Our very own Co-Director takes jail time to stand in solidarity with the people of Indiana against tar sands and Enbridge.

Jessica Clark, Co- Director of the Kalamazoo Peace Center, is in the locker. Her heroic actions in her LaPorte, Indiana tree sits to protest pipeline 6B of Enbridge’s oil/blood trail have led to her serving 26 days in jail. Jessica stands for environmental justice of all people. Her choices in court were to either have a year of probation or take jail time for her tree sit actions, which stopped tar sands for a day. Many people when doing direct actions take plea deals for their own personal reasons, but Jessica choose jail time in a choice of solidarity with the people and environment of Indiana – because tar sands need to stop. Not many folks have gone to jail for environmental direct action against Enbridge and tar sands, and Jessica believes in the immediate cease of dirty oil transport and use!

Here is her full speech of what she read in court as her ending statement:

“I grew up a mile from Lake Michigan. I rode my bicycle there many mornings to watch the sunrise. BP just spilled 1,638 gallons of oil, probably tar sands into Lake Michigan. This is the inevitability of the tar sands industry- it is sloppy and poorly regulated. There are unreported spills every hour, but it is well funded, and easy for companies like Enbridge to pay off governmental agencies to influence them to make statements like No long-term health effects expected from 2010 Kalamazoo River oil spill.

I climbed that tree in September to highlight the injustice of tar sands, and to halt expansion of Enbridge pipeline 6B. As a resident of the greater Kalamazoo River basin, I am conscious of the ways in which corporations such as Enbridge, Marathon and BP turn ecosystems and communities into sacrifice zones in the name of profit. The people of Marshall and surrounding communities that endured the spill have been dealing with intense health implications such as kidney and liver failure, and cancer. July 27, 2010 when Enbridge spilled around a million gallons of tar sands into the Kalamazoo River, should have been the end of the line. Tar sands should no longer be pumping through the great lakes bio region. We have to leave tar sands in the ground. The governmental agencies need to stop valuing profit over health and safety of communities. July 27, 2010 when Enbridge spilled around a million gallons of tar sands into the Kalamazoo River, should have been the end of the line. Tar sands should no longer be pumping through the great lakes bio region. We have to leave tar sands in the ground. The governmental agencies need to stop valuing profit over health and safety of communities.

Tar sands from Canada are actively killing indigenous people in the boreal forest as their water and land are polluted by around 39 companies that are active there. The concept of “infinite growth” that underlines capitalism is not at all logical on a planet with finite resources. Enbridge, Marathon and BP, these “corporate people”, and the attitude of entitlement are actively enabling the apocalypse. Climate change is another main reason I climbed the tree- all reputable organizations of scientists endorse the statement “Most of the global warming in recent decades can be attributed to human activities.” Our species will not continue this way. The jury is no longer out, there are things we can do about this fact. Halting the problem at the root is a viable solution. The green house gas emissions must stop. Carbon emissions must stop. Stomping on the rights of indigenous people must stop.

I am calling for a revolution of values. As a society, we need to re-consider what happiness actually is. Happiness is not a comfortable middle class lifestyle at the cost of ecosystems, water and health, and comfort of others. Happiness is not getting so drunk or zonked out on television that you forget about the smog cloud of guilt in your gut for polluting neighborhoods and ecosystems. Happiness is not living next to a refinery, or downstream from tar sands strip mine. It is not living next to a rare earth mineral mine. Happiness is building resilient communities, growing food in our own neighborhoods and fostering independence from global capitalism.

It is essential that we come together and organize ourselves in the spirit of resilience. We cannot live on a dead planet. We cannot drink their money. We need each other to stop these industries from threatening our livelihoods. It is essential we resist harsh extraction and the attitude of human entitlement, colonialism and patriarchy that enable the earth to be co modified. We need to grow organic, bio-dynamic food in our own communities to become independent, to soften the collapse that climate change will incur. We need to stop the movement of tar sands once and for all. Leave the tar sands in the ground.”

You can support Jessica by writing her a letter, which can be sent to this address:

Jessica Clark
809 State Street Suite 201A
La Porte, IN 46350

Jessica can also receive books, but they must come directly from the publisher (Amazon or Barnes & Noble doesn’t count). Here are some of the types of books she likes:

The Architecture of Infinite Justice
Listening to Grasshoppers
Walking with the Comrades
fantasy books
books about radical social change
anything about farming
anything about herbalism

We love you Creepsauce, miss you, and our hearts are with you.

