Pardon Gregory Boertje-Obed, Sister Megan Rice, and Michael Walli.

Tuesday, Feb 18, 2014
Pardon anti-nuclear activists Gregory Boertje-Obed, Sister Megan Rice, and Michael Walli.

Pardon anti-nuclear activists Gregory Boertje-Obed, Sister Megan Rice, and Michael Walli.

U.S. District Judge Amul Thapar in Knoxville, Tenn. sentenced 84-year-old Sister Megan Rice, a Catholic nun, to 35 months in prison and three years probation. Rice is a sister in the Society of the Holy Child Jesus. She became a nun when she was 18 and served for 40 years as a missionary in western Africa teaching science. Thapar sentenced 58-year-old Greg Boertje-Obed, an Army veteran who lives at a Catholic Worker House in Minnesota, and Michael Walli, a 64-year-old two-tour Vietnam veteran who lives at the Dorothy Day Catholic Worker house in Washington DC, to five years in prison and three years probation as well.

The activists were found guilty on May 8 of sabotaging the plant and damaging federal property at the Y‑12 National Security Complex in Oak Ridge, Tennessee.  Officials said “there was never any danger of the protesters reaching materials that could be detonated or made into a dirty bomb…”

Protesters were engaged in a symbolic act to bring attention to America’s stockpile of nuclear weapons, which they view as both immoral and illegal …  

Gregory Boertje-Obed, Sister Megan Rice, and Michael Walli

Gregory Boertje-Obed, Sister Megan Rice, and Michael Walli

Boertje-Obed, Sister Megan Rice, and Michael Walli are members of Transform Now Plowshares, “an effort by people of faith to transform weapons into real, life-giving alternatives, to build true peace.”

Sister Megan Rice told the judge: “Please have no leniency with me … To remain in prison for the rest of my life would be the greatest gift you could give me.”

Their attorneys asked the judge to sentence them to time they had already served, about nine months, because of their record of good works throughout their lives.

A sentence of time served is fair.

Please sign both of the petitions asking President Barack Obama to pardon the three activists.

Thanks,

Kevin Alexander Gray

White House ~ https://petitions.whitehouse.gov/petition/pardon-anti-nuclear-activists-gregory-boertje-obed-sister-megan-rice-and-michael-walli/hTh4PRLQ

Change.org ~ http://www.change.org/petitions/president-barack-obama-pardon-anti-nuclear-activists-gregory-boertje-obed-sister-megan-rice-and-michael-walli?recruiter=3098064&utm_source=share_petition&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=petition_invitation

NEWS STORIES:

http://www.nbcwashington.com/news/national-international/NATL-Nun-84-Megan-Rice-Sentenced-Almost-3-Years-Prison-Break-In-Nuclear-Plant-Peace-Protest-Uranium-246059071.html

http://www.commondreams.org/headline/2014/02/18-8

http://gazette.com/nun-gets-nearly-3-years-in-prison-for-nuke-protest/article/feed/91065#M8mlktzxz1LpOUOd.01

Advertisements

1 Comment

February 19, 2014 · 4:53 am

Proud To Be

Watch the #BigGame commercial the NFL would never air. Get involved by contacting the Washington Professional Football Team, the NFL and the Washington Post.

DC Team@redskins
Facebook.com/redskins
http://www.redskins.com/footer/contac…

Roger Goodell & NFL

@NFL
@NFLcommish
https://www.facebook.com/NFL

Washington Post, DC’s hometown paper is still using the R-word in its coverage of the team.

@WashingtonPost
@PostSports
https://www.facebook.com/washingtonpost

Leave a comment

February 2, 2014 · 5:57 pm

COMMUNITY MEETING ON COLUMBIA STRONG MAYOR REFERENDUM

Correct flyer

Community Members

As you know, there is a Special Referendum on Dec. 3 to decide whether the City of Columbia will retain a council-manager form of government or change to a mayor-council form.  I am hosting a community meeting next Thursday, Nov 21 at 6:30pm at Bishop’s Memorial AME Church on Washington St to discuss the ballot measure.

The proponents of the change will spend A LOT of money over the next 2 weeks trying to convince you that we need to change but I would like to make sure you are armed with the practical realities of what may or may not change under a different form of government.  Please share this invitation with your communities and invite anyone interested to come out and find out what this change really means for us as a community.

There are already meetings scheduled for Districts 3 & 4, but if you know of anyone in those districts who would like to attend, please feel free to invite them.

