MEETING NOTES FOR PEOPLE FOR PEACE, JUSTICE, AND HEALING
August 11, 2007
People for Peace, Justice and Healing met at 10:00 a.m. on August 11, 2007 at Associated Ministries. Present for check-in were Susan, Sally M., Sallie S., Jan, Rob, Mark, Nancy, Colleen, Sonia, Sheila, and Kyle.
1. PUGET SOUND INTERFAITH YOUTH CAMP (Sallie S.)
Sixty-two campers have signed up, and there are enough counselors. The search for a Jewish faith leader is still ongoing.
2. MILITARISM OF THE TACOMA NEWS TRIBUNE (Mark)
Description of two instances of demonstrable militarism in the editorial practices of the News Tribune (Tacoma, WA) in the past week — see here and here — led to a discussion of its causes and what to do about it. This issue is being actively researched at present by United for Peace of Pierce County.
3. "CONSTITUTIONS MATTER" (Jan)
Clear Channel posted the statement "Constitutions matter" on nearly 200 billboards throughout the city to coincide with the effective date of a law that will restrict them. The public response has been vigorous. For more on this see the cover story and editorial in the Aug. 9 Tacoma Weekly. Excerpts from John Larson's article: "In late July, the company filed suit in Pierce County Superior Court challenging the legality of the law on constitutional grounds. . . . The company’s argument is based upon the fact the ordinance permits political messages on signs, but not advertisements for businesses. City Manager Eric Anderson sent a letter dated July 30 to Randall Mays, president and chief financial officer of Clear Channel Outdoor [stating] his disappointment with Clear Channel’s legal tactics and remorse that the two sides could not avoid litigation. . . . [But o]n Aug. 2 Anderson said he was still holding meetings with the city’s legal staff to formulate strategy. 'We tried to negotiate. They feel negotiating is not the way to handle this,' he said. 'We will settle this in the courts. We believe we have a strong case and are happy to meet them there.' Anderson and the council held an executive session, closed to the public and media, to discuss the matter Aug. 7. Afterwards, Councilmember Tom Stenger said a decision was made to take the matter to federal court, noting it is a more suitable venue to decide a First Amendment matter. . . . Several of the 'Constitutions Matter' billboards have been defaced, including two in Proctor District on which someone spray-painted 'Death to Clear Channel.' One downtown across the street from city hall had the message 'Mr. Baarsma, please tear down this billboard.'”
4. OPT-OUT FORMS (Sallie S.)
Pierce County Truth in Recruiting will be passing out opt-out forms to students registering for classes; Sallie is scheduling staffing and time slots for volunteers.
5. FIGHTING CO-OPTING OF SEPTEMBER 11 (group).
Discussed the possibility of organizing several projections on Tues., Sept. 11, 2007, of the 2004 three-hour BBC documentary "The Power of Nightmares" in several locations. (The film, by Adam Curtis, traces in parallel the development of American neoconservatism and Islamist radicalism and interprets them as "the last political idealists," bent on exploiting "the politics of fear"; Peter Bergen, author of Holy War, Inc., has called "The Power of Nightmares" "arguably the most important film about the ‘war on terrorism’ since the events of September 11.") Possible venues to be discussed next time.
6. PALESTINE (Nancy)
Nancy is going to the Sept. 26 meeting of the sister city committee to discuss the possibility of a sister city relationship of Tacoma with the Palestinian town of Aboud. She is also pursuing the divestment issue.
1. NORTHWEST DETENTION CENTER VIGIL — Aug. 11
Sat., Aug. 11, from 11:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. (Here's a column in the Aug. 12 Seattle Times that mentions the Northwest Detention Center, located on the Tacoma Tideflats.)
2. STUDY CIRCLE ON AMERICAN IMMIGRATION POLICY — Aug. 13, 20, & 27
Continues on Mon., Aug. 13, at 7:00 p.m. at the Mandolin Café, 3923 S. 12th St., Tacoma. The books: Roger Daniels, Guarding the Golden Door: American Immigration Policy and Immigrants since 1882 (2004); -- Erika Lee, At America's Gates: Chinese Immigration during the Exclusion Era, 1882-1943 (2003; paperback 2007); -- Lucy E. Salyer, Laws Harsh As Tigers: Chinese Immigrants and the Shaping of Modern Immigration Law (Univ. of North Carolina Press, 1995); -- Philippe Legrain, Immigrants: Your Country Needs Them (Princeton University Press, 2007); -- Mark Steyn, America Alone: The End of the World As We Know It (Regnery, 2006). For more information see here. ()
3. FELLOWSHIP OF RECONCILIATION PICNIC — Aug. 19
Sun., Aug. 19, 4:00 p.m.-7:00 p.m., at Jose Rizal Park, Seattle: Seattle Chapter Fellowship Of Reconciliation picnic, potluck meal at 5:00 p.m., bring musical instruments and sporting equipment if you like. Free, collection will be taken. All welcome. Info 206-789-5565.
4. PACT/UFPPC EVENT — AUG. 26
Planning continues for the Aug. 26 event in People's Park from 1:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m., sponsored by Peace Action Coalition Tacoma and United for Peace of Pierce County, with the theme "another world is possible" — a flyer is imminent.
Respectfully submitted, Mark