Father Roy Bourgeois to speak in Ann Arbor

Father Roy Bourgeois is a founding member of the School of Americas’ Watch organization and vigil. His presentation will be a great introduction to the School of Americas, the intersection of U.S. militarism in South America, which fuels the influx of people immigrating north, and the militarization of the police in North America. Since 1990, in Ft. Benning Georgia FR. Roy and others have been joined by thousands of people from all over North & South America to peacefully shut down the school, and end militarism every November.
Father Roy Flyer Final (2)
WHINSEC (formerly known as the School of Americas) is a military training facility in Ft. Benning Georgia where members of South/Central militaries, paramilitaries and other violent organizations are taught violent tactics used to silence peaceful uprisings.

If you are interested in carpooling, or donating to enable students to attend this speaking event, call 616-298-9318 or email organize@kzoopeacecenter.org

My thoughts on Femen & feminism

Originally posted on Neo-colonialism and its Discontents:

I just finished watching an episode of al-Jazeera Stream, where one of the women from the feminist group Femen was speaking. Femen have become widely known over the past few years, particularly for their tactic of stripping to protest patriarchy. Their logic goes like this: women’s bodies are consistently used by men and the media and don’t really belong to us, so we must take them back by re-appropriating them as a symbol of resistance of patriarchy. Therefore stripping becomes an act of “taking back our bodies” and a way to stand up against patriarchy. While I completely agree with this logic, as well as with the fact that in today’s world our bodies still don’t belong to us, what I find problematic about Femen is their tendency to universalize their feminist vision. What works for them, should work for all women, everywhere.

Now this isn’t the first time feminism…

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Peaceful Alternatives to Air Strikes

“We don’t like to learn things in this country, we just like to make the same mistakes, over and over and over again” Kevin Wordelman said.

We know, at the Kalamazoo Peace Center and among the progressive movement in Kalamazoo and this country, there are alternatives to war. We can learn from our mistakes of the past and invest our resources into waging peace.

Below is a statement condemning the proposed violence, and suggesting some alternatives, written by the Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom.

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We are horrified by the unfolding events in Iraq and Syria: beheadings of non-combatants – including American journalists – mass executions, and the rape and enslavement of women. These actions deserve a strong response from the international community. However, we are deeply concerned about the prospect of another protracted war.

It would be naïve to think that the overwhelming power of the U.S. military will lead to a solution. On the contrary, American firepower will only serve to broaden and deepen the war. Airstrikes and military intervention will surely further inflame and energize the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) and sharpen their anti-American focus. The possibility for political solutions will shrink as war expands and the hope of building a sustainable peace becomes more remote. Meanwhile the United States will become more embroiled in a war with costly sacrifices in blood and treasure.

Instead, what is needed are strong international efforts engaging the United Nations and international and regional partners focusing on unified economic and diplomatic strategies that include working to cut off funding and weapons flow to ISIS; addressing root causes of unrest in society in order to stem popular support of ISIS; increasing humanitarian assistance; and working within the region to establish political solutions.

In addition, any response must take women’s needs into account. It is also crucial for the international community to recognize the role that women in the region have played in combating extremism, and to ensure that women are a part of any processes to bring peace to the region.

First Meeting Fall 2014

oin us for out first meeting this evening at 6:30 pm 2101 Wilbur Ave. We will share on how our summers were, give report backs, establish when our meeting time will be and brainstorm for the coming semester. For folks who can’t make it to the meeting this evening, feel free to join us tomorrow at noon.

The Collective w/ Boots Riley Spring 2014J

Good White Person

Originally posted on harshbrowns:

Yes, ol’ fashioned racism can and does get to me. Those racial slurs as I ride my bicycle, being the only one followed by the security guard, or the never-really-random airport search, but most days, if I had to choose my direct racist experience, I’d rather any of the above over encounters with a Good White Person.

If you’re a POC, you probably know at least one of these Good White People! If you’re white and reading my blog, maybe you are one; a well intentioned whitey. You’re ‘on my side’, right? You figured out racism is ‘bad’ so now you’ve joined the fight against racism! Maybe you work in a social enterprise, for a charity, with refugees, or Indigenous people, or in the multi-cultural arts. You’re proud of yourself for your many years of human rights work. You’ve claimed your anti-racist identity, you have friends and maybe even lovers…

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