Mount Diablo Peace and Justice Center
Mount Diablo Peace and Justice Center

Encouraging peaceful solutions since 1969

8th ANNUAL PEACE & JUSTICE AWARDS DINNER

SAVE THE DATE! SATURDAY, OCTOBER 22nd

CLICK HERE TO ORDER TICKETS ONLINE

6-9 PM – BORTIN HALL at MT. DIABLO UNITARIAN UNIVERSALIST CHURCH

55 Eckley Lane, Walnut Creek

IT’S THE SOCIAL EVENT OF THE SEASON!

PLEASE JOIN US IN CELEBRATING THE WORK OF ACTIVISTS IN OUR COMMUNITY

Cindy Sheehan gives the peace sign in front of the White House on Nov. 7, 2006. (Photo courtesy of Ben Schumin)

OUR LOCAL HERO FOR PEACE AWARD GOES TO:

CINDY SHEEHAN, “Peace Mom” Anti-War Political Activist

 

 

OUR LOCAL HERO FOR JUSTICE AWARD GOES TO:

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BETTY REID SOSKIN, Anti-Racism Educator and Political Activist

 

 

 

 

Enjoy a full-course meal, wine, music, speakers, a raffle and silent auction.

CLICK HERE TO ORDER TICKETS ONLINE

$65 General Public or $50 Peace Center Members*

OR MAIL IN YOUR CHECK PAYABLE TO “Mt. Diablo Peace & Justice Center”,

55 Eckley Lane, Walnut Creek, CA 94596 and include the names of attendees.

* to check your membership status or if you have questions:  (925) 933-7850 or email margli@ourpeacecenter.org

 

 

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WAR IN SYRIA: TWO PERSPECTIVES

Reese Erlich & Rick Sterling

ZA'ATARI, JORDAN - FEBRUARY 01:  Children pose for a picture as Syrian refugees go about their daily business in the Za'atari refugee camp on February 1, 2013 in Za'atari, Jordan. Record numbers of refugees are fleeing the violence and bombings in Syria to cross the borders to safety in northern Jordan   (Photo by Jeff J Mitchell/Getty Images)

ZA’ATARI, JORDAN – FEBRUARY 01:  northern Jordan (Photo by Jeff J Mitchell/Getty Images)

will present their analyses of the conflict. They have different views in  some areas but are in agreement that we need to build a mass movement to oppose US aggression against Syria.

· Is the Syrian conflict a Civil War or a Foreign War of Aggression?
· Is Assad a brutal dictator or the legitimate leader of Syria?
· What is the role of the USA and its allies? What is the role of Russia, Iran and their allies?
· What are the dangers ahead and what should we do?

erlich-afghanistan-mines

THURSDAY, OCTOBER 13th, 2016

6 PM Potluck/7 PM Presentation

MDUUC – OWL ROOM, 55 Eckley Lane, Walnut Creek, CA

Erlich is a world–renowned journalist and author of  Inside Syria, The Backstory of Their Civil War and What the World Can Expect. Now updated and in paperback, it will be available for sale.  

Sterling head shot

Sterling is co-founder of the Syria Solidarity Movement and a researcher who travels and writes extensively on the Middle East.

Tickets: $10 in advance available online  CLICK HERE or $15 at door.

FREE for students / Half price for MDPJC Memebers.

More info (925) 933-7850 or margli@ourpeacecenter.org

 

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RALPH NADER

nader-book-jacket-breaking-through-powerSpeaking Tuesday, October 18, 2016 / 3 PM

Diablo Valley College

The Diablo Room (HSF B3),

321 Golf Club Road, Pleasant Hill

In Breaking Through Power, Nader draws from a lifetime waging—and often winning—David vs. Goliath battles against big corporations and the United States government. In this succinct, Tom Paine-style wake-up call, the iconic consumer advocate highlights the success stories of fellow Americans who organize change and work together to derail the many ways in which wealth manipulates politics, labor, media, the environment and the quality of national life today. Nader makes an inspired case about how the nation can—and must—be democratically managed by communities guided by the U.S. Constitution, not by the dictates of big businesses and the wealthy few. This is classic Ralph Nader, a crystallization of the core political beliefs and commitments that have driven his lifetime of advocacy for greater democracy.

