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Week of December 14, 2020


Electoral College Confirmation Follows Week
of Constitution-Busting Shenanigans


Conservative-Dominated USSC Rejects Trump and Texas Attorney General

The expected Electoral College confirmation Monday afternoon of a Joe Biden victory may end legal challenges temporarily, but wild and fact-free charges of election fraud could continue for months, with possible hearings in the U.S. Congress and demonstrations nationwide. On Saturday, “Stop the Steal” protesters gathered on Washington DC’s Freedom Plaza and in other cities to insist a Biden victory was simply impossible. By nightfall, four people had been stabbed in Washington, DC and one shot in Olympia, Wash.

A week’s worth of legal challenges to the election, unprecedented in the nation’s history, were stopped cold by the U.S. Supreme Court and various state supreme courts, all of them saying that the plaintiffs brought no evidence of fraud to consider. The most outrageous action took place after the USSC’s rejection of a Pennsylvania case. Texas attorney general Ken Paxton filed suit against four battleground states, and the suit was joined by President Trump and more than 100 GOP members of the House of Representatives who filed amicus curae briefs. On Friday night, USSC rejected the Texas suit, saying the state had no standing to bring it. New Jersey Democratic Rep. Bill Pascrell demanded Nancy Pelosi refuse to seat any of the representatives who signed on as friends of the court, because such acts would be seditious in nature, Pascrell said.

The ironic thing for Republicans wanting to support those in Trump’s base who act in unconstitutional ways, is that it does not gain the Republican Party a thing. Diehard Trump supporters on alternative social-media networks like Parler were saying over the weekend things like “Burn the Republican Party to the ground!”, apparently because the GOP still did not dare to call for wildly unconstitutional efforts, such as a coup, to keep Trump in power. Some Republicans fear that the effort by Trump supporters to undermine the GOP and Fox News could lead to Democrats winning both special elections in Georgia in January, which would give Democrats control of the Senate. In any event, it is likely that the U.S. will be facing the threat of violent populism for some time to come. It is also likely that Trump will begrudgingly leave the White House without any form of concession speech.


City Will Take Comments for Module 2 of Housing Plan Through December 30


The city of Colorado Springs will accept comments through Dec. 30 for Module 2 of its RetoolCOS plan. The Colorado Springs Pro-Housing Partnership is encouraging members and friends to comment on Module 2, released Nov. 18. Note that COS-PHP made a small typo for the email in its initial call for comments, and it is corrected below. Here’s the appeal from COS-PHP:
We wanted to let you know that the city published a first draft of Module 2 yesterday, and public comments are needed to make sure they prioritize affordable housing. Roughly 50 people sent in comments on Module 1 and it prompted the city to revisit their draft. Our goal is to get more than 50 on Module 2. These comments don’t need to be more than 2-3 sentences.
Module 2: 
Module 2 deals with development and design standards—the elements of the zoning code that restrict how property owners build on their land. It requires that they have a certain amount of land to build anything (minimum lot sizes), not build on large portions of it (maximum lot coverages, setbacks from the edges of the property, height restrictions), and dedicate a certain amount of it to parking. 
How Module 2 Impacts Affordable Housing:
When these restrictions are too onerous, they limit the amount of land that can be used for housing and make housing more expensive to build. 
How to comment: 
Email and your city council members (email addresses here).
BCC so that we can keep track of how many comments the city receives. 
Emphasize that your primary concern is ensuring that everyone in the city can afford a place to live, which requires that the city do the following:
  1. Reduce minimum parking requirements more than the Module 2 draft already does
  2. Make it easier to build missing-middle housing by easing onerous development and design standards such as minimum lot sizes, setbacks, height restrictions, and lot coverages more than the Module 2 draft already does
  3. Include incentives for affordable housing in the zoning code, such as increased height allowance and lot coverages, and reduced parking requirements
If you’d like to learn more about why these things are so important, and use the information to beef up your comment, click here.

And if you're as concerned about our planet's future as we are, make sure to mention that the electric vehicle charging station incentive should be even bigger than it is.

Finally, if you didn’t comment on Module 1, include a sentence at the end saying that you want to see more permitted uses in single-family zones. If you did, reiterate your support for more types of housing in more parts of the city.
Thanks so much for your commitment to a future in which all of our neighbors can afford a place to live.

Max, Liam, and Elam


Remember PPJPC In Your Year-End Giving

Because of the inability to plan events at year's end, PPJPC elected not to participate in the Give! campaign this year. But that doesn't mean the need for contributions is absent! We hope you will consider making a year-end gift to the commission. If you are a sustaining member, we thank you! To make a gift or find out more, send a donation to PPJPC, PO Box 2115, Colorado Springs, CO 80901. We will soon have an online donation page at our revamped web site, .

Active for Justice Podcast Covers Nuns' March 5 Plowshares Speech

As a means of remembering the recently-departed Sister Ardeth Platte, we'd like to remind you to check out the presentation Ardeth Platte and Carol Gilbert gave at All Souls Church on March 5. We were lucky to host the sisters for several events prior to the quarantine being enacted locally. 

Plowshares Podcast here:

Moms Demand Action Sends Out Thanks to Supporters


We’d like to share this year-end note from our good friends at Moms Demand Action:
Thank you to all the volunteers and supporters of Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America, local Colorado Springs.  We extend our gratitude to each of you who worked to support Gun Sense Candidates this fall.  All the efforts including writing postcards, making phone calls, paying attention to policy positions and advocating for prioritization of safety and people over guns- it all made a difference.  Thank you. 

