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South Carolina State Senate

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Petitioning South Carolina State Senate

Remove the Confederate Flag from the State House Grounds

UPDATE:  I started this petition BEFORE the terrible hate crime was committed in Charleston.  That horrific event has become the catalyst for my petition gaining so much attention.  Also, Gov. Nikki Haley has changed her position from when I started this petition, but I do not want to change my original message. We have some great momentum now, but the job is not yet complete... Please keep sharing this petition until the Confederate flag comes down from the grounds of the South Carolina State House! PETITION: As a South Carolina resident, my heart broke when I heard about the senseless killings of nine African-American churchgoers during prayer in Charleston. As we mourn and search for answers, I can’t help but turn my attention again to how our state leaders continue to stand by a symbol that represents similar acts of hatred and racism. The Confederate flag is proudly displayed and flown at South Carolina’s State Capitol. Why are we intentionally sending a message of support of terror and oppression to our citizens and the rest of the country? I’m a former teacher who has taken my kids to visit the State House. I was sick to see that the Confederate flag was displayed right at the building’s front door. That’s right, the first thing you see upon entry is a definitive symbol of African-American hatred. What does that teach my children? It tells them that our leaders support bigotry and choose to feign ignorance in order to obtain votes. I can’t stand by and let that happen any longer. The suspect in this tragedy, Dylann Roof, was known to associate with the Confederate States of America -- an organization eager to return to a white supremacist era. He even had a Confederate Flag license plate. While some defend the flag as a symbol of our state’s history, they fail to recognize that elements of our past are not worth glorifying. I don’t believe that taxpayer dollars should support what is a very poor representation of our state. I like Governor Nikki Haley, but I don’t support her defense of the Confederate flag on public grounds. I am asking her and our elected leaders to take the overdue and necessary step to take down the flag for once and all. When I visited the State House, I asked an African-American man exercising on the building’s steps what he thought of the flag. He said it didn’t matter because it would never change. Many people here accept the status quo out of fear nothing will change. We don’t have to accept that reality. We know that the flag appeals to a very specific group of people, but it otherwise serves little to no purpose for most South Carolinians. Let’s make this change. What we saw on June 17 was a premeditated act of mass murder likely fueled by hate. Let this be the last such act that takes place in our state under a flag that stands for such violence and inequality. It’s time for Gov. Haley and the state’s legislature to remove the Confederate flag from the State House once and for all.

60,035 supporters
Petitioning Donald Trump, U.S. Senate, U.S. House of Representatives, Department of Veterans Affairs, Alabama State Senate, Alabama State House, Alabama Governor, Florida State Senate, Florida State House, Flo...

Congress: Let all children of U.S. military service members unite with their families!

I’m Jenifer Bass, a U.S. Navy veteran, who served for 10 years, one-third in the Asia-Pacific region. It was due to my travel between ports in countries like Japan and Thailand that I first encountered amerasian children, and descendants, of U.S. service members and civilian contractors previously stationed overseas. Filipino Amerasians are abandoned and neglected biracial children of Filipino mothers and American fathers (mostly members of the US armed forces). In the Philippines alone, more than 52,000-plus children were born and left behind after the U.S. Navy withdrew the last of its military personnel in 1992. Right now, the U.S. government won’t legally recognize them as U.S. citizens, despite having been born to an American parent. The Philippine Embassy won't help them either. As a former US colony between 1898 and 1946, the Philippines was home to millions of US soldiers and their dependents, even after its independence. Until 1992, the country hosted two of the largest US military facilities outside the US – Clark Air Base and Subic Naval Base, which played major roles during the Vietnam and first Gulf wars. In 1982 US Public Law 97-359, or the Amerasian Act of 1982, allowed children from Korea, Vietnam, Laos, Kampuchea, or Thailand to move to the US and eventually become American citizens, but those who were from the Philippines were excluded from the law, an exclusion which was upheld by the US Senate on the basis that many Filipino Amerasians were “conceived from illicit affairs and prostitution”, and were born during peacetime. Today, there are estimated to be more than 250,000-plus children. Many amerasians are caught in a no-man’s land of discrimination and poverty -- most left behind by U.S. service members who are unaware that they’ve fathered children overseas. My friend John Haines is one of these sailors. In 2011, John discovered he was the father of a half-Filipino daughter, Jannette. He attempted to unite with her through the American Homecoming Act -- but was frustrated to learn that the Act did not apply to Filipino children of U.S. service members. Today, all John wants is to be united with his daughter and grandchildren. He, like so many other veterans are living with a “hole in their hearts” as they search for ways to unite with their children. There is hope. The Uniting Families Act of 2018, HR 1520, creates a specialized visa allowing military veterans and eligible civilian contractors to sponsor their children and grandchildren for U.S. citizenship. Currently, blood relationship must be proven by DNA test and the total number of visas granted will be capped at 5,000 each year. The issue takes on more urgency as so many of our veterans from our wars in Southeast Asia are getting older and dying each day -- without the chance to connect, or in some cases, reconnect with their own children. John’s daughter Jannette has already undertaken the DNA testing process, conclusively proving her relationship to her American father. All she’s waiting for is the opportunity to permanently unite with her father. There is a PBS documentary, "Left by the Ship" (2010), documenting a day in the life and the personal struggles as a Filipino amerasian on the never ending search for identity and their struggles to connect to their American military families. Please sign this petition to tell Congress that these families cannot wait another day. Pass the Uniting Families Act of 2017, HR 1520, now!