Co-sponsors include but are not limited to the DVC Student Equity Committee, the History Club, Project Censored, the Media Freedom Foundation and Mt. Diablo Peace and Justice Center.

For more information contact Mickey Huff, Professor of Social Science and history, who will be hosting the event: mhuff @ dvc.edu

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STATEMENT ON ACTS OF VIOLENCE OF JULY 2016

SoaringDoveBlack100 pixelsIn recent weeks, several deeply troubling events have taken place. These events include the deaths of Alton Sterling and Philando Castile at the hands of police, the assassination of multiple police officers in Dallas and Baton Rouge, and the police blowing up a murder suspect with a bomb attached to a robot.

While the exact circumstances surrounding each of these deaths have yet to be determined, one thing is very clear: We have a problem with violence in this country. And, race is routinely a contributing factor in the violence we perpetrate, experience, and hear about every day. Despite the suffering and injustice we witness on an almost daily basis, we cannot give up hope. We cannot give up hope that the problem of violence in America will be tamed. We can, and we must continue to work to create a more peaceful and just world.

While we are far from having all the answers, we may take refuge and comfort in the fact that conversations are happening and steps are being made to eradicate such unnecessary violence in our country. Today, or any day for that matter, as you wake up to face another horrific news story,  please remember that your work and membership through the Mt. Diablo Peace and Justice Center, your participation in center events and programs, and throughout our community and our nation is making our world safer and happier. Remember that your contributions are helping lift people up, create powerful connections to mobilize change, and address many of the root causes of inequality, injustice, and violence. For this, we thank you.

Board Members’ statement 7/18/2016

 

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BECOME A MEMBER TODAY!

SoaringDove

   IT’S EASY TO DO ONLINE!  

CLICK HERE TO RENEW OR JOIN

 

   THANK YOU FOR YOUR SUPPORT!

JOIN NOW and your membership will be good through the next fiscal year, June 30th, 2017. 

Not sure of your membership status?  Call  (925) 933-7850 or email margli@ourpeacecenter.org and we’ll check it out.

 

 membership chart

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THE CROSSES OF LAFAYETTE

Deer Hill & Oak Hill Road, Lafayette

(across from Lafayette BART)

CrossesMarch4_flags

We MUST not forget how the occupation of the Middle East is still ongoing.  

 PLEASE CONSIDER MAKING AN ONLINE DONATION TO THE CROSSES!

FUNDS WILL BE USED FOR PAINT, REPAIRS AND WEED CONTROL

“DONATE’ BUTTON MAY BE FOUND ON RIGHT SIDE OF SCREEN >

Mt. Diablo Peace and Justice Center is now a fiscal sponsor for the Crosses of Lafayette.

Donations are tax deductible.  Thank you for your support!

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RESOLUTION ON IRAN NUCLEAR DEAL

Resolution in Support of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action SoaringDoveBlack100 pixels
(“The 2015 Iran Agreement”)

Whereas, an international agreement has been negotiated by the five permanent members of the UN Security Council (China, France, Russia, UK and the USA) plus Germany with Iran, officially called the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), and informally known as the P5+1 Iran Agreement; and
Whereas, the plan calls for major reductions in Iranian capacity to produce enriched uranium or plutonium and agreement to not enrich beyond a level far below that required for military use, and the agreement calls for continuous monitoring and allowance for inspections and verification for 15 years, and in return, the P5+1 countries will lift economic sanctions on Iran and unfreeze Iranian assets in foreign banks; and
Whereas, the Mt. Diablo Peace & Justice Center believes this plan is a positive step toward a foreign policy based on negotiation and compromise rather than force, and
Whereas, for the past 12 years the US government and allies have invaded, bombed and destabilized governments they did not like; the US and allies invaded Iraq (2003) , bombed Libya (2011) and have funded the armed opposition in Syria (2011-present); and
Whereas, the consequences of this policy have been disastrous at home and abroad, with conditions vastly worse in Iraq, with chaos and terrorism having taken over Libya, and with close to 250,000 people having died, and another 10 million people displaced in Syria; and
Whereas, it is now estimated the US invasion of Iraq will ultimately cost about $3 trillion, with many thousands of Americans killed, and hundreds of thousands seriously injured physically or psychologically; and
Whereas, we note that many of the opponents of this agreement are the same organizations and individuals who promoted the invasion of Iraq and who have encouraged war with Iran; and
Whereas, we note that the agreement has been attacked with false claims, exaggerations and falsehoods just as there were false assertions about “weapons of mass destruction” in Iraq; and
Whereas, if the USA fails to endorse the agreement, the other countries involved will likely proceed, without the USA, and this would damage American credibility on the world stage; and
Whereas, we believe this agreement is a significant and overdue step toward a foreign policy which uses diplomacy and negotiation rather than force, and that the alternative to diplomacy on this issue could be war;
Therefore, be it resolved that the Board of the Mt. Diablo Peace & Justice Center supports the JCPOA; and
Therefore, be it further resolved that the Mt. Diablo Peace & Justice Center urges our congressional representative to fully endorse the agreement, and vote in its favor.
Dan Reynolds, Board Chair
Resolution passed August 31, 2015
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BOARD RESOLUTION ON MILITARIZATION OF POLICE

