POSTPONED, STAY TUNED: Ramapough Lenape: Solidarity with #NoDAPL in the fight against the Pilgrim pipeline–Sept. 25 (stay tuned for new date)

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Co-sponsored by Bronx Climate Justice North

Facebook event page HERE

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Settling in for the long haul with the protectors of the Great Plains–#NoDAPL #MniWiconi #WaterIsLife

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The news from Standing Rock comes in daily. Stay with it:

Democracy Now!

Indigenous Environmental Network

Indian Country Today Media Network

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Act with Bronx Climate Justice North in Solidarity with #NoDAPL

Thursday, Sept 15, 5:30-7 pm, TD Bank, 281 W. 230th St, Kingsbridge section of the Bronx

Details for BCJN’s action, HERE.

What else?

12 ways you can help the Standing Rock Sioux and more than 100 other Native tribes (#NoDAPL movement) fight the Dakota Access Pipeline:

1. Call North Dakota Governor Jack Dalrymple at 701-328-2200. You can leave a message stating your thoughts.

2. Sign the petition to the White House to Stop DAPL:https://petitions.whitehouse.gov/…/stop-construction-dakota…

3. Donate to support the Sacred Stone Spirit Camp and the Red Warrior Camp. Details here: https://nodaplsolidarity.org/support-the-camps/

4. Call the White House at (202) 456-1111 or (202) 456-1414. Tell President Obama to rescind the Army Corps of Engineers Permit for the Dakota Access Pipeline.

5. Contribute to the Sacred Stone Camp Legal Defense Fund:https://fundrazr.com/d19fAf

6. Contribute to the Sacred Stone Camp gofundme account:https://www.gofundme.com/sacredstonecamp

7. Call the Army Corps of Engineers and demand that they reverse the permit: (202) 761-5903

8. Sign other petitions asking President Obama to stop the Dakota Access Pipeline. Here’s the latest: https://act.credoaction.com/sign/NoDAPL

9. Call the executives of the companies that are building the pipeline:

a. Lee Hanse
Executive Vice President
Energy Transfer Partners, L.P.
800 E Sonterra Blvd #400
San Antonio, Texas 78258
Telephone: (210) 403-6455
Lee.Hanse@energytransfer.com

b. Glenn Emery
Vice President
Energy Transfer Partners, L.P.
800 E Sonterra Blvd #400
San Antonio, Texas 78258
Telephone: (210) 403-6762
Glenn.Emery@energytransfer.com

c. Michael (Cliff) Waters
Lead Analyst
Energy Transfer Partners, L.P.
1300 Main St.
Houston, Texas 77002
Telephone: (713) 989-2404
Michael.Waters@energytransfer.com

10. Find, join, and organize a local solidarity rally:https://nodaplsolidarity.org/

11. Rally in solidarity with all of NYC: Friday, Sept. 9, 5 pm, Washington Square Park, details HERE

12. Don’t miss the Black Lives Matter #NoDAPL Solidarity Statement

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Echoes of 50 years past: Attack dogs are set on peaceful indigenous protectors defending ancient, sacred burial sites on the N. Dakota plain, September 3, 2016. Democracy Now! was there.

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#NODAPL Standing Rock Sioux Tribe Sues the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to Halt Dakota Access Pipeline and Protect “Sacred Waters”

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Thousands of Native American brothers and sisters are taking part in a spirit camp and rolling direct actions at the northern border of the Standing Rock Sioux reservation in North Dakota to prevent construction of the $3.8 billion Dakota Access Pipeline (DAPL). There have been scores of arrests, and in mid-August, the protesters succeeded in gaining a construction halt on a portion of the pipeline. On Wednesday, August 24, the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe filed suit in Washington D.C. against the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to protect their water and land from the pipeline and halt its construction. The Standing Rock Sioux Tribe and the International Indian Treaty Council have filed an urgent communication to the United Nations citing human rights violations resulting from the pipeline construction. As the action grows, the Sioux have been joined by Comanche, Navaho, Northern Cheyenne and other tribes from Indian Country, as well as by non-native allies.

