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YOUR help is needed to protect the world's largest intact temperate rainforest, the Great Bear Rainforest, by sending the government of British Columbia, Canada, a fax through the website: www.savethegreatbear.org
Below is a joint statement by the coastal indigenous native bands and environmental groups about the Great Bear Rainforest deal:
From the Amazon basin to the Great Barrier Reef, the challenge on the Central and North Coast and Haida Gwaii is echoed around the world: How do we integrate the needs of natural systems with the needs of the people who depend upon them for their livelihoods and way of life? The coastal rainforests and waters are a vital natural, cultural and economic resource for First Nations, coastal communities and British Columbia as a whole. To be successful, land use agreements must not only preserve the lands and protect its ecological integrityÂ—they must also respect indigenous cultures and strengthen local economies. To be successful, conservation must be sustainable, both ecologically and economically.
The Portland Central America Solidarity Committee (PCASC)/Cross Border Labor Organizing Coalition (CBLOC) is organizing a delegation to Caracas, Venezuela January 19-29, 2006. Besides attending the World Social Forum, PCASC has arranged meetings with union and community activists in Venezuela's Bolivarian Revolution.
A conference bringing together a broad range of speakers and presentations to address the increasing incarceration rate in the United States, and its effect on diverse population in our society. Also a commemoration of Dec. 3rd, an International of Solidarity with Political Prisoners.
Addressing the Politics of the Prison Industrial Complex December 3rd, 10am-5pm
Among the major issues that Portland should contemplate is the growing racial and class divide it is experiencing, particularly among the city's large Black and Brown communities. Portland has a major class and racial gulf in economic resources available to Whites and the advantages it provides in buying homes and investing in neighborhoods. Recently the Chicago Sun-Times ran a major series on class and race in Chicago that illustrates my perspective.
The African American Alliance for Homeownership has decried the lack of commitment by our government to ensure that citizens of color are treated fairly and that adequate resources are provided to close the racial gap in homeownership. As we think about Portland's future, we should avoid the errors that other cities have made in ignoring the race and class gulf. How does this relate to the Portland Development Commission?
The New Waveland Cafe in Waveland MS, initiated by a group of Rainbows, was the first recognized relief kitchen in Hancock county after Hurricane Katrina. The Kitchen has become a community center for locals and volunteers in Waveland and the surrounding areas. People are drawn to this kitchen because the food is healthy, much of it is organic, and it is always cooked with style. The kitchen is run completely by volunteers who focus on empowering this community to continue helping one another even after the kitchen is gone. Anyone who expresses interest is welcome to facilitate a meal. Now we have 9 and 10 year-olds chopping vegetables for dinner, and spooning out soup in the serving line. Most nights during the week different local bands come to play on the stage at dinner time. Often, when dinner is finished, tables are pushed back and a spontaneous community dance party ensues. Afterwards, locals and volunteers work together to clean the dining room.
The New Waveland Cafe is closing down on the Saturday after Thanksgiving. It is re-opening at a new location in St. Bernard's Parrish, just outside of New Orleans. The folks who are continuing on with this mission are in need of a larger volunteer force and many resources in order to carry out this project. Many of the people moving to St. Bernard's Parrish have been working for 1 to 2 months, seven days a week, with very few breaks. This move is going to take a lot of work, and some brand-spanking new creative vibrance will be enthusiastically welcome.
Please keep in mind that no amount of carrying signs, marching, meditation, prayer, signing petitions, or voting will ever carry as much power as helping one person gut out her ruined house, or feeding a single mother at the end of another stressful day of red-taping it to a Fema trailor. This is a chance to extract yourself from our traditionally divided and materialistic American culture, shake off the stagnant mundane, and participate in true community building during a time of suffering and hardship.
