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Remove Monument to Genocide that Welcomes People to UVA“George Rogers Clark, Conqueror of the Northwest” is a massive sculpture (approximately 24 feet in height, 20 feet in length, and 8 feet in width) that was put up in 1921 by the University of Virginia, at the edge of its campus in Albemarle County, just across the line from the City of Charlottesville. The location is prominent, although not as prominent as it was in the 1920s, due to the growth of trees around three sides of the monument, which nonetheless proudly and openly faces University Avenue with some 10 yards of grass between the memorial and the sidewalk along the street. This monument was paid for by Paul Goodloe McIntire, the same wealthy individual who paid for three other statues in Charlottesville in the 1920s, all of which still dominate central spaces in the city: those of Robert E. Lee and Stonewall Jackson, which have been in the news in recent years, and that of Meriwether Lewis, William Clark, and Sacajawea. Like these other statues, that of George Rogers Clark was created without any vote by the general public. Like the statues of Lee and Jackson in downtown Charlottesville, the statue of George Rogers Clark at UVA depicts a white man on a horse dressed for war. But, unlike Lee and Jackson, Clark is not alone. He has other men behind him with a gun and a barrel of gun powder, and he appears to be reaching back for a gun with his right hand. There are four Native Americans in front of him, including one infant. One of them appears defiant. One appears to be a woman carrying the infant. An article from the 1921 dedication of the statue in the University of Virginia Alumni News approvingly describes the woman in the memorial as being forced to beg for mercy for her baby. A successful 1997 application to add the statue to the National Register of Historic Places reads, in part: “She kneels in front of Clark holding a covered cradle board aloft as if to plead for a papoose within.” At the dedication, then-UVA President Edwin Alderman credited George Rogers Clark with stealing large amounts of territory for an empire — the empire of Virginia, of which the land he claimed had been deemed a part. The Alumni News newspaper celebrated the statue when it was first created as “explaining the futility of resistance.” The base of the sculpture calls Clark the “Conqueror of the Northwest.” The Northwest means the general area of today’s state of Illinois. At least that was the focus of Clark’s victories which either importantly seized or easily and temporarily occupied, depending on the account. But the entire Old Northwest Territory, which the United States took from Britain at the end of the Revolutionary War, included all or large parts of six eventual U.S. States (Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, Michigan, Wisconsin, and the northeastern part of Minnesota). Conquering means . . . well, let’s allow George Rogers Clark to tell us in his own words. George Rogers Clark said that he would have liked to “see the whole race of Indians extirpated” and that he would “never spare Man woman or child of them on whom he could lay his hands.” Clark wrote a statement to the various Indian nations in which he threatened “Your Women & Children given to the Dogs to eat.” Thomas Jefferson, the founder of the University of Virginia, depicted in a smaller statue nearby in front of the Rotunda building, when he was Governor of Virginia, sent George Rogers Clark west to attack Native Americans, writing that the goal “should be their extermination, or their removal beyond the lakes or Illinois river.” Clark killed the captured and destroyed the crops of those he was sent by Jefferson to exterminate or remove. Clark later unsuccessfully proposed further military expeditions to Virginia Governor Benjamin Harrison in order to demonstrate “that we are always able to crush them at pleasure.” The quotations above are found in Surviving Genocide by Jeffrey Ostler, who shows that U.S. officials developed the policy that “wars of extermination” were “not only necessary, but ethical and legal.” Causes of decline among Native peoples included direct killing, other traumatizing violence prominently including rape, the burning of towns and crops, forcible deportation, and the intentional and non-intentional spreading of diseases and of alcoholism to weakened populations. Ostler writes that the most recent scholarship finds the devastation caused by European diseases resulted less from Native Americans’ lack of immunity, and more from the weakness and starvation created by the violent destruction of their homes. In George Rogers Clark’s day, John Heckewelder (a missionary and author of books on the customs of Native Americans) noted that frontiersmen had adopted “the doctrine . . . that the Indians were the Canaanites, who by God’s commandment were to be destroyed.” That is not the view of the general public of Charlottesville or Albemarle County or Virginia today. It is not the view of the University of Virginia today. But it is the view blatantly and explicitly celebrated by the George Rogers Clark memorial that greets those arriving from downtown to the campus of the University of Virginia. The University is constructing a memorial nearby to those enslaved people who built the university. This will arguably be the first and only major memorial in Charlottesville and the immediate surrounding area that is not clearly or arguably a celebration of war or genocide. (One could include in that statement the monument to the war on Vietnam, while some would claim it does not apply to the monument to Lewis-Clark-Sacajawea. Minor statues at UVA include war poet Homer and a World War I memorial, as well as Jefferson who of course engaged in many activities including but far from limited to war and genocide). But the new memorial at UVA will be dedicated just down the street from the monument celebrating the horrors inflicted by George Rogers Clark. READ MORE: http://davidswanson.org/grc594 of 600 SignaturesCreated by David S.