The Dakota Access Pipeline is a new, 1,172-mile proposed pipeline across the Midwest that would carry 570,000 barrels of oil per day from the Bakken region of northwest N. Dakota to a refinery in Illinois. From there the refined oil would be transported to the East Coast and the Gulf of Mexico. In addition to the danger from oil spills, the pipeline would bring 250,000 tons of carbon per day into the atmosphere.
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Occupying the prairie – tensions rise as tribes move to block a pipeline – New York Times

‘For as long as it takes’ – The Guardian

Native activist Winona LaDuke: ‘Pipeline company Enbridge has no right to destroy our future’ – Democracy Now!

Standing Rock Sioux Chairman: Dakota Access Pipeline is ‘threatening the lives of my tribe’ – Democracy Now!

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#NODAPL defending the Missouri River

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#KeepItInTheGround #NODAPL

 

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Mount Holyoke Climate Justice Coalition By The Numbers

Need a sense of the brilliance, courage, joy, and determination of the student fossil fuel divestment movement? Please see this blog post by the Mount Holyoke College Climate Justice Coalition for an insight into the blood, sweat, and tears this band of students is pouring into their sophisticated and energetic effort to persuade the powers that be at Mount Holyoke that their future is jeopardized by their college’s investments. Please “like” and follow the MHC Divest Facebook page. Please seek ways to give active and material support to the divestment group at the college or university you graduated from, or to divestment groups at local colleges and universities. To learn more, go to the website of 350.org’s global Fossil Free campaign.

 

Mount Holyoke Climate Justice Coalition

Years active: 4

Hours of work: 500+

Number of MHC students who voted yes to divest from fossil fuels (in 2014 student referendum): 1,049

Number of teach-ins organized: 2

Number of organizing retreats and trainings: 12

Number of meeting locations over 4 years: 3 (you can now find us in the Mead Common Room! Time and date for Fall 2016 is TBD)

Number of student orgs with whom we have collaborated: 8

Number of coalitions/partnerships (with groups like the Seven Sisters Coalition for Fossil Fuel Divestment and the Responsible Endowments Coalition): 9

Number of banners painted and signs made: 5 and countless

Number of articles in on- and off-campus media about divestment at Mount Holyoke: 5+

Number of large protests attended: 6 (including Forward on Climate and the People’s Climate March)

Number of miles walked in climate protests: 100+

Number of CJC organizers arrested at XL Dissent:…

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The Movement for Black Lives: “We believe it is time to forge a new covenant.”

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Please read the new Platform for the Movement for Black Lives.

Los Angeles Times, August 1, 2016

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#MillionsMarchNYC occupies City Hall Park in New York City on August 1, 2016 (Photo: Drew Angerer AFP/Getty Images)

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We say we want a REVOLUTION!

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On Sunday, July 24, on the eve of the 2016 Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia, more than 10,000 took to the streets to March for a Clean Energy Revolution. With the DNC occurring in Pennsylvania, the March shone a spotlight on the fracking that has ravaged the state.

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At the head of the 10,000-strong March for a Clean Energy Revolution, Philadelphia, PA, July 24, 2016

Targetting elected leaders at the Democratic National Convention, the march, endorsed by BCJN, called for:

  • A ban on fracking and other unconventional extreme fossil fuel extraction methods – we must keep fossil fuels in the ground!
  • A halt to the rapid and reckless expansion of fossil fuel infrastructure including gas and oil pipelines, frack sand mining, wastewater injection wells, gas storage facilities, fossil fuel power plants, bomb trains, and other dirty infrastructure across the United States.
  • A ban on the export of liquefied natural gas (LNG), a halt to the approval of export facilities, and a continuation of the ban on crude oil exports.
  • A stop to other dirty energy sources including incineration, nuclear power, and biomass.
  • Environmental justice for all to end the disproportionate impacts on low-income communities and communities of color.
  • Swift action to invest in solar, wind and other clean energy power sources and energy efficiency measures across the United States so that we can transition quickly to a 100% renewable energy economy.
  • A just transition for workers who are employed by the fossil fuel industry, and policies to ensure that the new renewable energy economy provides living wage jobs and benefits communities across the country.

For our future and our children’s future, we must stop the expansion and reliance on fossil fuels and instead swiftly advance renewable energy. Renewables and efficiency are the clean energy solutions we need to combat climate change and create millions of new jobs that will strengthen our economy. With the eyes of the world on Philadelphia, now is the time for us to come together as a united national movement.

Please see coverage of the March on Democracy Now!

