January 08, 2011

Complete Health Care vs. Religiously limited care

Someone reminded me that papers like to have LTEs from just 1 person, and the more letters on a topic the paper receives, the more likely they are to print one or more of them.

So we're asking people to send in letters on their own, in their own words, conveying support for Adventist hospital to

We're also asking people and organizations who want to be listed as Coalition members please send me their names and titles for me to post on the blog.

If you're interested in that, please email me and I'll add you here: http://completecarecoalition.wordpress.com/coalition-members/

Mike Hersh
Co-Founder, Montgomery County Complete Care Coalition

January 07, 2011

Adventist Offers Advantages over Holy Cross

Background: Montgomery County needs a new hospital. 2 proposals are under consideration, but Marilyn Moon, Chair of the Maryland Health Commission, is favoring the Holy Cross proposal. We support the Adventist proposal, because it would provide complete care at a more accessible location, while Holy Cross cannot offer a wide range of essential health services because of the Ethical and Religious Directives for Catholic Health Care Services. More information: http://completecarecoalition.wordpress.com/

If you want to sign on to this letter to the editor and / or join the
Montgomery County Complete Care Coalition, please let me know.



Adventist Offers Advantages over Holy Cross

The Post article, "Adventist challenges Md. official's backing of Holy Cross" reported, "Reproductive health advocates across the country have raised concerns about religious directives that prevent Catholic hospitals from providing a variety of services, including fertility treatments, abortions, tubal ligations and hormonal contraception." The Montgomery County Complete Care Coalition (MCCCC) is concerned about all the essential care Holy Cross cannot offer, including end-of-life care, control of STDs and HIV/AIDS, the needs of same-sex families, as well as reproductive care. When it comes to life and health, the best medicine is complete care, not care limited by religious doctrine.

According to the article, Marilyn Moon, Chair of the Maryland Health Commission, "acknowledged the women's groups' concerns," but did she really? Men as well as women have grave concerns about The Ethical and Religious Directives for Catholic Health Care Services which prevent Holy Cross from providing needed care. MCCCC is perplexed by Ms. Moon's mistaken belief that our county is "not an area 'that lacks available and accessible options for obtaining these services.'" Severely limited options in the north county require a new hospital--that's the point!

Ms. Moon's rejection of complete care offered by Adventist HealthCare makes no sense. Adventist's proposal for a more accessible hospital in Clarksburg would meet all the public health goals of Maryland and Montgomery County. Holy Cross's proposal would not, because its Directives conflict with health needs of patients, the county and the state. Chairperson Moon acknowledged limits on health services would have “a serious impact,” she argues patients can go elsewhere. This is simply not true, and raises general concerns about her recommendations.

We have a better, viable alternative in Adventist HealthCare. When it comes to life and health, don't we deserve the best?

Mike Hersh, Wheaton Maryland

January 06, 2011

Tom Hucker's Fundraiser this Sunday at McGinty's

Join us for Del. Tom Hucker's Fundraiser at McGinty's Public House
This Sunday January 9th 3:30 - 5:30 pm

Featured speaker: Lt Gov Anthony Brown. Many special guests invited and expected!

911 Ellsworth Drive, Silver Spring, MD 20910

Tons of public parking in area garages.  8-10 minute walk from Silver Spring Metro.


Provided as a public information announcement, not coordinated with any candidate or campaign.

Roger Manno Annapolis fundraiser

Friends --

Hope you are able to join us this Tuesday for our first fundraiser of
the new year, and just one day before the opening of the 2011 Session of
the Maryland General Assembly. To make a secure online donation of $5,
$10, or more, please visit http://www.RogerManno.com. Thank you, as
always, for your support!

