Tuesday, July 12, 2016

Baltimore Activist Alert - July 13 - 14, 2016

25] Toxic Threats to Human Rights – July 13
26] Palestine at a Crossroad – July 13
27] Bargaining for the Common Good -- July 13
28] CO-OP advice night – July 13
29] Politics of Hate – July 13
30] Bias in Rent Court – July 13
31] See the film SELMA – July 13
32] Save WPFW – July 13
33] Security Situation on the Korean Peninsula and in East Asia – July 14
34] Nuclear Proliferation – July 14
35] Tame the Gerrymander – July 14
36] Iran Nuclear Deal – July 14
37] Pathway to Resilience and Hope – July 14
38] Movement to end police violence – July 14
39] Dan Zak at Politics and Prose – July 14
40] The Poverty Industry – July 14
41] Lighting the Way – July 14


25] –  The next Amazon Watch Green Bag  is Toxic Threats to Human Rights: A conversation with the UN Special Rapporteur with Baskut Tuncak on Wed., July 13 from 12:30 to 2 PM in the CIEL Conference Room, 1350 Connecticut Ave. NW, #1100,  (above Cosi, Dupont Circle South), WDC.  The UN mandate on human rights and toxics (formerly toxic waste) seeks to address the growing threat of toxic chemicals, pollution and waste to human rights around the world. Pollution is the largest cause of premature death in low- and middle-income countries. Air pollution alone kills over 7 million people per year. One quarter of the global burden of disease and more than one third of the burden among children are due to environmental factors. Air pollution alone kills over 7 million people per year.  Recent cases have highlighted deadly deficiencies in both the prevention of human rights impacts and the assurance of an effective remedy for impacts that result. Baskut will discuss some of the recent cases that have come to the attention of the mandate, as well as the future priorities and activities of the mandate. Tuncak is a former attorney with the Center for International Environmental Law (CIEL).

26] – Palestine at a Crossroad will take place at New America, 740 15th St. NW, #900, WDC, on Wed., July 13 from 2 to 4 PM.  More than two decades have been lost on bilateral peace negotiations between Israelis and Palestinians. The two sides today seem further away than ever from a peace agreement. Does the latest French Initiative present an alternative to failed bilateral talks? Is a P5+1 model the last hope for peace between Israel and Palestine? Join New America and the Foundation for Middle East Peace for a conversation with Dr. Husam Zomlot, Ambassador-at-Large and Senior Advisor to Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, about the way forward for Palestine and Palestinian efforts to internationalize the solution to the Israel-Palestine conflict. Visit https://www.newamerica.org/international-security/events/palestine-crossroad/.

27] – Bargaining for the Common Good: Lessons from Los Angeles and Beyond is the topic at Georgetown University School of Continuing Studies, 640 Massachusetts Ave. NW, WDC, on Wed., July 13 from 2:30 to 5 PM.  The Kalmanovitz Initiative, joined by AFSCME, AFT, NEA, SEIU, and the Rutgers SMLR Center for Innovation in Worker Organization, invites you to join them. Find out how the Fix LA Coalition united labor and community groups, broke the mold on collective bargaining, and WON BIG – and how the Bargaining for the Common Good strategy used in LA is helping workers and their allies around the country roll back austerity, win new revenues for public services, and build power together. The event will also mark the release of the Kalmanovitz Initiative's case study detailing the many innovations, challenges, and achievements of the Fix LA campaign. Email kilwp@georgetown.edu.

28] –  A CO-OP ADVICE NIGHT & HAPPY HOUR is happening on Wed., July 13 at 6 PM at the Red Emma's Bookstore Coffeehouse, 30 W. North Ave., Baltimore 21201, in the Free School Classroom.  Curious about starting a cooperative business? Interested in finding out what kind of resources and support for co-ops is being built in Baltimore City?  Just want to hang out and geek out about building democratic workplaces? Then swing by this cooperative info night (and happy hour!) organized by the Baltimore Roundtable for Economic Democracy, a new project building the ecosystem for a community-owned local economy. Call 443-602-7585.  Go to http://www.redemmas.org.   

29] – The Politics of Hate - Exclusion in the Presidential Race is happening at the  United States Capitol Visitor Center, First Street NE, Congressional Room North, WDC, on Wed., July 13 from 6 to 8 PM.  This panel is being hosted by the American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee (ADC) and the Hindu American Foundation (HAF). This panel discussion is timely with the ongoing race to capture the democrat and republic nominations and ultimately the primary election. Both the Arab and Hindu community have experienced backlash with the political rhetoric, but also have turned out in record number to voting at the polls. During the campaign season, xenophobia has grown significantly more vocal - and sometimes violent. As communities impacted by the hate, how do we address the hate and political rhetoric? Speakers will also discuss the way social justice movements and members of South Asian and Arab American communities can work together to combat the intolerance and xenophobia.