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Phone-banking in Brooklyn in the days leading up to the March.

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Patrick Robbins of Sane Energy Project works at a March art build organized by colleague Kim Fraczek.

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July 17: Hunts Point, Bronx, #StopTheViolence #Rage&Love #BlackLivesMatter #NoJusticeNoPeace

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At 4 pm on a hot July afternoon, the second anniversary of Eric Garner’s murder by police chokehold, we came together for Black Lives Matter and for an end to broken windows policing, poverty, gentrification, unemployment and all the forms of violence endlessly perpetrated against the people of the South Bronx.

Organizing groups for #StoptheViolence#OrganizeYoBlock included: Mothers on the Move, The Rebel Diaz Arts Collective, The Laundromat Project, The BLK ProjeK, The Point CDC, Bronx Climate Justice North, and more. We rallied with speakers and drumming at Hunts Point Plaza, old and young, all colors, all ages, all parts of the Bx, before marching through largely residential streets of the S. Bx, ending at the 41st precinct on Longwood.

Please stay tuned for more organizing for #BronxJustice. Huge thank you to Ben Meyers of the NYC National Lawyers Guild, who participated as legal observer at very short notice.

#DelrawnSmall #AltonSterling #PhilandoCastile #EricGarner #3dead3days #NoJusticeNoPeace

Photos: Erik R. McGregor

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Rodrigo Starz, Rebel Diaz Arts Collective

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Claudia De la Cruz

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Mother Loyda Morales, Church of the Mediator, Kingsbridge

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Claude Copeland, NW Bx Community & Clergy Coalition

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Kazembe Balagun

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NYPD 41st precinct, Longwood Ave

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Why we march – Carlos Sabater. Photo by his mother, Lisa Ortega, 7/19/16

 

 

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The Movement for Black Lives: Take the Pledge

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Take the Pledge – click this link.

TO: BLACK PEOPLE AND OUR ALLIES

Our Movement is under attack. Many want us to stop moving forward. Show them that we can’t stop. Stand with the Movement for Black Lives.

Why is this important?

Guided by love, we continue to stand together for justice, human dignity and our shared goal of ending all forms of state violence against Black people. We organize, occupy, demonstrate, march and chant for a new future: A future we can be proud of. We stand on the shoulders of our ancestors, who fought for their freedom and ours. Like them, we want a world where our lives matter.

We want an end to the war being waged on Black people, in all its forms. Some people fear change, and that’s ok. Many will attempt to halt our progress. That is not ok. Some will continue their attempts to undermine us, but we will remain undeterred.

For far too long, our unjust deaths have meant business as usual in this country. No more.

Our work remains undone until our lives are free of violence. That is the future we imagine.

Until that day comes:
We pledge togetherness— we will not allow ourselves to be divided.
We pledge to allow our thinking and actions to be guided by love.
We pledge to bring courage and power into our communities, and stop their flow out.
We pledge not to be controlled by fear, but instead by our dreams.

Join us, and pledge to do the same: Stand with the Movement for Black Lives.

And BCJN recommended reading: Policing isn’t working for cops either from Waging Nonviolence

 

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Just the edge of the knife…

A Letter to Our Patients on Racism

Photo: Jonathan Giftos, MD

We are doctors and medical students who witnessed the events of the week of July 4th, 2016 with horror and grief. The murders of Alton Sterling in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, Philando Castile in St. Paul, Minnesota and Delrawn Small in Brooklyn, New York reiterated a lesson that we should not have to keep learning: that black and brown people in the United States are at risk of police violence unlike any other group of people. There is a long tradition of physician-activists who have devoted their careers to working for racial justice. Yet historically, physicians as a group have not yet taken adequate responsibility for confronting racism, in our work or outside of it. We write to you now, late in making these promises, to make explicit the following five commitments:

1. We commit to support Black Lives Matter.

We write to express our solidarity with activists around the country who are working to protect and promote the dignity, well-being and equality of black people. We stand with Black Lives Matter in protests and affirm BLM’s commitments to restorative justice and respect for life. We hear in the clarion call for empathy and loving engagement the values that inspire us to care for patients. Following the lead of medical students who have organized themselves to form White Coats 4 Black Lives, we stand with friends and colleagues who organize to fight racial injustice.