SoaringDoveBlack100 pixelsThe Board of the Mt. Diablo Peace & Justice Center passed the following resolution on September 15, 2014

Whereas recent events in Ferguson, Missouri have shown that even small police departments have acquired military hardware such as armored personnel carriers (APCs), grenade launchers, military-style “Fritz helmets,” and camouflage uniforms that are conspicuous shows of authority in built-up areas, and

Whereas Davis, California had acquired an APC and seeks to dispose of it (1) and Saddleback College of Mission Viejo, California has acquired an APC, even though the Campus Police force has 10 or fewer officers (2), and

Whereas the use of SWAT team actions has soared from a few hundred annually in the 1970s to more than 50,000 per year by 2005 (3) and SWAT team use has shifted from hostages, barricades, and active shooters (7 percent of uses as analyzed by the American Civil Liberties Union (4)) to routine police tasks such as drug searches and serving search warrants (80 per cent); SWAT teams infrequently find contraband (36 per cent); and often involve forced entry into private residences (65 per cent) and involve risk to innocent people, including children, and

Whereas militarized police can be cut off from their communities rather than be engaged with their communities, as happened in Ferguson, Missouri, and exceed their mission to protect and serve the public, as when battle-clad police in Ferguson fired rubber bullets and tear gas at protestors (5) and also invaded a McDonald’s restaurant to arrest reporters (6), and

Whereas there are far too many police actions resulting in citizen deaths that should result in questioning, arrest, or non-fatal use of force instead.

It is concluded that:

  • The militarization of police has reached unjustifiable levels,

  • Militarized police often threaten the public they are to protect and serve, and

  • The combination of militarized police and pervasive surveillance poses a threat to the civil liberties of Americans.

Therefore, be it resolved that:

  • The militarization of police needs to be stopped immediately, SWAT team use restored to hostage, barricade, and active shooter situations, and military weapons and equipment returned from police departments to the Federal government for storage or disposal.

BOARD OF THE MOUNT DIABLO PEACE AND JUSTICE CENTER, WALNUT CREEK

References:

(1) http://tinyurl.com/Davis-MRAP

(2) http://tinyurl.com/Saddleback-College-MRAP

(3) http://tinyurl.com/50000-swat-action-year

(4) http://tinyurl.com/ACLU-on-police-militarization

(5) http://tinyurl.com/police-force-ferguson-missouri

(6) http://tinyurl.com/police-arrest-reporter

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BOARD RESOLUTION ON BLACK LIVES MATTER

MT. DIABLO PEACE & JUSTICE CENTER

RESOLUTION IN SUPPORT OF THE BLACK LIVES MATTER MOVEMENT

WHEREAS, the Mount Diablo Peace & Justice Center upholds the ideals of equal justice under the law, racial justice and human dignity for all; and

WHEREAS, the recent deaths of Eric Garner, Michael Brown, Freddie Gray and too many others, compel questioning of whether or not equal justice under the law is possible for young men of color – particularly poor, young men of color; and

WHEREAS, these deaths are indicative of a growing social-economic division threatening the current and future well-being of people of color and the larger society; and

