Thursday, June 23, 2011

Activism and Activists for Peace, Justice, and Environment

ACTION FOR PEACE, JUSTICE, AND ECOLOGY Newsletter #1, Compiled by Dick Bennett for a Culture of Peace,   June 23,  2011

The peace movement must be more innovative and courageous.   We can draw from activism and activists from many directions to convert the Pentagon, militarism, empire, wars, to peace, justice, and land/species stewardship.  See Dick’s See Dick’s Blog, “IT’S THE WAR DEPARMENT” and   the many newsletters related to U.S. militarism and empire in


Indignation Not Silence!  Stephane Hessel

Environmental Hero: Support Tim DeChristopher
   Moral Revolutions
   US Radicalism:  Deming and McReynolds
   Resisting Corporatocracy
   Communication Activism
   Abe Osheroff
Evaluations of Activist Methods

[The following section on Indignation was sent to Blog 3-2-11.]

The Outrage Deficit

After the shootings in Arizona, cries arose from the public and pundits for a return to civility.   But if you are aware of the silence in response to the US wars and other harms, and to climate warming and weather extremes increasing, you realize that not civility but indignation is needed.   For example, all across the nation budget discussions in towns and cities occur with no apparent concern that half of the US budget is for militarism and empire.  Dick    

The Editors   The Nation March 7/14, 2011
In 2011 America’s social compact, already frayed by the right’s decades-long assault on its essential elements, is in danger of coming apart.
The Great Recession was caused by the depredations of Wall Street and enabled by a political class captive to its greed. Those same forces have conspired to deprive the recession’s victims—millions of ordinary Americans who have lost jobs, homes and hope—of comfort and justice.
Where is the outrage?
The truth is, it is hard to find—at least on a scale commensurate with the magnitude of the betrayal we have endured. True, the Tea Party’s calls to slash an additional $100 billion from an already crimped 2011 budget elicited jeers across the leftish blogosphere. And next to the GOP’s spreadsheet of cruelty, President Obama’s blueprint for 2012 appears relatively gentle and sane, with its targeted investments in infrastructure and cuts to fossil fuel subsidies. But let’s not forget the human context in which this budget debate is occurring: 25 million unemployed, 50 million without health insurance, 44 million living in poverty.
That Obama’s plan was greeted with barely a grumble from his liberal base—surprising even the White House, which, according to the New York Times, had braced for a backlash on its left flank—reflects our diminished expectations, not only of Obama but of society.
It is time, as Stéphane Hessel reminds us in this issue, to regain a sense of outrage. In the first English translation of a cri de coeur that has topped bestseller lists for months in France, the 93-year-old former diplomat and hero of the French Resistance recalls the ideals of that movement—which not only struggled against Fascism but for “a true economic and social democracy”—and urges a new generation to seek their fulfillment. “The worst possible outlook is indifference that says, ‘I can’t do anything about it; I’ll just get by,’” he writes. “Behaving like that deprives you of one of the essentials of being human: the capacity and the freedom to feel outraged. That freedom is indispensable, as is the political involvement that goes with it.”
In the United States today, one need look no further than our state legislatures to find ample cause for outrage. As Robert Pollin and Jeffrey Thompson detail on page 19, states struggling with dropping revenues and spiking demand for social services are not contemplating such reasonable measures as raising taxes on the wealthiest 1 percent of households, who collected a breathtaking 65 percent of income gains between 2002 and 2007. Instead, state officials—including many newly elected Republicans, but also some Democrats—are taking aim at the benefits and jobs of hospital nurses, schoolteachers, firefighters—public servants who are the backbone of the middle class.
And that’s not all. The public sector unions—the last redoubt of organized labor, the first of “five pillars” of Democratic strength, according to right-wing guru Grover Norquist—have been marked for destruction by a longstanding right-wing campaign now coming to fruition, as Jane McAlevey reports (page 22).  States like Wisconsin, where Republicans won a “trifecta”—control of the governor’s office and both chambers of the statehouse—are moving to take away the fundamental right of government workers to engage in collective bargaining.
The stakes could hardly be higher for unions and for all progressives. Indignez-vous!

