Syracuse Peace Council Page

Compiled by Carol Baum

Patriot Act Resolution
On September 8, by a bipartisan vote of 7 to 1, the Syracuse Common Council passed a resolution opposing aspects of the USA Patriot Act (see page 7). This was initiated by the Bill of Rights Defense Campaign, of which SPC is a part, and is just the beginning of the effort to protect and defend the civil liberties of all. To get involved, contact the CNY Chapter of the NYCLU at 471-2821, or Carol Baum at SPC.

Trial Win
September 11 was the trial date of the 16 people who had been arrested and charged with “disorderly conduct” January 15 (Martin Luther King, Jr. Day) for staging a theatrical tableau protesting the US drive to war on Iraq. They had stood in front of (but did not block) the doors of the Federal Building in downtown Syracuse.
After the prosecution had presented its case, the attorneys for the protestors asked for the case to be dismissed. To the joy of the defendants and their supporters, City Court Judge Karen Uplinger then dismissed it, saying that the prosecution had not proved that the defendants’ free speech rights interfered with the rights of others.

Oct 25 Demonstration in DC
United for Peace and Justice (a national coalition of which SPC is a part) and ANSWER (Act Now to Stop War and End Racism) have sent out a joint call for people to come to Washington, DC on Saturday, October 25, to oppose the Bush Administration’s foreign and domestic program. The demands are:
• End the Occupation of Iraq, Bring the Troops Home Now!
• Money for Jobs, Education and Healthcare, Not War and Occupation.
• Fight Back Against the Patriot Act.
SPC has reserved two busses and may not be able to get more, so reserve your spot soon. The busses will leave at 1 am on October 25, returning about 24 hours later. The cost is $45 – 60, sliding scale, and are available on a first come, first served basis. To make your reservation, contact Carol Baum at SPC. If you are driving, and can offer space in your car, let the SPC Office know.

SPC and Sept 11 – 14
In response to the World Trade Organization meeting held September 10-14, SPC organized various educational events.
On September 11 we showed the film Life and Debt, which uses Jamaica to explore the effects of economic globalization on people’s daily lives. Diane Swords connected globalization and militarism, and we had a moment of silence to acknowledge 9/11/01 and the continuing deaths of Iraqis, Afghanis, and US soldiers in the US “war on terrorism.”
On September 13, several carloads of people went to the Rochester Social Forum and demonstration at Kodak. Then on the 14th, we presented a theatrical tableau at the Westcott Street Fair entitled “The World Trade Organization and You” (see photo). We gave out many leaflets.

850 Sign Accountability Petitions
During July and August SPC collected 850 signatures on petitions demanding that Congress establish an independent, bipartisan commission to hold open public hearings on whether anyone in the Administration manipulated intelligence to “justify” their invasion of Iraq. The petitions were delivered to Sen. Schumer’s and Rep. Walsh’s offices on August 29. Sen. Clinton was at the New York State Fair; two stalwart activists attempted to deliver the petitions to her there, but to no avail. Since then, the petitions have been brought to her office.

Weekly Street Outreach for Peace
Formerly known as the “Weekly Peace Vigils,” street outreach is what we’re really doing. Help us remind people that the war in Iraq is far from over. Please join us Tuesdays, from 4:45-5:30 pm.
• Oct. 7 Valley Drive and Seneca Turnpike (Valley)
• Oct. 14 Erie Blvd. W. and W. Genesee St. (Westside)
·• Oct. 21 S. Salina and East Colvin (Southside)
• Oct. 28 E. Genesee St. and Erie Blvd. (Dewitt)
• Nov. 4 Onondaga Rd. and W. Genesee St. (Camillus)

Starhawk in SPC Benefit
Join global activist and author Starhawk (see page 9) in exploring the tools of “magic” to begin to change the world. This benefit for SPC is Tuesday, October 7, 6 - 9 pm at Grace Episcopal Church (corner of Madison and University, Syracuse), and is $10 - 50 (sliding scale – no one turned away). Thanks to the organizing committee: Carol Ardolino, elana levy, Andy Mager, Mayer Shevin, and Marie Summerwood.

