Past Events: 2007
We are proud of our political/social education, fundraising, community outreach, and other activism events! The events listed below were presented, hosted, or strongly supported by Merriam Park Neighbors for Peace or our members during 2007.
Elizabeth de la Vega, author of United States v. George W. Bush et al.
Friday, February 2, 2007
Weyerhaeuser Chapel, Macalester College
1600 Grand Avenue, St. Paul, MN
What if there was a fraud worse than Enron and no one did anything about it?
Elizabeth de la Vega, long-time St. Paul resident and former federal prosecutor in Minneapolis, does what she knows best in the face of gross criminal activity: she convenes a grand jury!
In United States v. George W. Bush et al., former federal prosecutor Elizabeth de la Vega brings her twenty years of experience and her passion for justice to the most important case of her career. The defendants are George W. Bush, Richard Cheney, Donald Rumsfeld, Condoleezza Rice, and Colin Powell. The crime is tricking the nation into war, or, in legal terms, conspiracy to defraud the United States. Ms. de la Vega has reviewed the evidence, researched the law, drafted an indictment, and in this lively, accessible book, presented it to a grand jury.
If the indictment and grand jury are both hypothetical, the facts are tragically real: Over half of all Americans believe the president misled the country into a war that has left over 3,000 American soldiers and countless Iraqis dead. The cost is $350 billion-and counting. Faced with an ongoing crime of such magnitude, de la Vega argues, we cannot simply shrug our shoulders and walk away.
At this February 2 event, Elizabeth de la Vega will speak about her hypothetical indictment and answer questions about her book. The presentation will be followed by a casual reception and book signing. Copies of United States v. George W. Bush et al. will be available for purchase.
About Elizabeth de la Vega
Elizabeth de la Vega, a federal prosecutor for over twenty years, is a graduate of the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor and William Mitchell College of Law in St. Paul. After law school, she clerked for the late U.S. District Court Judge Robert Renner in St. Paul and then worked for eleven years as an Assistant U.S. Attorney in Minneapolis, handling a wide variety of criminal cases, including the Northwest Pilots' Case, the first federal prosecution of commercial pilots for flying under the influence. She now lives in Northern California where she was a member of the Organized Crime Strike Force and branch chief in San Jose, CA.
Since her retirement in 2004, Ms. de la Vega has been a regular contributor to TomDispatch.com. Her articles have also appeared in The Nation, the Los Angeles Times, The Christian Science Monitor, Salon.com, and Mother Jones. A frequent guest on talk shows, she has recently appeared on Air America's The Thom Hartmann Program, Amy Goodman's Democracy Now!, and Comedy Central's The Colbert Report.
Praise for the Book
"[M]uch more powerful than the 9/11 report. A tour de force."
– Chalmers Johnson, author of Blowback and The Sorrows of Empire
"Any American patriot who would like to see a grand jury challenge this Administration's blitzkrieg against our constitution will relish Elizabeth de la Vega's book United States v. George W. Bush et al.…Ms. de la Vega invites us into the courtroom to consider the indictment of our modern day Machiavellis and the fraud they've perpetrated."
– Edward Asner
"De la Vega has accomplished an amazing feat with this singularly triumphant presentation of the intersection between political fantasy and legal reality. Reading the delightfully logical and clearheaded United States v. George W. Bush et al. is both incredibly sobering, and yet strangely hopeful. Real American patriots can only wish the United States godspeed in this case, and this brief is destined to be well studied by principals in all three branches of American government, as well as by those who serve as the Fourth Estate."
– Karen Kwiatkowski, retired U.S. Air Force Lieutenant Colonel
"[A] front-row seat for the evidence of violent crimes by high officials of the Bush administration."
– Ray McGovern, retired CIA Analyst
Phone: Krista (651) 641-7592 or Anne (651) 647-0580
Web Site: http://www.mppeace.org/edlv
This event is free and open to the public. Donations will be accepted to cover costs.
