Saturday, January 22, 2005

Meeting Notes for People for Peace, Justice, and Healing

People for Peace, Justice and Healing met January 22, 2005, at Associated Ministries at 10 a.m. Present for check-in were Sol, Sallie, Sally, Nancy, Vivi, Kyle, Sheila, Mark, Karen, H., Karen K. Karen H. introduced Brian, a poet, soldier who has just returned from Iraq. Discussion. Check-in abandoned in favor of conversation with Brian and a short meeting before our 11 o'clock program.

It was the consensus of the group that the ball was a success. About 200 people attended the ball, the music was great and people had fun. $165 to treasury.

Notified by the Mandolin that music would be featured during our next meeting and our "reservation" in question there was a discussion about the possibility of moving the venue. Sallie made a reservation at Godfather's Pizza in the meeting room located at 6th and Orchard for this coming Tuesday.* Discussion of Tuesday's topic-question. Group decided to ask, "What claim does America have on world leadership?" Mark asked to tweak the question.

*In further discussion following the meeting, Karen K. urged the group to try and talk with management at the Mandolin and find out what the problem is re: our meeting there. Group decides it might hurt attendance if we don't show this Tuesday and talk to participants about possibility of moving the venue. The Conversation Cafe will meet at the Mandolin this Tuesday. [Note from Mark: Subsequent to this discussion the Mandolin notified me that the concert had been rescheduled, rendering this moot.]

Mark reported on meeting with the group charged with planning this event. Overtures have been made to contacts at the University of Washington in an effort to get the use of the outdoor staircase beside the bookstore to display the exhibit. Second choice for the display -- the amphitheater at the History Musuem. Next meeting: Feb. 3, Wednesday at King's Books at 6 p.m.

Sheila encouraged people to think about the times they'd like to work on 2/5 as we prepare potluck for marchers. Discussion.

Karen is trying to assemble a group to see the play of Chaim Potok's novel, The Chosen, a story of two Jewish families during and after the close of WWII and at the time of the establishment of Israel. It runs at the Lakewood Playhouse from January 21 through February 13. January 28 is pay what you can night. Karen is also encouraging attendance at the Feb. 6, 2 p.m. matinee.


Ken Miller, Sallie Shawl and Annie Phillips discuss their experiences campaigning for Kerry/Edwards in the swing states of Ohio, Pennsylvania and Ohio respectively.

This very interesting program ran about an hour. Some highlights:

Ken Miller: Ken spent 10 weeks in southwestern Ohio, in a two county region about 1/2 the size of Pierce County. Ken said this area was racially segregated and characterized as "up south"; a suburban/urban area, formerly agricultural, with lots of growth pressures, thought to be about evenly divided between Republicans and Democrats. His major point was that campaign workers were relatively "green" and untrained. He characterized the state (Democratic) party as moribund and losing the game organizationally.

Sallie Shawl: Sallie was in Pennsylvania. She spent time in Pittsburgh and Newcastle. Her main focus was on attitudes she picked up from the voters -- especially the "undecideds" who she asked to work with. She felt these voters were trying to make up their mind from campaign advertising and literature. Felt a lack of (party) organizational planning -- there was no "needs assessment" developed, for instance.

Annie Phillips: Annie worked in a shopping mall in Cleveland, Ohio, 9 hours a day, 7 days a week trying to get people to register to vote. She felt those willing to register were mostly young and progressive. The general area "wasn't on the upswing." She found that blacks hesitated because they felt their vote "wouldn't be counted." She told of incidents where people registered, got a letter from the Republican party welcoming them as voters, but didn't get their registration card and weren't told where they could vote. Some people got cards sending them to the wrong place to vote. She also said voters had to wait in long lines because the people staffing the booths weren't well trained and the process was very slow. She also told us that the majority of Secretary of State offices are held by Republicans. Other examples of incompetence, if not fraud, are leading her to decide to focus her future energies on election reform.

Presentation by each panel member was followed by a discussion among panel members and questions from the audience. Mark expressed need for a "muckraker" journalist to find out what's going on in the electoral field to find out what "they" are doing. Meeting adjourned. Further discussion.

Karen H.