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Fully Decriminalize Industrial HempIndustrial hemp is a variety of cannabis sativa. Both the U.N. and the North American Free Trade Agreement recognize industrial hemp as distinct from marijuana due to hemp's next-to-nothing THC content. For thousands of years hemp was used to make dozens of commercial products like paper, rope, canvas, and textiles. Many years ago hemp and marijuana were unjustly banned together. Hemp has great environmental, economic, and commercial potential!! Hemp and marijuana are two very different cultivars grown using very distinct and differentiated methods. The potential of hemp for paper production is enormous. In 1916 the U.S. Department of Agriculture published a report which found that one acre of hemp can produce four times as much pulp for paper as one acre of trees! All types of paper products can be produced from hemp: newsprint, computer paper, stationary, cardboard, envelopes, toilet paper, even tampons. Paper production from hemp would eliminate the need to chop down BILLIONS of trees! MILLIONS of acres of forests and huge areas of wildlife habitat could be preserved! With tree farms, soil exposure can last for years in the time it takes for even a small tree to grow. Trees must grow for somewhere between several years & thousands of years after planting before they can be harvested for commercial use! Within 3-4 months after it is planted, hemp grows 10 to 20 feet tall and it is ready for harvesting! Hemp's long, strong, quickly growing roots help percolate and hold the soil in place. They also contribute to nutrient recycling through the whole plant. Additionally, any stalk or leaves help keep the soil from drying out while its bio-mass insulates the area. Reduction of topsoil erosion would also reduce pollution of lakes/rivers/streams. Fewer caustic and toxic chemicals are used to make paper from hemp than are used to make paper from trees. It has been estimated that hemp could provide 100% of US energy needs if widely cultivated and put to good use. So many products can be made from hemp. Growing hemp would completely change what we call America today. Many products would become eco-friendly and our environment and economy would improve drastically in just a few short years. Of course there are some very rich people who have been doing things the wrong way for a very long time who would not like the U.S. to have a cheaper, more renewable, resource -- a resource that would be available to almost anyone with land, a little bit of money, or the ability to sharecrop. Some people are very resistant to change. But President Obama claims to be so much different than that. Thats why the world needs your help to tell Obama to use his power of executive order to fully and immediately decriminalize industrial hemp.
Take Pulitzer Away from Reporter Who Lied About HiroshimaAfter Wilfred Burchett reported on the death and dying at Hiroshima, the Pentagon assigned reporters to dishonestly oppose that reporting with lies. One of these was William Laurence. His front-page story, U.S. ATOM BOMB SITE BELIES TOKYO TALES: TESTS ON NEW MEXICO RANGE CONFIRM THAT BLAST, AND NOT RADIATION, TOOK TOLL, ran on September 12, 1945 in the New York Times. "William L. Laurence went on to write a series of ten articles for the Times that served as a glowing tribute to the ingenuity and technical achievements of the nuclear program. Throughout these and other reports, he downplayed and denied the human impact of the bombing. Laurence won the Pulitzer Prize for his reporting." "It turns out that William L. Laurence was not only receiving a salary from The New York Times. He was also on the payroll of the War Department. In March 1945, General Leslie Groves had held a secret meeting at The New York Times with Laurence to offer him a job writing press releases for the Manhattan Project, the U.S. program to develop atomic weapons. The intent, according to the Times, was 'to explain the intricacies of the atomic bomb’s operating principles in laymen’s language.' Laurence also helped write statements on the bomb for President Truman and Secretary of War Henry Stimson." Amy Goodman and David Goodman wrote about this at https://www.transcend.org/tms/2015/08/hiroshima-cover-up-how-the-war-departments-timesman-won-a-pulitzer/