Jenifer Bass
33,377 supporters
Petitioning South Carolina State Senate

Reduce current mandatory 85 % to 65 retroactive for all offenders. Parole offered for all offenders- those who are sentenced under determinate or indeterminate sentence consider previous votes Reestablish good behavior and work credit credits

Currently, the United States has the highest prison population than any other country. South Carolina currently has twenty four prisons through out the state. According to SCDC Profile as of June 30, 2014 there were over  20,000 inmates and over 10.000 of those inmates are sentenced under the Truth In sentencing Law.  Twenty years later there has not been any retroactive relief given to those who were sentenced and under the Truth In Sentence Law or any given to those who were sentenced under the determinate or indeterminate laws. There are inmates who has served more than twenty years and are still being denied parole for the same reason each time a parole hearing is given.  South Carolina  Parole Board requires an inmate to have a minimum of four votes  be considered for release. In most instances inmates are being denied for "nature of offense" for crimes that were committed greater than twenty years ago . South Carolina Department of Corrections requires that all inmates work within the institutions. Those inmates who work within these institutions  are not receiving pay and are not given any work credits that will help the inmate earn time reduction. The Institutions are receiving free labor from the inmates without giving them any incentives for the work they are doing.    In conclusion, the solutions that we pose are to reduce the mandatory minimum from 85% to 65 % retroactive including those with violent offensives, offering  parole eligibility for all offenders and those who are sentenced under the "old laws" consider previous votes towards current eligibility year and reestablishing both good behavior and work credits for all. Creating such solutions will allow the inmates the opportunity to work towards their freedom, independence and coming back into society as productive citizens. All institutions where inmates are required to work should offer trades or job training that will help the inmates earn pay while incarcerated or skills that will help them become employable after being released. There are men and women who daily strive towards making better choices than the one that lead to prison. Lets help them by establishing options that will help them come back into society as productive citizens.      

HEARTS FOR INMATES Founded by Erica Fielder
28,578 supporters
Petitioning Henry McMaster, Donald Trump, United States Supreme Court, U.S. House of Representatives, Mike Pence, South Carolina State Senate, Lindsey Graham, South Carolina State House, Trey Gowdy, Tim Scott,...

Protect SC Employees (It could’ve saved this woman’s life)

36 yr old Alicia Mitchell was walking from work at 8:21am on a usually busy road because she was told she'd be fired (confirmed via a cousin) if she didn't come in. This was apparently the Walmart MarketPlace on Ladson Rd in Ladson, SC. A 17 yr old unlicensed driver was going too fast on icy roads, lost control, slid off the road, that causing him to hit and kill Alicia. SC Governor and countless others urged people to stay home and off the roads. SC currently has no laws protecting an employees rights due to it being a right to work state and employers can let you go at any given moment for no reason at all. I believe SC needs to adopt laws protecting its citizens to avoid situations like this. Many other states have laws protecting its employees and I think it is time for SC to adopt similar laws. This lady’s death could’ve been avoided had SC citizens had laws protecting them from repercussions for simply calling out due to unsafe conditions that State Officials advised people to not travel in. She feared for her job, so she went to work, and in turn lost her life.... My hope is that officials introduce a law named Alicia’s Law or adopt similar laws as other states. Everyone please sign to help! No matter where you live your support is greatly appreciated. ❤️ Share, share, & share some more until we reach our goal.

