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Find 100 Ways to Improve Human Rights (1-10)

November 17, 2009

1. Start simple. First think about yourself. You are a human being. What is your age, religion, ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation, socio-economic background, family history, in other words, what is it about you that you feel passionate about? Now, find YOU. Find the human beings that are suffering that you relate most to. Do not doubt that there is a need for someone just like you. Even if you are a rich beautiful princess where everyone worships the ground you walk on, look at what happened to Princess Diana! You could join the movie stars in a movement to create laws on the books to restrict the actions of paparazzi. What if you are in an abusive relationship with a toxic person, and you just love that person so much that you will never leave? Then help others that can.

2. Just because you are reading this, doesn’t mean that everyone has access to a computer. Print this out and give it to your friends, family, and keep copies handy for those random encounters. What we do not credit ourselves with often enough is that our chance encounters with others creates movements, trends, and change. This is what is known as the Tipping Point!

The Tipping Point: How Little Things Can Make a Big Difference is a book by Malcolm Gladwell, first published by Little Brown in 2000.  Tipping points are “the levels at which the momentum for change becomes unstoppable.” Gladwell defines a tipping point as a sociological term: “the moment of critical mass, the threshold, the boiling point.” The book seeks to explain and describe the “mysterious” sociological changes that mark everyday life. As Gladwell states, “Ideas and products and messages and behaviors spread like viruses do.” 

3. Make a conscious effort to change your information gathering. If you watch television 4 hours a day, which consists of sitcoms, movies, and gossip channels then introduce yourself to news oriented programming. Now you can take this slow. You can start with something funny, like the Colbert Report, John Stewart, or Red Eye. You should alternate news reports. Watch the nightly news on each channel and discuss the difference of the topics that are headlining that week. You could choose one news program, like 60 minutes, which will give you 3 different topics and Andy Rooney. You have to watch till the end for Andy Rooney. He’s always interesting. You do not have to politically agree. How do you know what you really feel politically if you are not up on the current world events? Put that aside. If you are a Republican, then watch MSNBC, and if you are a Democrat, then watch Glenn Beck or Billy O’Reilly. Alternate your news sources even a little. Most people who work in New York tell me that they like the BBC or CNN World News because it reports with a world view. If you are really daring….watch Al Jazeera. You are not a terrorists for learning how the world reports issues. Be a well rounded person. You don’t have to agree with anyone. If you are a creative family. You could make a list. The top 10 things I liked about what I watched tonight. The point of views I agreed with and didn’t agree with. The commercials that were running. Everything is connected. Pay attention to the details. The difference I heard in the story from when I heard it reported from the night or week before on another station. Then break down the commercials. What were they trying to sell to me? Who is the audience that this commercial is targeting, and why are they spending $50,000 (or whatever) to run it now! What is it about us, this demographic that makes this commercial invest in my eyeballs, ears and brain? Make sure to include talk radio, newspapers, and the websites affiliated with the channels. You don’t have to do this all at once. Pick one station for one week and fit in their news program, that talents radio show, the websites, and the commercials. Why the commercials? Go to # 4.

4. All corporations have a charity division. This fosters good will in the communities in which they do business in. Many corporations can not legally do business in some countries, therefore, if you are inclined you could write them letters about your passion to help. You could ask them for assistance. You could explain to them that if this works then they will have a whole new market to sell their product in! You could get beer donated to throw a fund raiser, or soda … if you are a church organization. Do you get my drift! Most people are always afraid to ask for something. If you are trying to help, then you should not be ashamed to try! They may give you products or money. The worst thing in the whole wide world that this company is going to do is send you a rejection letter. You can handle that! 16 years ago I called Budweiser and asked for them to donate to an independent feature film “The Brit Pack”. They actually sent 50 cases of beer! The director, Kevin Ula-Christie used the beer in trade at a local bar so we could film after closing! My support of them has probably returned those 50 cases by now and here is the link to their Charity site: Anheuser Busch Gives Back!

