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Take Action to Support the Nuclear Ban Treaty! Honduras has become the 50th country to ratify the UN Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons. This means that the treaty has reached the number needed to go into effect. This will start on January 2022 according to the United Nations. 122 countries out of the 193-member UN General Assembly have expressed support and 84 have signed the treaty. Write your representatives and tell them to support this effort! According to the Secretary-General of the United Nations Antonio Guterres this development, “represents a meaningful commitment towards the total elimination of nuclear weapons.” But this is only the beginning. Countries with nuclear weapons, including the United States, Russia, and China, have shown opposition to the treaty which aims to destroy all nuclear weapons and ban new ones. The countries that possess nuclear weapons, the US, Russia, the UK, China, France, India, Pakistan, North Korea, and Israel have not signed the treaty. Changing perspectives in nuclear countries is incredibly important in the movement for nuclear disarmament. Citizens and residents of nuclear powers need to use their voices to support the elimination of these dangerous weapons. Tell your representatives that you want them to push for the United States to join the treaty!
Events and Meetings:
Monday, May 3, 2021, 12:00 PM. Arab-Israeli Normalization: A Viable Avenue Towards Peace? Since the second-half of 2020, four Arab nations (United Arab Emirates, Bahrain, Sudan, and Morocco) have formed normalization agreements with Israel. Proponents of the deals believe they are a historic win for diplomacy-first champions. Meanwhile, others are more skeptical, and fear that normalization could cause harm to the Palestinian rights movement while driving further conflict in the greater Middle East. In what scenarios could these agreements foster lasting peace? What are the drivers that shape these scenarios? What motivations did the signers have to normalize? Importantly, where do the Palestinians fall into the equation? This event is co-sponsored by Georgetown University’s Conflict Resolution Program. More information and link to the registration here.
Tuesday, May 4, 2021, 11:00 AM. KUMI Now: Freedom of Speech. As we celebrate World Press Freedom Day on May 3, we want the world to know that Palestinian journalists face regular threats of censorship and violence. Frustratingly, this censorship has been aided and abetted by tech giants such as Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, and Zoom. Our guests will include Donna Baranski-Walker, founder and executive director of Rebuilding Alliance, and others. Zoom Meeting Link. (You might need to do a quick registration. This link is the same, either way.)
Tuesday, May 4, 2021, 2:00 PM. Human Rights Watch Report on Israeli Violations of Palestinian Rights. A new report by Human Rights Watch on Israeli violations of Palestinian rights is ruffling feathers in Israel and beyond. The comprehensive report, “A Threshold Crossed,” is based on years of documenting violations of Palestinian human rights, to state, controversially, that “Israeli authorities methodically privilege Jewish Israelis and discriminate against Palestinians” in order to maintain “Jewish Israeli control over demographics, political power, and land.” The report contends that these violations “are so severe that they amount to the crimes against humanity of apartheid and persecution.” To better understand how the world’s leading human rights organization has reached such harsh conclusions, Americans for Peace Now will host a webinar with Human Rights Watch’s Israel and Palestine Director, Omar Shakir, and Eric Goldstein, Director of Human Rights Watch's Middle East and North Africa division. Register here.
Tuesday, May 4, 2021, 3:00 - 4:00 PM. Gerrymandering and Redistricting in a Faithful Democracy. Following the decennial census, the United States Constitution directs states to draw new district maps for congressional and state legislative races. Local jurisdictions also often redraw districts following this process, so every elected body is affected. Many are aware of this process on the occasions when officials in charge of drawing maps use this power to give a political party an unfair advantage through a process called partisan gerrymandering. Yet the process for creating districts involves many other variables and offers opportunities for the general public to engage. Join the CEEP Network and our partner The Episcopal Church Office of Government Relations for this digital workshop to understand what redistricting is, why it is important, and how you and your congregations can be informed and engaged not just to combat partisan gerrymandering, but to help shape our voting districts in ways that improve fair representation in our government. More information and registration here.
