A Communal Reading of a Lecture by Frederick Douglass

 

THE MEANING OF THE FOURTH OF JULY FOR THE NEGRO

FRED.SOUD

“To work for ‘a more perfect union’ we need to start to understand complexities we’ve never really worked through.”

 

A COMMUNAL READING

OF A LECTURE BY

FREDERICK DOUGLASS

 

WHEN
SATURDAY, JUNE 28TH, 1:00PM

WHERE
AMHERST TOWN COMMON
RAIN – GRACE EPISCOPAL CHURCH, 14 BOLTWOOD AVENUE

In his fiery July 5, 1852 speech, the great abolitionist orator Frederick Douglass took exception to being asked to commemorate the signing of the Declaration of Independence …

Sponsors: AFSC, Amherst Human Rights Commission, Amherst NAACP, David Ruggles Center, Karuna Center for Peacebuilding, Leverett Peace Commission, Mass Humanities, Mass Slavery Apology Project, NE Peace Pagoda, Peacenet, Project Unspeakable, Sankofa Foundation of the Pioneer Valley, Sojourner Truth Memorial Committee and Traprock Peace Center.

Find out more about the “Reading Frederick Douglass” statewide collaboration at http://www.masshumanities.org

download the flyer –> RFD Flyer

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Buddhist Monks Lead Activists on a Journey of Transformation

2013 Walk for a New Spring Reaches D.C. photo by @drvonskillet

2013 Walk for a New Spring Reaches D.C. photo by Vanessa Lynch/Zorlu

via Walk for a New Spring

Walking the Talk of Peace

Buddhist Monks lead Activists on a Journey of Transformation

Beginning February 21, the Monks and Nun of the New England Peace Pagoda will lead their annual “Walk for a New Spring”, from Leverett, Massachusetts to Washington, DC.  The walk is 47 days long and will end on April 8th.  It is the 13th annual Walk for a New Spring, which began in 2002 in response to the tragedy on September 11, 2001 at the World Trade Center in New York City.  This year is the third time the Walk for a New Spring has brought its message to the nation’s capital.

From the harsh frozenness of mid-winter to the warm burst of spring, we walk for the understanding that our life-and-death challenges affecting our beautiful, common home, the earth, affect us all.  We have brought ourselves to a time where we are undeniably in the same boat.  Money cannot, in the end, buy safety from the catastrophic earth changes of climate change, cannot protect us from the radioactive potential of the nuclear chain to annihilate life.  These and other present day realities affect us all.

The destructive policies kept in place by very powerful interests, may seem untouchable, but, truly the limitless spiritual/moral force within each one of us for the good, is more powerful.  The Black Freedom Movement facing the entrenched power of Jim Crow is a shining example on our own soil of the unarmed, spiritual power of soul force over physical force.

Yet, when we look at our society we do not yet see the human community of the country coming together.

So, we walk believing that, as never before, we are called to come together and find the genuine path to acknowledge and heal our social wounds and divisions.  Starting with the renunciation of war making and killing, let us find ways to transform the old legacy of racism and fear of the other.  Let us build genuine relationship with new and old friends, and work to implement social policies based on the acknowledgement of unassailable human dignity.

As President Kennedy said in 1963 “… For, in the final analysis, our most basic common link is that we all inhabit this small planet. We all breathe the same air. We all cherish our children’s future. And we are all mortal.”

We walk to Washington, DC bringing the aspirations of people in over 50 communities in nine states and the District of Columbia.