Letter to Pope FrancisSome endorsers: Bishop Thomas J. Gumbleton, Archdiocese of Detroit, Michigan Rev Kristin Stoneking, Executive Director, Fellowship of Reconciliation, Nyack, NY Deacon Tom Cornell, Catholic Worker Farm, Marlboro, NY Johnny Zokovitch, FL David Swanson Sister Rose Marie Cummins Sr. Miriam MacGillis, OP, Genesis Farm Dr. Paul E. Ivory Debbie & Bill Quigley, New Orleans, LA Herbert Bix, Cambridge, MA Kathy Kelly, Chicago, IL Fr. Tim Taugher, St Francis of Assisi, Binghamton, NY Terri MacKenzie, SHCJ Deacon Jim Rauner, Diocese of Kalamazoo, Watervliet, MI Jane F. Morissey, ssj, Massachusetts Rev Robert E. Osborne, Louisville, KY Sister Kathleen Desautels, SP, Chicago, IL Elliott Adams Fr. Regis Ryan, Dio. of Pittsburgh Fr. Tony Gallagher, Toledo, OH Sally Bostwick, ret. USN Commander Karl Meyer, Greenlands Catholic Worker, Nashville, TN William H. Privett, NY Victoria B. Ross, Western NY Peace Center, Buffalo, NY Ardeth Platte, OP, Jonah House Carol Gilbert, OP, Jonah House Jack Gilroy, NY Elizabeth McAlister, Jonah House, Baltimore, MD Pat Ferrone, Pax Christi Massachusetts Pat McSweeney, Massachusetts Pax Christi Greensburg, PA Robert M. Smith Brandywine Peace Community, Philadelphia, PA Neil Himber, Youngsville, Pennsylvania Nick Mottern, New York Molly Rush, Thomas Merton Center, Pittsburgh, PA Sister Rosemary McSorley, shcj Anne Symens-Bucher, Canticle Farm, Oakland, CA Wally Inglis, Honolulu, HI R. Barry Martin, Good Shepherd & McCauley House, Philadelphia, PA Victor Hummert, Indiana Mary Aileen/ Purdy Dame, Medford, MA Nancy O'Byrne, Pax Christi Florida Ray Mack Faye Hinze, Bay Area, CA Mike Wisniewski, Los Angeles Catholic Worker, CA Raquel Falk, St . Peter Claver Catholic Worker, South Bend, IN Fr. Jim Hogan, Dio. of Helena, MT Stephen Kobasa Michael Ifrate, Wheeling, WV Nancy Wallace Fr. Jim Murphy, Dio. of Madison, Highland, WI JoAnne Lingle Rev Louis Arseneaux, C.M., Pax Christi New Orleans Mary Ann Buckley Carolyn McDonnell, Mercy Associates, IL Patricia Donohue Roy Bourgeois, Founder SOAW, Columbus, GA Paula Ewers Fr. Donald Fisher, McKees Rocks, PA Libby Pappalardo Frances Rossi William Houston, Jr Mary Elizabeth Crane John Amidon, Albany, NY Jeanne Allen Eve Tetaz Maureen Hearn Henri A. Fourroux, III Karen McLoughlin Malachy Kilbride, Quaker Ben Gordon, Pax Christi, New Orleans (a partial listing)
President Obama, meet with President Putin.These are dangerous times. The U.S. is “modernizing” its nuclear arsenal and placing NATO bases and troops on the Russian border. In response, President Putin is building 40 intercontinental ballistic weapons, saying he has no choice. On July 4, 2015 Russian President Vladimir Putin called the White House and wished President Barack Obama Happy Fourth of July. “In his message of congratulations, the Russian President noted that, …Russian-American relations remain the most important factor of international stability and security,” Reuters reported. “Mr. Putin expressed confidence that Russia and the United States could find solutions to the most complicated international issues and work together to meet global threats and challenges," the Kremlin said. 60 years ago, on July 9, 1955, the Russell—Einstein Manifesto was signed. They denounced the dangerous drive toward war between the world’s two nuclear nations. “Here, then,” it stated, “is the problem which we present to you, stark and dreadful and inescapable: Shall we put an end to the human race, or shall” humanity “renounce war?” Today, we must add a second and terrible threat to the “Earth’s biosphere”: climate change, which would be greatly exacerbated due to the pollution of our lands, seas and sky by nuclear war. The Bulletin of Atomic Scientists has moved the Doomsday Clock from 5 minutes to 3 minutes to minutes to midnight because "the constant threat of nuclear war and ‘unchecked climate change’ severely threaten human civilization.” The U.S. and the Soviet Union worked together to defeat Nazi Germany. They cooperated again in the P5+1/Iran nuclear agreement and President Putin said the deal will ...“assist in strengthening global and regional security” and “global nuclear non-proliferation”. President Obama, please accept President Putin’s offer to meet to discuss Russian—American relations. This could help create mutual understanding and reduce the threat of nuclear war. It could be an important step toward saving the human race and our precious Earth. Lee Loe, Houston, TX Grandmother for Peace & Survival