2. We commit to dismantling the structural racism embedded in the healthcare system.

We aim to do so through learning, collaboration, activism, advocacy and leadership. We know from well-established research and from experiences in clinical practice that our healthcare system treats people of color differently from how it treats white people. Black and brown patients have less access to healthcare, endure more discrimination in healthcare settings and suffer worse health outcomes than white patients. This begins with our medical system’s failure to recruit and retain a diverse and representative physician workforce, continues with a white-centered curriculum and culture in our medical schools, is made manifest in unequal treatment of patients on the wards and in the clinics, and is perpetuated by research that has exploitedpathologized and excluded black and brown people. We commit to recognize our own conscious and unconscious biases, to be honest about the systems and teams in which we work, and to call out what we see. We promise to recognize our potential to lead and to work for change.

Photo: Jonathan Giftos, MD

3. We commit to learn how to provide trauma-informed care, and to teach this approach to our students, trainees, and fellow providers.

Traumatic experiences linked to community violence, segregation, concentrated poverty and discrimination negatively impact our patients’ health. We commit to partnering with our patients to address the pervasive stress associated with surviving in an unjust world, to recognize signs of trauma in our patients, to respond to trauma in our treatment plans and to avoid retraumatizing those we seek to serve. We will recognize and learn from the strength and resilience of the communities we care for. We will learn to support individual paths to healing. We will strive to practice with transparency in order to promote trust. We will seek to empower rather than patronize and diminish. We commit to practice with deep respect and love.

4. We commit to healing communities ravaged by discriminatory criminal justice practices through engaging public health systems.

We will confront discriminatory practices in the criminal justice system by measuring the questions that matter. These might include but are not limited to: monitoring trends in police violence; assessing the impact of mass incarceration on communities of color; and supporting evidence-based public health approaches to community violence. We will explore how local public health systems can convene diverse stakeholders in education, healthcare, law enforcement and faith-based organizations to facilitate truth and reconciliation forums in communities devastated by structural violence. We commit to models of community-based participatory research in which our patients serve as partners in our inquiries. We will support evidence-based policies that leverage the lessons from this research and we will lobby legislators to prioritize programs that promote racial justice.

Photo: Jonathan Giftos, MD

5. We commit to using our power as constituents and leaders to insist that every major medical society and association develop a policy on racial justice.

A policy on racial justice is a starting point; we will also hold these organizations accountable to their statements and leverage their influence to elect political leadership that represents our concerns. We will use the powerful organizations that are meant to represent us as physicians to demand change locally and nationally.

Much of what we promise to do in this letter is informed by the work of our activist colleagues and forebears, and some will require we make a new road by walking. We feel an urgency to set these intentions as a step along the path to change, recognizing there are many more steps for us all to take. We see the killing of black and brown people by police as just the edge of the knife; it is the sharpest, most acute consequence of a systemic racism that devalues black and brown lives. We cannot allow it to persist. With humility we make these commitments today to you, our patients, and to the possibility for a more just world.

In solidarity,

Rachael Bedard, MD

Ann Crawford-Roberts, MS-IV

Leo Eisenstein, MS-II

Jonathan Giftos, MD

Phillip Murray, MD

Alison Rapoport, MD

Lello Tesema, MD

M. Catherine Trimbur, MD, MPH

Rahul Vanjani, MD

Kathering Wang, MD

For the full list of signatories (932 as of 7/13/16), please go HERE. Please share the letter and signatory list widely.

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Michelle Alexander: “A profound shift must occur…”

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The summary execution of Alton Sterling, Baton Rouge, LA, 7/5/16. He was rushed by the police, thrown to the ground, stunned by a taser, and shot multiple times at point-blank range.

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Philando Castile, a school cafeteria worker, was fatally shot four times while complying with a police officer’s demand for his license and registration, Minneapolis, 7/6/16.

From Michelle Alexander, author of The New Jim Crow, on 7/8/16: 

I have struggled to find words to express what I thought and felt as I watched the videos of Alton Sterling and Philando Castile being killed by the police. Last night, I wanted to say something that hasn’t been said a hundred times before. It finally dawned on me that there is nothing to say that hasn’t been said before. As I was preparing to write about the oldness of all of this, and share some wisdom passed down from struggles of earlier eras, I heard on the news that 11 officers had been shot in Dallas, several killed from sniper fire. My fingers froze on the keys. I could not bring myself to recycle old truths. Something more is required. But what?