Third Annual Hullabazoo! Tomorrow

This will be the 3rd year of Hullabazoo, a celebration of diy and our local community.
There’s going to be music, workshops, and local artists, crafters, zinesters, and other makers and doers selling their wares.
We’re looking for folks to be a part of this awesome event (and folks to attend)!
If you are able to volunteer, it’s going to be a long day and we would love your help! Please email hullabazoofest@gmail.com.

::WORKSHOPS::
there will be a 10-minute setup/teardown between workshops! keep in mind that THESE TIMES ARE SUBJECT TO CHANGE!
11a-11:50a ~ Bike Maintenance ~ learn the basics of keeping your bike in shape!
12a-12:50a ~ Book Making ~
1p-1:50 ~ Screen Printing ~
2p-2:50 ~ Sexual Assault and Intervention ~
3p-3:50 ~ Self Defense ~
4p-4:50 ~ Arm Knitting ~ a quick afternoon knit project!
5p-5:50 ~ Organic Gardening ~
6p-6:50 ~ Local & Urban Farmers Panel ~
7p-7:50 ~ Herbalism ~
8p-8:50 ~ DIY Community Organizing and Event Planning ~

TABLING:
Expect to see salves, balms, jewelry, knitted goods, All Species Kinship,The Corner Record ShopAlready Dead Tapes & Records, homemade clay plugs, crafted goods, and more! (further details to be announced soon)

Music Provided by Students for Progressive Action And:
10:00-10:20
Violet Eyes 
Acoustic artist from Michigan.
10:30-10:50
Andrew Buczek
Acoustic solo Project
11:00-11:20
Aric Smejkal
Acoustic solo Project
11:30-11:50
Slakemoth
Folk/Pop Punk
12:00-12:20
The Green River Company
Alternative Indie Blues Post-Garage Punk Revival band
12:30-12:50
Jake Down and the Midwest Mess
Grand Rapids MI FOLK ROCK
1:00-1:20
Amber Nicole
Ambient Alt music
1:30-1:50
Circle, Get Square!
2:00-2:20
Saxsquatch and the All-Purpose, Semi-pro Brass Band
Neat brass band from Kalamazoo
2:30-2:50
Kentucky Lavender
Alex Young and Neal Shah
3:00-3:20
Kelsey/Rusty Vining
Solo low sad introspective songs
3:35-3:55
Brown Cow
Lo-fi, high gravity.
4:10-4:30
The Free Life
“Serious music that sometimes isn’t serious.”
4:55-5:15
Cardboard Highway
3 piece band from Kalamazoo, Michigan.
5:30-5:50
Rock Bottom String Band
Folky rowdy country punks from Grand Rapids.
6:05-6:25
AM Stations
Punk
6:40-7:00
Grave Hounds
Alt rock/punk band from Kalamazoo
7:15-7:35
Germynation
2 punk kids with a drum machine
7:50-8:10 
The Honey Pot
Rock & Roll/Garage Rock
8:25-8:45
Thats Blood
Punk
9:00-9:20
The Dandy Chums
Super punk, super cool chums.
9:20-9:40
The Hex Bombs
Punk Rock & Roll from Kalamazoo, MI

And! Just added : The Campus Beet will be offering lunch to folks for a small price of $3! Please enjoy this delicious offering.

Boots Riley to speak tomorrow despite free speech censorship on Western’s Campus

Boots Riley will be giving a keynote speech in celebration of the Kalamazoo Peace Center’s 35th Annual Peace Week! Boots Riley, an activist, musician, progressive labor advocate, union supporter, and overall revolutionary will be speaking tomorrow (Thursday) at 7pm in the Cafe of the Wesley Foundation of Kalamazoo, 2101 Wilbur Avenue. His lecture will consist of a brief history of his actions, as well as ideas and tactics to progress social justice. There will be a question and answer period, as well as a meet and greet after the lecture is finished.

