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From the Syracuse Peace Council: Drone Resister Sentenced to One Year in Prison Base’s Order of Protection Begs Judgement:
On July 10, grandmother of three, Mary Anne Grady Flores was sentenced to one year in prison for being found guilty of violating an order of protection. A packed courtroom of over 100 supporters was stunned as she was led away, and vowed to continue the resistance.
These orders of protection, typically used in domestic violence situations or to protect a victim or witness to a crime, have been issued to people participating in nonviolent resistance actions at Hancock Air Base since late 2012. The base, near Syracuse NY, pilots unmanned Reaper drones over Afghanistan, and trains drone pilots, sensor operators and maintenance technicians. The orders had been issued to “protect” Colonel Earl Evans, Hancock’s mission support commander, who wanted to keep protesters “out of his driveway.”
Mary Anne began her sentencing statement with, “Your honor, a series of judicial perversions brings me here before you tonight.” She concluded that the “final perversion is the reversal of who is the real victim here: the commander of a military base whose drones kill innocent people halfway around the world, or those innocent people themselves who are the real ones in need of protection from the terror of US drone attacks?”
The orders of protection are being challenged on many legal grounds.
Mary Anne had been issued a temporary order in 2012. The next year, she photographed a nonviolent witness at the base, not participating herself because she did not want to violate the order. The irony is that those who actually participated in the action were acquitted, while Mary Anne was charged with violating the order.
Even though the pre-sentencing report recommended no jail time, Judge Gideon sentenced Mary Anne to the maximum of a year in prison. As he imposed his sentence, the judge referred to his previous Hancock decision. He had stated then and insinuated now, “This has got to stop.”
In addition, Mary Anne was fined $1000 plus a $205 court surcharge and a $50 fee to have her DNA collected.
Her verdict is being appealed.
How you can help
- Send letters of support to Mary Anne Grady Flores c/o Onodaga County Department of Correction, PO Box 143, Jamesville, NY 13078.
- Mary Anne’s lawyer is appealing this case and financial support would be gladly accepted. Make checks out to Ithaca Catholic Worker (with Mary Anne’s name in the memo) and send them to 133 Sheffield Road, Ithaca, New York 14850.
- Help spread this Democracy Now link around: Grandmother Sentenced to 1 Year in Prison After Protest at U.S. Drone Base — and ask your local media to cover this situation. Write something yourself if you can.
These suggestions are amended from a Facebook post by Ellen Grady. She can be reached at demottgrady6 at gmail dot com for more information on upcoming trials and related support efforts.
“2 Togolese women are back from India’s Barefoot College, ready to solar power their village. Lets help them!”
Support their Indiegogo or at least, pass on a link to it!
Left Labor Project urges you to MAKE THURSDAY A MAY DAY TO REMEMBER
MAY 1, 2014, 5:00 pm, NEW YORK CITY HALL!
Join the NYC Central Labor Council, DC37, 1199, UFT, NYSNA, SEIU 32BJ, and many other union locals along with Domestic Workers United, Taxi Workers Alliance, Make the Road NY, NY Immigration Coalition, NY Communities for Change, US Labor Against the War NYC, and MANY OTHER LOCAL MOVERS AND SHAKERS!
(See attached flyer for longer list of endorsers)
MAY DAY 2014 demands LABOR RIGHTS, IMMIGRANT RIGHTS, JOBS FOR ALL!
This will be the broadest May Day rally in decades, with the participation of the majority of the city’s unions, and advocates for fair contracts, peace, justice, equality and human rights.
Take 4,5,6 to Brooklyn Bridge, R to City Hall, 2,3 to Park Place, A,C,J to Chambers or Fulton, E, PATH to World Trade.
Look for our Left Labor Party contingent on Broadway and join us!
Happy May Day,
Larry Moskowitz, Left Labor Project
The sponsoring organizations for this event are:
LOHV-NY – The League of Humane Voters of New York
FOA – Friends of Animals
IDA – In Defense of Animals
On lobby day we will have an orientation and organize into lobbying teams in the Terrace Lounge (street level) of the Legislative Office Building (LOB) in Albany from 10:45 am to 12:00 noon.
We will then lobby from 12:30 to 3:30.