Some concrete laws and policies we invite support for are:

  • Bill to Ban Uranium Mining in the US and to clean up the thousands of abandoned uranium mines on Native American lands
  • H.R.808  A Bill to establish a Cabinet-level Dept of Peace-Building
  • Continue the Funding of the SNAP Program – NO CUTS
  • Petition to support Jobs Not Jail for Non-violent Offenders (Massachusetts)
  • Support for Initiative of Fairfax, CA to establish an international body of experts to oversee the care of the damaged and dangerous Fukushima Nuclear Power Plant
  • Oppose Fast Track policy with regard of the Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP)

2013 Walk Reaches the White House

For more information regarding the walk, contact Tim Bullock at 413-485-8469 or email walk4newspring@gmail.com

 

Related Resources

Campaign to Boycott TD Bank for funding Tar Sands Oil Pipeline

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What:   3rd rally of Campaign to Boycott TD Bank for bankrolling
                                        climate change by investing in Tar Sands Oil
                                        development and pipelines. 

Where:  TD Bank,  1441 Main St. in downtown Springfield (and similar protests 
                               at bank offices in
 Holyoke, Westfield, Northampton, Amherst, and Greenfield)

When:   Monday, Sept. 9, noon to 1pm

 

More info:  John Berkowitz, Northampton   
                                                     413-325-4533  johnpberk@gmail.com

 

 

 

Area citizens concerned about climate change will hold a permitted rally in front of TD Bank at 1441 Main St. in downtown Springfield in a campaign to boycott TD until it stops its major investments in Tar Sands oil mining and pipelines.

 

Similar protests on the same day will take place at TD Bank branches in Holyoke, Westfield, Northampton, Amherst, and Greenfield.  Protests have already taken place in July at TD banks in Northampton and Amherst.  Read Daily Hampshire Gazette story at:http://www.gazettenet.com/home/7272782-95/qa-climate-activists-put-northampton-td-bank-branch-in-spotlight

Representatives of the group will ask the TD Bank manager to write a letter to
the TD CEO, urging him and the Board of Directors to divest its holdings and
loans to TransCanada, the Canadian energy giant that is developing the Tar
Sands Oil fields in Alberta.

The group will also call on President Obama and Sec. of State John Kerry to
reject the proposed Keystone XL pipeline from Alberta to Texas.  Their decision
is expected later this year.  Recently, 10 Nobel Peace Prize recipients signed a letter urging President Obama to reject the pipeline as a key step in taking bolder action to stop climate change.

Nearly 1500 people have been arrested in the past two years protesting the
proposed Tar Sands pipeline, including 30 college students in February at TransCanada’s office outside Boston, and 22 people of all ages in Chicago on June 17th.  Over 70,000 people across the country have signed a “Pledge of Resistance” to engage in non-violent direct action/civil disobedience to protest if the pipeline is approved.

 

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Itinerary Update for the Red Cry Screening

Hello all,

There’s been a slight change in the itinerary — unfortunately the Lakota elders will not be able to make it up to Massachusetts at this time.
We are excited to share that Chikako Nishiyama, a government official from Fukushima will be joining us to share a bit of her firsthand account of the still unfolding situation in Japan. 

We are still excited to share Red Cry and have some information and media to share with you from Pine Ridge.

Chikako Nishiyama, from the village of Kawauchi in Fukushima Prefecture, Japan, is making a trip to New England to offer her eye-witness report on the Fukushima nuclear disaster. Kawauchi is about 15 miles southwest of the stricken Fukushima nuclear reactors. The 2,300 people who lived there were evacuated. A year later they were told it was safe to return, but most still stayed away, fearing radioactive contamination. Now two years later, there are still many who have not returned.

Lakota Elders Truth Tour Comes to Amherst‏

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Friends, Revolutionaries, Artists:

I hope this message finds you in good health.

I am writing to tell you of an exciting upcoming event that I welcome you to take part in.

Many of you had the opportunity to meet Charmaine White Face, an Oglala Lakota representative from Pine Ridge Reservation when she joined our latest Walk for a New Spring. The walk was a 50 day pilgrimage to D.C. calling for peace and nuclear disarmament. On the walk she shared with us a presentation entitled “America’s Chernobyl”; the untold story of uranium mining on the Great Sioux Nation.
She came representing the Lakota Nation and the Defenders of the Black Hills, an organization she co-founded to protect the sacred Black Hills.