The driving force behind this legislation is the phone companies' desire to provide Internet based broadband video service without having to negotiate franchises with local municipalities. Sponsors of the legislation say it will help consumers by increasing marketplace competition and thereby lowering cable TV subscription rates. However at the November 9th hearings Gene Kimmelman, of the Consumers Union, stated the bill "fails to deliver the polices necessary to ensure that consumers will receive meaningful growth in price competition"... the "American consumer is being asked to give up a great deal in exchange for another promise of competition at some distant point in the future. Consumers have had their pockets picked too many times to be fooled again".
Among the things the public is being asked to give up is robust local-focus community TV. The framework for Public, Educational, and Governmental (PEG) TV was put in place during the late 1960s and early 1970s on the principal that local communities should have an opportunity to produce and air programming that would reflect the unique character and concerns of those communities. Today in thousands of communities large and small PEG TV is an essential part of the community. Public Access TV offers a range of viewpoints and expressions unseen anywhere else in the mass media. Governmental TV keeps citizens informed about local elections and other important local political issues. And Educational TV provides essential programming for school-age youth, for colleges, libraries and adult learners.
A murder of crows clamored ominously over Shohada Square last week while the gritty terrace swarmed with careering passenger cars, overloaded trucks, noisy motorbikes, book-toting children, browsing shoppers, white-gloved gendarmes, and loitering jobless men.
Apparently nothing but the name, translating as Martyrs Square, was left to remind busy passersby in this teeming super-metropolis of at least 20 million that the site was the violent epicenter of the start of the Iranian Revolution. On September 8, 1978 (17 Shahrivar 1357 in the Persian calendar) troops of the US-installed and supported Shah Muhammad Reza Pahlavi opened fire on peaceful demonstrators in what was then known as Jaleh Square. Hundreds reportedly were killed that day throughout the capital, most of them students.
Many more protestors were killed by the Iranian military in the aftermath, which resulted in a general strike that October. The Shah fled the country within weeks on January 16 with Ayatollah Khomeini returning from exile on February 1, 1979 to take control of the multi-faceted revolutionary forces.
More than 27 years after that series of world-shaking events, another weakened and unpopular hardline regime is threatening to cause bloodshed again in the streets of Iran. Only this time there is no proxy involved, and the violent administration is located unequivocally in Washington.
As old growth forest advocates await a Ninth Circuit Court decision, Pacific Lumber (PL) subsidiary Scotia Pacific (ScoPac) has brought their chain saws into an ancient grove of redwoods containing trees up to 15 feet in diameter and comprising the largest chunk of in-tact unprotected habitat for the federally listed Marbled Murrelet (Brachyramphus marmoratus) in California.
In addition to the legal challenges filed by he Environmental Protection Information Center and the Western Environmental Law Center, Humboldt Forest Defense and Earth First activists have erected tree-sits in the branches of some of the massive trees, and have been showing up daily at the logging road gate outside Scotia, and also held a demonstration at PL offices in Scotia.
The final day of testimony in Shaheeda Pierce's trial took place on Thursday 3rd November. The day seemed to go very well for Shaheeda's case. There were several inspiring moments during the day's proceedings, including one particularly poignant instance during the testimony of "Upel" Hsieh Yu Chin, the client whose breech birth Shaheeda attended. As Upel was speaking, her daughter, the breech baby who is now a healthy, vibrant 2˝ year old, ran up to her and wanted to nurse. Upel said, "My daughter needs to feed now." The judge responded, "Oh! I am up with that breastfeeding stuff!" and proceeded to share with the court that his daughter was now happily nursing his grandchild. Then he ADJOURNED THE COURT! He offered Upel a separate room where she could nurse her daughter peacefully, asking if she thought 10 minutes would be enough, or if she felt she would need more time!
The very first time I walked into a gay bar, I felt something that I had previously lacked in any public setting: security and community. The flashing of rainbow lights and the thumping of entrancing bass created an inviting atmosphere that was only enhanced by the flamboyant patrons and employees. At last I knew that I was someplace where I wasn't going to get my ass kicked if I let my wrist fall a little limp.
