GEORGE LACKEY – We need to step up and use our strategy heads to think clearly enough to map out campaigns that win.
GEORGE LACKEY – We need to step up and use our strategy heads to think clearly enough to map out campaigns that win.
SHARON LERNER – The people who wrote an ordinance banning the aerial spraying of pesticides in western Oregon last year aren’t professional environmental advocates. Their group, Lincoln County Community Rights, has no letterhead, business cards, or paid staff. Its handful of core members includes the owner of a small business that installs solar panels, a semi-retired Spanish translator, an organic farmer who raises llamas, and a self-described caretaker and Navajo-trained weaver. And yet this decidedly homespun group of part-time, volunteer, novice activists managed a rare feat:
SARAH FREEMAN-WOOLPERT – Among the most important developments for the peace movement in the last year is the formation of broad coalitions. According to international scholar-activist Simone Chun, 2018 marked “the first time we saw a formidable, sustaining coalition with major American peace activists and the Korean activist communities.” These coalitions have allowed actors to coordinate strategically in pushing for clear goals, like a formal declaration ending the Korean War and sustained diplomacy on a path to peace. These coalitions have also been key in elevating a range of voices, particularly those of Koreans, women and people of color, who have often been marginalized from the mainstream policy debates in Washington D.C.
KEVON PAYNTER – Decades of economic and population decline, a depleted tax base, and critically underfunded city services have forced Southwest Detroiters to self-organize, establishing a local network of goods and services to fill in for missing city services. The result is a range of neighbor-to-neighbor efforts, like Detroiters Helping Each Other (DHEO), that seek to address broader needs that are going unmet by local government agencies.
ROBERT DODGE – A national collaborative grassroots coalition to abolish nuclear weapons is rapidly emerging in this country. The effort called “Back from the Brink: A Call to Prevent Nuclear War” started last fall after the U.N. Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons was adopted by 122 nations with the U.S. and other nuclear nations boycotting.
MEXICO NEWS DAILY – The municipal council of Tijuana, Baja California, has unanimously approved a prohibition on plastic bags.
NORMAN SOLOMAN – When members of the Democratic National Committee voted to take power away from themselves and other “superdelegates” — removing their leverage over the presidential nominating process — they took a big step toward heeding a sign that activists held outside their decisive meeting: “Democratic Party: Live Up to Your Name.”
DR. HAKIM (DR. TECK YOUNG, WEE) – It’s frustrating that whereas all human beings wish to live meaningful lives, we seem helpless in the face of a few individuals waging wars and exploiting our world. But we can each do something about this insensible status quo, as ordinary folk of the People’s Peace Movement ( PPM ) show us by taking one barefoot-step at a time, traveling to the Northern areas of Afghanistan to persuade fellow Afghans, whether they’re with ‘insurgent groups’ or with the U.S./NATO/Afghan forces, to stop fighting.
RICHIE DAVIS –
LISA FULLER – 100 Sri Lankan community members have permanently moved back to their navy-occupied island of Iranaitheevu. After a quarter century of displacement, they have begun to rebuild the long-neglected, war-ravaged town. Their success was not a result of luck, nor did the navy have a sudden change of heart. Instead, a group of women from the community had developed and implemented a nonviolent strategy that closely resembles techniques implemented by professional civilian peacekeepers in conflict zones across the world.
ROBERT F. DODGE – 50 years ago on July 1, 1968 the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) was signed. This landmark nuclear arms control treaty brought the world’s nuclear powers together with the ultimate goal of eliminating nuclear weapons by engaging in good faith efforts toward that end.
KATHY KELLY – In the state of Georgia’s Glynn County Detention Center, four activists await trial stemming from their nonviolent action, on April 4, 2018, at the Naval Submarine Base, Kings Bay. In all, seven Catholic plowshares activists acted that day, aiming to make real the prophet Isaiah’s command to “beat swords into plowshares.” The Kings Bay is home port to six nuclear armed Trident ballistic missile submarines with the combined explosive power of over 9000 Hiroshima bombs.
DAVID SWANSON – Within 30 minutes of my publishing this complaint that peace had vanished from Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez’s website, the following appeared on her website.
MICHAEL NAGLER – Nonviolence is spread out all around us, yet we so often fail to see how it can be used to stop some of today’s worst atrocities. Take school shootings, as just one example. It’s telling that the idea of arming teachers has been seriously debated in the media, while nonviolent approaches to conflict resolution remain largely unknown. That’s why the recent film “Faith Under Fire: The Antoinette Tuff Story” is so unique. It tells the true story of Antoinette Tuff, an elementary school accountant in Decatur, Georgia, who prevented a mass shooting in 2013 by talking would-be killer Michael Hill into putting down his assault weapon.
L.A. KAUFMANN – Quite suddenly, over the last week or so, something crucial has shifted in the mood of the grassroots resistance to Donald Trump. You can time it, more or less, to the release of that devastating recording of migrant children weeping for their parents after having been ripped from their arms, or the widely circulated photographs of children being held in cages. The unfolding horror of Trump’s family separation policy, and his administration’s plans for indefinite immigrant detention, is galvanizing people to fight back in a way that hasn’t yet happened under this presidency — specifically, with mass direct action.
