Monday, September 28, 2015

Baltimore Activist Alert - September 28 - 30, 2015

14] Religion and the media – Sept. 28

15] Situation in Syria – Sept. 28

16] “Writing on the Wall, Selected Prison Writings of Mumia Abu-Jamal” – Sept. 28

17] Safe alternatives to solitary confinement – Sept. 29

18] "Solving Japan’s Plutonium Problem" – Sept. 29

19] Situation in Tunisia – Sept. 29

20] Peace vigil – Sept. 29

21] Vigil against JHU’s drone research – Sept. 29

22] “Black Prophetic Fire” – Sept. 29

23] Mentally ill in prison – Sept. 30


14] – At American University, 4400 Massachusetts Ave. NW, WDC, on Mon., Sept. 28 from 9:30 AM to 4 PM, join the School of International Service for a day-long public forum and conversation among academics and journalists from the Washington Post, Pulitzer Center, National Catholic Reporter, and AU faculty, among others, about journalistic and media reportage on the role of religion in public debate and activism on climate change.  The appearance of the papal encyclical on the environment, 'Laudato Si', will serve as the workshop's orienting point of reference. An important concern throughout will be how the political agency of religion is represented in media coverage, to identify prevailing frames and their effects, to explore alternative frames, and to suggest what might be missing from current reportage and public debate.

This meeting is open to the public and co-organized by CLALS and the Pulitzer Center on Crisis Reporting. The workshop represents a continuation of collaborations between the Pulitzer Center and American University, including with AU’s School of Communication. It is also part of a Luce Foundation-funded CLALS project on Democratic Contestation in Latin America, dedicated to exploring the relationship of religion to the environment across the region. Contact Rob Albro (

15] – In the light of the present barbaric violence and drastically destructive war that devastates Syria and Iraq by the Syrian regime, on one side, and all kinds of Islamist jihadi phalanges, on another, many local Middle Easterners and Western decision-takers and opinion-makers call for protecting the minorities in the region and encourage them to form a united front of ‘alliance of minorities’ to defend themselves and grant their survival in the region. In this presentation at Georgetown University, WDC, on Mon., Sept. 28 from 10 AM to noon, Najib George Awad will try to pause at the use of the term ‘minority’ and to scrutinize its factual meaning in the light of the real context that originated the revolution in Syria. He will demonstrate that in the Syrian sitz im leben, the notion of ‘minority’ is definitely neither numerical nor confessionalist in nature. It is the outcome of a minoritization policy that was exerted on Syria by the ruling regime. In the light of perceiving the ‘policy of minoritization’, which he will shed light on, Awad shall be ending the presentation with an assessment of the ‘alliance of minorities’ trend that stems out of the above mentioned call for protecting the minorities, calling the Christians and other minorities in the region to avoid this trend and beware of its dire danger.

Awad is a religious scholar, author and poet from Syria. He is Associate Professor of Christian Theology and the Director of the International PhD Program in Hartford Seminary, Connecticut. Go to

16] – Come to Busboys and Poets Brookland, 625 Monroe St. NE, WDC, on Mon., Sept. 28 from 6:30 to 8 PM for Mumia Abu Jamal’s D.C. book launch.  Enjoy a conversation between IPS' and WPFW's Netfa Freeman and the book’s editor and close friend of Mumia, Johanna Fernández who is a Baruch College Professor, former Fulbright Scholar, and a coordinator of the Campaign to Bring Mumia Home.

At a moment when the nation is grappling with the realities of—and backlash to—police violence in communities of color, join the Institute for Policy Studies for a talk and book signing of “Writing on the Wall, Selected Prison Writings of Mumia Abu-Jamal” that couldn’t be more relevant, provocative or timely, and reads like a syllabus for understanding the daily civic and political realities of those marginalized by racism and class inequality. Go to

17] – On Tues., Sept. 29 from 9 AM to 12:30 PM with a (continental breakfast starting at 8:30 AM, there is a conference Safe Alternatives to Solitary Confinement: A Human Dignity Approach, which will be held at Top of the Hill Club, One Constitution Ave. NE, WDC.  Register at

With bipartisan momentum for change in Congress, presidential attention, and the Association of State Correctional Administrators calling for a reduction in its use, the time is now for addressing the overuse of solitary confinement and its adverse effects on individuals and public safety. Join the Vera Institute of Justice and members of the advisory council for its Safe Alternatives to Segregation Initiative to hear about critical “on the ground” change strategies and reform efforts being tested and implemented by correctional leaders around the country—and the reasons behind them.

