No shamrocks about it, my City Council agreed to hold a vote for the Department of Peace. It is now on the agenda and the vote is set for April 7, 2008. If you are a local, show up, the support always helps.
And, shucks, no shamrocks about it, instead of chugging a Guinness at the local pub, I attended my first City Council meeting. There’s always time later for a creamy Irish stout, but these meetings get started early. Apparently, they can be a lot of fun; people were in full peace gear, with buttons and signs. The best part about the evening was that a group of high school kids got together to introduce the legislation! One councilman spoke first and held the stance that City Councils should not be involved in federal proposals-a bunch of hogwash.
As the Peace Alliance’s website says, here are the PRECISE reasons why City Council action is SO important. (And it’s my favorite-doing it from the bottom up)
There are many reasons for enrolling your local governing body in adopting a resolution to support legislation for a U.S. Department of Peace:
- It helps show broad public support for the Department of Peace
- It educates the public about the Department of Peace
- I generates free publicity that comes with open and televised City Council meetings, plus follow-up electronic and print media coverage.
- It gives you something to send to your Members of Congress to assist you in continuing to positively influence them.
The Peace Alliance caught my attention last year and this year I considered donating monies raised from P.E.A.C.E SCOOT 08 to their organization. However, they seem very well funded so for now I’m just going to spread the word far and wide.
Their page says:
“There is currently a bill before the U.S. House of Representatives to establish a United States Department of Peace. This historic measure will augment our current problem-solving options, providing practical, nonviolent solutions to the problems of domestic and international conflict.
The legislation will pass from bill to law under one condition: that a wave of citizen interest rise up from the American people and make itself heard in the halls of Congress.”
A DEPARTMENT OF PEACE WILL WORK TO:
–Provide much-needed assistance to efforts by city, county, and state governments in coordinating existing programs; as well as develop new programs based on best practices nationally
— Teach violence prevention and mediation to America’s school children
— Effectively treat and dismantle gang psychology
— Rehabilitate the prison population
— Build peace-making efforts among conflicting cultures both here and abroad
— Support our military with complementary approaches to peace-building.
— Create and administer a U.S. Peace Academy, acting as a sister organization to the U.S. Military Academy.
Hopefully, that’s a good introduction, but don’t stop there. Check out their impressively informative website:
There are representatives in most every state, making it easy to join a local campaign. Click on their map to find yours.
Times have been busy and I haven’t held up on the blogging end. This will change as I get a lot of legwork for the long ride out of the way-by the way-exciting news coming in on that front.
However, it is a busy week, in D.C. and around the world, as we go into our 5th anniversary in the Iraq war. I’ve been enjoying a fair amount of local action and meeting community members working hard for Peace and Justice. I just don’t have time to go and protest in D.C. but I respect those voices taking to the streets to utilize our constitutional rights.
One huge action that I should have posted about earlier was Winter Soldier, brought to you by Iraq Veterans Against the War.
One pertinent point for those who believe that the only way to support our troops is to be for the war is that many Vets and Soldiers are speaking out against this war. Very important thing to consider- and all respect for those fighting and who have fought. Please, in honor of our soldiers, make a point to check out this website:
Due to high traffic, I believe those broadcasts will be brought back. Their servers were actually shut down from the traffic, so keep your eyes out for Winter Soldier. The feedback I have heard is that the accounts from our soldier is quite shocking. I wish I could find a way to hack these broadcasts into public TV! At least we can give thanks that we live in a time of information where we can sidestep (slightly)corporate control of the airwaves. But only if you know where to go look!
A customer of mine commented that he’s been a bit of an insomniac lately…after we ruled out the 8 shots of espresso he drinks daily…he supposed it was the terrible times we live in today….saying, “Maybe we are on the verge of an apocalypse.” I hadn’t even had my coffee yet, but I said,
“Are you sure you weren’t restless because of all the action taking place to better our world? Maybe we are on the verge of a deep shift…and that’s got you humming.”
Because I tell you, I spend day in and day out researching groups working for Peace and it amazes me the amount of awareness and commitment that groups around our country have. Thank You.