Tuesday, May 4, 2021, 8:00 - 9:00 PM. Code Pink Capitol Calling Party: Divest from the War Machine. CODEPINK Congress will be led by two special co-hosts, Danaka Katovich and Olivia Hamer of the Peace Collective. We will be joined by two guests: Carley Towne is CODEPINK’s national co-director and leader of its Divest from War campaign. Carley will update us on outreach to urge investors, universities, religious organizations, retirement funds, and mutual funds to divest from war, share CODEPINK’s recommendations for cuts to the military budget, and explain the thinking behind the Divest from the War Machine pledge. Stephen Semler is co-founder of the Security Policy Reform Institute, a grassroots-funded think tank promoting a working-class approach to US foreign policy. Before that, he gained extensive knowledge of the formulation of the US military budget through his experience working for a Capitol Hill-based government relations firm. While living in Beirut, Stephen worked for Mercy Corps' Humanitarian Access Team, which conducted analysis to inform the delivery of humanitarian relief by non-governmental organizations in the context of the conflict in Syria. Together, we will learn who in Congress is taking the most money from military contractors and whether there is a correlation between these congressional representatives and their votes for militarism. More information and registration here.
Tuesday, May 4, 2021, 9:00 - 11:00 AM. FREE PUBLIC WEBINAR: Duke Energy's Climate Change Denialism: How the utility greenwashes and delays efforts to address the climate emergency. The Duke Energy Accountability Coalition made up of public interest, environmental and economic justice organizations, will convene its second hearing to further examine Duke Energy's policies and practices, which continue to stand in the way of addressing the climate emergency. The Coalition includes the People's Commission – an independent watchdog acting solely in the public interest, free from the political and economic influence Duke wields with regulators, lawmakers, and other elected officials throughout its six-state territory. On May 4th, the People's Commission will hear testimony from an array of expert panelists about Duke's well-established practice of greenwashing and foot dragging to slow any meaningful investment in clean energy for its ratepayers in order to meet the necessary C02 emissions required to stave off the worse impacts of the climate crisis. Register here.
Wednesday, May 5, 2021, 10:30 AM. Nonviolence International Book Launch. NVI will host an interactive webinar with author Michael Beer. Jamila Raqib, Executive Director of the Albert Einstein Institution founded by Gene Sharp, will be our guest speaker. Michael Beer’s book is an update to Sharp’s 1973 classic where he documented 198 methods of nonviolent action. Please save the date, spread the word, and join us. More information coming soon. Here is a link to get your free online copy or order the paperback book here.
Wednesday, May 5, 2021, 12:00 PM. Conversations with the Nation. Keep Transgender Youth Safe. During the past year, more than 100 state bills were introduced around the country targeting trans people’s ability to update identification documents to accurately reflect their gender, play sports in school, and access critical health care. Join an urgent conversation with activists and writers Chase Strangio and Raquel Willis on how to support the organizers and organizations on the front lines of this fight and resist this wave of legislative repression. The politicians pushing this anti-trans legislation are preying on the ignorance of the general public, wrote Strangio and Willis in a recent Nation article. They show how to counter the uninformed intolerance and build momentum to fight the systemic attacks that are continuing and, unfortunately, escalating nationwide. Hosted by Katrina vanden Heuvel, the conversation will have ample time devoted to audience questions. Tickets are $10. All proceeds directly support The Nation’s journalism. We hope you will join us! There will be ample time devoted to audience questions and conversation. Register here.
Wednesday, May 5, 2021 2:00 PM. Jerusalem at the Boiling Point: What’s Behind the Latest Violence in the City? Jerusalem is once again witnessing a surge of violence—rightwing Jewish extremists gathering to chant “Death to the Arabs” and assaulting Palestinians; clashes between the Israeli police and Palestinians; and acts of violence by individual Palestinians towards observant Jews. But what are the deeper historical, religious, and political factors that are behind the recent conflagration? Partners for a Progressive Israel will be joined via Zoom by Yonathan Mizrachi, Director of Emek Shaveh, an Israeli NGO working to challenge the politicization of historic sites in Jerusalem, and by Hagit Ofran, longtime member of Peace Now Israel’s “Settlement Watch” project. In addition, we expect to be joined by a Palestinian resident of Jerusalem (details to follow). Our panel will look at the sensitive flashpoints in Jerusalem, including Damascus Gate, the Temple Mount/Haram al-Sharif, and the Silwan neighborhood, that make the dispute there so explosive. How have recent developments at these sites contributed to the heightened tensions? Register here.
Wednesday, May 5, 2021, 4:00 PM. First 100 Days of the Biden Administration: Insights from History. Join faculty experts from OSU’s Department of History for a conversation about the first one hundred days of the Biden administration. Unable to join the event live? No worries, register anyway. All registrants will receive a recording of the webinar and additional resources about a week following the event. More information and registration here.