Participants include: Maurice Chammah, staff writer, The Marshall Project; Dr. Craig Haney, professor of psychology at the University of California, Santa Cruz; Joerg Jesse, director general of the Prison and Probation Administration of the Ministry of Justice of Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania, Germany; Carrie Johnson, criminal justice correspondent, NPR; Gregg Marcantel, secretary of New Mexico’s Department of Corrections; Richard McCarthy, assistant superintendent, Hampden County, Massachusetts Correctional Center; Fred Patrick, director of Vera’s Center on Sentencing and Corrections; Shaka Senghor, director of strategy and innovation at #cut50; Rick Raemisch, executive director, Colorado Department of Corrections; Reverend Ron Stief, National Religious Campaign Against Torture; Sara Sullivan, project manager for Vera’s Safe Alternatives to Segregation Initiative; Nicholas Turner, president of the Vera Institute of Justice; and Bernie Warner, secretary of the Washington State Department of Corrections.

18] –  On Tues., Sept. 29 from 12:30 to 2 PM, James Acton and Toby Dalton, from the Carnegie Endowment, will tackle "Solving Japan’s Plutonium Problem" at the Carnegie Endowment, 1779 Massachusetts Ave. NW, WDC. RSVP at

19] – The Center for the Study of Islam & Democracy (CSID) cordially invites you to a discussion with the former Foreign Minister of Tunisia - Tunisia's Democratic Transition: Will It Succeed? What can the U.S. do to help? It takes place at 1779 Massachusetts Ave. NW, WDC, on Tues., Sept. 29 from 3 to 4:30 PM.  Coffee and light refreshments will be available.

 His Excellency Dr. Rafik Abdessalem, Tunisian Foreign Minister (2011 - 2013) and member of the Executive Committee of the Nahdha Party, represented the first democratically elected government of Tunisia. He is currently a member of the Executive Committee of the Nahdha Party, in charge of External Relations, and of the Political Committee. He was in charge of media for Nahdha from 2001 to 2007, also serving through that period on its Consultative Council, the party's highest decision-making body. Visit

20] – Each Tuesday from 4:30 - 5:30 PM, the Catholic Peace Fellowship-Philadelphia for peace in Afghanistan and Iraq gathers at the Suburban Station, 16th St. & JFK Blvd., at the entrance to Tracks 3 and 4 on the mezzanine.  The next vigil is Sept. 29.  Call 215-426-0364.

21] – Vigil to say "No Drone Research at JHU" each Tuesday at 33rd & North Charles Sts. Join this ongoing vigil on Sept. 29  from 5:30 to 6:30  PM.  Call Max at 410-366-1637.

22] – The Monthly African-American Authors’ Book Club is reading “Black Prophetic Fire” by Dr. Cornel West at the Owen Brown Interfaith Center, 7246 Cradlerock Way, Columbia, on Tues., Sept. 29 from 7 to 9 PM.  This monthly book group always features books written by African-American authors. The book group meets on the final Tuesday evening of each month. West, with distinguished scholar Christa Buschendorf, provides a fresh perspective on six revolutionary African American leaders: Frederick Douglass, W. E. B. Du Bois, Martin Luther King Jr., Ella Baker, Malcolm X, and Ida B. Wells. In dialogue with Buschendorf, West examines the impact of these men and women on their own eras and across the decades. He not only rediscovers the integrity and commitment within these passionate advocates but also their fault lines.

23] – Go to the True Reformer Building, 1200 U St. NW (Green Line), WDC, on Wed., Sept. 30 from 8 AM to 5 PM, as MWPHA will bring together public health professionals and stakeholders from across the DC metropolitan area to learn, network and engage with peers.  Across the nation, individuals with severe mental illness (SMI) are three times more likely to be in jail or prison than in a mental health facility. Additionally, national studies estimate 40 percent of SMI individuals have spent some time in jail, prison, or community corrections. Public health agencies and partners such as education, housing, law, business, and justice system will need to work together to address the role of mass incarceration as a driver of health disparities—both behind bars and in communities—and look at opportunities to apply a public health framework to address aspects of the criminal justice system that deepen social inequalities and exacerbate health disparities.

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] Go to

"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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