Sponsored by Merriam Park Neighbors for Peace.
Monday, March 19, 2007
Minnesota State Capitol Rotunda
As the Iraq War begins its fifth year, take time to honor those who have died, and to contemplate the human cost of war.
Come anytime during the afternoon; stay as long as you are able.
The Eyes Wide Open Minnesota exhibit presents a memorial to those who have fallen and a witness to our belief that no war can justify its human cost. It includes a pair of boots for each Minnesota soldier killed in Iraq, shoes representing Iraqi civilian casualties, and a visual display showing the human costs of war to our communities.
Noon - Opening ceremony featuring former Senator Becky Lourey
12:30 - Reading of the names of all 3,000+ American casualties, as well as Iraqi civilian casualties
4:00 - Closing ceremony featuring Jack Nelson-Pallmeyer
Sponsored by Merriam Park Neighbors for Peace and Crocus Hill/West 7th Neighbors for Peace. Co-sponsored by American Friends Service Committee, Veterans For Peace – Chapter 27, Women Against Military Madness, and Military Families Speak Out Minnesota.
Phone: Anne (651) 647-0580
Web Site: http://www.mppeace.org/march19
Tuesday, March 27, 2007
Hamline Midway Library, 1558 West Minnehaha Avenue, St. Paul
Join Merriam Park and Crocus Hill/West 7th Neighbors for Peace at a screening of the widely acclaimed film, The Ground Truth: After the Killing Ends.
The Ground Truth takes an unflinching look at the training and dehumanization of U.S. soldiers and how they struggle to come to terms with it when they come back home.
This film overrides familiar images of heroic soldiers in battle, and overjoyed returning faces, reunited with their families with one effortless stroke. Instead, we see a scenario that can include illness, amputation and injury, depression and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), of which Iraq has become a fertile breeding ground. While America's poor treatment of veterans is not news to most, The Ground Truth makes it so personal and real that it is impossible to dismiss its characters simply as war statistics.
The film is 72 minutes, followed by a short discussion and refreshments. Free, but donations accepted.
Phone: Krista (651) 641-7592 or Anne (651) 647-0580
Web Site: http://www.mppeace.org/groundtruth
Wednesday, May 23, 2007
Macalester College Student Union, John B. Davis Auditorium
Grand Avenue, one block east of Snelling Avenue, St. Paul
An evening talk by a visionary thinker of our time, Michael Albert, on his new memoir, Remembering Tomorrow: From SDS to Life After Capitalism.
Wondering how to hang in for the long run? Learn what has worked successfully in movement building, as well as what hasn't. Whether you are an enthusiastic new organizer, a seasoned veteran, or just interested, you will want to hear Michael Albert speak about his experiences of the past and visions for the future. A writer, activist, and co-founder of ZNet and Z Magazine, Albert has been a leader in the creation of alternative media. Schooled in economics, he has developed "participatory economics," and has a vision to transform global inequality. While chronicling the struggle to end the Vietnam War, social change movements on Boston campuses, and the challenges of creating new, alternative social models, Albert points the way forward for the next generation.
"Michael Albert is an important thinker who takes us beyond radical denunciations and pretentious 'analysis' to a thoughtful, profound meditation on what a good society can be like." – Howard Zinn
"…insights into the exciting history of the past forty years, the popular movements and the institutional structures that have sought to contain and undermine them, their successes and failures, and the prospects for moving on." – Noam Chomsky
"…one of the world's premiere utopian thinkers." – Barbara Ehrenreich
This event is free and open to the public.
WAMM Phone: (612) 827-5364
Web Site: www.worldwidewamm.org
Minnesota Neighbors for Peace Metro-Wide Potluck Picnic
Sunday, August 12, 2007
Newell Park, 900 North Fairview Avenue (corner of Fairview and Pierce Butler Route), St. Paul
All friends and neighbors interested in supporting efforts for peace are welcome! Please join us for a picnic, a time to feast and socialize with friends old and new while enjoying a beautiful mid-summer evening.
