this weekend. 

    • People want a constitution that protects human rights, not just property rights. We like a lot of what’s in the Bill of Rights, (with some changes and exceptions), but the rights should extend further. People want a right to healthcare, housing, rights of nature, gender equity, a right to vote, and a whole lot more. 

    • We don't have to start from scratch. We can get over American exceptionalism and take inspiration from the constitutions of other countries, the UN Declaration on Human Rights, and the 2nd Bill of Rights proposed by President Franklin D. Roosevelt.

    We have a lot of political muscle to build to be prepared to democratize the constitution. We’re not proposing Move to Amend are the ones to do it alone, nor that it should be done right now. But there are people who want to restrict rights and create room for more authoritarianism, and they’re planning for a constitutional convention. We need to have a plan too. If we don’t, things aren't going to turn out well.

    We’re moving forward on this work, we’re creating a strategy, and if you liked the 2020 PMA, there’s a lot more where that came from. Sign up below to stay up to date on the latest news and future People's Movement Assemblies and our Toward a People's Constitution program.

    Sign up

Deb Hogshead

Deb Hogshead

Current Coordinator for Move to Amend Miami County, Ohio
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