Memorial Hospital Could See First Doses of Pfizer Vaccine This Week

Following a Friday night approval of the Pfizer vaccine by the head of the FDA, distributors planned to ship the first doses of the vaccine to hospitals around the country this week. Memorial Hospital is expected to get the first rounds locally, somewhere between 6000 and 10,000 doses in the first shipments.

Health-care workers and residents of nursing homes are expected to be among the first to get the vaccine. By the end of December, this could expand to include “essential workers,” though there remains some confusion about what this definition entails. Those deemed essential could include grocery workers, teachers, and a range of similar infrastructure employees. If Moderna and other vaccines come on line soon thereafter, it is possible that the vaccines will expand to the general population by early spring.


Catch the Nov. 14 Lynching Memorial Online


If you missed the Nov. 14 memorial for lynching victim Preston John Porter at Denver’s Creekside Park, you can view the ceremony at the Colorado Lynching Memorial web site HERE.

Participants in the ceremony  included Rosemary Lytle, president of NAACP state conference; Aurora poet laureate Jovan Mays; Episcopal Church Bishop Kym Lucas; Rev. Tawana Davis of Soul2Soul Sisters; Gov. Jared Polis; Denver Mayor Michael Hancock; and Denver City Council Member Candi CdeBaca.

The marker commemorates the Nov. 16, 1900 lynching in Limon of 15-year-old railroad worker Preston Porter Jr., falsely accused of killing a girl. Porter was one of four African Americans known to have been lynched in Colorado, who are being recognized by the CLM project.

Peak Environment Podcast 66 Covers a Sustainable Holiday Season


Join Studio 809’s Peak Environment for its Podcast 66, which examines sustainable holiday practices. The holidays are coming and that means shopping, gifts, and food. Do you approach the holidays mindful of the environmental impact of all these activities? This episode explores sustainable options for this holiday season. Konrad Schlarbaum, sustainability coordinator for Pikes Peak Community College shares low-impact holiday gift-giving practices, and fills us in on the virtual PPCC Green Holiday Fair. Lorrie Myers, of Who Gives a SCRAP, updates us on the shop’s just completed move to larger quarters at 810 Arcturus Drive, which expands the shop’s offerings.

Who Gives a SCRAP is a donation based scrap store that carries arts, craft and hobbies supplies in addition to unique vintage finds. The store was founded on the belief that the reuse of goods and materials is the most efficient, environmentally friendly and economically viable way to reduce the waste stream. In its five years of existence, Who Gives a Scrap has diverted over 213 tons of clean, reusable materials from ending up in the landfill.

You can hear the latest podcast at:

You can also check out Podcast 65, in which Dave Gardner, originator of Studio 809, provides a holiday-appropriate look at relative environmental impacts of flying, driving, bus, train, bicycle, on foot, even staycations - What do we need to know to make responsible decisions about the way we move about? This program is based on an Oct. 23 presentation Gardner made to the Pikes Peak Environmental Forum. It includes results of a Lund University study on carbon footprints, a study of green flight bookings, and a discussion on whether physical conferences have a future in the post-pandemic world.

You can hear Podcast 66 here:

PPJPC Seeks Interest for Officers of Board


We’d like to share this year-end note from our good friends at Moms Demand Action:
Thank you to all the volunteers and supporters of Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America, local Colorado Springs.  We extend our gratitude to each of you who worked to support Gun Sense Candidates this fall.  All the efforts including writing postcards, making phone calls, paying attention to policy positions and advocating for prioritization of safety and people over guns- it all made a difference.  Thank you. 

RAWtools Offers "Taking Stock" as a YouTube/Facebook Resource Following June 28 Debut

RAWtools debuted its new poetry video, “Taking Stock: Loaded Words and Bullet Points” in late June to rave reviews. The video features local poets reading works on issues of gun violence. The video was directed and produced by Mary Sprunger-Froese and Lauren Weaver, and includes poems from Jonathan Andujar, former Pikes Peak Poet Laureate Susan Peiffer, NAACP activist Rosemary Lytle, and PPJPC Chair Loring Wirbel.  The video is now on YouTube for viewing at any time, you can find it here:

Pikes Peak Women Launch "Elevating" Podcast Series

Pikes Peak Women expanded their “Elevating” Podcast series with a new series, “Women Making Change,” with the first episode featuring Stephany Rose Spaulding. Elevating Pikes Peak Women covers a wide array of diverse topics and critical issues for local women, hosted by former Mayor and community icon Mary Lou Makepeace. During each episode, local women of diverse backgrounds, ages, and political persuasions explore their experiences, values, and beliefs about local issues that affect the women in our community. Here’s an introductory clip to tell you a little about the PPW podcast.  Our October focus was on Voting Matters, covering topics like the mechanics of voting and how to negotiate your way through the long ballot of issues that are of critical importance to women. Going forward, we're planning episodes on Black Women's Lives Matter, Life in the Time of COVID (including the high rate of women's unemployment and the effect on the family), and Education in the Time of COVID.  We all know that the burdens of the pandemic are falling disproportionately on women, in their roles in the workplace and in the family, so we are looking to women who are change agents and supportive voices to bring us to higher grounds.
The new podcast with Dr. Spaulding is HERE

Thanks to our partner Studio 809, you can easily find and listen to all recent episodes here. The podcast is also available via SpotifyLibsynRadio Public, and Apple 
Do YOU have something you'd like to add to the general conversation? Feel free to contact us with any comments, questions, and ideas at

Mary Lou Makepeace, Marcy Morrison, Denise Abbott, Karole Campbell, Lindy Conter, Susan Davies, JJ Frazier, Kimberlie Griffis, Melissa Marts, Michelle Ray, Cianna Reider, Beth Roalstad, Carrie Simison, Barb Van Hoy, Deb Walker, Kayla Zowada

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