- Roger

PLEASE JOIN US THIS TUESDAY January 11, 2011 from 7:30 – 9:30 am:

Chairman Edward Kasemeyer of the Senate Budget and Taxation Committee
hosts a breakfast reception for Senator-Elect Roger Manno of the Senate
Budget and Taxation Committee
at the historic Governor Calvert House 58 State Circle, Annapolis, MD 21401

Host Committee: Friends $200 - Supporters $500 - Sponsors $1,000 - Hosts
$2,000 - 19th District Residents $35

To RSVP or for questions please contact Arie Stock at
Arie@RogerManno.com or 301-792-8962
Please make checks payable to Friends of Roger Manno, and mail to
Friends of Roger Manno, 2138 Merrifields Drive, Silver Spring, MD 20906

Authorized by Friends of Roger Manno. Anne Ambler, Chair / Sandra
Zimmet, Treasurer


Anyone wanting set up carpools to Annapolis, please write me at
mike@mikehersh.com and put Manno Carpool in the subject head.

Leaving Montgomery County before 6 am is a must! Times from other areas
may differ.

ACTION NEEDED! Retain experienced board of elections

Thanks to Sylvia Diss for sending this:

We need to  help the Montgomery County Democratic Central Committee correct  their  ill-advised selection of new members of the Board of Elections. Your letters must be written quickly to members of the Central Committee, as they are  meeting on January 11.
We must make sure that inexperienced members of the Board are not in place for the very important Presidential election in 2012.  The inexperienced members  the MCDCC has proposed will have a very difficult time overseeing Early Voting, the voting system, over 50,000 absentee ballots and the huge number of provisional ballots in the county's nearly 250 precincts.
Following are questions raised by Beverly Champeau, one of our members, to the Central Committee, expressing great concern over the prospect of losing two valued, hardworking, experienced members of the Board, including our friend Mary Kiraly.  Please email your own concern for the integrity of our voting process immediately to the Central Committee, and to individuals as you see fit.  Following are a number of email addresses--add others you may know personally, such as our state senators and state delegates.
Again, this must be done very quickly.

Dan Adcock, Chair                            daniel.c.adcock@gmail.com

Venattia Vann, Vice Chair                vwvann@aol.com

Francine Towbridge , Secretary      Ftowbridge92@gmail.com

Marie Wallace,Asst. Secret                emmabe101@verizon.net       

Simon Atlas, Treasurer                      Satlas2005@comcast.net

Sharon Bland , Dist. 15                       Sbland_esq@hotmail.com

Marjorie Goldman, Dist. 15                mgmagoo@aol.com

Elly Shaw-Belblidia, At-Large            mirinor@aol.com

"With the most important election coming up in 2012,  why did the MCDCC  disregard the recommendation of its own subcommittee, and favor an inexperienced Election Board,  instead of recommending the reappointment of those who have the experience and expertise and who have proven their dedication and commitment to the Montgomery County voters?

"I would especially like to know why you have not upgraded Mary Kiraly to be a full member.  She has served loyally in the substitute position.  Plus she has researched Maryland voter trends for many years and completely understands the workings of the Board of Elections.

"In the election of 2010, as a Democratic precinct vice chair, I was at our voting place for the entire day  to provide any assistance that might be needed.  When it was time for the 10 am posting of the votes, the chief judge did not seem to understand what was required. Gael Cheek, our precinct chair,  and I could not convince him how to report correctly, so we called the Board of Elections.  Mary Kiraly  spoke to him  and explained what information was required to be posted.  I do not believe that an inexperienced Board of Election member would have been able to solve this problem so quickly.

"Please reinstall the most experienced Board of Election members.  One never knows what problems can occur and need to rapidly solved."

Act now, to retain experienced  members of the board of elections.

January 05, 2011

Save the Date: "Saving Social Security," A Town Hall

The Montgomery County chapter of the National Organization for Women
presents: "Saving Social Security," A Town Hall.

National NOW President Terry O'Neill and other experts will present on
the topic, and explain ways we can help.