More information about Hessel and his book.
Feb 22, 2011 ... On the American publication of Stéphane Hessel's Indignez-vous! ... Bravo, editors of The Nation. Can't wait to read the full English copy -
1.                              Time for Outrage! | The Nation
Time for Outrage! | The Nation. Did You Join US Uncut on Saturday? -
2.                              Stéphane Hessel - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Stéphane Hessel was a member of the National Consultative Commission on Human ... In October 2010 his essay "Indignez-vous! was published with a firstéphane_Hessel -
3.                              Indignez vous! by Stephane Hessel – the text « Sapte Stele / Seven ...
Jan 8, 2011 ... CRY OUT! INDIGNEZ VOUS! By Stephane Hessel, 93. Page 1 ... and the sixty-six years program developed by the National Council of Resistance! -
4.                              Stephane Hessel Indignez-vous - French Connections Home
Jan 6, 2011 ... In October 2010 Stephane Frédéric Hessel's essay "Indignez-vous! ... Stéphane Hessel was a member of the National Consultative Commission on › ... › French Connections Home - Cached
5.                              Resistance Hero Stephane Hessel, 93, Cries “Indignez Vous - Bruce ...
Jan 6, 2011 ... Resistance Hero Stephane Hessel, 93, Cries “Indignez Vous! ... others see a nation hungry for a passionately rebellious French voice. indignez_vous_and_ignites_b/ -
6.                              Indignez-vous! Stéphane Hessel's bestseller Indignez-vous! serves ...
Feb 21, 2011 ... In the first English translation of a cri de coeur that has topped bestseller lists for months in France, the 93-year-old hero of the French serves-as-reminder-of-the-power-of-outraged-united-citizens-to-ena...
7.                              "Time for Outrage" (Indignez-vous!), Hessel, Now in English ...
Jan 28, 2011 ... INDIGNEZ-VOUS By Stéphane Hessel Booklet "Indignez-vous" by Man 93 Incites .... out 66 years ago by the National Council of the Resistance! -


Chris Hedges, “This Hero Didn't Stand a Chance”


Chris Hedges writes: "Tim DeChristopher is scheduled to be sentenced in a Salt Lake City courtroom by US District Judge Dee Benson on July 26. He faces up to 10 years in prison and a $750,000 fine for fraudulently bidding in December 2008 on parcels of land, including areas around eastern Utah's national parks, which were being sold off by the Bush administration to the oil and natural gas industry. DeChristopher, who attends a Unitarian church in Salt Lake City, comes out of the religious left. This left, defined by Christian anarchists such as Dorothy Day, Philip Berrigan and his brother Father Daniel Berrigan, as well as Dr. Martin Luther King, takes a moral stance not because it is always effective but because it is right, because to live the moral life means that there is no alternative. This life demands a commitment to justice no matter how bleak the future appears. And what sustains DeChristopher is what sustained the religious radicals who went before him - faith."


--Appiah, Anthony.  The Honor Code:  How Moral Revolutions Happen.  Norton, 2011.  Rev. The Progressive (Dec. 2010-Jan. 2011).  Particular types of honor have eliminated some deplorable human practices, and others might be in the future.
--Duberman, Martin.  A Saving Remnant: The Radical Lives of Barbara Deming and David McReynolds.  New Press, 2011.  A history of modern US left radicalism through two parallel lives.
--Levine, Bruce E.  Get Up, Stand Up: Uniting Populists, Energizing the Defeated, and Battling the Corporate Elite.   Chelsea Green, 2011.   Rev. Z Magazine (June 2011): Levine explores why public resistance to the major oppression of the  corporatocracy has been so weak, by examining key political events of the last decade—e.g. the Battle of Seattle.   His main explanation is that the corporate state has conditioned the public to feel powerless through all the apparatuses of the US consumer culture.  Then he proposes ways to reenergize a demoralized public. 

