Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom
East Bay and San Francisco Branches
August 2019 edition
Get involved! Become better informed!
Work to Advance Peace, Justice and Human Rights
OUR NEXT PLANNING MEETING WILL BE Saturday Sept 14th 10-12 am
5366 College Ave, Oakland 94618, south of Rockridge BART
ANTI-WAR LEAFLETING in San Francisco
Call Betty for info (415-931-1126)
ONE WILPF CALLS
A good way to become involved from your home is to join our Monthly One WILPF calls on the 2nd Thursday of the month. We hope you can join us.
Next ONE WILPF Call–Thursday, Sept 12, 4pm
To register click on link below and you only need to pre-register once http://myaccount.maestroconference.com/conference/register/NW7UOTL6KBLOV3E
Past calls are available to listen to here:
The main topic of the August One WILPF call was Human Rights for Palestinian Children. Genie Silver spoke about the incarceration of thousands of children and HR 2407: Promoting Human Rights for Palestinian Children Living under Israeli Military Occupation Act. https://www.congress.gov/bill/116th-congress/house-bill/2407/text It has 21 Co-sponsors. WILPF-US is supporting the Bill and we can download postcards to send to Congress from the WILPF website:
https://wilpfus.org/news/latest-news/promote-human-rights-israel-palestine It was raised on the call that this should be tied to the U.S. incarceration of immigrant children on the US-Mexico border.
Solidarity Event on International Treaties: Branches have been asked to host events/actions on International Treaties that can prevent wars as a WILPF solidarity program in October. This would be our first solidarity event with a topic initiated by WILPF. Cherrill Spencer of the Palo Alto branch is working on a very comprehensive research paper on the topic with the history of treaties, types, examples, famous and infamous, etc. that could be used as a resource for study and distribution. Four particular treaties were mentioned that WILPF branches could focus on, but more could be included, such as the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons that 122 nations of the world have signed onto, and some have ratified, and WILPF has been gathering signatures to send to Congress/President over the past two years.
Before Enlisting/Counter Recruitment Update
On Saturday, August 24th, Before Enlisting is sponsoring an all day workshop at the South Berkeley library for veterans, students and teachers to get people involved for the new school year. There will be training on how best to approach students in the classroom.
To read an update about our Before Enlisting activities in the July WILPF US Enews, written by East Bay member Sandy Thacker, go to https://wilpfus.org/news/updates/san-franciscoeast-bay-branches
This is also an excellent article about Counter Recruitment efforts around the country:
THE POOR PEOPLE’S MORAL ACTION CONGRESS
By Rowan Fairgrove WILPF San Jose
Poverty in the United States is no small issue. 140 million people—more than 43 percent of the population—are poor or low-income, meaning one emergency away from poverty. That figure includes 9 million children, 74 million women, 26 million black people, 38 million Latinx people, 8 million Asian people, 2.14 million Native and Indigenous peoples, and 66 million white people. (See: Explaining the 140 Million: Breaking Down the Numbers Behind the Moral Budget).
Building on the work of Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King in the 60s, the Poor People’s Campaign (PPC) is stepping up to lift up the poor that our system isn’t serving. The PPC is building a moral fusion movement to bring forward the concerns of those most impacted by systemic racism, poverty, ecological devastation, militarism, and the distorted moral narrative of Christian nationalism. The PPC calls upon our society to see the predicaments of the most vulnerable among us and to halt the destruction of America’s moral vision.
The Poor People’s Moral Action Congress was held at Trinity Washington University in Washington, DC, on June 17-19, 2019. Nearly 1,000 activists – faith leaders, veterans, single parents, homeless advocates, indigenous activists, immigrant rights advocates, and pretty much everyone who cares about the state of the world – came together to question and listen to presidential candidates, attend workshops, and launch a Moral Budget before the Congressional Budget Committee.
On the first day there was a Presidential Candidates Forum, moderated by Joy Reid of MSNBC. PPC founders William Barber and Liz Theoharis questioned each of the candidates with set questions, along with an additional prepared question by a member of the audience. The set questions were about voting rights and what the candidate would do to restore them, whether they would call for a national televised debate on issues of poverty and cuts to military spending. Rev. Barber was also concerned that Democrats organize in the South and not just concede it to the Republicans. He says if you can control the thirteen southern states you can control Congress since they control 26 seats in the Senate, 31 percent of the House, and 170 electoral votes, and represent about one-third of all poor people. We just need to get rid of the “stacking, packing, and bleaching of districts by gerrymandering.”
All the candidates on both sides were invited, but only nine Democrats came: Former
Vice President Joe Biden, Andrew Yang, Marianne Williamson, Senator Elizabeth Warren, Michael Bennet, Representative Eric Swalwell, Mayor Wayne Messam, Senator Bernie Sanders, and Senator Kamala Harris. It was live-streamed by MSNBC and had many watchers around the world in addition to those of us at the Congress.
Greg Kaufman writing in The Nation summarizes:
Repealing the Trump tax cut for the wealthy; bringing the troops home from the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, and reallocating those billions of dollars domestically; making college affordable or free. There was also a shared sense that scarcity of resources is a myth—the United States has plenty of money to do big things. Candidates also seemed to agree broadly that Democrats must respond to the right’s attempts to use race to pit poor people against one another by investing time and energy in building a multiracial coalition.” (Read Kaufman’s full Nation article Finally, Presidential Candidates are Talking About Poverty).
The second day began with a plenary titled “Organizing: Why We Need Moral Fusion Movement in this Moment” and there was a plenary later in the day called “The Attack on Voting Rights, Building Power Among the Poor: Electoral Strategy in Movement Strategy.”
Launching a “Moral Budget”
On the third day a group of delegates that included Rev. Barber, Rev. Theoharis, and a variety of people directly affected by current policies were sent off to testify before the Congressional Budget Committee hearing on Capitol Hill. They presented the PPC Moral Budget document.
The hearing was live-streamed at Trinity Washington University so we all could watch The video of the hearing can be viewed here The Poor People’s Moral Budget document can be found here. “As for policy, there was quite a bit that the candidates agreed on: a restoration and expansion of the Voting Rights Act; universal pre-K and affordable childcare; a $15 minimum wage; health care.”
EXPLORE WILPF TODAY
Local branch web pages
WILPF East Bay
P. O. Box 13083, Oakland, CA 94661
P. O. Box 590253, San Francisco, CA 94159
National WILPF www.wilpfus.org
International WILPF: www.wilpf.org