Recently, the Sunday Whoregonian (we only look at the pictures) included a shopping bag, that shoppers could fill for the Oregon Food Bank, a worthy cause. Read on, dear reader:
The bag was printed up in large logos, the largest of which was the logo of Albertson's. That would indicate to me that when the bag was full, I could drop it off at Albertson's for delivery to the food bank, right? Not so. The logo was printed on the bag in several places, along with this suggestion " Stop by your local ALBERTSONS today for high protein items to fill this bag." There were other logos which I ignored at first, since I do not care a whit for Jiffy Lube, U.S Bank, Weyerhaueser, Nike, The Commerce Company, etc. The bag itself is emblazoned with "designed by Nike".
I just wondered how many people in these quarters noticed the article from the Friday November 18th edition of the portland tribune that describes an incident where a homeless person, Clinton Whitman, interrupted an assualt upon a hapless portland policeman who misjudged his ability to independently confront an agitated bar patron.
The article recounts the gratitude officers felt towards Mr. Whitman for the extraordinary gesture of civic and personal responsibility he made, and of some of their efforts to respond with help addressing his present unstable personal situation. He's been rewarded with some money and supplies to combat the harshness of his existence, plus, at least for the present, there is a suggestion that the police will be on the lookout for opportuntities that could answer his longer term needs. They're conscious of the need to watch his back to protect him against possible recrimination by the person agitated bar person once he's released.
On Saturday November 19, about 10 protestors demonstrated in front of Schumacher's (811 SW Morrison), educating the general public about how fur is obtained ( http://www.furisdead.com) while letting their few patrons know that wearing fur would not be tolerated without comment.
To say Schumacher proprietors and employees were enraged by our presence would almost be an understatement. One little man came out of the store repeatedly with a cheap camera and tried aggressively to take our pictures, apparently in an attempt to intimidate us (what's he going to do with them, put them up in the store to prevent us from buying fur there)? He tried to push a fox mask off the face of one protestor and slap her sign away. He shouted insults at us. Inside, the other employees and owners huddled uselessly around their service counter, staring at us, shaking their heads. A clownishly made up female employee (all the fur hags seem to use a spatula to apply their make-up) came out and tried to stare each one of us down - not really sure what that was about. They seem increasingly desperate to have us discontinue our protests - which only makes us know that our protests are having an effect! It's always a wonderful feeling to know that your presence is really noticed and has some value.
The following is Peter Young's statement to the court at his sentencing on November 8th, 2005, an approximate account based on notes and the memory of supporters in the courtroom.
This is the customary time when the defendant expresses regret for the crimes they committed, so let me do that because I am not without my regrets. I am here today to be sentenced for my participation in releasing mink from 6 fur farms. I regret it was only 6. I'm also here today to be sentenced for my participation in the freeing of 8,000 mink from those farms. I regret it was only 8,000. It is my understanding of those 6 farms, only 2 of them have since shut down. I regret it was only 2.
More than anything, I regret my restraint, because whatever damage we did to those businesses, if those farms were left standing, and if one animal was left behind, then it wasn't enough. To those people here whose sheds I may have visited in 1997, let me tell you directly for the first time, it was a please to raid your farms, and to free those animals you held captive. It is to those animals I answer to, not you or this court. I will forever mark those nights on your property as the most rewarding experience of my life. And to those farmers or other savages who may read my words in the future and smile at my fate, just remember: We have put more of you in bankruptcy than you have put liberators in prison. Don't forget that.
Let me thank everyone in the courtroom who came to support me today. It is my last wish before prison that each of you drive to a nearby fur farm tonight, tear down its fence and open every cage.
Mississippi Avenue, between Skidmore and Fremont, seems to be center stage for new up-scale development. In the last two years, the identity of the area has changed rapidly. So much so, that I can no longer use data from the 2000 census reliably. Large swaths of property are being bought up by prospectors and the plans of development of churning. In the next two years the identity of this neighborhood will be very different.