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Boots Riley is best known for his intellectual lyrics in his eclectic hip-hop, soul, funk, and and punk band The Coup. The group’s music is characterized by aggressive, yet danceable bass-driven backbeats overlaid by humorous, hopeful, and witty lyrics- with a bent towards the literary- that critique, observe, and lampoon capitalism, patriarchal exploitation and police brutality.

The Kalamazoo Peace Center was told by University correspondence that Boots Riley was not able to speak on Western’s campus without undercover police officer at the event. This is because his affiliation with the Occupy Movement, otherwise known as the 99%. Therefore, The Wesley Foundation has graciously supported Boots Riley’s right to free speech, as the Wesley building is not technically University campus.

As the 35th Annual Peace Week ensues, The Kalamazoo Peace Center urges you to come to this insightful, edgy, and musically influenced event. Admission is free thanks to Western Student Association Allocations Commission. Fun will be had.

KCAC / Peace Center Benefit – Nostalgic and Folksy Edition – 3.29 – Milhouse

peacecenter:

This is show is our Saturday kick-off for Peace Week!

Originally posted on DITKalamazoo:

Maybe if you were in Kalamazoo in 2008, you went to Rocketstar Cafe. Primarily a coffee shop, sometimes also hosting all ages shows of a variety of genres. Maybe at that time you, like me, saw Ghost Mice and Eric Ayotte play a lovely and energetic folk show.

Photo by Jes Kramer

And if you’re familiar with Kalamazoo, you’ll also know that accessible venues have had a hell of a time remaining open. Shortly after this, Rocketstar ceased to be. Other spots have come and gone through the years, and many houses have picked up the slack – though not in a particularly legal or accessible way either.

Around the time of this Ghost Mice show, there was talk of creating the Kalamazoo Collective Arts Center. Tons of work was done on creating bylaws for this all ages art space, but when nailing down a location became exceedingly difficult, the…

View original 300 more words

35th Annual Peace Week is upon us!

“Peace week is a wonderful, action packed week of events to get people pumped to work for a more just and socially conscious world” said Peace Center organizer Jessica Clark. For the last 34 years, the Kalamazoo Peace Center has united with other organizations and individuals within the community to raise awareness about social justice issues. This week there are several events the Peace Center is helping put on. All of these events are free and open to the public.

ImageOn Saturday, March 29th, 9 pm there is a kick off concert in the vine neighborhood to raise funds for the new Peace Center office. Almanac Shouters, Ghost Mice and Minor Kind will play a fun-filled sing-along show. The show starts at 9 pm.

Visit http://www.ditkalamazoo.com for more information.

Sunday, March 30th from noon to 1pm, members of the Kalamazoo Peace Center will join Kalamazoo Nonviolent Opponents of War outside the federal building in downtown Kalamazoo standing in opposition to war and drone warfare.

Tuesday, April 1st from 12 pm-4 pm LGBTQA Awareness Tabling outside of the Wesley Foundation/Peace Center on WMU’s campus. Come and get a rainbow ribbon and discuss gender issues! From 4-8 pm, we invite people to join us to write letter and bring toiletries donations for prisoners in the main lounge of the Wesley Foundation.

Wednesday, April 2nd at 7 pm, the 3rd Occupation 101 film screening of Where Should the Birds Fly: a documentary about Gaza made by Palestinians can be viewed at the Multiculturalism Center/ Trimpe Hall on Western Michigan University’s campus.

Thursday, April 3rd at 7 pm will be our Keynote Speech by Boots Riley. Riley will speak about capitalism, liberation and organizing for a better world at the Wesley Foundation on WMU’s campus. This event is sponsored by the Western Student Association and the Allocations Fund.

Friday, April 4th at 6 pm the Peace Center will perform street theatre about drone warfare downtown Kalamazoo during art hop, on the Kalamazoo Mall.

Saturday, April 5th from 10 am-10 pm the 3rd annual Hullabazoo: Celebration of DIY Arts & Culture at the Wesley Foundation on WMU’s campus. This fest will include a local artisan market, regional musicians, and free workshops.

These events will be exciting, energizing and empowering. For more information on any of these events, please visit the Kalamazoo Peace Center’s facebook page or visit http://www.kzoopeacecenter.org. You can feel free to email organize@kzoopeacecenter.org with any questions.

Facebook event covering the week can be found here.