Protect VA, NC, and WV from a risky new fracked-gas pipeline!The 550-mile fracked Atlantic Coast Pipeline would pass by the James River, two VA state parks, and numerous schools and tourist destinations - plus the Blue Ridge Parkway and the gorgeous George Washington National Forest! http://thinkprogress.org/climate/2014/09/02/3478041/atlantic-coast-pipeline/ I am a Virginia resident, and am very concerned about the safety implications and environmental impact across VA, NC, and WV. Furthermore, private-property owners are at risk of losing their land through eminent domain. Our rights and our environment should matter more than fossil-fuel profits! My wife and I owned a log home in Nelson County and I worked in Augusta County, where my daily commute would take me across Reeds Gaps over the Blue Ridge Parkway and Afton Mountain. It's strikingly beautiful, and none of us want to see it threatened by a natural gas pipeline. That's why citizen groups like the Southern Environmental Law Center, the Sierra Club, Friends of Nelson, and the Augusta County Alliance are working hard to stop this risky pipeline. The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission isn't listening to the public, so we need to go straight to our state lawmakers and urge them to do everything they can to protect our homes. http://augustafreepress.com/friends-of-nelson-joins-grassroots-coalition-protesting-ferc-over-proposed-pipeline/
Rename J.E.B Stuart High School To Thurgood Marshall High SchoolOur schools support parents as they teach their children values. Segregation and racial supremacy are not American values. In 2015 is it embarrassing for a suburb of Washington, DC and home of Justice Thurgood Marshall to have a high school bearing the name of a Confederate general who fought for white supremacy and slavery. In 2015, it is inappropriate for Fairfax County to continue to honor a Confederate general 150 years after the Civil War by having his name attached to a diverse public high school. The Confederacy fought against the United States of America to maintain a system of white supremacy and slavery. Instead, Fairfax County should honor long-time Falls Church resident Thurgood Marshall who, as head of the NAACP Legal Defense Fund, was the chief architect of the legal strategy to dismantle segregation. As a result of his brilliant advocacy in Brown v. Board of Education, the U.S. Supreme Court declared racial segregation in the schools unconstitutional. While on the Supreme Court, Justice Marshall issued numerous opinions stressing the vital importance of equal educational opportunities for all children. On October 2, 1967, Thurgood Marshall was confirmed as a justice on the United States Supreme Court. In 1968, Justice Marshall and his wife moved to the Falls Church area in Fairfax County. He lived in the very high school area that the present JEB Stuart High School is located until he died in 1993.
Don't showcase Confederate "heroes" during International Bicycle Race.In the aftermath of the horrific white-supremacist massacre of nine African-Americans in Charleston, S.C., calls are being raised across the country for the removal of Confederate symbols from public places. But in Richmond, Va., the former capital of the slavery-defending Confederacy, during the 150th anniversary year of Emancipation and the end of the Civil War, prominent elected officials are defending their decision to spotlight racist symbols in an international sports event. The UCI Road Word Championships bicycle race, scheduled to take place in Richmond Sept. 19-27, is one of the cycling world's most prestigious competitions. It also likely will be the largest sports event held in the United States in 2015. Some 450,000 people are expected to attend, along with representatives of 500 U.S. news outlets, reporters from 100 countries and a worldwide TV viewing audience of 300 million. Truly, this event will showcase not only Richmond and the state of Virginia, but the entire country. And yet, U.S. Sen. Mark Warner, Gov. Terry McAuliffe and Richmond Mayor Dwight Jones – all Northern-born Democrats and chairmen of Richmond 2015, the official race organizing committee – have chosen to highlight Richmond's Monument Avenue, a virtual shrine to the Confederacy. (The fourth committee chairman is Thomas F. Farrell II, Chairman, CEO and President of Dominion Resources, Virginia's most politically influential corporation.) Hundreds of millions of people will watch as riders pass statues of Generals Robert E. Lee, Thomas “Stonewall” Jackson, J.E.B. Stuart and Naval Commander Matthew Fontaine Maury. Then, for the critical half-way point of the race, the riders will circle around the towering monument to Jefferson Davis, the slave-owning Confederate president. The route even manages to skip the avenue's one statue dedicated to an African-American, Richmond-born tennis champion and human rights activist Arthur Ashe, who was particularly known for his activism against the racist apartheid system of South Africa. The route then continues over Shockoe Bottom, the former slave-trading area that once was the epicenter of the U.S. domestic slave trade and an area that Gov. McAuliffe and Mayor Jones had been promoting for a