Time Monday, February 7 · 7:00pm - 9:00pm
Location Wheaton Regional Library Meeting Room downstairs
11701 Georgia Ave, Wheaton MD 20902

NOW is working with a wide coalition to protect Social Security. "With
the new Congress, there is a serious possibility that proposals to slash
Social Security benefits may go forward." See: http://www.NOW.org/

Demand U.S. Constitution Guarantee Women's Rights

We Hope You'll Join Us At This Important Event Tomorrow!

Women's Rights Advocates Demand U.S. Constitution Guarantee Women's Rights

January 5, 2011

While Republicans are reading the U.S. Constitution on the floor of the House of Representatives, women's rights advocates will be outside the Capitol asking: Where are the women?

"John Boehner and his cronies are holding up the U.S. Constitution as a sacred, perfect document. But we know the Constitution is far from perfect because it does not guarantee women's equality," says NOW President Terry O'Neill. "I am honored to join Representative Carolyn Maloney, who has been a tireless advocate on Capitol Hill for women's rights, to highlight the fact that women still are not fully protected in our nation's Constitution."


Representative Carolyn Maloney (D-N.Y.)
Representative Jerrold Nadler (D-N.Y.) - invited
Senator Robert Menendez (D-N.J.)
NOW President Terry O'Neill
Leaders from a broad range of women's rights organizations
What: Call for Equal Rights Amendment to U.S. Constitution
When: January 6, 11:00 a.m. - 11:30 a.m.
Where: House triangle, outside the Capitol at 1st St. SE and Independence Avenue

"We are way past due for a constitutional amendment explicitly acknowledging women's rights in the United States," says O'Neill. "Nothing less will do, as long as sexists like Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia feel completely justified interpreting women's rights as unprotected in the U.S. Constitution."

January 03, 2011

Hands off Social Security, Bring the troops home, money for our communities

Join Progressive Democrats of America and our allies asking your member of Congress to support 3 principles (or supporting him or her for doing so):
  • "Hands off Social Security"
  • "Bring the troops home in 2011"
  • "Move money from the Pentagon to our communities"

  • The next brown bag lunch vigils are January 19th. There will be at least 3 in Maryland--more if you organize one:
    Noon - 1 PM  MD-04 Rep. Donna Edwards--Brown Bag Lunch Vigil Brown Bag Lunch Vigil Silver Spring   See Map
    Noon - 1 PM  MD-07 Rep. Elijah Cummings--Brown Bag Lunch Vigil Brown Bag Lunch Vigil Ellicott City  See Map
    4:30 - 5:30 PM  MD-03 Rep. John Sarbanes--Brown Bag Lunch Vigil Brown Bag Lunch Vigil Baltimore  See Map

    Schedule your own brown bag lunch vigil: http://www.thedatabank.com/dpg/309/?formid=BBLVfacilitator


    Mike Hersh
    PDA Maryland State Coordinator

    January 02, 2011

    David Swanson with Andy Worthington, Debra Sweet, and Cindy Sheehan

    "War Is A Lie" in Baltimore on January 10
    David Swanson with special guests Andy Worthington, Debra Sweet, and Cindy Sheehan

    Here's a poster/flyer: PDF flyer

    David Swanson to Discuss, Sign Copies of "War Is A Lie" in Baltimore, Md.
    January 10, 2011
    7:00 p.m.
    Barnes & Noble Johns Hopkins Bookstore
    3330 St. Paul Street
    Baltimore, MD 21218
    (410) 662-5850

    Special guests:
    Andy Worthington, author of "Guantanamo Files"
    Debra Sweet, director of The World Can't Wait
    Cindy Sheehan, the Peace Mom
    and other surprises!