5. Go to your favorite FAMOUS PERSON! Who is your favorite singers? Go on line and find out what causes they support! Who is your favorite actor/actress? Go on line and find out what causes they support! Maybe nobody in your iPod will be supporting your desire to save the “aliens in outer-space who will die from us sending our garbage into space”. I’m kidding. So go find out about other famous people and see which one does! If you really think that we are killing aliens in outer-space with our pollution….go find out what the actors of Scientology are up to. I’m being a little far fetched here obviously, but I’m trying to prove a point….where there is a will…..there is a way. Don’t think you are the only one in the whole world that carries this burden on your shoulders. You have people who care about the same things you do out there, just waiting for a little support. Here is my favorite example of the efforts of the band U2’s project: ONE.

6. Time to throw a party! Do you know that I have been invited to parties that only had 10 people and a representative of the Dalai Lama showed up and had video of all the atrocities that were happening. I got so sick I was throwing up in the bathroom. I think it was the wine though. So don’t let everyone drink too much. But, be sure to have alcohol, because if you are raising money, people all of a sudden are more open to sharing what they truly can. Is that mean? No…..it’s human nature. Sometimes, we all worry about our money and things more than we do other people. Sometimes we just need those barriers broken down a little. Unless the only guests you invited were some AA group….then that would be highly inappropriate and I would suggest you not do that! The good thing about them though, is they will tend to be more giving after everything they went through. So they don’t need to be convinced it is their duty to help. It’s probably mandated by one of the steps. Here are some rules though when throwing a party. Make sure to get checks. Do not accept cash. If you have to…take the cash to the bank and put it in the person’s name so that you can give them an official receipt. Money has a way of bringing accusations of fraudulent behavior and you must keep your books open to everyone. Never assume people do things out of the goodness of their heart. I have learned that the hard way.

7. Sell T-Shirts! Come up with your own creative slogan and picture. If you are not creative you have someone you know that is. You can go to a business already established and they will keep the costs of the production, a profit, and give you what is left over for your cause. I would suggest my trusted friend John of 20+ years if you want to go that route. Do not be disturbed by the name. Trusted T-Shirt Company!You can buy t-shirts in bulk, an iron, a kit, sew, get the Bedazzler, let your kids put paint on their hands and stamp it, whatever you want! Just make the message clear and sell them. Give away a couple to those who are really cool and when everyone asks where they got it they could say, “Well….I don’t give away my fashion secrets, but since I like you …. here’s the phone number”. Even if you break even on the t-shirts, you have just advertised to the world.

8. Next parent/teacher conference you have with the school. Please discuss the curriculum and ask what projects, groups, or activities your child can get involved with that would promote community services. Then pick on and get them involved. This can apply to schools of any type, home schooling too, churches, groups, etc.

9. So there is nothing around. You don’t like the groups, you don’t like the churches, you don’t like what they are doing or how they are running it. Well, I guess it all depends on you then doesn’t it! You make your own group! You put up flyers. Talk to the local businesses. Tell your kids (ooh they won’t spread the word if they are teenagers) tell the parents, and the lady while you are checking out at the grocery store. Yep, it’s just like that. You can run free ads on Craigslist. You can call your local newspaper and have them give you an interview. You can create your own newsletter and send out e mails. Heck, you can just send out e mails. You can make your own blog for free. You can do anything you want, because we have all of the tools. If you don’t have a computer, have someone who is computer savvy to help you buy a used one on Craigslist. You can even ask for one to be donated. There are so many geeks out there that get rid of their computers regularly. It’s not a big deal to ask.

10. Contact your government!

Contact the White House!

Write Your Representative

Senators of the 111th Congress

Foreign Government Information

Leadership Directories and Foreign Government Resources (free trial)

Bucknell University Information On Foreign Governments

GCIS Foreign Government Directory

Information Resource Center – Embassies and Consulates

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