Events of the past few months have exposed deep racist inequities with life and death consequences. COVID-19’s disproportionate death tolls in communities of color and the continued blatant police and extrajudicial killings of black people reached a tipping point with the murder of George Floyd on May 25. We who have been active in the peace movement must be allies and accomplices in supporting black, brown and indigenous lives and the movements these communities are leading now.
The injustices of racist policies, practices and laws are interconnected with the militarism and destructive force against other nations, wrought by our government with corporate complicity, using our tax dollars.
Massachusetts Peace Action will be hosting a series of webinars entitled “Antiracism and Peace” to explore the intersections between peace and racial justice. The series will feature local, national, and international activists, scholars, and lawmakers who will take on these issues, each with their own lens. The series begins July 23rd and will continue for the rest of the summer. A schedule is listed below:
What happened to George Floyd simply does not happen in Cuba. Why? What has been done in Cuba to uproot racism in the face of tremendous challenges including more than five decades of aggressive policies by the US including war, terrorism, and blockade? Is there no racism in Cuba today? In addition to growing up in revolutionary Cuba, Dr Gloria Caballero has researched the formation of racialized nations, the power of storytelling, and Afro-Cuban contemporary visual art. In this webinar she will address these issues from personal and academic perspectives. Co-Sponsored with the Latin America Solidarity Coalition of WMASS, and the Traprock Center for Peace and Justice. Register here.
RESCHEDULED TBA, 7:00 pm- Wars Upon Us: Black Lives Matter’s Challenge to White Supremacy and Empire
As the nationwide uprising for racial justice takes center stage in the United States, we examine the connection between white supremacy and empire and ask how to build a durable movement for liberation, nationally and internationally. Rev. Karlene Griffiths Sekou organizes with Black Lives Matter Boston. She is an international public speaker, preacher, scholar, and has over twenty-years of experience working in grassroots community organizing and development, human rights advocacy, health equity, and cultural regeneration. She will be in dialogue with Mass. Peace Action board member Jared Hicks. Co-Sponsored with Black Lives Matter Boston. Register Here.
Sunday August 9th, 7:00 pm-A Discussion on the Connections Between Black Lives Matter and the Atomic Bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki
Vincent Intondi is an Associate Professor of History, Director of the Institute for Race, Justice & Civic Engagement, and Coordinator for History and Political Science at Montgomery College in Takoma Park, Maryland. From 2009-2017, Dr. Intondi was Director of Research for American University’s Nuclear Studies Institute in Washington, DC. He is the author of the book, African Americans Against the Bomb: Nuclear Weapons, Colonialism, and the Black Freedom Movement with Stanford University Press. He holds a PhD in history from American University. In this webinar, he will discuss the connections between Black Lives Matter and the atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki. Sponsored by Maryland Peace Action. Register here.
Locally, in Boston, the vast majority of the highest paid public employees are part of law enforcement, with 530 officers having higher salaries than Mayor Walsh. At the state level, the comprehensive Reform- Shift- Build Act is being pushed through the state legislature to take on the power of the police. But with budgets so large, will these reforms help? The problem is not over-policing, it is policing itself, argues professor Alex Vitale, author of The End of Policing, who will discuss his research on why we need to defund the police and how we can get there. The webinar will be moderated by board member Rev. Vernon Walker. Register here.
America’s obsession with private prisons and all of their human rights violations began as a transition from slavery. Today US prisons, both public and private, incarcerate more people than any other country. Andrea James, a formerly incarcerated woman, founder of both Families for Justice as Healing and the National Council for Incarcerated and Formerly Incarcerated Women and Girls, will be speaking from both a personal and activist point of view. Andrea James will be joined by Professor Amilcar Shabazz, who teaches history and Africana Studies in the W. E. B. Du Bois Department of Afro-American Studies. Amilcar will address the issue of the urgent need for reparations for the descendants of African slaves in the Caribbean and the US.