Here, There and Everywhere

Archive for July, 2013

Tail’s End

Tail’s End

Just finished sculpting this piece of Oregon river rock, then waxed and polished it up to put in the garden.

It sort of looks like the tail of a whale that’s jumped in head first. From another angle it appears to be an anvil. What’s it look like to you?

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No More Names

No More Names

It would be impossible to share all the powerful stories I’ve heard on the road with the No More Names bus tour. I’ve met so many incredible people — gun violence survivors, police officers, faith leaders, elected officials, responsible gun owners — and they all know that sensible changes like background checks will help end gun violence in our country.

That’s why we put together some of the best moments of the tour so far.

Check out this video, then chip in to keep the No More Names bus tour going. And when you donate $15 or more, we’ll send you a limited-edition car magnet to show off your support:

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We can be the ones who change the story on gun violence, Gabriel. You, me, and all the supporters we’ve met across the country can make our voices heard in our communities and in Washington, D.C.

We won’t forget the families we’re fighting for, or the cost of keeping quiet. And very soon, our representatives in Congress will head home for their summer recess — and the No More Names bus will be there to meet them and demand action!

Watch some highlights of the tour so far, then please give $15 or more to keep us going (and get a car magnet to show your support):

https://donate.demandaction.org/donate/No-more-names-magnet

Thanks to everyone for spreading the word, and I hope to see you on the road,

Mike

Mike D’Armi
No More Names Trip Director
Mayors Against Illegal Guns

The Green Turtle

The Green Turtle
by Gabriel Constans

This “totally green” drink is one of Kermit the Frog’s favorites. It is also well liked by Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, Mr. Green Jeans, and the ’60s rock group, The Turtles. Soy milk is high in protein. Kelp is filled with iodine and, in small quantities, is reported to decrease negative thyroid conditions.

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Yield: 5 cups

3 large kiwis, peeled and sliced
2 large ripe bananas
1/2 cup plain yogurt
1 1/2 cups filtered water
1/4 teaspoon almond extract
1 cup seedless grapes
1/2 cup soy milk
1 tablespoon kelp
3 tablespoons honey

Place all the ingredients in a blender, and blend on medium speed for 1 minute.

Pour into tall glasses, serve, drink and use your new found ninja green turtle powers.

In Order To Survive

Shiva’s Spectacular Gender Divide – Part 6 of 6
by Mira Prabhu. 22 July 2013
From Metaphysical & Mundane Musings of a Maverick Female Scribe

My own emotional reactions to perceived suffering—mine and others—were always so intense that I was often paralyzed into depression. By the time I was a teenager, I already knew that in order to survive, I would have to make peace with the patriarchy.

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Random investigations into the nature of reality proved to me that the foul concept of brawn over brain had distorted the collective psyche; everywhere—among rich and poor, educated and illiterate—I saw perverted masculinity. Instead of cherishing their womenfolk, men seemed to want to triumph over them. And by doing so, they smashed feminine self-esteem to smithereens. It was as if their own sisters, wives and daughters were arch rivals to be diminished and trounced. As a result, sexual union was often reduced to the usurpation of the female body, and marriage, in many cases, to no more than a legal form of rape.

To read entire article and series, go to Mira’s blog.

A Legal Black Hole

A Legal Black Hole

Our country continues to preserve the disgrace of Guantanamo bay. How is it in the United States of America that people cleared for release continue to rot in a legal black hole for years on end? Either there are 86 people there cleared for release or else there are not. Either they were wrongfully detained or else they were not. And if they deserve to be freed, then they must be freed.

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Close Guantanamo Now Action Page: http://www.peaceteam.net/action/pnum1126.php

And yet cowards of both parties would rather heap injustice on a multitude of innocents, lest some right wing nut accuse them of accidentally letting someone go who might, BECAUSE of our torture and mistreatment of them, turn to future violence. How can we call ourselves a just and civilized country, and continue to operate on the principle that it doesn’t matter who we lock up as long as we’re locking up somebody?

Guantanamo was conceived of as an outlaw garrison, contrived to be beyond the reach of any manner of justice. Even our currently reactionary Supreme Court could not swallow that one whole. We have lots (and we do mean lots) of perfectly good prisons here in America, that hold lots of convicted terrorists right now. And we did not need kangaroo court tribunals to put them there. We need to either convict these people fair and square or we need to let them go.

The most cowardly suggestion of all is that we should be afraid of housing anyone so convicted in actual American prisons. “I don’t want these terrorists in prisons in MY state,” you hear members of Congress say. If our supermax prisons cannot protect local people from the criminals inside the prisons, what’s the point of having prisons at all?

Close Guantanamo Now.

Though our corporate news media have avoided the subject like a plague, the hunger striking detainees at Guantanamo are being brutally force-fed, itself a form of torture. Torture by America has not stopped, they’re just trying to keep it quiet. And you should know there are some amazingly valiant activists who are on indefinite hunger strikes themselves, to try to force attention on this issue.

Here is what Cynthia Papermaster has to say.

We are asking President Barack Obama to immediately begin releasing the 86 cleared for-release Guantanamo detainees. My hunger strike is now 31 days old. I have not eaten solid food for 31 days, and am existing on less than 300 calories a day. I’ve lost about 20 pounds. I am committed to continuing my hunger strike until the President, who has the clear authority to do so, begins to release the cleared, innocent men from the prison. Cynthia Johnson has been fasting on mostly liquids for nearly 25 days.

Our City Council in Berkeley passed a Resolution co-authored by me, Peace and Justice Commissioner Rita Maran, and the national group “No More Guantanamos”, in October 2011, which welcomes one or two cleared detainees to settle in our community, at private expense. We’ve been successfully raising funds for this purpose.

The Resolution also said that the Council would urge Obama to close Guantanamo Prison and Congress to lift the ban against detainees resettling in the United States. Well, that hasn’t happened, yet we think that if the men had a place to live, a safe and welcoming place, that Obama could use his Executive Order privilege to allow them to live in the USA, in Berkeley.

We also know that there is a waiver in the National Defense Authorization Act that allows him to release detainees. So there’s really no reason for him to refuse, especially since I, Elliot Adams and Tarak Kauff are on long-term, open-ended hunger strike. Elliot is on day 60 of his hunger strike. Tarak is on day 47. We are all taking less than 300 calories a day. You can see our profiles and hunger strike statements at www.closegitmo.net. Click on “Hunger Strikes/Fasts” tab.

Because my health is at risk, I think it’s time to step up the actions for helping the men go free.

As Dr. Martin Luther King said- “These are the times for real choices and not false ones. We are at the moment when our lives must be placed on the line if our nation is to survive its own folly. Every man of humane convictions must decide on the protest that best suits his convictions, but we must all protest.

Peaceteam.net

Completely Nutz

Completely Nutz
by Gabriel Constans

You’ll feel a little nutty after you swig down this concoction loaded with minerals, protein, and iron.

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Yield: 5 cups

2 large ripe bananas
2 cups filtered water
1 tablespoon peanut butter
1 cup orange juice
1 cup fruit punch
1 tablespoon honey
1/4 cup chopped pecans, cashews, or walnuts
1/4 cup pine (or pignoli) nuts

Place all the ingredients in a blender, and mix on medium speed for 1 1/2 minutes.

Pour into any size cup and let your self go.

Attacks On Egyptian Women

71613_donation_email200 Attacks On Egyptian Women In Four Days

What if protesting put you at risk of sexual violence? Mobs of men are sexually assaulting women and girls protesting in the vicinity of Egypt’s iconic Tahrir Square. Law enforcement and other leaders are standing idle; some are blaming the women themselves and denouncing the protests.

Nearly 200 brutal attacks were reported in just four days. Will you help us pressure Egypt’s leaders to condemn the violence now?

Please make an urgent donation to Amnesty so we can continue to document human rights abuses like these in Egypt and around the world.

This is not a new phenomenon. Attacks on women protesters have been reported during past protests in Egypt. However it is clear they have greatly increased in the latest unrest.

Amnesty has sent researchers to Egypt to document the abuses and provide videos and other materials that we can use to:

Show the media what is happening to women and girl protestors in Egypt.

Support activists calling on leaders in Egypt – including prominent women in public life – to condemn the violence and press for action.

Help call global attention to the crisis and demand an end to violence against women in Egypt.

The time is now. Your donation will provide help and hope to peaceful protestors who face violence for speaking out against government oppression in Egypt and around the world.

Sincerely,

Cristina Finch
Managing Director, Women’s Human Rights Program
Amnesty International USA

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