There will be a bus from New York City to Albany and back ($20 roundtrip)
There is no charge for registration
Please Register Now to Attend
After you register for the event you will be given an opportunity to buy a bus ticket on-line or by mail and be given directions to the Legislative Office Building (LOB) by car or public transportation.
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- Left Forum 2014: Reform and/or Revolution: Imagining a World with Transformative Justice (May 30-June 1, 2014, NYC):
“Pressing questions loom for justice-seeking social forces: What is to be done today when a reform brings us one step forward, while leaving other important struggles worse off in the process? What type of movements will it take to overcome such challenges? What type of institutions, systems and societal conditions are possible when transformed conditions of justice no longer take the forms of, ‘the aggrieved speaking to the grievance alleviators’? How do these issues raise the question of the relation of reform to revolution? More than ever, people know that a new and different world is urgently needed. How do we get there from here: reforms, revolution, or strategic combinations of both?”
- People Links Digital Gatherings (online):
“Join us on Thursday, March 27th from 6-7pm EST and 4-5 CT-MexDF to discuss technology related violence against women and the tensions that exist between combating hate speech versus the right to freedom of expression.”
- Socialist Campaign in New York? A Discussion, Hosted by Campaign for a United Socialist Party – CUSP, April 17, 2014, The Brecht Forum, NYC (via Edge Left):
“Previous meetings focused on the theory; this one is about concrete options. How do campaigns work? Should we learn by working on Howie Hawkins’ campaign for governor? Should we run open socialists? Now, in a few years, or when? What opportunities to run exist between 2014 and 2018? Will running candidates interfere with important movement work? How do we approach nationwide formations? This event is an open discussion and organizing meeting, so it will involve “audience” participation more than typical events. Bring your thoughts, listen to others, and focus on the nuts-and-bolts of what we will actually do.”
- A New York that works for all of us Rally in Albany, NY, March 20, 2014 (via Edge Left):
“We stand for a NY that works for all of us but today, Albany works for the super-rich and powerful corporations. If it favors the wealthy and CEO campaign contributors, it’s sure to pass in Albany. On the other hand, common sense legislation the majority of New Yorkers believe in, is stalled by politics. It doesn’t have to be this way. We can do better. On March 20th we are going to hold our elected officials in Albany responsible for putting people ahead of campaign contributors. We demand that our basic democratic rights be respected.”
Things to read:
- Edward Snowden’s Testimony to the European Parliament on NSA Spying and its Consequences:
Snowden’s testimony is vitally important for every citizen in every country to understand, yet it has barely been covered by the commercial or (non-commercial) global media. At stake is the possibility of individuals and organizations (not just the media) to function as checks on executive power. It also demonstrates the ability of a secret agency to become an executive power, able even to control the spy services of foreign countries.
- Heroic Imagination Project:
“Headquartered in San Francisco, California, The Heroic Imagination Project was founded by Dr. Philip Zimbardo, Professor Emeritus of Psychology at Stanford University. At HIP, we translate the extensive research findings of social psychology and related fields into meaningful insights and tools that individuals can use in their everyday lives to transform negative situations and create positive change. Dr. Zimbardo’s work has studied the psychological foundations of negative forms of social influence (such as conformity, obedience, and the bystander effect) and is now refocused on understanding the nature of everyday heroism and they psychology of personal and social growth.”
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Awesome links from awesome people. Please sign these petitions, read these articles, Like these pages, and help broadcast them all! Send me more on Twitter @arievergreen.