4138 N Mississippi Ave, includes 200 feet of frontage on the avenue. The development team, investors, and concerned neighbors met (11.19.05) at the Mississippi Rising Ballroom to see some sketches of the development, listen to some community opinions, and field a few questions about their development.
In April of 2004 the US Govt. pressured the Thai government to deport an American Akha activist from Thailand. Matthew McDaniel had complained of US Drug War policy that led to the brutal extra-judicial murders of many Akha people by Thai Security Forces. The US DEA called the drug war a "success".
US Embassy officials knew that he was being seperated from his small children and Akha wife who lived in a remote Akha village in Thailand. His wife was pregnant at the time and had to take care to the new baby on her own. Most of his possesions were either sold or looted. Matthew McDaniel lived in Thailand helping the Akha for more than 13 years. Chief players in the deportation and aftermath were Eric S. Rubin, the US Consul in Chiangmai, John F. Aloia, Emily Fisher and Ambassador Daryl Johnson.
American human rights activist from Oregon arrested in Thailand | Akha and Indymedia Activist, from Salem, Arrested in Thailand | Akha Woman Activist and Wife of Keizer Activist Persecution by US Immigration | Akha Activist Married to Oregonian with FOUR American Children Prevented from Entering US | Arturo Commando Interviews Human Rights Activist Matthew McDaniel
Today I received a letter dated 11-9-05 from eco-defense prisoner Steve (Stephen) Marshall. Steve is being held in Multnomah County Jail in Portland, Oregon while awaiting trial. He is accused of planning to destroy equipment belonging to a quarry company, which he allegedly claimed is polluting a river.
Because of his beliefs against cruelty to animals, Steve does not eat any animal products. Steve's diet has been a huge issue the entire time he has been in custody, and he has continually struggled to get vegan food. He has repeatedly been denied vegan food, and has often gone hungry rather contribute to the oppression of animals.
On November 9th, the jail's chaplain told Steve that in order to get vegan meals, a prisoner at the jail has to "have a recognized religion." Since Steve is not claiming religious reasons for wanting vegan food, but his "own beliefs against animal cruelty," they are denying Steve the diet he needs.
Perhaps you could send Captain Turney some literature telling of the horrors of the meat, diary, and egg industries, or send him your favorite vegan recipe so he will have some ideas of what Steve should be fed. If you would rather call the jail, the telephone number is 503-988-3689. Please take a few minutes to help Steve in whatever way you can. He is a really nice guy and seems to truly care about the environment and animals. He hasn't even been convicted of a crime, but jail officials are demanding that he go against his values so that he does not starve.
I am excited to announce that City Repair has started hosting the Cascadia Hour Exchange, a local currency & barter group that has been operating for a while (they just moved from meeting at Peoples Co-op) in the regional area.
I am hoping that the activist community can help support this group to grow into a true alternative to our current worldwide money system. Keep it local!
Sunday, Dec 18th
3:00pm - 6:00pm
City Repair Cooperative Space
2122 SE Division Ave (near Red & Black Café)
The Oxygen Collective, an Ashland, OR-based non-profit organization, and the newly formed Southern Oregon Gulf Coast Relief Network today announced plans to travel to New Orleans in early December. Members of both groups intend to support the ongoing grassroots hurricane relief efforts coordinated by Common Ground. Common Ground is a community-run organization offering assistance, mutual aid and support to the New Orleans communities that have been historically neglected and under served.
Local resident and educator Peter O'Connell traveled to the region two months ago to work with Common Ground. He is planning to return again with the Oxygen Collective and Southern Oregon Gulf Coast Relief Network. "I will never forget the images of desperate people suffering the initial tragedy of Hurricane Katrina. This tragedy has been compounded by the failures of FEMA and the federal, state and local governments to adequately address the needs of the affected communities. Into this void, Common Ground has stepped in to do the work that needs to be done," said O'Connell.
Momentum is building for what will be a great protest! If your organization wants to sign on, send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org
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