Citizens of Penobscot Bay Urge Nordic Aquafarms to Halt the ProjectWe the undersigned are concerned that Nordic Aquafarms’ proposed facility threatens to harm Belfast and all communities around Penobscot Bay. Our concerns include depleting our fresh water supply, polluting our ecosystems, endangering our fisheries and increasing our dependence on fossil fuels. At this time of ecological crisis, local control of our fresh water and the health of Penobscot Bay are crucial. We must protect our valuable resources for today and for our children’s tomorrow. This is why we support halting the project. Halting the project would prevent probable pollution, potential accidents and activation of existing mercury deposits in the bay. Halting the project would protect jobs in fisheries, tourism and coastal recreation. We the undersigned are committed to generating healthy, local alternatives for a robust regional economy. This petition provides an opportunity to demonstrate our communities’ level of concern about this project in our region.692 of 800 SignaturesCreated by SaveThe C.
SAVE 400 ACRES OF MAGNIFICENT MENDOCINO HEADLANDS: CLEAN UP FIRST! FOR A HEALTHY FORT BRAGG NOWThe well being of the Northern Mendocino Coast is entirely dependent upon a healthy ocean and natural landscape, which requires protection of our coastal resources. The former G-P Mill Site, now owned by Koch Industries, encompasses almost one third of the City of Fort Bragg. Its reuse offers an opportunity to showcase the importance of thoroughly cleaning up our coastal resources that have been polluted by highly toxic materials extremely harmful to the health and well being of humans and wildlife both on land and in the ocean. This is particularly urgent because the Mill Pond has been identified as the most polluted area of the site and its failing dam leaves it highly vulnerable to earthquakes, tsunami and sea level rise. Please sign the petition and demand that the Fort Bragg Headlands be Cleaned up First.7 of 100 SignaturesCreated by Headlands Symposium Committee
Support the Bank of Virginia Act• There is an increasing need for municipal governments and state agencies to transition to sustainable alternatives requires accessible and affordable financing • There is an increasing need for small farmers to have access to affordable credit in the state, that is inaccessible through current day financial market conditions • There is a need to decrease overall costs for financially burdened municipalities and state agencies to better allocate resources to important aspects of each entity • There is a need to decrease financial risk municipalities and state agencies are exposed to by risky corporate lending behaviors82 of 100 SignaturesCreated by Austin S.
Pass the Bank of Virginia Act• There is an increasing need for municipal governments and state agencies to transition to sustainable alternatives requires accessible and affordable financing • There is an increasing need for small farmers to have access to affordable credit in the state, that is inaccessible through current day financial market conditions • There is a need to decrease overall costs for financially burdened municipalities and state agencies to better allocate resources to important aspects of each entity • There is a need to decrease financial risk municipalities and state agencies are exposed to by risky corporate lending behaviors9 of 100 SignaturesCreated by Austin S.
Cut defense budgetSpend money on helping Americans not involved in a war economy8 of 100 SignaturesCreated by Greg D.
Save The Cal State Fullerton ArboretumThe Cal State Fullerton Arboretum is a classroom for children and young adults to learn about their food, medicinal plants and the environment.7 of 100 SignaturesCreated by Mario S.
