Saturday, February 8, 2003 Meeting Notes


0. Check-in
1. Endorsement of statement on Colin Powell's presentation to the UN Security Council
2. Tacoma City Council resolution of Jan. 28, 2003
3. UFPPC Feb. 15 events
4. Announcements

0. Check-in:
- Marilyn talked about her life in the peace movement, as a leader, beginning in the '60's, her "evolution" in consequent years and her feeling of inner conflict post 9/11 - a conflict between her political and spiritual self. The reading of the Earth Charter, introduced two weeks ago by Sheila, "resonated with her heart." She wants to be for something not just against (the war) and at the forefront of creating a new consciousness.
- Dorothy: Has been visiting in Florida with her husband where he had medical problems. She is also interested in the Earth Charter.
- Mark J.: Introduced himself to newcomers as a professor at PLU. Following Colin Powell's speech Steve Maynard of UFPPC and John Carlson, talk show host, asked for his reactions; he developed a position paper which was adopted by UFPPC at their Thursday meeting. This last week PLU presented a film on Depleted Uranium, attended by about 30 people including Vets of the Gulf War. A group of faculty members are planning to cancel classes and gather in the center of campus at noon should war break out.
- Benji: Moved here in the Fall, is attending UW Tacoma and working on a Masters. He previewed Feb. 4 meeting at UW from the Hate Free Zone - Civil Rights in post 9/11 climate with activist Pramila Jayapal. This meeting "forced" him to think seriously about the approximately 1200 people currently being held without charges in the name of Homeland Security.
- Sheila and Kyle: Sheila briefly discusses Earth Charter which will be discussed in last hour of today's meeting.
- Mara: Relates experience of vigiling following Colin Powell's speech this week. Lots of people showing up for the vigil. Discussed her personal feelings on hearing about the "Shock and Awe" strategy of the Defense Department - which is talking about bombarding Iraq/Bagdad with four times the strikes used in Gulf War - 800 strikes in a single day.
- Ann: Expressed interest in discussion of Earth Charter. Brought a poem, copies of which she distributed.
- Patricia: Told us she "can't believe what is happening." She feels scared and the need to be around people who feel the same way.
- David: Says he was "sent" to our group "by George Bush." He feels depressed that the actions of the country have led to this crisis. He attended MLK day commemoration and found out about PJH through our website.
- Karen H.: Mother is dying and she's dealing with that...
- Sally: Wanted to "take care of herself" so went to a movie at the Grand - THE PIANIST, but couldn't stay more than 15 minutes and watch the barbaric treatment of human beings by other human beings. (Grand refunded the ticket price.) Came back to the office and felt better doing her email. Recommended we attend Peltier march, rally at Fed Bldg. and pot luck at Guadelupe House following. Announced World Wide Poets for Peace reading at United Methodist (MLK Way by TG) on Wednesday night, Feb. 12 at 7:00. Attended small rally at TCC - touted as "first" peace rally (but probably not.) Organized by one student. About a dozen students attended full rally, with 25 to 40 students passing through. Brochures for 2/15 event distributed.
- Mark B.: Expressed appreciation for work of our group. Is looking for personal liberation.
- Jill: Introduced herself as a writer. Was traveling in Wa. D. C. this week and characterized citizens of Washington as "stunned." Was in Cleveland airport when a guy who lifted his arm to scratch his back was tackled by Federal Marshals (or guards.) Wasn't certain of reason but characterized people as on edge.
- Colleen: Accepted this week that "we probably are going to war." While she doesn't think its "inevitable" thinks it will happen. Discussed in detail Hate Free Zone with Pramila Jayapal at U.W. and a video where the Somalian family, "busted" in Seattle this summer discussed their experience along with a Japanese woman whose family was interned in '42 and "can't believe its happening again." Colleen says there is going to be a dramatic expansion of the Patriot Act - even the Washington Legislature is considering (redundant and unnecessary) legislation - and Colleen encouraged people to become members of the ACLU. She cautioned us that it will become more difficult to be "in the streets" after war starts. She also feels we need to reform our electorial process so that its more representative of our concerns and beliefs instead of a "winner takes all" situation. Steven Hill's book FIXING ELECTIONS again recommended. It's available through the public library. (Dorothy) Colleen says current budget designates 396 billion for military, 60 billion for education, 50 billion for health and 30 billion for housing.