“George Shrub”
Dave Lipmann, a.k.a. “George Shrub, the Singing CIA Agent,” will bring his satirical songwriting and political humor to Syracuse on Tuesday, October 14. George Shrub’s title is “Cultural Director of Homeland Security,” and in the Iraq Liberation Anthem sings “You and I travel to the beat of a big oil drum…” Please join us for an evening of poking fun! It’s 7:30 at May Memorial (3800 E. Genesee, Dewitt) and costs $3-15, sliding scale. Thanks to Gabe Barry and Jessica Azulay for arranging it. For more information email <>.
Volunteer Orientation
Have you ever thought about volunteering with the Syracuse Peace Council, but weren’t sure how to do that? Are you already an SPC volunteer, but want to learn more? Now’s your chance! Come to the next Volunteer Orientation on Tuesday, October 21 from 7 - 8:30 pm at the SPC office. An enthusiastic group of volunteers attended September’s orientation, and we look forward to meeting more in October.

SPC Youth Workshops
The Peace Council’s successful youth workshops on violence and nonviolence continue to be welcomed by local youth programs. In September, Jessica Maxwell and Rae Kramer led a series of four workshops for the teen center at Rolling Greens apartment complex on E. Fayette Street. We are also scheduling workshops for the Northside CYO. When this project began, we actively contacted youth centers. As the word spreads, we’ve begun to receive inquiries from other groups. Both Rolling Greens and Northside CYO contacted us after hearing from others about our workshops.

October Potluck/Discussion
SPC’s potluck on October 23 features Norliza Mahjhrin, a volunteer with the Peace Brigades International Indonesian Project. She recently spent over four months in Aceh, Indonesia, and ten months in Jakarta. Norliza is a Malaysian citizen who will be in the US a short while, so we are fortunate that she’ll be able to make it to Syracuse.
The free event is Thursday, October 23 at the Westcott Community Center (corner of Euclid and Westcott, Syracuse). The potluck is 6 - 7 pm, the talk and discussion from 7 - 8:30. Come for the food and socializing, or just for the talk.

Media Workshop
Want to learn how to get media coverage for events? Need some practice on developing a soundbite? Come to a workshop on Media for Activists on Tuesday, October 28 from 7 - 9 pm, location TBA. Andy Mager will share ideas and experiences about reaching the mainstream media. The workshop will cover news releases, media calls, interviewing skills and media contacts in Central New York, and will include practicing skills. The cost is $5-15 for the workshop, no one turned away. Please RSVP by October 24 to <andy@> or 472-5478.

Speak Up: The Bush Agenda and You
This Town Meeting is now scheduled for Wednesday, November 12 from 7 - 9 pm at Southwest Community Center. The event will include short presentations by representatives of local community groups about how they have been negatively affected by the Bush/Cheney/Ashcroft/Wolfowitz agenda. There will also be time for individuals to “speak up” and for informal networking after the formal program ends. Organizational endorsements and support for the event are needed. Please get your union local, neighborhood group or faith community to support this effort. Contact Andy Mager.

Help and Things Needed
This month we’re focussing on help needed for the Peace Newsletter and for outreach and educational tabling.
The PNL is down to three people on the editorial committee and welcomes: more editorial committee members, graphic artists (and a graphics editor), mailing party coordinators (a job that could easily be shared with a friend), and people willing to do any number of small, but crucial tasks.
The tabling team would happily accept more members, as well as big storage tubs to tote materials in, and display boards (and someone to help create displays).

Our Woman in Iraq
In early October, Central New Yorker Cynthia Banas will join Ed Kinane (see Ed’s article starting on cover) in Baghdad with Voices in the Wilderness. She will send us updates, which we’ll distribute. We wish her well and are grateful that people are doing this important work.
Study Group
We’re reading Power Trip: US Unilateralism and Global Strategy After September 11, and have had several lively discussions. The group meets every two weeks at the Friends Meeting House and welcomes new members (as long as they have done the reading). To get involved, contact Carol Baum.

A Long, Financially Dry, Summer
As predicted, SPC’s income dropped way down in the summer, and we had to dip into our savings. This had been planned for, but was still sobering, especially since we have just hired a third staffperson. If you haven’t donated or renewed your PNL subscription in a while, now is an especially good time to do it. We’ll also be sending out our fall fund appeal in the next few weeks.