After the Walk finished Charmaine went on tour again with the Lakota Grandmothers and the Strong Heart Lakota Solidarity Project. I had an opportunity to join this Truth Tour while they were in NYC. The tour was promoting the new documentary Red Cry which details the ways in which the United States Government initiated and is still employing genocidal tactics against the Indigenous People of this country.

This extremely pertinent documentary tells the unheard stories of Pine Ridge, and what we as a community can do to stop this cultural and physical genocide.

I am extremely excited to tell you that Charmaine, Canupa Gluha Mani and several elders and organizers will be coming back to the East Coast early next month.

Continuing the Truth Tour the elders and supporters will again go to the United Nations to deliver an official complaint of genocide from the Lakota Oyate and ask to be represented fairly as a nation.

According to the 1851 and 1868 Fort Laramie Treaties signed by the Sioux Nation and the United States Government the areas of North Dakota, South Dakota, Montana, and Wyoming are set aside for the “Absolute and undisturbed use and occupation [of the great Sioux nation]”. By neglect and feigned ignorance, the United States continues to allow the devastation of indigenous land, including the Black Hills which are considered a sacred area to many Native tribes. The uranium mining of the traditional indigenous land in the Midwest, central US and Western US is a direct violation of treaties signed by the US government.

We have a chance to change that.

On Wednesday June 5th and Thursday June 6th the Truth Tour will come to Amherst.
There will be a screening of the new documentary Red Cry and a chance for discussion with the elders and organizers. We will also be hosting a solidarity & decolonization training.

I am writing to invite you to these events and ask for your help.

We are looking for a space for the approximately 10 people who will be making the trip up from South Dakota to stay.

We are also looking for some light refreshments and/or donations for food and travel expenses for the group.

If you are interested in any of these things, please contact me by phone or email.

 I thank you all for your work and interest, and I hope I will see you at one or both of these events.
More information to come.

 

Peace & Solidarity
Vanessa
Contact

 

Resources/More Information:

Lakota Elders Denied Entry into the United Nations — Video
Defenders of the Black Hills Website
Red Cry Trailer
Uranium Exploration and Mining Accountability Act
[to download this document visit newenglandpeacepagoda.org and select the document on the right hand side]
Fort Laramie Treaty of 1868

 

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Walk for the People – Walk for the Earth Community Meeting 3/16

Peace Walk, Manomet Point

Peace Walk, Manomet Point

The 50 day Walk for the People, Walk for the Earth begins on
Friday, February 15th at 2:30pm at the gates of the
Vermont Yankee Nuclear Facility in Vernon, VT.

There will be a potluck at 6:00pm at the
Green Trees Gallery in Northfield, MAfollowed by a presentation by Charmaine White Face and
community discussion.

The next day, Saturday the 16th
the walk will start at
11 am at Pulaski Park in Northampton
the group will walk into downtown Amherst
amidst a Black History Month town celebration
and have a potluck/community discussion at
5:30pm at the Jones Library.

12th Annual “Walk for a New Spring”

12th Annual Walk for a New spring

Walking for Peace
For the People – For the Earth

February 16 – April 5

Walk initiated by
Nipponzan Myohoji
New England Peace Pagoda
100 Cave Hill Road
01054

For more information, to join or support
the walk when it comes to your community
Call Tim Bullock: 413-485-8469
Email: walk4newspring@gmail.com

Endorsers
Arise for Social Justice – Western Mass American Friends Service Committee
Mass Peace Action – House of Peace – United for Justice with Peace – Cambridge Peace Commission – Nuclear Free Future – The Traprock Center for Peace and Justice – Mass Slavery Apology – Leverett Peace Commission – Dorchester People for Peace – Louis D. Brown Peace Institute – Orange Ink

Walking for PEACE….
We are in a time of great change, some have called it the “Great Turning”
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Term first used by Joanna Macy
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