Communication Activism
Lawrence R. Frey (University of Colorado, Boulder) and Kevin M. Carragee (Suffolk University, Boston), editors.A two volume set of books containing more than 800 pages.  From the book cover: “these two texts showcase how scholars have engaged in communication activism to assist individuals, groups, organizations, and communities  to secure social reform.” Volunteer reviewers can choose both or simply one of the volumes. Communication Activism, Volume 1: Communication for Social Change.    From the book cover:  “Volume One presents research studies that promote public dialogue, debate, and discussion and demonstrate how communication consulting can be used to accomplish social change.” Communication Activism, Volume 2: Media and Performance Activism.     From the book cover: “Volume two focuses on research studies that show how the media can be managed to promote social change and how performance can serve as an important form of communication activism.”

Two films on Abe Osheroff.
--American Renegade: Confessions of a Radical Humanist.   Dir. Scott Garen, 2009, Seven Arrows, 80 min.  Examples of his activism.
--Abe Osheroff: One Foot in the Grave, the Other Still Dancing.   Dir. Nadeem Uddin, 2009.  MEF, 46 min. Asheroff as teacher and critical thinker.   Rev. YES! Winter 2011.  
Asheroff was involved in some of the most critical struggles for justice of the past century:  union organizing, civil rights, US intervention in Nicaragua, opposing Iraq and Afghan wars, etc. 

Host Action
Host Invitations
 If there is a host individual or organization for the event, this will be the single most effective method for building an audience. Help the host(s) to translate their enthusiasm for the event into personal invitations to their own friends and communities. Help them use personal invitations, emails, letters and phone calls and support them in their efforts.
Effectiveness: A+
Time: Low, but vital
Cost: Free

Personal Action
Invitations to Personal Contacts
Invite your personal contacts, in person or by telephone. Then send an e-mail with the Symposium flier as an attachment. Follow up by phone a few days later, making sure you get hold of them and allow them to make a decision about it.
Effectiveness: A+
Time: Low
Cost: Nearly free (only the cost of the calls)

E-Invitations to Local ATD mailing list
Invitations to Allied Organizations
Send e-mail invitations with the Symposium flier as an attachment to everyone you know in organizations that are, or might be, sympathetic to our aims. Make reference to our alignment with their aims and refer to any experience any of their colleagues/fellow members might have had with the Symposium. Follow up by phone to help them decide.
Effectiveness: A
Time: High
Cost: Nearly free (only the cost of the calls)

Personal Networking at related events
Make a point of attending related events (environment, social justice, etc.), with fliers and cards available. Be high intentioned to meet and network with others. Let them know about the Symposium (have your elevator speech down). Get their business card, and if they indicate interest, follow up by phone.
Effectiveness: B+
Time: Medium
Cost: Nearly free

Announcements at related events
Talk to the event producer of a related event in advance to see if they would be willing for you to make an announcement about the Symposium, including where people can go to pick up materials (e.g. at the back table). Even better, have the announcement made by a supportive emcee or event producer.
Effectiveness: B
Time: Low
Cost: Free

Flier posting
Post fliers in your local area on kiosks and other prominent, high traffic areas. Ask in stores (yoga and dance classes, schools, etc.) to post in prominent windows.
Effectiveness: C-
Time: Medium
Cost: Medium (the cost of fhe posters)

Media Action
Website calendar listings
There are many events calendars on the web as well as many group e-mail services with event schedules. Find out how to connect with these calendars in your area by asking others who have promoted events before. Calendar listings often have a basic required format (see template below).
Effectiveness: B
Time: Low
Cost: Free

Newspaper calendar listings
You should submit a basic calendar listing to any local newspapers. See template below for sample calendar listings.
Effectiveness: C+
Time: Low
Cost: Free
(Sorry, I failed to record the source of these evaluations.)


No comments:

Dick's Wars and Warming KPSQ Radio Editorials (#1-48)

Dick's Wars and Warming KPSQ Radio Editorials (#1-48)