commercial baseball stadium, until that for-profit developer's scheme was blocked by a prolonged community struggle. Many of the corporate principals of Richmond 2015 are the same business leaders who heavily promoted the stadium proposal. So, 150 years after Emancipation and the end of the Civil War, Sen. Warner, Gov. McAuliffe, Mayor Jones and CEO Farrell are saying that the finest this country has to present to the world are the monuments to the traitors who fought to preserve slavery – and that this outrageous statement is being made at the same time they are failing dismally to properly memorialize the site that once was the fountainhead of the domestic slave trade. Simply put, the message is: Black Lives and History Really Do Not Matter. In Richmond, the Defenders for Freedom, Justice & Equality, a community organization and a founding member of UNAC that has been fighting since 2002 to reclaim Shockoe Bottom, is calling on the race organizers to move the route off Monument Avenue and for the city to finally commit to a proper memorialization of Shockoe Bottom. The Defenders also are calling for progressives to join them in a National Presence in Richmond at noon on Saturday, Sept. 19, the opening day of the UCI race – at the Jefferson Davis monument. UNAC endorses these demands and strongly encourages all our members and allies to be in Richmond on Sept. 19 to let the world know that we reject this honoring of the slavery-defending Confederacy and demand a proper memorialization of all slavery-related sites, including Richmond's Shockoe Bottom.
The Greek people got to vote. Why shouldn't we?The Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) is a trade agreement dictated by the corporate and wealthy interests who will reap its rewards. If adopted, the majority of Americans will be the losers. They’re using negotiations that they have branded as “trade talks” to impose many non-trade policies that could lower our standard of living, export our jobs and undermine our rights. TPP is being negotiated in secret. Corporations are at the table. The American people are not. Congress won't even know what it is voting on until all the negotiations are over. Congress' decision to give the president Fast Track authority means TPP can't be modified or amended to protect the American people. If you like NAFTA, you'll love TPP! Requirements like “renewable/recycled” or “sweat free” and obligations for firms to meet basic health, safety, minimum and prevaling wage, child labor, human rights and other standards could be challenged, even on work for the government paid for with our tax dollars. Corporations will be able to sue our government for unlimited compensation if they believe labor, environment, food safety or other standards affected their "expected future profits". More American workers will lose their jobs and incomes as companies export our jobs to wherever they can pay the lowest wages with the fewest restrictions, including places with child labor and modern forms of slavery. Shouldn't the American people get to vote whether we are subjected to this corporate power grab dressed up as a trade agreement? Shouldn't we have at least as much democracy as the Greek people in deciding our fate?
Change the Name of Jefferson Davis Highway in ArlingtonWhereas, Arlington County prides itself on diversity and a welcoming attitude toward all ethnic groups, and *Arlington County, where Freedmans Village was located, was the destination for African Americans liberated by President Lincoln's Emancipation Proclamation during the Civil War, and *African American soldiers were trained at Camp Casey in Arlington County to fight to end slavery and to preserve the United States, and *Arlington County was never part of the Confederacy, and *Confederate President Jefferson Davis sought to perpetuate the enslavement of African Americans, and has no personal relationship to Arlington County, We, the undersigned, consider continued use of the name Jefferson Davis in connection with Route 1 and Route 110 not only to have no relevance to Arlington County, but also to be a symbol viewed by many as racist, similar to flying the Confederate flag, and therefore petition the Arlington County Board to take appropriate steps to initiate the removal of the name Jefferson Davis from those roadways. For information about Jefferson Davis Highway from the Department of Transportation: http://www.fhwa.dot.gov/infrastructure/jdavis.cfm For more information on Camp Casey: https://consortiumnews.com/2015/02/26/the-mystery-of-the-civil-wars-camp-casey/ See also, "Lynching and Jeff Davis Highway:" https://consortiumnews.com/2015/02/12/lynching-and-jeff-davis-highway/