Wednesday, May 5, 2021, 7:00 PM. Columbus Area Region of SPAN Ohio Meeting. A lot is happening now on the Medicare for All front. We will cover a wide range of topics, so that you can be up-to-date on what is occurring. Some of the topics we will cover are as follows: The introduction of Medicare for All of 2021 as HR 1976 in the Congressional House, Congresswoman Joyce Beatty is not a cosponsor of HR 1976. SPAN Ohio’s efforts on this, Senator Bernie Sanders Medicare for All Bill and another bill he is sponsoring to expand standard Medicare, Walk for Healthcare Justice, in Columbus on Saturday, May 22nd at Noon from North High Street at North Broadway to the Whetstone Library and back, 1.2 miles. SPAN Ohio Fund-raiser, 20th Anniversary of SPAN Ohio will be celebrated at an “in person” annual meeting on Saturday, October 30th, and Recommended reading on Medicare for All. Please contact Region 5 Coordinator, Bob Krasen, firstname.lastname@example.org for information on how to join this zoom meeting.
Wednesday, May 5, 2021, 3:00 PM. Human Rights Advocacy and the Legacy of Sr. Dianna Ortiz. Human rights and politics are seemingly inseparable: around the world, calls for accountability for human rights violations are ignored as the political demands of complicated economic and geopolitical relationships between nations take precedence. But, like Sr. Dianna Ortiz, OSU, we are called to stand with survivors and bear witness to the truth. Maryknoll Office for Global Concerns. Register for the zoom here or watch live on our YouTube page.
Thursday, May 6, 2021, 1:00 - 2:00 PM. The Dictatorship Syndrome: A Book Talk with Dr. Alaa Al Aswany. The study of dictatorship in the West has acquired an almost exotic dimension, but authoritarian regimes remain a painful reality for billions of people worldwide, whose freedoms are violated and their rights abused. Many are subject to arbitrary arrest, corruption and injustice. In his recent book The Dictatorship Syndrome, Alaa Al Aswany writes that, like with any disease, to understand dictatorships, we must first consider the circumstances of its emergence, along with the complications it causes in both the people living under the regime and the dictator themselves. How do dictatorships develop? Which conditions permit dictators to hold power and thrive, and how can dictators retain power even in precarious political environments? The Middle East Institute (MEI) is pleased to host Alaa Al Aswany in conversation with Wall Street Journal reporter Vivian Salama to discuss this deeply considered and at times provocative work. More information and registration here.
Thursday, May 6, 2021, 7:00 PM. Massachusetts Peace Action: Money Pit Missile webinar. Plans for a new Intercontinental Ballistic Missile (ICBM) carrying nuclear warheads are underway. Dubbed the Ground Based Strategic Deterrent (GBSD), or more properly the Money Pit Missile, this exorbitant boondoggle is meant to replace the Minuteman III missiles housed in silos in Wyoming, Colorado, Nebraska, Montana and North Dakota. And it comes with an estimated price tag of $264 billion that’s sure to go up even higher. Nuclear weapons are not the solution to our real security threats like catastrophic climate change and global health pandemics. In fact, new nuclear weapons make us less secure by destabilizing the world and launching a new arms race. Please join staff from Senator Ed Markey’s (D-MA) and Representative Ro Khanna’s (D-CA) offices for a briefing and strategy discussion on their ICBM Act (Investing in Cures Before Missiles!) to stop the Money Pit Missile and invest in Covid relief instead. Register here.
Thursday, May 6, 2021, 8:00 PM. ACLU Systemic Equality Action Series. Broadband/Housing. Trump may be gone, but America’s legacy of racism is still with us. Racism is ingrained in the fabric of this country, and has been enforced through policies, practices, and attitudes that harm Black, Indigenous, and people of color. Register here.
May 6, 2:00 - 3:30 PM, Saturday, May 8 , 2:00 - 3:30 PM, and Tuesday, May 11,
12:00 - 1:30 PM, 2021. Virtual
Delegation to Mesarvot. Visit with Mesarvot, Israeli
Military Refusers, with your guide Yuval Gal Cohen and our co-sponsors:
Refuser Solidarity Network and OBJECTOR Impact Project. Mesarvot
is a network of Israeli activists that supports conscientious objectors in
their refusal to become soldiers and take part in the occupation and oppression
of the Palestinian people. Our goal is to promote a platform for political
discussions about Israeli society in general and the military occupation in
particular, while providing young refusers with legal, media and personal
support. Join us to hear about our activities and our struggle for a just
society for everyone between the Jordan River and the Mediterranean Sea. Cost $25.00. More information and registration
Thursday, May 6, 2021, 5:00 PM. ACLU Webinar: What's Up With the Courts? Litigation Roundup. Join us for an upcoming webinar and hear from the fierce legal team at the ACLU of Ohio about our current legal docket and how our attorneys fight for civil rights and liberties inside and outside the courtroom. Register for the zoo link here.