OCCUPYICEPDX – Today 6/28/18 at approximately 6am federal agents from the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and Portland Police Bureau (PPB) swept the driveway at the 4310 SW Macadam ICE detention facility in Portland. No protesters at the camp are armed. Officers came in full riot gear and tactical weapons.
ARUN GUPTA – Thwarting Donald Trump’s war on immigrants and dismantling the vast deportation machine is possible. It won’t be easy, but it has to be done.
JOANNE LUCAS CVAR – Is a world beyond the barbaric practice of war only a romantic dream?
KHARI JOHNSON – We’re roughly halfway through 2018, and one of the most important AI stories to emerge so far is Project Maven and its fallout at Google. The program to use AI to analyze drone video footage began last year, and this week we learned of the Pentagon’s plans to expand Maven and establish a Joint Artificial Intelligence Center. We also learned that Google believed it would make hundreds of millions of dollars from participating in the Maven project and that Maven was reportedly tied directly to a cloud computing contract worth billions of dollars. Today, news broke that Google will discontinue its Maven contract when it expires next year.
REV. DR. STEPHEN P. BOUMAN – This week’s focus of the Poor People’s Campaign is about the resources dedicated to military strength and its relationship to mitigating poverty.
PROJECT 21 – Law enforcement agencies focus too much on revenue-generating activities that have a negative impact on poor and minority communities, further straining the relationship between police and the communities they serve, according to the black leadership network Project 21 . As part of its “Blueprint for a Better Deal for Black America,” Project 21 recommends 10 criminal justice reforms.
PRESS RELEASE FROM STAND UP TO OIL COALITION AND PARTNERS – Despite widespread opposition to the Kinder Morgan Trans Mountain pipeline expansion project, which would bring in 890,000 barrels of crude oil per day across Canada and out through the international Salish Sea waters in oil tankers, the Canadian government announced today that it will buy the pipeline in an attempt to guarantee its construction. By nationalizing this project, the Canadian government is taking on the risk of a massive construction project and pipeline that just this past weekend spilled oil.
REV. DR. WILLIAM J. BARBER, II and REV. DR. LIZ THEOHARIS – As the Poor People’s Campaign: A National Call for Moral Revival prepares for our third week of direct action, the nation pauses for Memorial Day weekend. Listening to many, including veterans in this movement, we chose to focus this week on our challenge to militarism and the war economy as well as the proliferation of gun violence in the US. We believe the greatest patriotism for moral agents is insisting that America become a more perfect union.
ROBERT F. DODGE, M.D. – Ignoring international partners, world public opinion and action, the U.S took additional steps these past weeks to renounce another international leadership role, this time in nuclear disarmament.
SHARON TENNISON – We Americans must take diplomacy into our own hands — as our citizens did in the 1980’s!
EL – The Standing Rock Sioux Tribe won a significant victory today in its fight to protect the Tribe’s drinking water and ancestral lands from the Dakota Access pipeline. A federal judge ruled that the federal permits authorizing the pipeline to cross the Missouri River just upstream of the Standing Rock reservation, which were hastily issued by the Trump administration just days after the inauguration, violated the law in certain critical respects.
MICHA NARBERHAUS – To this day, few civil society organisations are promoting the much-needed transition to a new economic system based on the principles of ecological limits, solidarity, human well-being, and intergenerational justice, nor are many organisations embracing the complexity of systemic change in their strategies, campaigns, and projects.
THE NUCLEAR RESISTER (a posting) – Seven Catholic plowshares activists were detained early Thursday morning, April 5, at the Kings Bay Naval Base in St. Mary’s, Georgia. They entered on Wednesday night, April 4. Calling themselves Kings Bay Plowshares, they went to make real the prophet Isaiah’s command: “beat swords into plowshares.”
ROB OKUN – Students: keep up the pressure to ensure legislators pass assault weapons bans. Demand they raise the age requirement to purchase firearms. Insist on funding for mental health screenings. Also, please don’t forget to press for research dollars and training initiatives on how we raise boys.
RICK ULFIK – Our system of Representative Democracy has been increasingly failing us.
ANDREW BUNCOMBE – More than a dozen protesters who clambered into holes dug for a high pressure gas pipeline said they had been found not responsible by a judge after hearing them argue their actions to try and stop climate change were a legal “necessity”.
RIVERA SUN – We have more power than we think. But we’ve got to go beyond the “protest-petition-call officials-vote” routine. Think outside that box, and you’ll find a world of creative solutions and strategies to tap into. The time has come to double down on strategy and make great strides toward change.
GEORGE LAKEY – Many assume that polarization is a barrier to making change. They observe more shouting and less listening, more drama and less reflection, and an escalation at the extremes. They note that mass media journalists have less time to cover the range of activist initiatives, which are therefore drowned out by the shouting. From coast to coast activists asked me: Does this condition leave us stuck? My answer included both good news and bad news. Most people wanted the latter first.