Speaker Pelosi: Uphold your Oath of Office or ResignThe process of impeachment is indicated by the Constitution in cases where the Executive has broken the law. It is illegal to employ another person to break the law on your behalf. We have seen the checks signed by the President to Michael Cohen for the commission of felonies for which he has been convicted. There is no question that the President has broken the law, and no question that the Oath of Office you took requires you to impeach him. By stating on March 11 that despite the evidence of his crimes, this President is 'not worth' impeaching, you have broken your Oath of Office. Your personal feelings, political agenda, and predictions for the upcoming months, years, and elections are irrelevant. You must do your job as delineated by the US Constitution, and you must do it now. Therefore, we, your constituents demand you uphold your Oath of Office and draft Articles of Impeachment immediately, or resign.5 of 100 SignaturesCreated by Armand D.
"Hold the LYNE" on the New "Low-Yield" Trident Nuclear WarheadThe W76-2 nuclear warhead is a new “low-yield” warhead called for by the Trump administration's 2018 Nuclear Posture Review. It will be mounted on the Trident II D5 ballistic missile, which is deployed on OHIO Class “Trident” ballistic missile submarines. Trident's only mission is strategic nuclear deterrence; the W76-2 turns this stated mission on its head. There is no “deterrence gap” that the Trump administration claims as justification for the W76-2. The United States spends approximately four times the amount as Russia each year on its nuclear arsenal—amounting to $61.3 billion for the U.S. in 2011 compared to $14.8 billion for Russia. While this immense program is excessive, adds to a new arms race with Russia, and should be scaled back, Russia cannot doubt that the United States is serious about maintaining an unambiguously strong nuclear deterrent. The United States already deploys a variety of low-yield nuclear weapons. These include 150 B61 gravity bombs that can be set from 0.3 to 60 kilotons, and air-launched cruise missiles with yields of 5 to 150 kilotons. These weapons are being upgraded to extend their lifetimes, and are receiving improvements, including greater accuracy. For comparison, the W76-2 will be 6.5 kilotons. Nuclear war cannot be controlled. Perhaps the biggest fallacy in the whole argument for the W76-2 is the mistaken and dangerous belief that a “small” nuclear war would remain small. There is no basis for the dubious theory that, if Russia used a “low-yield” nuclear weapon and the United States responded in kind, the conflict could stay at that level. General James Mattis, former Secretary of Defense, has said, “I don’t think there’s any such thing as a tactical nuclear weapon. Any nuclear weapon used at any time is a strategic game changer.” Congress must prohibit the further production and deployment of this dangerously destabilizing nuclear weapon before it can be deployed. Otherwise, the already delicate diplomatic balance with Russia will be further eroded, and nuclear war will become more likely.4,972 of 5,000 SignaturesCreated by Leonard E.
Ask Speaker Nancy Pelosi to Co-Sponsor the Green New DealEvery year's newly registered voters enter into political life with greater zeal for dealing with the planet's burgeoning environmental crisis than the prior year's. With the Green New Deal (aka, the Green Dream) we finally have a comprehensive statement of a way forward that leaves no one behind, and puts the right to live in a clean world and the right to make a decent living on equal footing. H.Res. 109 - https://www.congress.gov/bill/116th-congress/house-resolution/10910,760 of 15,000 SignaturesCreated by Tom G.
Stop Retaliatory Prosecution of Catholic Charity WhistleblowerBrigitte Fuzellier is a well-known charity leader and community worker who has lived in Paraguay since 1987. Kolping International hired Ms. Fuzellier, a German citizen, to run its operations in Paraguay and clean up its financial situation. Kolping is a large Catholic charity based in Cologne, Germany, that receives millions of dollars in public funds each year. Fuzellier discovered widespread and well-documented misconduct and degeneracy within Kolping’s operations in Paraguay. Rather than being used as a school, a Kolping building funded by German taxpayer money was being used as a brothel. An entire soccer team is said to have availed itself of the services in the Casa de Citas (“House of Appointments”), according to the German magazine Der Spiegel. Customers enjoyed beer and liquor before going upstairs, which was stocked with beds – “a true orgy." After reviewing Kolping's finances, Fuzellier discovered that a large chunk of €1.4 million in German and EU public funds did not go toward its intended purposes. Only after a series of investigations did Kolping repay €241,000 to the German government, according to media reports. Fuzellier has piles of documents and other evidence about many other episodes and irregularities in Paraguay. She has signed bank checks and other evidence that she says proves vast misspending of EU funds. A probe by the EU's anti-fraud office, OLAF, ended without explanation, says Fuzellier. She said a bakery worker was killed when he fell headlong into a poorly-made, makeshift production machine. Kolping fired her in 2010 and began an unabated retaliation campaign that has included public humiliation, smearing her reputation throughout her community, filing a series of dubious criminal charges, and using questionable legal tactics to limit her ability to travel. Fuzellier was convicted and only spared from prison after an international campaign raised €30,000 so she could pay a fine. As another dubious case dragged on for more than four years, she was banned from leaving Paraguay. This virtually put an end to her Eco-Loofah business, which employed hundreds of local people including members of the indigenous Macá Tribe. Now, people associated with Kolping are at it again. In December 2018 Fuzellier was re-charged with allegations of which she already has been cleared – raising questions of double jeopardy. Once again, she has been banned from leaving the country. We are rallying international support for Brigitte Fuzellier, including seeking prompt intervention by the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights at the Organization of American States.21 of 100 SignaturesCreated by Mark W.