30] – 7000 Families: race and gender oppression in Baltimore's rent court will be discussed at the American Brewery, 1701 N. Gay St. on Wed., July 13 from 6:30 to 8:30 PM.  Each year, on average, Baltimore City judicially evicts 7,000 families due to non-payment of rent. The Public Justice Center and the Right to Housing Alliance conducted a study to understand how renters fair when they defend themselves in the city’s “Rent Court.” Data from the study will show how the judicial process itself prioritizes landlords’ bottom line, at the expense of renters’ (94% of whom are Black and 80% of whom are women) stability and security. Join Right to Housing Alliance, Public Justice Center, Jews United for Justice, and others to discuss how the court’s systemic failure to ensure housing justice perpetuates housing insecurity among the city’s Black communities. Email bmoreantiracist@gmail.com. RSVP at https://docs.google.com/forms/d/1q1dx0-D3zCGgXzzjpgnTECFRuBK7lb8JOSxqsA8q5gY/viewform?c=0&w=1.

31] – See the acclaimed film SELMA   (2015, 127 minutes) sponsored by the Frederick Douglas Humanist Society of Baltimore, and the Baltimore Ethical Society, on Wed., July 13 at 6:30 PM at the Congress Hotel, 1st floor,  306 W. Franklin St., Baltimore. The unforgettable true story chronicles the tumultuous three-month period in 1965, when Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. led a dangerous campaign to secure equal voting rights in the face of violent opposition. The epic march from Selma to Montgomery culminated in President Johnson signing the Voting Rights Act of 1965, one of the most significant victories for the civil rights movement. 

Director Ava DuVernay's film" tells the story of how the revered leader and visionary Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr and his brothers and sisters in the movement prompted change that forever altered history.  THE CHARM CITY FILM SERIES is always FOLLOWED BY a DISCUSSION.

32] – Members & Supporters of WPFW -  89.3 FM Radio the Local Station Board (LSB) will hold its regular monthly meeting on Wed., July 13 at 6:30 PM at the radio station, 1990 K St. NW,  2nd floor, WDC.  WPFW needs to hold a Town Hall meeting to inform the community about what is happening with the station.  If you still care, please come to this meeting and voice your concerns about not hearing the very latest news.   I am sure there are other issues you could raise but please come to learn and then decide on what we need to do to Save Our Station. Go to http://www.wpfwfm.org

33] – On Thurs., July 14 from 9 to 10:30 AM, Hwang Jinha, South Korean National Assembly, and former Rep. Buck McKeon (CA), will do a "Discussion of the Security Situation on the Korean Peninsula and in East Asia" at the Korea Economic Institute, 1800 K St. NW, Suite 1010, WDC. RSVP at http://www.keia.org/webform/rsvp-event.

34] – On Thurs., July 14 from 10 to 11 AM, Mark Fitzpatrick, International Institute for Strategic Studies, will examine "Nuclear Proliferation Success and Failure: Iran and North Korea webinar." RSVP at http://www.iiss.org/en/events/events-s-calendar/webinar---nuclear-proliferation-success-and-failure-7b14.

35] – Join Common Cause Maryland at a rally for redistricting reform on Thurs., July 14 at 10:30 AM in Lawyer’s Mall.  The Tame the Gerrymander Coalition will commemorate the 272nd birthday of Elbridge Gerry, the namesake of the gerrymander. Call on our elected officials to reform the redistricting process in Maryland. There will be birthday cake and party games to celebrate this momentous occasion! Maryland draws new congressional and legislative districts every ten years, in order to account for population changes.  Districts are supposed to reflect the ideal of “one person, one vote,” but Maryland’s congressional districts consistently rank among the most poorly drawn in the nation. Critics including the Washington Post have called the map “highly partisan and racially charged,” questioning how a Congressperson could fairly and accurately represent a district that “slices and dices counties, communities and neighborhoods.” Just as an example, the 3rd Congressional District contains parts of Annapolis, Prince George’s County, Howard County, and even Baltimore City. RSVP at http://act-md.commoncause.org/site/Calendar?id=104285&view=Detail.

36] – On Thurs., July 14 from noon to 1:30 PM, the National Iranian American Council will host "The Iran Nuclear Deal One Year Later: Maximizing or Minimizing the Opening?" with six speakers in 340 Cannon House Office Building, WDC. RSVP at http://www.niacouncil.org/events/hillbriefing071416/.

37] – “Cultural and Educational Development: A Pathway to Resilience and Hope” with Ziad Khalaf will happen at The Palestine Center, 2425 Virginia Ave. NW, WDC, on Thurs., July 14 from 12:30 to 2 PM.  With much of the Middle East engulfed in human catastrophe and the world at large facing dire challenges, the Palestinian issue has been pushed to the fringe. In parallel, Palestinian cultural practitioners and organizations have been contending with a mounting matrix of intersecting forms of control, imposed mainly by the prolonged Israeli occupation in all its manifestations, but also by donor policies and agendas, the Palestinian government, and refugees’ host countries. Within this context, activists, cultural practitioners, and organizations work diligently to foster social dialogue and engagement, and to instill resilience and hope. RSVP at http://www.thejerusalemfund.org/events/upcoming/cultural-educational-development-pathway-resilience-hope-ziad-khalaf.