1. Endorsement of statement on Colin Powell's presentation to the UN Security Council Mark: Distributes copies of "Statement on Colin Powell's Presentation to UN Security Council adopted by United for Peace of Pierce County on Feb. 6, 2003." Mark reads paper:

"We have studied carefully the declarations of US Secretary of State Colin Powell to the UN Security Council on Feb. 5, and acknowledge that they present further evidence of serious and troubling behavior on the part of the Iraqi régime. We have also studied the responses of the other members of the UN Security Council to this evidence. We remain committed to our opposition to a war on Iraq. As a justification for a war against Iraq, Secretary Powell's presentation was unconvincing for the following reasons, each of which has been expressed by more than one member of the UN Security Council:

"1) The weapons inspections in Iraq are, in fact, working. More than 100 weapons inspectors have been deployed, on average 300 inspections a month have been taking place, and inspections are continuing.

"2) Secretary Powell does not explain why this information has not already been communicated to the inspectors, as called for by paragraph 10 of UN Security Council Resolution 1441. We call on our government to provide without delay all relevant information in its possession to the UN inspectors, as other nations have done.

"3) The UN, not the White House, should be the center of decision-making with regard to any military action against Iraq. Secretary Powell did not demonstrate the existence of a situation that would justify an attack by the United States without UN Security Council approval.

"4) A proposal to strengthen the weapons inspection process has been advanced which includes doubling or tripling the number of inspectors, setting up an international surveillance body, deploying observation aircraft, establishing a collective information processing center, ranking unresolved disarmament questions by common accord, and laying down a strict and realistic time frame. We endorse this proposal as preferable to a war against the Iraqi régime.

"5) Because of its horrific costs and incalculable consequences, nations and their leaders have a moral duty to avoid this war if possible, and a real possibility of avoiding a war on Iraq still exists.

"6) Given the danger posed by international terrorists, maintaining international unity in the world's response to this challenge is a high priority that would be undermined by a war waged by a US-led coalition in the absence of a UN Security Council resolution supporting it.

"7) The official position of the government of Iraq is that it accepts the international community's right to demand verification that Iraq is free of weapons of mass destruction, and Iraqi cooperation to date, while not total, has been sufficiently extensive to justify the continuation of the inspections process.

"8) TIME IS NOT RUNNING OUT. Only the US and Britain say that time is short. In fact, UN Security Council Resolution 1441 imposes no time limits, and under paragraph 11 of the resolution it is up to the Executive Chairman of UN Monitoring, Verification, and Inspection Commission (Hans Blix) and the Director-General of the International Atomic Energy Agency (Mohamed ElBaradei) to report Iraq's failure to comply with its disarmament obligations to the UN Security Council. This they have not yet done in terms that would justify a war.

"THEREFORE, WE DEPLORE statements from US government officials saying that the present crisis must be resolved within a matter of weeks;

"AND WE CALL ON OUR LEADERS to work to maintain the unity of the international community on the matter of Iraq."

Discussion. TPJH votes unanimously to endorse statement. Sallie says UFPPC is looking into possibility of running this position paper in TNT, suggests that it might mention endorsement of PPJH as well as UFPPC.

Kim West: Arrives. Introduces herself. She's brought No War Tee Shirts (She GAVE me one! They are great tee shirts! Price 10 bucks) for 2/15 march. She heard about us on the internet.

Ann: Reads her poem, THE PATH TO PEACE. Group kudos. [Mark will post on website.]

Colleen: Briefly explains TPJH to newcomers as: we meet every Saturday morning at 10. Leadership is shared. We "check in" then build our agenda...

Benji: Passes around colorful items (none of which have to do with the President of the United States - of course) but conducive to tee shirt "art."