PG&E Buyout (not a bailout) and formation of a Public-owned utilityThe Constituents of California rely upon their Government and its Regulatory Agencies to provide legal and statutory protections against criminal wrongdoings of any kind, and to act with swift authority to prevent the recurrence of any exigency which threatens the safety of the public and the natural environment within the State of California. The Corporate Entity Pacific Gas and Electric Company, which has enjoyed a State sanctioned monopoly on energy production and distribution throughout Northern California, and which is expected by the Public in exchange to operate its business with the highest standards of safety and accountability, has repeatedly betrayed the public trust and demonstrated a chronic pattern of corporate negligence, fraud, regulatory obstruction, falsification of records, safety and code violations, and deliberate under-funding of safety programs to increase profit, as evidenced by: 1. $30 millions in fines and 739 counts of criminal negligence for deliberately under-funding required tree-trimming protocols and causing a power line blaze leading to the 1994 Trauner Fires, which destroyed 12 homes and burned over 500 acres of property; 2. $1.4 billion in fines and penalties and 6 felony convictions for obstruction and safety violations resulting in the 2010 San Bruno gas explosions which killed 8 people and destroyed 38 homes; 3. $8.3 million in fines for failing to maintain a power line that sparked the 2015 Butte Fires which killed 2 people, destroyed 549 homes and burned over 70,000 acres; 4. $14.5 billion in damages with multiple code violations for downed power lines causing 12 Northern California wildfires in October 2017 which killed 44 people, destroyed 8,900 homes and burned 245,000 acres; 5. Anticipated $30 billion in class action lawsuit for the 2018 Camp fire which killed 86 people, destroyed 13,900 homes and burned over 150,000 acres. The People of California have paid too much already to be expected to bail out — with their own tax dollars — a criminally negligent corporation which is now seeking bankruptcy protection in order to shield itself from its liabilities. To rescue PG&E from the failure it has brought upon itself would be an insult to those who have lost their homes, their loved ones, and their hopes for a better tomorrow because of pure corporate greed. No organization or corporation should ever be considered "too big to fail," as this will in effect place such an enterprise above the law. We the undersigned now petition our elected officials to take any and all actions pursuant to a legal buyout of the failing company using the following Eminent Domain justifications: A Public-Owned energy company will be more transparent and SAFER because, as a non-profit utility, it will no longer be incentivized to cut corners on safety in order to increase profits for investors and shareholders; A Public-Owned energy company will be MORE AFFORDABLE for California ratepayers as it will be legally bound to charge ratepayers based on actual costs, leading to the following savings annually, at a minimum: - $1 billion per year saved by not paying dividend payments to shareholders; - $25 million per year saved by not paying current level Executive salaries and bonuses; - $8 million per year saved by no longer lobbying State officials, which would constitute illegal activity for a public utility; - Additional $ millions saved by not funding ballot initiatives or propositions (such as Prop 16, on which PG&E spent $46 million,) which would constitute illegal activity for a public utility. And finally, a Public-Owned energy company will inherently be MORE ENVIRONMENTALLY RESPONSIBLE, as it will no longer answer to profit-driven private investors and a Board of Directors, but to California taxpayers and elected officials who are ultimately interested in reducing greenhouse gas emissions, committing to more renewable energy production, and driving innovative solutions to the global crisis of climate deterioration.2,838 of 3,000 SignaturesCreated by Eric T.