Tameika Isaac Devine

###

Kevin Alexander Gray Explains How a Strong Mayor System Would Hurt Minority Communities

Presser 2013

Leave a comment

Filed under Actions, Actions | Events, Events, Events & Actions, Harriet Tubman Freedom House Project, Meetings, South Carolina, South Carolina Politics

Question Bridge: Black Males

“… if you want to make a human being into a monster, deny them, at the cultural level, any reflection of themselves.”
~ Junot Diaz
Question Bridge Blueprint Roundtable

Question Bridge Blueprint Roundtable

Join the discussion and find out more about Question Bridge: Black Males, a transmedia art project that seeks to represent and redefine black male identity in America. The roundtable will provide a safe setting for necessary, honest expression and healing dialogue on themes that divide, unite and puzzle black males in the U.S. This program is a partnership between

Steve Benjamin, Mayor of Columbia

Steve Benjamin, Mayor of Columbia

Friends of African American Art and Culture (FAAAC) of the Columbia Museum of Art, Sumter Gallery of Art and Richland Library. Panelists include: Darion McCloud, Kevin Alexander Gray, Alvin A. McEwen, Willis Thomas, Steve Benjamin and  Charles Whitherspoon.

Scott Trafton

Scott Trafton

Question Bridge: Black Males opens a window onto the complex and often unspoken dialogue among black men, creating an intimate and essentially genuine experience for viewers and subjects. This project brings the full spectrum of what it means to be “black” and “male” in America to the forefront. “Blackness” ceases to be a simple, monochromatic concept.

Kevin Alexander Gray

Kevin Alexander Gray

By creating an identity container (e.g. “Black” and “Male”), then creating a way of releasing the diversity of identities and thought within that container, we can break the container. Question Bridge strives to make it more difficult to say, “Black Males are___.” If we succeed in deconstructing stereotypes about arguably the most opaque and feared demographic in America, then the Question Bridge model can work to overcome limiting assumptions about any demographic, therefore moving the needle on implicit bias.

Darion McCloud

Darion McCloud

Remember to come to the Richland Library – Lucy Bostic Auditorium for Question Bridge Blueprint RoundtableThursday, October 10th @ 6PM.

Leave a comment

Filed under Actions | Events, American Culture, ART | CULTURE | WRITING, Black Culture | United States, South Carolina, Special Events

The Black Misleadership Class v. the Movement and Its Legacy

Black Agenda Report Fundraiser & 7th Anniversary Celebration

Join BAR, Cornel West and Other Special Guests for our 7th Anniversary Celebration & Fundraiser in Harlem's Historic Riverside Church

Join BAR, Cornel West and Other Special Guests for our 7th Anniversary Celebration & Fundraiser in Harlem’s Historic Riverside Church

Black Agenda Report’s Glen Ford, Nellie Bailey, Bruce Dixon & Margaret Kimberley join Cornel West, Kevin Alexander Gray, Marsha Coleman-Abedayo, Ajamu Baraka and other comrades to delve into the vast gulf between the pretensions of the black misleadership class and the promise of the movement past yet to come. 

Join us Friday, October 18th at Harlem’s historic Riverside Church, 400 Riverside Drive, NYC, as the Riverside Church Social Justice Ministry & Black Agenda Report proudly celebrate the 7th anniversary of BAR. Reception & program from 6 to 9:30 p.m.

###

Our black misleaders pretend to be the successors and fruits of the historical black Freedom Movement.  But Wells Fargo or Comcast or the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation didn’t fund the Freedom movement.  

The Freedom Movement successfully called our people to stand against war and empire.  Our current crop of black misleaders and TV talking heads are “cruise missile liberals” eager to line up behind the drone bombings of Somalia, Libya, Syria or anyplace else, prepared to ignore or excuse the persecution of whistleblowers, the coddling of banksters, the unleashing of the NSA or pretty much anything else as long as the president is black and/or a Democrat.  

Black unemployment was double white employment 45 years ago when there were only handfuls of black elected officials.  But today with more than ten thousands black elected officials on every level, relative black unemployment is has not changed, although black incarceration rates have skyrocketed.  In the last few years, with our black misleadership class supposedly at the height of their power and influence, black family wealth has plunged from a tenth that of the average white family to a twentieth.

Activists of the Freedom Movement era fought for quality education for all children, while our current black misleaders are champions of for-profit charter schools.    Our black misleaders have no answers to the housing crisis or black mass incarceration because they no longer believe social justice is possible.  From the president on down, our black misleaders, instead of “representing” the voices of our people in the halls of power, govern us on behalf of those powerful interests. 

If President Obama and the rest of our black misleadership class truly stood upon the shoulders of MLK, Ella Baker, Malcolm X and Fannie Lou Hamer, they’d be standing somewhere else.  

Since our beginning in 2006, we at Black Agenda Report have focused our attention the black misleadership class and its role in normalizing punitive and unfair policies that white authorities could not implement without them.  

Join us as we celebrate and organize to fight back!

Reception & program: 6 PM to 7 PM, minimum donation $100

Program only: 7 PM to 9:30 PM, minimum donation $30

 

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized

After Trayvon: Revisiting MLK’s “Triple Evils” | Pamela Brown

In the 20th century, Martin Luther King Jr. defined the problem of America under the weight of the “triple evils” of racism, economic exploitation and war. In the 21st, the case of Trayvon Martin has created an existential crisis for black Americans and allies engaged in the struggle for racial justice. It underscores, again, that for many millions of people the “ism” felt as the greatest threat is not capitalism or militarism. Yet these effusions of persistent racism are enmeshed in a context: of growing inequality under neoliberal economic regimes and of wide-scale state-sponsored violence globally.  It is time for all people to revisit MLK’s “triple evils” in forming a strategy for resistance and a vision of the future — re-imagining what freedom might look like and how it might be achieved.