I think we all know, deep down, that something more is required of us now. This truth is difficult to face because it’s inconvenient and deeply unsettling. And yet silence isn’t an option. On any given day, there’s always something I’d rather be doing than facing the ugly, racist underbelly of America. I know that I am not alone. But I also know that the families of the slain officers, and the families of all those who have been killed by the police, would rather not be attending funerals. And I’m sure that many who refused to ride segregated buses in Montgomery after Rosa Parks stood her ground wished they could’ve taken the bus, rather than walk miles in protest, day after day, for a whole year. But they knew they had to walk. If change was ever going to come, they were going to have to walk. And so do we.

What it means to walk today will be different for different people and different groups and in different places. I am asking myself tonight what I need to do in the months and years to come to walk my walk with greater courage. It’s a question that requires some time and reflection. I hope it’s a question we are all asking ourselves.

In recent years, I have come to believe that truly transformative change depends more on thoughtful creation of new ways of being than reflexive reactions to the old. What is happening now is very, very old. We have some habits of responding to this familiar pain and trauma that are not serving us well. In many respects it’s amazing that we endure at all. I am inspired again and again by so much of the beautiful, brilliant and daring activism that is unfolding all over the country. Yet I also know that more is required than purely reactive protest and politics. A profound shift in our collective consciousness must occur, a shift that makes possible a new America.

I know many people believe that our criminal justice system can be “fixed” by smart people and smart policies. President Obama seems to think this way. He suggested yesterday that police-community relations can be improved meaningfully by a task force he created last year. Yes, a task force. I used to think like that. I don’t anymore. I no longer believe that we can “fix” the police, as though the police are anything other than a mirror reflecting back to us the true nature of our democracy. We cannot “fix” the police without a revolution of values and radical change to the basic structure of our society. Of course important policy changes can and should be made to improve police practices. But if we’re serious about having peace officers — rather than a domestic military at war with its own people— we’re going to have to get honest with ourselves about who our democracy actually serves and protects.

Consider this: Philando Castile had been stopped 31 times and charged with more than 60 minor violations – resulting in thousands of dollars in fines – before his last, fatal encounter with the police. See http://www.dailymail.co.uk/…/Man-shooting-death-hand-cop-st….

Alton Sterling was arrested because he was hustling, selling CDs to get by. He was unable to work in the legal economy due to his felony record. His act of survival was treated by the police as a major crime, apparently punishable by death.

How many people on Wall Street have been arrested for their crimes large and small — crimes of greed and fraud that nearly bankrupted the global economy and destroyed the futures of millions of families? How many politicians have been prosecuted for taking millions of dollars from private prisons, prison guard unions, pharmaceutical companies, oil companies, tobacco companies, the NRA and Wall Street banks and doing their bidding for them — killing us softly? Oh, that’s right, taking millions from those folks isn’t even a crime. Democrats and Republicans do it every day. Our entire political system is financed by wealthy private interests buying politicians and making sure the rules are written in their favor. But selling CDs or loose cigarettes? In America, that’s treated as a serious crime, especially if you’re black. For that act of survival, you can be wrestled to the ground and choked to death or shot at point blank range. Our entire system of government is designed to protect and serve the interests of the most powerful, while punishing, controlling and exploiting the least advantaged.

This is not hyperbole. And this is not new. What is new is that we’re now watching all of this on YouTube and Facebook, streaming live, as imagined super-predators are brought to heel. Fifty years ago, our country was forced to look at itself in the mirror when television stations broadcast Bloody Sunday, the day state troopers and a sheriff’s posse brutally attacked civil rights activists marching for voting rights in Selma. Those horrifying images, among others, helped to turn public opinion in support of the Civil Rights Movement. Perhaps the images we’ve seen in recent days will make some difference. It’s worth remembering, though, that none of the horrifying images from the Jim Crow era would’ve changed anything if a highly strategic, courageous movement had not existed that was determined to challenge a deeply entrenched system of racial and social control.

This nation was founded on the idea that some lives don’t matter. Freedom and justice for some, not all. That’s the foundation. Yes, progress has been made in some respects, but it hasn’t come easy. There’s an unfinished revolution waiting to be won. — Michelle Alexander, 7/8/16

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