    Pledge of Resistance Baltimore
    Chesapeake Citizens
    Voters for Peace
    Progressive Democrats of America/Maryland
    Generations for Peace and Democracy
    Indypendent Reader

    "David Swanson’s War Is A Lie may be the most comprehensive antiwar statement available in the English language." — Kevin Young

    "Not since General Smedley Butler's War is a Racket has a simpler, more brilliant, or truer book been published." — Geoffrey Millard

    “David Swanson despises war and lying, and unmasks them both with rare intelligence. I learn something new on every page.” — Jeff Cohen


    MCPA Progressive Coalition Meeting: Tuesday, January 4, 2011

    "For all those whose cares have been our concern, the work goes on, the
    cause endures, the hope still lives, and the dream shall never die."
    -- Ted Kennedy at the Democratic Convention in 1980

    You are essential! Thanks to you, we're making progress in Montgomery
    County, Maryland and the USA. As we move into 2011, the work goes on.
    With your help, the dream shall never die. But we need you to keep MCPA
    going and growing. MCPCA is a non-profit, all-volunteer organization. We
    can only keep working with generous member donations. Your support lets
    us pay for social networking tools such as Meetup.com, rent venues for
    special events, print flyers and other materials, and keep organizing
    for progress.

    Join us at our next meeting: 7-9 PM Tuesday, January 4, 2011
    Combined MeetUp/Meeting for MCPA, DFMC, PDA, and more. Progressive
    Coalition Meeting to plan future events and actions.
    Victory 2012 Meetup

    Saigonese Restaurant
    11232 Grandview Ave
    Wheaton, MD 20902

    Public Transportation: Short walk from Wheaton Metro (red line)
    Google Map:

    Report on priorities for 2011 and progress on Healthcare, the
    Environment, Education, Labor, Transportation, Government Reform, Peace,
    Energy and other issues. We're building up our coalition and lobby
    efforts on the state and national level, planning special events,
    forming a steering committee, and working on meetings with legislators,
    and other organizations.

    We've been organizing events, supporting candidates, and informing you
    about progressive efforts in our area since 2003. We have big plans to
    work with our friends and allies in the county and state on healthcare,
    the environment, equality, and more! MCPA is playing a role organizing,
    supporting, and/or promoting ALL of the events below. NO OTHER
    ORGANIZATION is involved and promoting progress on such a wide range of
    issues and efforts!

    Please join the Montgomery County Progressive Alliance Google Group:

    If you're on Facebook, please join the MCPA group:

    We meet at least once each month to discuss and plan events and actions.

    1. MCPA: The Montgomery County Progressive Alliance is a result-oriented
    coalition working on local, state, national and international issues.
    MCPA includes more than 1,000 local activists, mainly in and around
    Montgomery County Maryland. The organization began in 2003 when
    Democracy for America Meetup members reached out to other Meetup groups
    and other groups. In 2004, 100s of Montgomery County for Kerry members
    and local Progressive Democrats of America members joined the MCPA. MCPA
    adopted a mission statement, organized special events, and has held
    meetings nearly each month since 2003.

    2. DFA/DFMC: Democracy for America emerged from Gov. Howard Dean's
    presidential campaign in 2004, and has organized grass-roots activists
    to support socially progressive, fiscally responsible candidates. DFMC
    is Democracy for Montgomery County, a local DFA-inspired organization
    which is not directly or legally affiliated with DFA. DFMC has organized
    events and meetings; and endorsed and organized volunteers for several
    candidates. DFMC is currently seeking additional steering committee
    members. Please contact me, mikehersh@mikehersh.com if you're
    interested. You can sign up for DFA here:

    3. PDA: Progressive Democrats of America began just after the 2004
    Democratic National Convention in Boston. Bringing together people from
    the 2004 Kucinich and Dean Campaigns with other progressives, PDA
    adopted an "inside/outside strategy" uniting activists working inside
    the Democratic Party with those working in peace and justice movements.
    PDA's core issues include clean, accurate and transparent elections;
    environmental protection; single-payer healthcare; economic and social
    justice; and peace. See: http://www.PDAmerica.org/ You can sign up for
    PDA there.

    Help keep us working for you! Please support us by paying 2011 dues of
    $15 now. You can also make an additional donation now. We hope you will
    give $25, but we appreciate any help you afford in these tough economic
    times. You can donate safely and easily online here
    or bring your donation to our meetings and events. Note: donations and
    dues are not tax deductible.