PolicingTroy – Join the Opposition to Police Violence in Troy, NY: “There is a significant grassroots movement to affect real changes in the structure and community relations of the police department in Troy. However, accountability will not come without public pressure. A petition may seem futile or petty, but it represents an important component of national and international awareness. People are watching to see if government will come down on the right side of history. Signing is important, but so is spreading the word and encouraging your networks to sign on as well.” (Sign the petition)
Manhattan Neighborhood Network video interview with Anna Mwalagho: “Born and raised in Kenya, East Africa, Anna Mwalagho began performing professionally at the tender age of 8. She is a true remarkable renaissance woman, an internationally recognized actress, poet, dancer, singer/songwriter and storyteller. She has won numerous national awards in her native Kenya, where she performed on stage as well as on television and radio with the Kenya broadcasting corporation. Internationally recognized as the Queen of spoken Afro beat also Mama Africa.” (Via David McReynolds / Edge Left)
- Talk of the Town- WVBR 93.5 FM: “Tune into WVBR 93.5 FM every Saturday 5-6pm to hear Juliana Garcia and her guest discuss various social, political and cultural issues within our society” (Podcasts)
- Shalefield Justice Spring Break: “a week-long camp that aims to bring together members of extraction communities, students, environmentalists and concerned residents who are interested in learning more about shale gas hydraulic fracturing and its infrastructure, as well as other forms of extreme energy extraction”
- Please donate to Riseup because they are awesome: “Riseup works tirelessly to create grassroots technology alternatives that address the communication needs of people and organizations working for social change. When you get a service from a corporation that doesn’t charge you, chances are that the money comes from extensive surveillance. Riseup, on the other hand, relies on donations by users like you who believe in supporting democratic alternatives.”
- Save the Date: The World of Skills Steering Committee is pleased to announce that World of Skills, the annual job fair in Ithaca, NY, is Thursday, April 24, 2013, 9:00 – Noon, at The Hotel Ithaca (formerly The Holiday Inn), 222 S. Cayuga Street, Ithaca. For information call the Finger Lakes Independence Center, 272-2433 and ask for Larry Roberts. Please help spread the word!
- Food Pantries, Hot Meals, and other Programs Served by Friendship Donations Network in Tompkins and nearby counties: “FDN provides produce, breads, desserts, dairy, deli, and groceries (if available) to the programs listed…” (Via Share Tompkins)
Amnesty International report: ‘Trigger-happy’ Israeli army and police use reckless force in the West Bank: “Israeli forces have displayed a callous disregard for human life by killing dozens of Palestinian civilians, including children, in the occupied West Bank over the past three years with near total impunity, said Amnesty International in a report published today.” (Via David McReynolds / Edge Left)
- Food For Change: “a feature-length documentary film focusing on food co-ops as a force for dynamic social and economic change in American culture. The movie tells the story of the cooperative movement in the U.S. through interviews, rare archival footage, and commentary by the filmmaker and social historians. This is the first film to examine the important historical role played by food co-ops, their pioneering quest for organic foods, and their current efforts to create regional food systems” (Via Multicultural Resource Center (MRC) Talking Circle on Race and Racism Alumni Group)
- NSA robots are ‘collecting’ your data, too, and they’re getting away with it: “Yahoo webcam users are the latest victims of agency eavesdropping – and whether it’s done by human or algorithm, it’s still eavesdropping” (Via Anarchaithacans)
News and events:
These links are all Ithaca- or Tompkins County-specific:
- CALL FOR ARTISTS: Rhythm & Rhyme Exhibit in the CAP ArtSpace in May 2014
- Community Foundation of Tompkins County Grant Opportunities
- Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) Fair at Boynton Middle School
- Gender-blind Romeo and Juliet auditions (Theatre Incognita)
- The HELLFYRE CLUB | “How to Succeed as an Independent Artist” Panel x FREE SHOW (Just About Music / JAM Residence Hall)
- West Virginia CARE Campaign (Facebook)
- Do Not Transfer Robinson’s Arch to Idealogical Settlers (Salsa petition, via T’ruah)
- The 2014 Ithaca Native Landscape Symposium (Via)
- Listening Workshop – March 15th in Ithaca
- Triple Divide screenings
- How Covert Agents Infiltrate the Internet to Manipulate, Deceive, and Destroy Reputations (Via Anarchaithacans)
- Jewish Voice for Peace: Academic Freedom (Via David McReynolds of Edge Left)
- Tompkins County Neighborhood Mini-Grants Program: Next round of applications March 1
- Internet for Artists: Why We Only Recommend Two Website Services (Creative Capital)
“It is not a black problem. It is a white problem. This is an American problem. It is a societal problem.”
- Sign and help broadcast the petitions at ipetitions.com and MoveOn
- Join and spread the word about the R.I.P Jordan Davis and the Justice For Jordan Russell Davis Facebook groups
- Donate to the Jordan Davis foundation
- If you think what happened was an injustice, particularly if you’re a white person, please, learn more about privilege and what you should do if you have it!