Shawn Sally
7,622 supporters
Petitioning President of the United States

Remove the penalty that prevents people with disabilities from marrying!

When we think of marriage equality, we think about the ongoing fight LGBT couples face, but another minority group must deal with the stark reality that they are better off living in long-term committed relationships, without marriage. Like LGBT couples, these couples are denied the right to over 1,100 rights afforded to married couples. They have been denied access into their loved ones hospital rooms, faced family disputes over wills and have been denied spousal benefits from their partners workplace or the government in the event of their partners death. These are people with disabilities. Many people rely on the government for medical and financial assistance. Without medical insurance they would have no way to live independently. They would be forced into nursing homes (some already are), which would cost the government significantly more than getting Medicare and/or Medicaid does. At the same time, this assistance comes with a price. The government expects married couples to share income and that affects any assistance the couple receives. For many, their spouse makes too much (even if they make meager SSDI payments). This cuts into the healthcare services these couples receive. For some, their able-bodied partners make too much to allow them to qualify for medical assistance, if married, but not enough to pay out of pocket for costly medical equipment, medicine, or any other needs the disabled partner has. Add in the fact that even when a person with a disability can work, the opportunity for quality medical insurance is hard to find, due to their pre-existing condition and you will understand why many couples with disabilities are forced to live in domestic partnerships. Also, if two people with disabilities marry and they are on SSI or SSDI, their payments are CUT significantly, making it hard for them to maintain independence and afford their own food, shelter, clothing or other necessities. The time to stand up is now!! Let your Senators and Representatives know you want to remove the income caps placed on individuals with disabilities, so they can keep the government assistance and still be able to get married. Every loving couple deserves the right to marry. No one should have to choose between their wheelchair and their love, their therapy and their love, their medication and their love, their ability to eat or have a roof over their head and their love!! Those are not choices!! Help make it possible for those with disabilities to share their love without being penalized!Join our fight for marriage equality for people with disabilities:

Dominick Evans
6,863 supporters
Petitioning Charles ruth, South Carolina State Senate, Trey Gowdy, South Carolina State House, South Carolina Governor, Henry McMaster, Kevin Johnson, Kevin Bryant, Mike Gambrell, David Hiott

Keep Deer hunting with dogs legal and do away with current proposed bill S936.

The use of Deer dogs in SC is as old as the Deer hunting itself. There any many people that try every year to destroy what is a deep rooted tradition in the low country of SC. With the help of modern technology and GPS tracking capability the control of our hounds are somewhat at our fingertips. It is understood that certain clubs and people have given dog hunting a sour name and these groups need to be stopped but be understood not all clubs and people that dog hunt are bad. Before any decision is made to do away with or restrict the use of hounds on land due to it not being a total of 1000 acres please take the time to research the sport and understand the negative economical impact the smaller towns in low country SC will endure if they do not receive the business from hunters. I feel the dog hunting community in SC will agree and hope this petition will represent the vast majority in saying WE ARE NOT OPPOSED TO CHANGE but allow us to have a voice to be heard. Every person reading this that has ever dog hunted can think back and probably have fond memories of doing it with people that was a great impact on their life.  All we are asking is the chance to meet in the middle so the land owners/still hunters in SC and doghunters can both enjoy their land the way they would like. 

South carolina Deer doggers association
3,964 supporters
Petitioning United States Supreme Court, Barack Obama, California State Senate, California State House, Florida State Senate, Florida State House, Texas State House, Texas State Senate, New York State House, N...

Get Pit Bull Breeds off of the aggressive breed list! It's the owner, not the dog!