Friday, May 7, 2021, 9:30 AM - 3:30 PM. Immigration Policy in the Biden Administration: The First 100 Days and Beyond. During the 2020 presidential campaign, Joe Biden repeatedly signaled his interest in adopting an immigration policy very different from that of the prior administration. After winning the election, several leaders from the immigrants’ rights movement joined the new administration, suggesting that fundamental change was imminent. As we approach one hundred days into this new era, it has become clear that the Biden Administration will reset U.S. immigration policies. But reset to what? This conference will bring together important stakeholders to address three central questions: First, what should federal immigration policy look like, both in the Biden Administration and beyond? Second, have the first 100 days put the country on a path toward achieving those goals, or is the reality mixed? Third, what should immigrants’ rights advocates do to achieve the world they want, in terms of both substantive demands and tactics to achieve them? Topics: April 30: Movement Lawyering; The Department of Homeland Security; and Asylum. May 7: Inside vs. Outside Strategies; Congress vs. the Executive Branch. UCLA School of Law. More information and registration here.
Friday, May 7, 2021, 5:00 - 5:30 PM. GrassRoot Ohio With Carolyn Harding. Our mission is to profile every-day people working on important issues and to connect them with other folks who want to help. Conversations with every-day people, working on important issues here in Columbus and all around Ohio Justice: environmental, social, racial, economic, w/ folks on the front lines. LISTEN TO 94.1 FM and stream US online at WGRN.com. You can find all GrassRoot Ohio podcasts/shows on Soundcloud: https://soundcloud.com/user-42674753. Apple Podcasts: https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/grassroot-ohio/id1522559085 and YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCAX2t1Z7_qae803BzDF4PtQ.
Saturday, May 8, 2021, 12:00 - 1:00 PM. Occupy for Our Revolution. Join Our Revolution each Saturday at the intersection of North Broadway and High street to demonstrate for peace and justice. Bring a mask and a sign or two in solidarity. Register here.
Saturday, May 8, 2017, 7:00 PM. Columbus Free Press Second Saturday Salon. Since we aren't getting together in person, we can gather for a couple hours on the second Saturday night of each month. Join Zoom Meeting. https://us02web.zoom.us/j/83906590837. Meeting ID: 839 0659.
Saturday, May 8, 2021, #LightTheLamps: Annual Ramadan Gala. We are excited to invite you to our signature event this month LIVE here on Facebook and on Youtube. In the United States, American Muslims for Palestine is working diligently to light the lamps on the path of freedom and justice in Palestine. Without a doubt, your support has been the cornerstone of AMP making gains toward this goal. Join our star-studded lineup of speakers as you’ll hear from the formidable Dr. Cornel West, Oscar-Nominated Director Farah Nabulsi, two Jerusalemite trailblazers Hanady Halawani and Dr. Mustafa Abu Sway, and our very own Dr. Osama Abuirshaid and Mohamad Habehh. Facebook.
Saturday, May 8, 2021, 2:00 PM. 5th Annual Mother's Day Climate Rally, virtual edition! Food and Water Watch is rallying for renewable energy, a livable climate and a healthy future. Our powerful list of speakers includes: Wenonah Hauter, founder and executive director of Food & Water Watch with decades of experience campaigning and writing on food, water and energy issues, Bill McKibben, author, educator, environmentalist and founder of 350.org, Harriet Shugarman, author of "How to Talk to Your Kids About Climate Change: Turning Angst into Action" and executive director of ClimateMama, Jerome Foster II, youth activist serving on the White House Environmental Justice Advisory Council and executive director of OneMillionOfUs, and Finn Fisk, co-hub coordinator of Sunrise Richmond and a leader of Sunrise Virginia. We'll round out the program with a children's story time! Register here.
Sunday, May 9, 2021, 2:00 PM. GrassRoot Ohio With Carolyn Harding. Our mission is to profile every-day people working on important issues and to connect them with other folks who want to help. Conversations with every-day people, working on important issues here in Columbus and all around Ohio. Justice: environmental, social, racial, economic, w/ folks on the front lines. LISTEN TO 94.1 FM and stream US online at WGRN.com. You can find all GrassRoot Ohio podcasts/shows on Soundcloud: https://soundcloud.com/user-42674753. Apple Podcasts: https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/grassroot-ohio/id1522559085 and YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCAX2t1Z7_qae803BzDF4PtQ.