On Wednesday, executrix posted a link
. I finally got around to trying it out today and I am here to now convert the rest of you into using it.
Resistbot is my new favorite thing.
Story time: The first week after Inauguration it wasn't hard to get over my fear of phones and call my representatives in Congress. It sucked but I did it. Then three things conspired to make me pretty much stop. 1) I live in a very vocal blue state. My senators and reps are already doing what I want them to do, so the urgency tapered as 2) real life reasserted itself and things simmered down since I can't live in crisis mode, and 3) when I did call, there were so many calls that I wasn't getting through anymore and it all felt pointless.
I'm going to pause here and recommend you read What Calling Congress Achieves
(The New Yorker) that snickfic
posted in today's linkspam
. It reinvigorated my urge to contact Congress People because it DOES
matter. It matters that we do it collectively in large numbers over the long haul.
Back to Resistbot. Here's what it is. You text "resist" to their number 50409 and the bot answers. I got to grin and imagine I was talking to a droid in Star Wars.
The bot asks for your name and zipcode. It finds your senators (it will add your representative if you use it again). Then it asks what you want to tell them. Here's where I messed up this time around: I talked to the bot instead of my senators. Don't do that. What you text to the bot is what's going to be put in the fax addressed to them, so you should address your representatives directly.
I gotta say, it was really easy to do, and I really liked being able to text what I wanted to say. At this point in my life, texting is one of my major forms of communication, so it wasn't hard to come up with something. I think it's good because it also forces you to be short. Make one point and then send.
The bot formats it into a letter, which it screenshots for you, and then faxes to the appropriate offices. All told it took about five minutes.
To sum up:
You basically get to text Congress without looking up their contact info
The resistbot sends it to them as a faxed letter
You don't have to call over and over again to get through jammed lines or full inboxes
You don't have to talk to a person or wait for open office hours