The Pit Bull breeds, American Pit Bull Terrier/American Staffordshire Terrior/Staffordshire Bull Terrier/Bull terrior, are really misunderstood dogs. It is never the dog who chooses to be aggressive, it's the owner who makes them aggressive. Any dog, any breed can bite. Any dog, any breed can attack. If you think about it, how many times does a small dog such as a chihuahua bite? Every day, but they're not on the BSL. Pit bulls are actually a mix of terriers and English Bulldogs. Have you ever heard from someone that Pit Bulls have lock jaw? Well, that's not true. Pit Bulls just have really strong jaws. In fact, German Shepherds actually have stronger jaws then Pit Bulls. German shepards got off the list not too long ago. So why not this beautiful breed with a weaker jaw? When it comes to temperament, these breeds are actually really patient animals. They are great with family's, babies and children. So great that they were once called "Nanny Dogs." The American Temperament Testing Society has proven that Pit Bull breeds can be less aggressive than Beagles and Golden Retrievers! These loyal pups can be trained to be service animals, therapy dogs, and if you want, police dogs!  During WWII, this amazing breed was used as a symbol of bravery. They were the symbol of our great country during that tough time. All of the people out there that say Pit Bulls are mean, have clearly never owned one. Yes, horrible people fight dogs, but it's not the dogs fault. Once they are rescued, they should be given a second chance at life. It's the dog fighter who should be euthanized. Not the dog. These companions are smart, therefore they are easy to train and learn fast! They are naturally sweet, cuddly, and love their humans unconditionally.

Andrea Brown
3,428 supporters
Petitioning Alabama State Senate, Alaska State Senate, Arizona State Senate, Arkansas State Senate, California State Senate, Colorado State Senate, Connecticut State Senate, Delaware State Senate, Florida Stat...

Require Amazon to Collect and Remit Sales Tax For All FBA (Fulfilled By Amazon) Sales

Please require Amazon to collect and remit sales tax for all FBA (fulfilled by Amazon) purchases. Requiring the hundreds of thousands of small businesses to register in every state and collect and remit in all applicable states is not practical -- it is a complex, heavy financial burden on small businesses and it is causing states to lose billions of dollars in tax revenue each year. With E-commerce now playing such a big role in the local economies, and with Amazon being THE major player, it is time for new legislation to be passed so that these matters can be properly addressed, removing any doubt regarding State sales tax liability and nexus -- especially as it relates to Amazon FBA and similar programs. If Amazon FBA was recognized as consignment, from a sales tax perspective, as it should be, then this would solve a lot of the associated issues that we are currently seeing. Laws vary from state-to-state, but most states require that the consignee (the store, or, Amazon in this case) should collect and remit sales tax. Arguments regarding consignment, who the seller really is and who the 'supplier' is: 1. FBA 'Suppliers' (as they should be called, and not FBA 'sellers') do not choose how/where their products are stored/shipped. 2. Commission is paid to Amazon on each unit sold. 3. FBA 'suppliers' must adhere to Amazon policy. Suppliers do not have the right to refuse sale/shipment without consequence and do not collect any money on transactions (all transactions are handled and controlled by Amazon, the store owner, with the supplier having no participation in said transactions). 4. FBA 'suppliers' have no real relationship with the customer as nearly all communication is prohibited as per Amazon (this relationship is owned and controlled by Amazon, the real seller). 5. Amazon provides advertising for products that they sell, including FBA products. Suppliers have no say in that message or how it's presented. 6. Amazon charges a 'monthly, rental fee' (FBA subscription fee) to display FBA products at their property, as well as additional fees for special exposure (e.g. special ad types or brand page vs. window or end-cap at front of store), as well as additional fees for how the product may be presented (e.g. videos on listing vs. in-store display). 7. Product ownership does not transfer to Amazon (the store owner), but sits on Amazon's shelves until a buyer is which point, the buyer should pay the appropriate sales tax (Amazon/the store owner, is responsible for collecting and remitting this, as they handle all transactions with the end-buyer and own the property where all merchandise is stored and sold). 8. et al. Amazon should be charging and then remitting the sales tax to all applicable states -- not the FBA seller. Not only would this eliminate any argument about complexity or what constitutes nexus amid the varying, questionable and ever-changing interpretations that each state has established, but convincing the States to get behind it should be easy if they only had to pursue one entity (Amazon), in lieu of the hundreds of thousands of small businesses that currently operate within the US marketplace. It is estimated that the majority of the FBA sellers that sell on the Amazon-US marketplace are operating on foreign soil, and do not have a legal entity that is locally established inside of the United States. How are the states going to force compliance if a foreign seller, using a foreign bank account, is operating outside of the jurisdiction of local law? This poses serious problems and creates an environment of unfair competition if foreign sellers can offer products 10% cheaper due to not having to collect and remit sales tax. If Amazon were required to collect and remit on all FBA sales, not only would this reduce costs, man hours and complexity etc., but it would be a lot easier to ensure compliance and remittance. States could get the tax dollars that they desperately need, instead of missing out as they do now. If things continue as they are, States will waste tons of money auditing individual sellers and pursuing legal action, all, unnecessarily. Since Amazon has decided to take full custody of its customer base and is essentially acting as consignment, this should put sales tax liability on Amazon's shoulders, not on FBA sellers. Since FBA sellers are currently required to collect and remit for all states where they are deemed to have a substantial nexus, then, in order to do that, they must first register their business in that State, apply for permits etc., and admit to having a substantial nexus. Just having a single box of inventory in one of Amazon's warehouses will be sufficient for establishing nexus for most applicable states. Amazon may move inventory around, however they see fit, and in doing so, will force FBA sellers to have nexus in those states, oftentimes, unknowingly. Once nexus is established for a particular state, it applies to ALL subsequent sales to that State -- so, if a seller wants to sell something on Ebay, and the buyer is located in the nexus state, then that seller would need to collect and remit sales tax, even if that inventory was stored in and shipped from their home. If FBA sellers are required to register in all of the applicable states and admit that they have a substantial nexus, they would then potentially be subject to Corporate/State income taxes for that state, use-tax for all products/services, franchise taxes, non-resident taxes, opportunity taxes and other, associated fees/taxes etc.. If non-local businesses have to admit that they have substantial nexus due to a single box of inventory, and if they have to remit in the same way (or worse) as a local business that is actually operating out of that state, then what other tax implications and responsibilities will they be subjecting themselves to? And wouldn't this put undue burden on FBA sellers? And isn't that illegal? Please require Amazon to collect and remit sales tax for all FBA (fulfilled by Amazon) purchases. Thank you.

