How to make your own pallet flag yard sign

Emilene Leone explains how to make a sturdy, eye-catching pallet flag yard sign that costs “next to nothing.” -promoted by Laura Belin

I am such a fan of Bleeding Heartland, and am perpetually in awe of the intelligent, well-researched, and incredibly informative writing that contributors bring to this site. With that in mind, I was almost embarrassed to ask if I could submit a post to talk about my idea for a fun, political craft project….but I did it anyway, and here it is!

Another election season is upon us, and with election seasons, come fights over signs. Iowans plead, beg and ask for yard signs. Campaigns often seem to respond to those requests either slower than we’d like, or not at all. The saying “Yard signs don’t win elections” seems to run rampant, yet those of us here on the ground get more and more worried as we see signs for the opposition seem to pop up all over town overnight.

So, I’ve got a solution: let’s make our own signs!

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To see the racism of Kenosha, look beyond the videos

Jeff Walberg: The diagnosis begins by attending to where the pain is and listening to the part of our collective body crying out “I can’t breathe.” -promoted by Laura Belin

If you find yourself dissecting fractured images of chaos to find the proof of racism (or its absence) in Kenosha or similar scenes, let me suggest taking your eye from the microscope and widening your view.

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Lessons learned from our giving table

Todd Struthers chronicles “what went right, what went wrong, and the lessons we’ve learned running our 4H Giving Table in Waukee.” -promoted by Laura Belin

It started for us on May 26. The idea came from a post by Andy Slavitt, former administrator of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services under President Barack Obama. He linked to an article in the St. Louis Post-Dispatch titled, “After losing loved ones to virus, Maplewood woman makes her yard a lifeline for others.” 

Slavitt occasionally showcases people doing good in these “difficult times,” to quote an overused phrase. The feature was about a cancer survivor named Shana Poole-Jones, who lives in the suburbs of St Louis. She had family who died or had gotten sick with COVID-19, and she had created these grab and go tables where people can drop off or pick up food or toys. 

One thing she said resonated with me: “I realize that I’m a broken person and most of the people who to the table are broken right now. But all the broken pieces pieces come together and make a soft of community to survive this.”

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When Iowa farmers took to the streets--and got results

Dan Piller: The “Farmers Holiday” movement was the Black Lives Matter of the Corn Belt during the early 1930s. Mass protests, including blocking traffic, changed government policy.-promoted by Laura Belin

The churches, coffee shops, and co-operatives of northwest Iowa that gave us Steve King and a huge majority for Donald Trump in 2016 are no doubt generating massive disapproval of the Black Lives Matter protests, adding their voices to the call for “law and order” in the distant cities.

It might come as a surprise to many of these folks, who probably nodded through their Iowa history courses, that they enjoy their status as entitled owners of some of the richest farm land in the world primarily due to the government rescue of agriculture in 1933. That policy was a response to civil disorders that on several occasions prompted the governors of Iowa and Nebraska to call out their National Guards.

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The Disability Caucus: Fighting for inclusion

Eric Donat: “It’s important for inclusion to show people with disabilities in all possible roles – not just in disability-specific ones.” -promoted by Laura Belin

I’m excited to be part of the new leadership on The Iowa Democratic Party Disability Caucus as vice chair. I am Eric Donat of Waterloo and Black Hawk County.

I got my start in politics through advocacy training at the Center for Independent Living in Waterloo, Iowans with Disabilities in Action, and the Iowa Developmental Disabilities Council. Consumers at the center were connected to state legislators via our work on systems change advocacy.

Through being an advocate, I supported legislation making it easier for people with disabilities, particularly those using wheelchairs, to travel about in their communities. I also supported reorganizing Iowa’s counties into today’s mental health service regions. In addition, I advocated against privatizing Medicaid in Iowa.

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Three notable Iowa events that happened on July 4

Independence Day was established to celebrate the July 4, 1776 vote by the Second Continental Congress to adopt Declaration of Independence. But many other noteworthy historical events also happened on this day. Thomas Jefferson and John Adams both died on July 4, 1826. New York state abolished slavery on this day in 1827.

July 4 has also been a significant date in Iowa history. Two of the events described below happened within the lifetimes of many Bleeding Heartland readers.

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