Pamela Brown

Pamela Brown

Kopkind’s 2013 Harvest Late Brunch fundraiser will be held Sunday, October 13, at 2 pm.  Our speaker is Pamela Brown.

Pam was deeply involved in Occupy Wall Street and has continued in its offshoot organizing and educational projects, at the convergence of race, class and debt. She is a columnist for Tidal Magazine and an organizer with the People’s Investigation of Wall Street. She was a founding member of Strike Debt and the Rolling Jubilee, and has been involved in campaigns and writing projects including the student debt pledge of refusal and the Debt Resistors Operations Manual. With a background in philosophy and media arts, Pam is currently a doctoral student in sociology at The New School.

Kopkind is a living memorial to the great radical journalist Andrew Kopkind. Each summer since 1999 it has been bringing together journalists, activists and filmmakers for week-long seminar/retreat sessions with the aim of thinking deeply, acting consciously, living expressively and extending the field for freedom, pleasure and imagination.

Out-of-towners, we have some rooms and cabins, so contact us if you’d like to stay the night.

Please Come! We Look Forward To Seeing You!

Leave a comment

Filed under Actions | Events, American Politics, Black Culture | United States, Black Politics, Civil Rights, Feminist Leaders, Police Abuse|Brutality|Killings, Political Ideology, Protest, Work of Comrades

LIVE AT THE ICE HOUSE: EPISODE 4 ~ “ROCK AND ROLE MODELS”

Judah 1

American roots-rock duo William Pilgrim & The All Grows Up return with a brand new episode of Live at the Ice House, the duo’s socially conscious ongoing music web series. In the latest installment, titled “Rock & Role Models,” Ishmael Herring, aka William Pilgrim, and his musical cohort PM Romero, take the show on the road to East West Studios in Hollywood, CA, where they are currently finishing a new record for Orange County-based label, Moonlight Graham Records that is scheduled for release in early 2014.


Exene Cervenka and Kevin Alexander Gray

Exene Cervenka and Kevin Alexander Gray

In this episode, William Pilgrim and PM Romero are joined by the legendary Blind Boys Of Alabama, and other friends from previous Live at the Ice House segments including Modern Poet and Renaissance Man David “Judah 1” Oliver from Episode 3, singer Lesedi Lo-Fi from Episode 2, and Exene Cervenka of the celebrated band X, who narrated the series’ debut episode that focused on teen homelessness. Social and political blogger/author Kevin Alexander Gray also stops by for a heated but good natured and insightful discussion with Pilgrim and Romero.

Blind Boys Of Alabama at East West Studios In Hollywood

PM Romero with the Blind Boys Of Alabama & friends at East West Studios In Hollywood

The Blind Boys of Alabama are notably featured on a track on William Pilgrim & The All Grows Up’s forthcoming sophomore release, titled Epic Endings. The five-time Grammy Award winning gospel group was in the process of cutting tracks at East West Studios and, drawn to the message of Live at the Ice House, asked to join in the roundtable discussions. The Blind Boys’ soulful style and spirituality prove an ideal complement to William Pilgrim’s haunting, bluesy vocals. X singer Exene Cervenka is also featured in a duet with William Pilgrim on the upcoming release and in this Live at the Ice House episode she speaks on the inspirations and meanings behind that song.

Ishmael Herring, aka William Pilgrim and Kevin Alexander Gray

Ishmael Herring, aka William Pilgrim and Kevin Alexander Gray

“Last episode we tried to demonstrate the power we all have with the words we choose and how we use them,” says William Pilgrim. “In this episode we move to focus more on music.  Music was an integral part of the 60′s fight for civil rights and it spoke out against our destruction of the people of Vietnam and to the tightening grip of American business over our government and public policy.  We believe music, performers and songwriters have a responsibility today to pick up where our 60′s predecessors left off.”

“Music is a tremendously powerful force for change and can inform and raise awareness but also impact people on a deeply emotional level, and this is where the seed for real social change must take root,” says PM Romero. “With no resonating voice within government or the media to challenge our misguided understandings of civics, economics and history, music and the artists that craft songs can become major influences to break through our corrupted common sense and reason.  Music can be the voice that unifies and organizes people around a common good.”

Live at the Ice House, “Rock & Role Models,”  is also available now on http://liveicehouse.com.

Live at the ICE HOUSE

Live at the ICE HOUSE

Additional information on William Pilgrim & The All Grows Up Is available at: https://www.facebook.com/williampilgrimmusic.

Leave a comment

Filed under American Culture, American Politics, Black Culture | United States, Movement & Message Music, Music History, Poetry, Political Ideology, R&B, Rock, Soul, Work of Comrades