Please bring a dish to share as well as your own beverage, and blanket or lawn chair. A grill will be available, so bring charcoal if you would like to barbecue. No alcohol is allowed in the park and dogs must be on a leash at all times.
Bring your family and friends, and if you are looking for a Neighbors for Peace group to be a part of, this is the place to be.
Saturday, September 29, 2007
Rondo Community Outreach Library, 461 North Dale Street (at University Avenue), St. Paul
Learn from Army of None authors and trainers Aimee Allison and David Solnit how the military and the media are influencing young minds and how you can organize an effective counter-recruitment campaign in your community or school.
About Army of None
Every day in the United States, military recruiters enter the halls of high schools equipped with a goodie bag of promises and free copies of the U.S. Army's official new video game, America's Army. Assurances of non-combat positions and college money made largely to teens of color and low-income communities rarely materialize upon real-life service.
Army of None is a comprehensive guide to counter-recruitment campaigns—from personal counseling to legislative change to direct action. More hands-on and sustainable than other antiwar activities, the counter-recruitment movement offers a provocative vision for the future and has the potential to create deep positive social change and de-militarize our schools, country, and the world at large.
Army of None is an unprecedented and practical resource for activists, containing compelling photos and artwork, spoken word, sample fact sheets, how-to guides, lobbying directions, resource lists, and ideas for direct action. It provides a frightening look into the world of military recruitment that everyone in the United States should know about, and the hopeful stories, inspiration, and tools necessary to do something about it.
About the Authors/Trainers
Anti-war, global justice and arts organizer David Solnit was a main organizer in the WTO protests in Seattle in 1999 and in San Francisco the day after Iraq was invaded in 2003. He is the editor of Globalize Liberation: How to Uproot the System and Build a Better World.
After serving four years as a combat medic in the Army Reserves, Aimee Allison earned an honorable discharge as a conscientious objector during the Persian Gulf War. She now serves on the steering committee of San Francisco's College Not Combat Initiative.
Free and open to the public. Donations accepted.
Monday, October 29, 2007
Macalester College, Campus Center, John B. Davis Lecture Hall
1600 Grand Avenue , St. Paul, MN
• How does our health care system fail patients and providers alike?
• What are health care systems in other countries really like?
• What reforms are being pursued in Minnesota and other states?
• How would the plans proposed by leading 2008 presidential candidates really work?
Merriam Park Neighbors for Peace invites you to a panel presentation by:
Sen. John Marty, Minnesota state senator since 1987, current chair of the Senate Health Policy Committee and author of the current Minnesota Health Care Act reform bill.
Elizabeth Frost, M.D., family practitioner at La Clinica serving predominantly uninsured patients and co-founder of the MN chapter of Physicians for a National Health Plan.
John Schwarz, M.A., health system analyst for over 10 years, director of the progressive health policy think-tank United Health System, and a member of the Minnesota Legislature Single-Payer Working Group.
Joel Clemmer, M.A., longtime community activist who has led health reform community outreach efforts with the Minnesota Universal Health Care Coalition and the DFL Progressive Caucus.
The panel discussion will be moderated by Elizabeth Dickinson, and a question and answer period will follow the presentation.
This event is free and open to the public.
More Information & Flyers
Click here to download and print a PDF flyer for this event.
For further information call (651) 647-0580 or visit www.mppeace.org/health.
Sunday, December 23, 2007
Corner of Snelling and Summit Avenues, St. Paul
Bring a candle and join neighbors from throughout the Twin Cities to quietly witness for peaceful solutions to world problems.
After the vigil, warm up and socialize at a local Grand Avenue restaurant or coffee shop (to be determined).
If you can't attend the vigil, light a candle in your window for peace and be with us in spirit.
Click here to view and print a flyer for this event.
Krista Menzel or Anne Benson at firstname.lastname@example.org, (651) 641-7592, or (651) 647-0580.
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