See model Move to Amend resolutions for UU Congregations, Congregations of all faiths, and City Councils at the bottom of this page, as well as
o Reasons for overturning corporate personhood
o How this relates to Unitarian Universalist principles
o Reasons why corporations should NOT have the constitutional rights of human beings
To date, 22 UU Congregations in Florida have passed resolutions for Move to Amend:
Manatee Fellowship (Bradenton), Venice, Gainesville, Tarpon Springs, Palm Beach, Nature Coast (Citrus Springs), Pensacola, UU Fellowship of South Florida (Hollywood), Clearwater, St. Augustine, Ft. Lauderdale, Miami, River of Grass (Davie), UU Church in the Pines (Weeki Wachee), UUs of Bay County (Panama City), UU Fellowship of Marion County (Summerfield), Sarasota, Tallahassee, Buckman Bridge UU Church (Jacksonville), the UU Church of St. Petersburg, the UU Society of the Daytona Beach Area (Ormond Beach) and the UU Church of Brevard (W. Melbourne).
Others are encouraged to do so!
Will your congregation pass a resolution for Move to Amend? This is the effort to help get the BIG MONEY out of politics by not only overturning Citizens United, but establishing that corporations do not have constitutional rights and money is not speech. After subsequent Supreme Court rulings in McCutcheon and other cases, such an amendment to the Constitution is even more needed. The problem can't be solved by passing a law alone.
The boards of the UUA (Unitarian Universalist Association), UUSC (UU Service Committee), and UUJEC (UUs for a Just Economic Community) have endorsed Move to Amend, along with numerous organizations nationwide: See https://movetoamend.org/organizations
- We are asking even those congregations whose Social Justice Committee has passed a resolution or who have simply “endorsed” Move to Amend, to put the resolution before their congregation for a vote. That way, more people can become knowledgeable about the issue, and can help spread the word by becoming educators and ambassadors for Move to Amend.
- When you pass a resolution, please submit it for posting on the national website here: https://movetoamend.org/resolutions-map
- Then you can also endorse Move to Amend here: https://movetoamend.org/organizations, and use your posting as a PR opportunity for your congregation by adding your mission, time of your service, website, contact person with name, phone and email as desired. You may attract visitors!
Various groups, individuals and members of Congress are now proposing ways to overturn Citizens United—by amending the Constitution. Passing a law is simply not enough: it could be overturned by the next Congress. While all of these proposals are heading in the right direction to curb the influence of money in politics (see amendment comparisons), the most comprehensive is that of Move to Amend, a growing national coalition of organizations winning grassroots support around the country. Theirs is the only proposal that addresses both corporate personhood and money as speech. Overturning Citizens United alone doesn’t accomplish that. The Move to Amend proposal is also the only one building grassroots support from the ground up, which is required to persuade state and federal legislators that a Constitutional amendment is needed. Pressure from the “Inside-the-Beltway” organizations can publicize the issues, and win Congressional support for resolutions they think may be easier to pass, but awaking the grassroots to the need for addressing BOTH money AND corporate constitutional rights--in the same amendment--is critical. Resolutions and endorsements are needed organization by organization, congregation by congregation, city by city. Although individuals and congregations may support whatever measures they wish, Unitarian Universalist Justice Florida encourages all congregations and social justice committees to support Move to Amend, the “Gold Standard”.
RELATED UU SOCIAL JUSTICE STATEMENTS AND EFFORTS
GA 2010: A Congregational Study Action Issue (CSAI) proposed at the 2010 General Assembly in Minneapolis entitled “Revitalizing American Democracy” was written by UUs from New York, Boston, and Venice Florida and brought the issue of corporate personhood squarely before the Assembly.
GA 2011: The 2011 UUA General Assembly in Charlotte, NC passed the Action of Immediate Witness (AIW) “Oppose Citizens United: Support Free Speech for People” before the language of the Move to Amend amendment was crafted.
2011: The UU Legislative Ministry of Florida (UULMF) Steering Committee passed a resolution in support of Move to Amend October 15, 2011.
2010 and 2011: The UU Legislative Ministry of Florida supported two statewide tours by David Cobb, the original national spokesperson for Move to Amend. Six Florida UU congregations hosted events in 2010 (Miami , Ft. Lauderdale, Palm Beach, Melbourne, Ormond Beach, and Sarasota). Six Florida UU congregations hosted events in the 2011 tour (Palm Beach, Melbourne, Marion County, Orlando (1U), Tampa, and Ft. Myers)
2013: The 2013 Healing Our World and Ourselves conference co-sponsored by the Unitarian Universalist Church of Brevard and UULMF featured David Cobb again as one of three keynote speakers, in conjunction with Sr. Patricia Siemen of the Center for Earth Jurisprudence, Barry University School of Law, and Barry Alexander, psychology professor from Vancouver, Canada to show the connections between corporate personhood, damages to our natural world, and damages to human health.
GA 2013: The UUA General Assembly in Louisville, KY passed the AIW “Amend the Constitution: corporations are not persons and money is not speech”. This is the essence of Move to Amend. In the mini-assembly, one person said “Move to Amend is really the Gold Standard of all the proposals, but we are not sure it could pass.” To that we say, “Let’s go for the GOLD.” We know any proposed amendment will be modified, but if we don’t ask for what we truly need, we will never come close to achieving it.
2014: Our newly formed UUJF Action Network, the sister organization to UU Justice Florida, passed a resolution for Move to Amend January 2, 2014.
GA2016: The UUA General Assembly in Columbus, Ohio passed the 2016-2020 Congregational Study Action Issue "The Corruption of Our Democracy"
which specifically addresses passing a constitutional amendment to overturn corporate personhood and money as speech.
See the reasons for overturning corporate personhood here.
See how this relates to Unitarian Universalist Principles here.
See the reasons in depth why corporations should NOT have the constitutional rights of human beings here.
REACHING THE PUBLIC
UUs along with other dedicated activists in Move to Amend Affiliates are persuading their city councils to pass resolutions as well. Some have also passed local ballot initiatives, and persuaded their state legislatures to pass resolutions. Ten city councils in Florida have passed resolutions for Move to Amend (Cutler Bay, Gainesville, Orlando, Key West, S. Miami, Lake Worth, St. Petersburg, Sarasota, Pensacola and Anna Maria). See https://movetoamend.org/resolutions-map Your organization, congregation or social justice committee is encouraged to pass a resolution for Move to Amend, post it on the resolutions page, and endorse Move to Amend on the endorsements page, where you can also highlight the work of your organization and attract new members interested in social justice: https://movetoamend.org/organizations
One county in Florida (Alachua) passed a non-binding referendum for Move to Amend in 2014 with 72% of the voters in favor! Ballot initiatives are the best way to reach the greatest number of people. See https://movetoamend.org/resolutions-map for the list of all cities and counties nationwide that have passed citizens ballot initiatives.
You are also encouraged to gather petitions for Move to Amend, to build grassroots support nationwide.
The U.S. Constitution has been amended 27 times, when the highest interests of the American people were at stake, including seven constitutional amendments that have overturned U.S. Supreme Court decisions. With climate change impacting all parts of this country and the world, income inequality increasing logarithmically, and legislators at all levels of government passing laws against the wishes of the people, now may be another one of those times.
If not now, when?