WHEREAS, while we recognize there have been some strides within police departments across the nation to engage in constructive dialogue and good faith efforts to improve relations between officers and communities of color and young people, there are still problems that exist and improvements that are needed in order to protect lives; and

WHEREAS, while we recognize that most police officers carry out the mission to protect the public in a manner that is honorable and professional, it is also true that incidents of racial profiling are still a very serious issue; and

WHEREAS, we express solidarity with the thousands of protestors in the Bay Area and throughout the nation who are peacefully expressing their outrage and frustration at the deaths of unarmed African-Americans; and

WHEREAS, while we profoundly believe and insist that all black lives matter, we also believe that the growing divide between “haves and have nots” in American society undermines the realization of that belief in the actual workings of the criminal justice system, our schools and economy,

NOW, THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that we encourage people to engage in dialogue around the concepts of equal justice under the law, racial justice and “institutional racism”; and

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that the Mount Diablo Peace & Justice Center supports Black Lives Matter forums, community meetings and peaceful demonstrations; and

BE IT FINALLY RESOLVED, that the Mount Diablo Peace & Justice Center  joins with local schools, districts, labor and community groups to call for the creation of a national model for community policing and well-funded, thoughtful programs for youth that divert marginalized young people into academic and career programs, and an end to institutionalized racism in the criminal justice system.

 

Dan Reynolds                                                                         Adopted by Mt. Diablo Peace and Justice Center Board on June 15, 2015

Board President

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BOARD RESOLUTION ON RACISM

Mt. Diablo Peace and Justice Center – Resolution – Against Linguistic Racism

Whereas, language is power; and

Whereas, the term “dog whistle language” defines seemingly neutral language (such as “welfare queen,” “food stamp president,” and “the undeserving”) used by politicians, those in the media, and others as a substitute for explicit racial pejoratives to trigger and promote racial anxiety, create racial division, influence the way people vote, and nurture a political climate that has allowed income inequality to expand while appearing innocuous, disguising open class warfare; and

Whereas, dog whistling cannot be resisted by refusing to talk about race because this allows constant racial insinuations to go unchallenged, creating fear and feelings of racial superiority among many whites; and

Whereas, dog whistle racism rests in “colorblindness”;

Whereas, the core stories of colorblindness —that discrimination against minorities has ended, their inferior social positions are deserved, and contemporary whites are innocent victims of reverse discrimination—underpin dog whistle portrayals of nonwhites as threats to imperiled whites; and

Whereas, some politicians, Supreme Court Justices, and others contend that colorblindness means government should not take race into account even to promote racial equality; and

Whereas, some politicians and others use veiled racial references to persuade white voters to support policies that weaken unions and public pensions, defund public schools, block improvements to health care, and favor the extremely rich yet threaten their own interests; and

Whereas, racial politics has destabilized the American middle class—white and nonwhite members alike; and

Whereas, inequality and exploitation are the enemies of all people; and

Whereas, addressing linguistic racism allows American society to combat economic inequality; and

Whereas, the Board of Directors of the Mt. Diablo Peace and Justice Center sees the issue of combating economic inequality as being in line with the mission and vision of the Center

Therefore, be it resolved, that the Mt. Diablo Peace and Justice Center condemns “dog-whistle” politics, and political rhetoric of colorblindness, and encourages Americans to condemn it whenever it is used; and

 Be it further resolved, that the Mt. Diablo Peace and Justice Center will work to combat racism by focusing on educating Americans about racism’s persistent cultural presence, and ways to transcend it; and

Be it further resolved, that the Board of the Mt. Diablo Peace and Justice Center will work to create inclusive environments, expose and eschew linguistic racism, and promote equality; and

Be it further resolved, that the Mt. Diablo Peace and Justice Center encourages its members to work to create inclusive environments, expose and eschew linguistic racism, and promote equality; and

Be it further resolved, that the Mt. Diablo Peace and Justice Center calls upon government at all levels to promptly promote inclusiveness, expose and eschew linguistic racism, and promote equality.

Daniel Reynolds, Board Chair                                   November 17, 2014

 

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Mount Diablo Peace and Justice Center - 55 Eckley Lane Walnut Creek, CA 94596 - (925) 933-7850

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