38] – On Thurs., July 14 from 7 to 9 PM at All Souls Church, Unitarian, 1500 Harvard St, NW, Tupper Room, WDC, come to a public discussion on Building The Movement Against Police Violence. The stakes for building a mass movement for equality and justice are higher than ever. The brutal police murders of Alton Sterling and Philando Castile are just the latest incident of national epidemic of police racism and violence.  US police killed an average of 3 people a day in 2015 (Wash Post, Jan. 6, 2016) with Black men accounting for 40 percent of those killed -- that's one killing a day. Meanwhile, the police remain unaccountable and protected behind a wall of politicians, media, police bureaucracy and aggressive police unions -- all either blaming victims of police violence or promising toothless reforms. Meanwhile, the rate of legal lynchings for 2016 is on track to be even higher than 2015. Go to https://www.facebook.com/events/1221604264519026/?notif_t=plan_user_invited&notif_id=1468247339523082.

39] – Dan Zak, author of "Almighty: Courage, Resistance, and Existential Peril in the Nuclear Age," will speak on Thurs., July 14 at 7 PM at Politics and Prose, 5015 Connecticut Ave. NW, WDC 20008.  In his first book, Zak, a Washington Post reporter for nearly a dozen years, focuses on an act of public disobedience—and tells the seven-decade story of the country’s complicated relationship with nuclear forces, from the Manhattan Project to weapon stockpiles to energy plants. On July 28, 2012, three anti-nuclear activists, one of whom was eighty-two-year-old Sister Megan Rice, broke into the Oak Ridge complex, painted slogans on the wall, and waited to be arrested. Their action raised many serious questions, not least about public safety, given that “the Fort Knox of Uranium” had been so easily entered. Zak will be in conversation with Kelsey Davenport the Director for Nonproliferation Policy at the Arms Control Association, where she provides research and analysis on the nuclear and missile programs in Iran, North Korea, India, and Pakistan. http://www.politics-prose.com/event/book/dan-zak-almighty-courage-resistance-and-existential-peril-nuclear-age.

40] – Daniel L. Hatcher brings his book THE POVERTY INDUSTRY: THE EXPLOITATION OF AMERICA'S MOST VULNERABLE CITIZENS on Thurs., July 14 from 7 to 9 PM @ The Potter’s House, 1658 Columbia Rd. NW, WDC. How do institutions of the state profit from and deepen structural inequality and economic exclusion? Hatcher exposes how state governments and their private industry partners have turned America’s most vulnerable populations into sources of revenue. The poverty industry is taking billions in federal aid and other funds from impoverished families, abused and neglected children, and the disabled and elderly poor. As policy experts across the political spectrum debate how to best structure government assistance programs, a massive siphoning of the safety net is occurring behind the scenes. In the face of these abuses of power, Hatcher offers a road map for reforms to realign the practices of human service agencies with their intended purpose, to prevent the misuse of public taxpayer dollars, and to ensure that government aid truly gets to those in need. Visit https://www.facebook.com/events/1756596764554801/.

41] – Attend Lighting the Way, a Gun Violence event on Thurs., at 7:30 PM on the West Lawn of U.S. Capitol Building held by the Democrats.  This is a National Speak Out: The Path Forward on Gun Violence with Assistant Democratic Leader James E. Clyburn (D-SC), Representative John Lewis (D-GA), Congressional Black Caucus and Members of the House Democratic Caucus will discuss Ensuring Universal Background Checks, H.R. 1217, Public Safety and Second Amendment Rights Protection Act.  Also to be discussed is Enacting No Fly, No Buy, H.R. 1076, Denying Firearms and Explosives to Dangerous Terrorists Act.  The idea is to close the Charleston Loophole, H.R. 3051, Background Check Completion Act. Another part of the discussion will be Barring Firearm Sales to Hate Crime Offenders, H.R. 4603, Hate Crimes Prevention Act. Email Sr. Patricia Chappell [mailto pchappell@paxchristiusa.org].

To be continued. 

Donations can be sent to the Baltimore Nonviolence Center, 325 E. 25th St., Baltimore, MD 21218.  Ph: 410-366-1637; Email: mobuszewski [at] verizon.net. Go to http://baltimorenonviolencecenter.blogspot.com/

"The master class has always declared the wars; the subject class has always fought the battles. The master class has had all to gain and nothing to lose, while the subject class has had nothing to gain and everything to lose--especially their lives." Eugene Victor Debs 

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