Dorothy: Mentions "If your enemy is hungry, feed him"(Romans) rice by mail campaign. Discussion of what type of rice to send and how to package. (Not white rice, use bubble wrap.)


Mark summarizes for group the essence of the Charter which was brought to us by Sheila, whose Buddhist Group has endorsed it. Over ten thousand groups and individuals have adopted or endorsed this Charter. Mark suggests we use the charter as a way to respond positively if and when war breaks out. This document will be available on our website or by writing Mirian Vilela, Executive Director, Earth Charter International Secretariat, c/o Earth Council, P.O. Box 319-6100 San Jose, Costa Rica. Phone: (506) 205-1600; Fax (506) 249-3500; e-mail;

The four broad principles of the Charter are: 1. Respect & Care for the Community of Life; 2. Ecological Integrity; 3. Social and Economic Justice; 4. Democracy, Nonviolence & Peace. The document includes a Preamble and detailed definition of each principle.

Discussion: (I'm sorry. I wasn't able to attribute each discussion point by name. Here are some highlights of people's interests and concerns:)

- how do we internalize (these principles)

- how do we move forward

(Sheila details her group's work with the homeless (work with the vulnerable) and their connection to Tahoma Indian Center (work party every Saturday) and their desire to build a watershed model)

(Valerie (sp?) Long arrives. She has another Saturday a.m. commitment and has to come late.)

- this Charter was taken to UN meeting in Johannesberg this summer. Uncertain what happened to it...but it didn't receive any official endorsement

(Marilyn: UN has strayed from its original intent)

- concerns about how "man in the street" will assimulate a document like the the word "sustainable" accessible enough? Overused?

- (this is) the sort of document one can integrate into a formal and lifelong education

- document calls for change of mind and heart (of our culture)

- affirms gender equality

- encourages study of links between ecology and the devastation of war

- economic: addresses growing gap between rich and poor

Marilyn: How do we feel (about the Charter)

Sara: Feels its an excellent statement but is concerned about communicating it. How will it break out to public consciousness?

Various ecological concerns

Marilyn: We need to bite off pieces at a time...educate ourselves...Conversation Cafes...forums at schools, universities...feels people are hungry {for this kind of direction or these kind of ideas and ideals) Won't be able to realize in six months.

Dave: (Quotes Woody Guthrie) Nobody notices when one or two people are doing it...but hundreds? People notice.

Marilyn: How do you eat an elephant? One bite at a time.

Comments on corporate responsibility, lack thereof and/or getting the attention of corporations

Ann: Feels maybe some redundancy in the document.

Dorothy: Most of us haven't seen the published edition...

Mark: Five hundred copies will be at 2/15 events.(See above for how to get a copy.)

- Preparing for Peace: building, maintaining, recuperating...we're looking for alternatives to war...

Benji: Preparing for Peace in a time of War.

Marilyn: How do we begin?

Sallie: We need a marketing phrase...

(Discussion of possible ad.)

Colleen: We'll start a course of study, tackle some piece of it every Saturday.

Benji: Brings up suggestions from Julio meet...we bring our own personal experience...the second month we put into practice what we've discussed, learned the first month and so on in the third and fourth months...

Marilyn: We're not anti-war anymore...we're people of peace...

Sallie: I feel uncomfortable with saying we're not anti-war...we can just focus elsewhere

Mark: We're talking about tools to implement a change of consciousness

Marilyn: Do we want to endorse today or carry over into next week?

Valerie: Finds nothing objectionable in the document; feels it would be unrealistic to try and "re-write" it; wants to endorse it and move forward

Vote: Ann and Karen only persons to abstain.

Sallie: Call for consensus

(General discussion and hub bub)

Dave: We endorse the principles...

Colleen: We are endorsing the document not what to do with it...this will be one of our item...

More General discussion

Sallie: It's a focus, but just a focus

Benji: We have other interests - Farenheit 451, Farenheit 2003

Sara: Wants environmental issues that relate to peace issues

Mark: Use this document as a way to critique ourselves...adopting the document will effect done...

Time: Noon

Marilyn: calls for adjournment and circle.

Respectfully, Karen Havnaer