American Citizen
3,143 supporters
Petitioning South Carolina State Legislature

Designate the Columbian Mammoth as the official South Carolina state fossil

My name is Olivia McConnell and I am an 8 year old who needs your help. I love science, and I love fossils. Fossils tell us a lot about our past and how things lived. I want to be an Egyptologist when I grow up. I think the Columbian Mammoth should be the official state fossil where I live in South Carolina, but some people in the government do not want that to happen because they don't feel as passionately about making science fun and exciting for everyone. I know that they will change their mind if you sign my petition because they don't know how much this means to a lot of people who care about science and history. I came up with three good reasons why my state needs an official fossil: (1) The first vertebrae fossil in North America (the Columbian Mammoth) was discovered in South Carolina in 1725. (2) South Carolina doesn't have a state fossil, but 43 other states already do. (3) Fossils tell us a lot about our past so this is a way to be proud of our history.  My family likes to eat at a restaurant called "The Chat-N-Chew" and they have a menu with all of the South Carolina state symbols...and I learned every single one. I realized that I didn't see a state fossil and I don't understand why. I do love fossils, so I started doing some research. Then I started sending letters to my South Carolina legislators. Senator Johnson and Representative Ridgeway think I have a good idea so they introduced this as House Bill 4482. Most people thought my idea was going to happen because they liked it so much! But now it is stuck in some committee because of a couple of people who don't love fossils as much as so many of us. One objection added a verse from the Bible to the bill (I believe in God, but don't know what that has to do with this) and one asked that there would be no more state emblems. I don't really understand why it is not passing now, because this was just a simple idea about recognizing our state history. I just want my state to get credit for this fossil find that was the first vertebrate in North America. I don't want that history to be lost. It's so cool! I known that I am just 8, but I care about making a difference in the world and I want everyone to know that big or small, change can happen if you just believe and never give up on your passions.  Please join me in asking the South Carolina Legislation to pass Bill 4482 to designate the Columbian Mammoth the official state fossil of South Carolina. Thanks also to my mom for giving me permission to do this petition and talk about it on the news!

Olivia Mcconnell and her mom Amanda .
3,035 supporters
Petitioning Pennsylvania State House, Alabama State House, Pennsylvania State Senate, Maryland State House, Oklahoma State House, South Carolina State Senate, California State House, Utah State House, Pennsylv...

Tell the state's to stop supporting Pigeon shoots

The pigeon shoot takes place all across the US, even though the acts are illegal. Most the pigeons are starved and deprived of water before being thrown into the air and shot down. The act is cowardly and inhumane. Then, afterwards, most of them are left to die in awful ways, varying from being abandoned and burned alive, all of which is illegal. The act is cruel and no animal deserves to suffer like that, at least in my opinion. I hope we can at least make a difference and save these animals lives. Note- Pigeons are actually not as gross as people make them out to be.

Cailey Kay
3,030 supporters