OUR CHILDREN’S TRUST and EARTH GUARDIANS – San Francisco. On March 7, Chief Judge Sidney R. Thomas, writing for a unanimous three-judge panel of the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals, rejected the Trump administration’s “drastic and extraordinary” petition for writ of mandamus in the landmark climate lawsuit, Juliana v. United States, brought by 21 youth supported by Our Children’s Trust.
TOM H. HASTINGS – What will greatly increase the chances for a movement victory? A seriously researched and developed strategic plan.
DAN SERRES – On February 20, 2018, Portland General Electric (PGE) officially ended plans to expand the Carty Generating Station, a fracked gas-fired facility located near Boardman, Oregon. This is a huge victory for our climate and public health. But controversy remains: PGE wants to dramatically increase air pollution at the existing Carty gas plant.
LAURA FINLEY – I never thought this would be my life’s work. But writing and speaking about the connections between domestic and dating violence and mass shootings has become an absurd and sickeningly frequent part of my life. Here we go, again.
EMILY JOHNSTON – It’s such an astonishing honor to live in this moment, knowing that we probably still have the power to set the world back onto a stable path, and thereby make life better, or at least possible, for countless people and other beings. I cannot imagine anything more meaningful. Uncertainty is possibility. In the uncertainty before us, in the sacrifices and joy of our connections with each other and every living thing, we have been given overwhelming abundance. In this darkness, we have begun our real journey.
MARK PRATT – Gene Sharp, a lifelong advocate of nonviolent resistance whose influence has been cited in social upheaval around the world, has died.
BRIAN TERREL – On Thursday, January 11, the sixteenth anniversary of the opening of the US military prison at Guantanamo Bay in Cuba was marked by a coalition of 15 human rights organizations gathered in Lafayette Park, across Pennsylvania Avenue from the White House in Washington, DC.
KAZU HAGA – We find ourselves in an urgent moment in history. From climate change to the Trump agenda, we do not have the luxury to wait until tomorrow. We need a movement today. So maybe trying to make the moral argument is not the most strategic thing. But King taught us that it is never the wrong time to do the right thing. And so, I believe the time is right to make the argument that violence itself is our biggest enemy.
DAVID CORTRIGHT – Marcus Raskin died [in late December, 2017] in Washington DC. He was the founder and long-time director of the Institute for Policy Studies, the influential left-liberal think tank that was at the heart of the Vietnam antiwar movement and many progressive projects over the decades.
SAMMI-JO LEE – “The FCC is basically taking the regulations off of big companies, but local companies can still offer high-quality internet access at good prices,” Christopher Mitchell says. Without net neutrality, broadband providers will be able to charge more for better access and faster speeds, or be able to restrict traffic to preferred business partners over competitors. More independent ISPs can offer consumers a wider variety of choices.
TRULS GULOWSEN – For the first time ever, a government is being brought to justice for opening new areas for oil and gas extraction after signing and ratifying the Paris Agreement. This historic court case is set to begin in Oslo, Norway, on November 14. Greenpeace and Norwegian environmental organisation Nature and Youth are challenging the Norwegian government in court for allowing oil companies to drill for new oil in the Arctic.
LISA FULLER – Dear Baby Boomers: Your children and your grandchildren need you right now- their lives may depend on it. I know, because I am one of them.
TOM H. HASTINGS – This essay is meant to help those who are especially interested in the court proceedings of nonviolent resisters to anthropogenic climate change. The intended readers would include nonviolent resisters, their lawyers, and those experts in strategic nonviolent civil resistance who may be asked to provide expert testimony validating the use of the necessity defense for resisters. In general, the necessity defense is known as an affirmative defense, a narrative that contextualizes and validates the otherwise apparently illegal actions of the nonviolent resisters.
TOM H. HASTINGS – Michael Foster was born and raised in Texas, in an oil family. His crime in North Dakota was turning off the Keystone pipeline in a symbolic but real call to all of us to do what we can to stop global climate chaos.
ROB OKUN – Okay, guys, white guys—all guys—this is our moment to say, “Enough!” This is the moment to start a national “Men Against Gun Violence” campaign. Right after Newtown, women launched “Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense” the day after the murder of 20 six and seven year-olds, and six staff at Sandy Hook elementary school. The day after!
MARK SCHLOSBERG – Recently Rep. Tulsi Gabbard (D-HI) introduced the Off Fossil Fuels for a Better Future Act (OFF Act), the strongest, most aggressive climate change legislation we’ve got. But it’s up to us to build the pressure to help make the OFF Act a reality. And we must.
PRESS RELEASE FROM ROGUE CLIMATE – Landowners, Tribes, and community groups are ready to stop the proposed Pacific Connector Gas Pipeline and Jordan Cove LNG export terminal terminal for the third time in 12 years, following yesterday’s announcement by Veresen Inc. that it has filed its permit application for the project with the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC).