FROM THE WEB
Net Briefs - 05/11
Caustic Political Speech
STOP THE DAM
8 Years of Occupation
Hezbollah in Lebanon
The Master's Plan
Kristen L. Buras
30th Years of FNB
War, Prisons, Torture
Angola 3 News
What Happened in Wisconsin
A Serious Fight
The Libya Intervention Debate
Stop Bombing Libya
On Libya & Crises
Stephen Shalom and Michael Albert
A Q&A on Libya
Stephen Shalom and Michael Albert
Civil Wars U.S. Labor
Guide to Green Politics
Toward Climate Justice
Zaps - 05/11
NOTE: Z Magazine subscribers and sustainers have access to all Z Magazine articles here and in the archive. The latest Z Magazine articles available to everyone are listed in the Free Articles box at the top of the table of contents, and are starred in the list below. Questions? e-mail Z Magazine Online.
Caustic Political Speech And The Supreme Court
The Supreme Court frequently lets progressives down on the First Amendment. The Citizens United case from 2010—which gave corporations an unlimited First Amendment right to contribute to political campaigns—is only the latest example. In 2006, the Court sharply restricted the rights of public employees who blow the whistle on government misconduct, holding in Garcetti v. Ceballos that the First Amendment does not protect them from retaliation if the speech relates to official job duties, a restriction that knocks out the most important whistleblowing.
A thread that runs through the Court's First Amendment cases lately is an absolutist approach to free speech, unless it affects government efficiency in the public workplace or other institutions, such as public schools. But even the conservatives on the Court have broadly extended speech rights in "pure speech" cases on the street and in the media. The recent case upholding the Westboro Baptist Church's right to protest military funerals shows that the Court is able to hold its nose on the most offensive speech imaginable in order to stand on the broader principle that anything goes in the public forum, so long as no one is hurt.
Four cases since 1970 drive this point home. Each case involved vulgarities or deliberately offensive conduct and speech. Had public opinion controlled the outcome, the speech would have been restricted in each case. Instead, the Court rejected calls for censorship in ways that laid the groundwork for controversial political speech in the future.
"Fuck the Draft"
No speech case highlighted the tensions of the Vietnam War more than Cohen v. California, decided in 1970. After Paul Cohen walked into a California courthouse with a jacket reading "Fuck the draft," he was convicted of disorderly conduct and given 30 days imprisonment. The Supreme Court noted that, "[t]he conviction quite clearly rests upon the asserted offensiveness of the words Cohen used to convey his message to the public. The only 'conduct' which the State sought to punish is the fact of communication. Thus, we deal here with a conviction resting solely upon 'speech.'" This language allowed the Court to step away from the O'Brien ruling (1968), which gave the government leeway to punish certain speech-related conduct, including draft-card burning.
Ruling in Cohen's favor, the Court stated, "[a]t least so long as there is no showing of an intent to incite disobedience to or disruption of the draft, Cohen could not, consistent with the First and Fourteenth Amendments, be punished for asserting the evident position on the inutility or immorality of the draft his jacket reflected." Cohen prevailed in the Supreme Court for two reasons: case law interpreting the First Amendment did not give the Court any reason to restrict the speech and, more interestingly, the Court decided that speech like this—no matter how offensive to the older generation—had a place at the table. In particular, the offended parties were not a captive audience and Cohen's jacket was not unprotected "fighting words." Perhaps never before had the Court tolerated such language in the public sphere.
In famous language that opened the door to vigorous and even offensive political speech, Justice Harlan (a Republican appointed by President Eisenhower) wrote: "Surely the State has no right to cleanse public debate to the point where it is grammatically palatable to the most squeamish among us. Yet no readily ascertainable general principle exists for stopping short of that result were we to affirm the judgment below. For, while the particular four-letter word being litigated here is perhaps more distasteful than most others of its genre, it is nevertheless often true that one man's [sic] vulgarity is another's lyric. Indeed, we think it is largely because governmental officials cannot make principled distinctions in this area that the Constitution leaves matters of taste and style so largely to the individual."
Nazis in Skokie
By 1978, the public may have been forgiving of Vietnam protesters. Even President Carter pardoned draft resisters a year earlier. As the 1960s turned into the 1970s, vulgarities were more commonplace in American culture, but memories of the Holocaust were still fresh in the minds of Americans who fought in World War II and lost family members in Nazi Germany. The case that gave Nazis the right to assemble in Skokie, Illinois—home to many Holocaust survivors—became a flashpoint. Even free speech advocates turned their backs on the American Civil Liberties Union, which represented the Nazis in court. This had to be the most controversial speech case ever litigated in the American courts, though it never reached the Supreme Court, which declined to hear the case.
Just as the Westboro Baptist Church protests military funerals to promote its homophobia, the National Socialist Party was looking for a provocative way to promote its bigotry. It could not have found a better vehicle than a demonstration in Skokie, a move that triggered extensive media coverage and hand-wringing. Surely, many citizens said, there must be limits on even peaceful speech. The federal courts did not agree, though the judges in this case opened up their legal analysis with the following disclaimer: "The conflict underlying this litigation has commanded substantial public attention, and engendered considerable and understandable emotion. We would hopefully surprise no one by confessing personal views that NSPA's beliefs and goals are repugnant to the core values held generally by residents of this country, and, indeed, too much of what we cherish in civilization. As judges sworn to defend the Constitution, however, we cannot decide this or any case on that basis. Ideological tyranny, no matter how worthy its motivation, is forbidden as much to appointed judges as to elected legislators."
Although the Nazis wanted to demonstrate on public property (normally a safe haven for assemblies and speech), the court noted that the government may regulate the time, place, or manner of speech so long as the restrictions are not in reaction to the content or message of the demonstration. But in this case, the municipality acknowledged that it wanted to restrict the speech out of hostility toward the hateful message. The Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals would not go there, noting that speech may not be restricted on the basis of content unless it is obscene, libelous, encourages an imminent danger "of a grave...evil," or constitutes fighting words. Courts are loathe to add to that list.
None of these exceptions applied in Skokie. The only way to rule against the demonstrators was the repugnancy of their message. The trial court in this case stated, "if any philosophy should be regarded as completely unacceptable to civilized society, that of plaintiffs, who, while disavowing on the witness stand any advocacy of genocide, have nevertheless deliberately identified themselves with a regime whose record of brutality and barbarism is unmatched in modern history, would be a good place to start."
While sympathetic with that view, the Seventh Circuit stood firm: "there can be no legitimate start down such a road." For this reason, the most compelling reason to restrict this speech—avoiding the psychic trauma visited upon Holocaust survivors whose presence in the community inspired the demonstration in the first place—could not be squared with settled First Amendment principles as outlined by the Supreme Court. The Court of Appeals reasoned: "It would be grossly insensitive to deny, as we do not, that the proposed demonstration would seriously disturb, emotionally and mentally, at least some, and probably many of the village's residents. The problem with engrafting an exception on the First Amendment for such situations is that they are indistinguishable in principle from speech that 'invite[s] dispute...induces a condition of unrest, creates dissatisfaction with conditions as they are, or even stirs people to anger.' Yet these are among the 'high purposes' of the First Amendment. It is perfectly clear that a state may not "make criminal the peaceful expression of unpopular views."
Hustler v. Falwell
If Cohen v. California and the Skokie cases taught us anything, it was that the government cannot censor unpopular or even vulgar speech. But what about private lawsuits against offensive speakers? These cases do not neatly fit within the censorship definition, but they pose other risks: jurors might award money damages against the most hated speakers and groups in American society on the basis of a civil tort, such as "intentional infliction of emotional distress," a judge-made doctrine that allows victims to recover for the pain and suffering caused by extreme and outrageous conduct.
The Supreme Court dealt with this problem head-on in 1988, this time in a case that highlighted two other products of the post-1960s culture: pornography (Larry Flynt) and religious evangelists (Jerry Falwell). The public held both men in low regard, but Flynt, publisher of Hustler magazine, took it one step further when he insulted Falwell's mother. Running an advertisement parody in Hustler, Flynt portrayed Falwell as an incestuous drunk whose first sexual encounter took place in an outhouse with his mother. The parody drew from the liquor ads that employed double entendre in asking celebrities about their "first times," but at the bottom of the page Flynt wisely noted that this was parody, "not to be taken seriously."
A jury in Virginia awarded Falwell damages in the amount of $150,000 for emotional distress. In Hustler Magazine v. Falwell, the Supreme Court unanimously stated: "This case presents us with a novel question involving First Amendment limitations upon a State's authority to protect its citizens from the intentional infliction of emotional distress. We must decide whether a public figure may recover damages for emotional harm caused by the publication of an ad parody offensive to him, and doubtless gross and repugnant in the eyes of most."
Flynt's speech probably offended the Supreme Court even more than Cohen's jacket. Whatever the Court may have thought of Falwell, what did his mother do to deserve this public ridicule? The Court, though, could not retreat from age-old precedents that sharply restricted caustic speech against public figures.
Writing for a unanimous Court, even arch-conservative Chief Justice William Rehnquist could not deny the harms associated with punishing Flynt for this speech: "[t]he sort of robust political debate encouraged by the First Amendment is bound to produce speech that is critical of those who hold public office or those public figures who are intimately involved in the resolution of important public questions or, by reason of their fame, shape events in areas of concern to society at large'."
Ruling in Flynt's favor, the Justices ruled that civil tort claims cannot override Flynt's right to parody a public figure, and that since no reader would have taken it seriously, Falwell could not argue that the parody was libelous.
Tipping its cap to political satirists, the Court explained why it could not reach any other result: "Were we to hold otherwise, there can be little doubt that political cartoonists and satirists would be subjected to damage awards without any showing that their work falsely defamed its subject. Webster's defines a caricature as 'the deliberately distorted picturing or imitating of a person, literary style, etc. by exaggerating features or mannerisms for satirical effect.' The appeal of the political cartoon or caricature is often based on exploitation of unfortunate physical traits or politically embarrassing events—an exploitation often calculated to injure the feelings of the subject of the portrayal. The art of the cartoonist is often not reasoned or evenhanded, but slashing and one-sided."
Perhaps no speech repulsed Americans more than the antics of the Westboro Baptist Church, which deliberately provoked hostility in picketing military funerals with signs that celebrate dead soldiers and 9/11 as God's retribution for America's tolerance of gays and lesbians. It is fair to say that no rational human being would support the church's decision to picket military funerals with such hateful speech. This is why Snyder, whose son died in Iraq, prevailed at trial on a civil tort against the church, winning millions of dollars in damages for emotional distress. The public euphoria over this victory was snatched away when the Court of Appeals threw out the verdict.
In an 8-1 decision in Snyder v. Phelps (March 2011), the Supreme Court also sided with the church, but not before issuing the usual disclaimer: "Westboro believes that America is morally flawed; many Americans might feel the same about Westboro. Westboro's funeral picketing is certainly hurtful and its contribution to public discourse may be negligible. But Westboro addressed matters of public import on public property, in a peaceful manner, in full compliance with the guidance of local officials. The speech was indeed planned to coincide with Matthew Snyder's funeral, but did not itself disrupt that funeral, and Westboro's choice to conduct its picketing at that time and place did not alter the nature of its speech."
The Court's decision is in two parts. First, it noted that the protest addressed matters of public concern. After taking note of the church's speech (including signs reading "God hates the USA/Thank God for 9/11" and "Priests Rape Boys"), Chief Justice John Roberts stated, "[w]hile these messages may fall short of refined social or political commentary, the issues they highlight—the political and moral conduct of the United States and its citizens, the fate of our Nation, homosexuality in the military, and scandals involving the Catholic clergy—are matters of public import," even if a few of the signs were directed at Snyder's son. Second, "the church members had the right to be where they were" in that they complied with local public assembly requirements, situated themselves some 1,000 feet from the funeral, and there was no shouting, profanity, or violence. "Given that Westboro's speech was at a public place on a matter of public concern, that speech is entitled to 'special protection' under the First Amendment."
The Supreme Court had never decided a case like this. While it has repeatedly upheld the right of protesters to assemble in public parks and on streets and sidewalks, and it has also protected the use of caustic and offensive speech, having sidestepped the Nazi/Skokie case, it had never decided whether the First Amendment protected intentionally provocative speech under these difficult circumstances. None of the precedents cited in the Westboro case resembled this one. The Court fused together from other cases the "public concern" and "public place" theories. And, drawing from legal principles outlined in the Hustler case, it expressed concern that a jury being asked to award damages on the basis of outrageous speech could easily allow its subjective hatred for the message to influence its verdict. "In a case like this, a jury is 'unlikely to be neutral with respect to the content of the speech,' posing a real danger of becoming an instrument for the suppression of...'vehement, caustic, and sometimes unpleasant' expression."
Apologizing for this result, the Court ended the opinion as follows: "Speech is powerful. It can stir people to action, move them to tears of both joy and sorrow, and—as it did here—inflict great pain. On the facts before us, we cannot react to that pain by punishing the speaker. As a nation we have chosen a different course—to protect even hurtful speech on public issues to ensure that we do not stifle public debate. That choice requires that we shield Westboro from tort liability for its picketing in this case."
The Supreme Court went out of its way to rule in favor of the Westboro Church. The short-term harm posed by the case is that the church will continue to picket military funerals with its outrageous homophobic slander. But the church is a radical sect that will remain on the fringe; no one else is picketing military funerals. In deciding in favor of the church, the Court ensured that other provocative speech will not be censured as long as no one is physically injured. While the Court's speech absolutism may damage this country's electoral process in allowing corporations to buy elections, the Westboro case protects not only conservative Tea Partiers, but liberals and radicals who protest U.S. policies at home and abroad. The message is clear when it comes to this kind of political speech: anything goes.
Stephen Bergstein, a lawyer in upstate New York, writes on civil rights issues (www.secondcircuitcivilrights.blogspot.com).
Z Magazine Archive
AnnouncementsLABOR - May 1 is May Day. Workers of the world will celebrate the 124th anniversary of International Worker’s Day. Born out of a call for an 8-hour workday in the United States, this day is an opportunity for all workers to show their solidarity with one another, as well as to renew the call for labor rights.
FARM CONFERENCE - The Farm Conference on Community and Sustainability will be held May 24-26 in Summertown, TN, in partnership with the Fellowship of Intentional Communities. Tour green homes, see sustainable food production, learn about solar installations, alternative education, midwifery, and more.
Contact: Douglas@thefarmcommunity.com; http://www.thefarmcommunity.com/.
PALESTINE - The Conference of the Palestinian Shatat in North American will be held June 3-5 in Vancouver. The conference will examine the future of the Palestinian liberation movement.
Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org; http://www.palestinianconference.org/.
LABOR - The Pacific Northwest Labor History Association’s 45th annual conference will be held May 3-5, in Portland, OR. This year’s theme is Labor Under Attack: Learning from the Past and Preparing for the Future. A call for presentations, workshops and papers is currently underway.
Contact: PNLHA, 27920 68th Ave. East, Graham, WA 98338; 206-406-2604; PNLHA1@aol.com; http://www3.telus.net.
MARIJUANA - On the first Saturday of May marijuana legalization activists will hold informational and educational events, rallies and marches in over 300 cities around the world.
ECONOMICS - The Union For Radical Political Economics will hold its 39th annual conference May 9-11 in New York City.
RECLAIM THE DREAM - The 2013 Poor People’s Campaign & March from Baltimore to Washington D.C. will be May 11. Communities, schools and unions interested in participating are encouraged to contact the Baltimore People’s Assembly.
Contact: 410-500-2168; 410-218-4835; BaltimorePeoplesAssembly@gmail.com; Southern Christian Leadership Conference of Baltimore and the Baltimore Peoples Power Assembly, 2011 N. Charles St., Baltimore, MD 21218.
MOTHER’S DAY - The 17th Annual Mother’s Day Walk For Peace will be May 12th, in Dorchester, MA. The walk began in 1996 for families who had lost children to violence. The day has become a way for thousands of people to financially support the work of the Louis Brown Peace Institute.
Contact: http://www.ldbpeaceinstitute.org/; http://mothersdaywalk4peace.org/.
NATO 5 - An International Week of Solidarity with the NATO 5 has been called for May 16-21. Supports call on supporters to raise awareness of the NATO 5 and support funds for the defendants on the one-year anniversary of their preemptive arrests.
Contact: email@example.com; https://nato5support.wordpress.com.
MOUNTAINTOP - The 2013 Mountain Justice Summer Activist Training Camp will be held May 19-27 in Damascus, VA. It will be a week of workshops, field trips to view Mountain Top Removal coal mines, direct actions, and service project.
FEMINIST SCI-FI - The feminist science fiction convention WisCon 37 is scheduled for May 24-27 in Madison, WI.
Contact: WisCon, ? SF3, PO Box 1624, Madison, WI 53701; firstname.lastname@example.org; http://www.wiscon.info/.
ANARCHY FEST - A month-long Festival of Anarchy is scheduled for May in Montreal. The festival includes The Montreal Anarchist Bookfair (May 19-20).
Contact: http://www.anarchistbookfair.ca/; http://www.radicalmontreal.com/.
LABOR - The International Labor Rights Forum will present: Down the Supply Chain, Driving Corporate Accountability, on May 22 in Washington, DC. The Labor Rights Awards Ceremony and Reception will honor pioneers in supply chain worker organizing, working solidarity and international labor rights policy.
MULTICULTURE - The 26th annual National Conference on Race & Ethnicity in American Higher Education (NCORE) will take place May 28-June 1, in New Orleans.
Contact: SWCHRS, 3200 Marshall Avenue, Suite 290, Norman, OK 73072; 405-325-3694; email@example.com; www.ncore.ou.edu.
MEDIA - The 2013 Alliance for Community Media Annual Conference will be held May 29-31, in San Francisco, CA. Participants will include educators, community leaders, media professionals, journalists, nonprofit leaders, policymakers and students.
RADIO - The 38th Annual Community Radio Conference is schedule for May 29-June 1, in San Francisco, CA, with discussions and workshops.
Contact: 1101 Pennsylvania Ave. NW, Suite 600, Washington, DC 20004; 202-756-2268; firstname.lastname@example.org; http://www.nfcb.org/.
BRADLEY MANNING - On June 1, a rally will be held at Fort Meade in support of Bradley Manning.
BIKES - Bikes Not Bombs is holding its 24th annual Bike-A-Thon and Green Roots Festival in Boston, MA on June 3, with several bike rides scheduled, music, exhibitors and more.
Contact: Bikes Not Bombs, 284 Amory St., Jamaica Plain, MA 02130; 617-522-0222; email@example.com; www.bikesnotbombs.org.
LEFT FORUM - The 2013 Left Forum will be held June 7-9, at Pace University in New York City.
Contact: 365 Fifth Avenue, CUNY Graduated Center, ? Sociology Dept., New York, NY 10016; http://www.leftforum.org/.
VEGAN FEST - Mad City Vegan Fest will be held in Madison, WI, June 8. The annual event features food, speakers, and exhibitors.
Contact: 122 State Street, Suite 405 B, Madison, WI 53701; firstname.lastname@example.org; http://veganfest.org/.
ADC CONFERENCE - The American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee (ADC) holds its annual conference June 13-16, in Washington, DC, with panel discussions and workshops on civil rights, media and other topics.
Contact: 1990 M Street, Suite 610, Washington, DC, 20036; 202-244-2990; email@example.com http://convention.adc.org/.
CUBA/SOCIALISM - A Cuban-North American Dialog on Socialist Renewal and Global Capitalist Crisis will be held in Havana, Cuba, June 16-30. There will be a 5 day Seminar at University of Havana, plus visits to a cooperative, urban garden, community development project, social research centers, and educational & medical institutions.
Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org; http://www.globaljusticecenter.org/.
NETROOTS - The 8th Annual Netroots Nation conference will take place June 20-23 in San Jose, CA. The event features panels, trainings, networking, screenings, and keynotes.
Contact: 164 Robles Way, #276, Vallejo, CA 94591; email@example.com; http://www.netrootsnation.org/.
MEDIA - The 15th annual Allied Media Conference will be held June 20-23, in Detroit.
Contact: 4126 Third Street, Detroit, MI 48201; http://alliedmedia.org/.
GRASSROOTS - The United We Stand Festival will be hosted by Free & Equal, June 22 in Little Rock, Arkansas. The festival aims to reform the electoral process throughout the U.S.
SOCIALISM - The Socialism 2013 Conference is scheduled for June 27-30 in Chicago, featuring talks and panel discussions.
Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org; http://www.socialismconference.org.
LITERACY - The National Association for Media Literacy Education (NAMLE) will hold its conference July 12-13 in Los Angeles under the heading, Intersections: Teaching and Learning Across Media.
Contact: 10 Laurel Hill Drive, Cherry Hill, NJ 08003; http://namle.net/conference/.
IWW - The North American Work People’s College will take place July 12-16 at Mesaba Co-op Park in northern Minnesota. The event will bring together Wobblies from branches across the continent to learn new skills and build One Big Union.
PEACESTOCK - On July 13th, the 11th Annual Peacestock: A Gathering for Peace, will take place at Windbeam Farm in Hager City, WI. The event is a mixture of music, speakers and community for peace. Sponsored by Veterans for Peace.
Contact: Bill Habedank, 1913 Grandview Ave., Red Wing, MN 55066; 651-388-7733; email@example.com; http://www.peacestockvfp.org.
CHILDREN’S DEFENSE - July 15-19, join clergy, seminarians, Christian educators, young adult leaders and other faith-based advocates for children at CDF Haley Farm in Clinton, Tennessee, for five days of spiritual renewal, networking, movement building workshops, and continuing education about the urgent needs of children at the 19th annual Proctor Institute for Child Advocacy Ministry.
Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org; http://www.childrensdefense.org.
ACTIVIST CAMP - Youth Empowered Action (YEA) Camp will have sessions in July and August in Ben Lomond, CA; Portland, OR; Charlton, MA. YEA Camp is designed for activists 12-17 years old who want to make a difference in the world.
Contact: email@example.com; http://yeacamp.org/.
LA RAZA - The annual National Council of La Raza (NCLR) Conference is scheduled for July 18-19 in New Orleans, with workshops, presentations and panel discussions.
Contact: NCLR Headquarters Office, Raul Yzaguirre Building, 1126 16th Street, NW, Washington, DC 20036; 202-785-1670; www.nclr.org.
LABOR - The Eastern Conference For Workplace Democracy: Growing Our Cooperatives, Growing Our Communities, will be held at Drexel University in Philadelphia, PA, July 26-28.
Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org; http://east.usworker.coop/.
WOMEN/LYNNE STEWART- Radical Women is asking for support letters and cards to be sent to Lynne Stewart. Stewart is a civil rights attorney and political prisoner who is currently in jail. She has breast cancer and authorities have denied her request for transfer from her Texas prison to the New York City hospital where she received medical attention during a prior bout of breast cancer. Send messages and cards to: Lynne Stewart 53504-054, Federal Medical Center Carswell, P.O. Box 27137, Fort Worth, TX 76127.
Contact: 747 Polk Street, San Francisco, CA 94109; 415-864-1278; RadicalWomenUS@gmail.com; http://lynnestewart.org/; http://www.radicalwomen.org/.
HAITI/WOMEN - Haiti’s government is considering a legal reform measure that would prohibit and punish all sexual assault, including marital rape. MADRE and the International Campaign to Stop Rape & Gender Violence in Conflict are launching a petition to raise international support for this push to address violence against women in Haiti.
Contact: 121 West 27th Street, #301, New York, NY 10001; 212-627-0444; email@example.com; http://www.madre.org.
SYRIA/MIDDLE EAST - The Middle East Children’s Alliance (MECA) is currently seeking funds to assist more than 200,000 refugees fleeing violence in Syria.
FOLK FESTIVAL - The Falcon Ridge Folk Festival will be held August 2-4, in the Berkshires, NY.
Contact: http://www.falconridgefolk.com/; firstname.lastname@example.org.
WAR RESISTERS - The War Resisters League will hold its 90th anniversary conference, Revolutionary Nonviolence: Building Bridges Across Generations and Communities, August 1-4, at Georgetown University. The event will focus on the U.S.’ long history of antimilitarism.
Contact: 339 Lafayette Street, New York, NY 10012; 212-228-0450; email@example.com; http://www.warresisters.org.
POPULAR ECONOMICS - The Center for Popular Economics is holding its 2013 Summer Institute August 4-9 at Hampshire College in Amherst, MA. No background in economics is needed for this intensive training. This year’s theme is, The Care Economy: Building a Just Economy with a Heart.
Contact: Center for Popular Economics, PO Box 785 Amherst, MA 01004; 413-545-0743; firstname.lastname@example.org; www.populareconomics.org.
VETERANS - Veterans for Peace is holding the 28th annual convention August 6-11 in Madison, WI. This year’s theme is, Power To The Peaceful.
DEMOCRACY - The Democracy Convention will take place August 7-11 in Madison, WI. The convention brings together nine conferences including topics such as media, education, defense, race, environment and others.
MEN - The 38th National Conference on Men & Masculinity: Forging Justice: Creating Safe, Equal and Accountable Communities, presented in partnership with HAVEN, will be held in Detroit, MI, August 8-10.
Contact: email@example.com; http://www.nomas.org/.
OCCUPY - An Occupy National Gathering will be held in Kalamazoo, MI, August 21-25.
Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org; http://occupynationalgathering.net/.
COMMUNITIES - The Communities Conference is a networking and learning opportunity for co-operative or communal lifestyles, with workshops, events and entertainment; scheduled for August 30-September 2 at the Twin Oaks Community in Louisa, Virginia.
LABOR DAY - The 29th annual Bread and Roses Festival, a celebration of the ethnic diversity and labor history of Lawrence, MA, will be held September 2, in honor of the 1912 Bread and Roses Strike. There will be music, dance, poetry, drama, ethnic food, historical demonstrations, walking & trolley tours.
Contact: PO Box 1137, Lawrence, MA 01842; 978-794-1655; http://www.breadandrosesheritage.org/.
OCCUPY WALL STREET - September 17 is the two-year anniversary of the Occupy Wall Street movement. Events are planned in New York City and worldwide.
TEACHERS - The 13th Annual Conference, “Teaching for Social Justice: The Politics of Pedagogy,” will be held October 12 in San Francisco, CA. The free event features workshops, resources, and free childcare.
Contact: 415-676-7844; email@example.com; http://www.t4sj.org/.
HAITI - International Action, which brings clean water and chlorinators to Haiti, seeks office space capable of housing up to six people and their office equipment.
Contact: Zach Bremer, Zbrehmer@haitiwater.org; 202-488-0735; http://www.haitiwater.org/.
MEDIA - The Union for Democratic Communications and Project Censored are sponsoring a joint conference on media democracy, media activism and social justice to be held November 1-3 at the University of San Francisco. Proposals for presentations, workshops and panels from activists and critical scholars are invited.