November 5, 2007: This website is an archive of the former website, traprockpeace.org, which was created 10 years ago by Charles Jenks. It became one of the most populace sites in the US, and an important resource on the antiwar movement, student activism, 'depleted' uranium and other topics. Jenks authored virtually all of its web pages and multimedia content (photographs, audio, video, and pdf files. As the author and registered owner of that site, his purpose here is to preserve an important slice of the history of the grassroots peace movement in the US over the past decade. He is maintaining this historical archive as a service to the greater peace movement, and to the many friends of Traprock Peace Center. Blogs have been consolidated and the calendar has been archived for security reasons; all other links remain the same, and virtually all blog content remains intact.THIS SITE NO LONGER REFLECTS THE CURRENT AND ONGOING WORK OF TRAPROCK PEACE CENTER, which has reorganized its board and moved to Greenfield, Mass. To contact Traprock Peace Center, call 413-773-7427 or visit its site. Charles Jenks is posting new material to PeaceJournal.org, a multimedia blog and resource center.
December 1, 2004 Contact: Cynthia Brown
Phone: (919) 225-5073
GREENSBORO TRUTH AND RECONCILIATION COMMISSION BEGINS PUBLIC WORK
After nearly six months of foundational work, the Greensboro Truth and Reconciliation Commission (GTRC) is now ready to begin the public phase of its work, determining and clearly describing the truth, causes and consequences of the November 3, 1979 incident, when five people were killed and ten wounded during a public demonstration.
Since the independent commission was seated in a public ceremony on June 12, 2004, the seven commissioners have worked together to chart a road map to fulfill its Mandate. The International Center for Transitional Justice (ICTJ), which provides assistance to truth commissions throughout the world, has helped develop a detailed plan of action for the work in Greensboro. In addition, experienced leaders from the South African and Peruvian commissions have provided valuable expertise in charting a course for the Greensboro Commission’s work.
The commissioners also have spent time planning for staffing their work, supplementing available funds and locating workspace. Approximately $230,000 dollars have been secured thus far for the Commission’s work. These funds have been donated by many generous residents in Greensboro and surrounding communities, the JEHT Foundation and the Andrus Family Fund, two private foundations that have a commitment to restorative justice and community reconciliation.
The Commission now has an office in the Self-Help building in downtown Greensboro (122 North Elm Street, Suite 810). The office phone number is (336) 275-6462. Administrative, research, media, and volunteer staff for the Commission will be housed in this office. A national search for these positions is now underway and inquiries are welcome. All mail should be sent to the following address: Greensboro TRC, PO Box 20566, Greensboro, NC 27420.
In recent months, the Commission has developed a set of protocols to guide its operations, research and relation-building with the community. It also has identified several principles (identified below), which, together with the Mandate, will help ensure the full transparency and independence of the commission’s work.
Starting in January 2005, the Commission will organize frequent meetings and some public events in order to engage with the community. Testimonial statements from individuals who were involved directly or indirectly with the event will be taken by trained statement-takers starting in early 2005. Several public hearings also are planned for the spring and summer months.
At the same time that the Commission is gathering information through a public and transparent statement-taking process, a detailed and extensive analysis of court documents, newspaper articles, police reports, interview notes and other sources will be conducted by the commissioners and the staff.
By the end of 2005, the Commission expects to release a detailed report that we hope will provide new insights and findings on the events that took place, the context in which those events unfolded, and the consequence of those events on the lives of individuals and of this community. We will also offer recommendations based on our findings.
The Commission’s statement of guiding principles is as follows:
We, the members of the Greensboro Truth and Reconciliation Commission, are committed to carrying out our work in accordance with the ideals and objectives set forth in its Mandate. In this spirit, we have also adopted the following guiding principles:
a. Because we recognize that injustice anywhere affects us everywhere, we will seek the truth in all its layers and will seek to provide creative ways for all members of our community to explore their experiences and feelings, engage in fruitful dialogue, and work together in our search for both truth and reconciliation.
b. Because we enthusiastically embrace the twin principles of honesty and openness, we will work hard to assure that every part of our examination is open, fair and impartial.
c. Because we are a totally independent entity, not accountable to or dependent on any particular group or segment of our community, we will earnestly seek to hear and will honestly value everyone's story. No evidence or testimony will be rejected. In every aspect of our work we will give respect to and provide opportunity for expressions of diverse viewpoints.
d. We commit ourselves to the ideal of restorative justice, freed from the need to exact revenge or make recriminations. The work that we do, and the report that we ultimately will issue, will be inspired by the belief that divisions can be bridged, trust restored and hope rekindled.
In addition, we affirm the closing paragraph of our Mandate, which states that, “The passage of time alone cannot bring closure, nor resolve feelings of guilt and lingering trauma, for those impacted by the events of November 3, 1979. Nor can there be any genuine healing for the city of Greensboro unless the truth surrounding these events is honestly confronted, the suffering fully acknowledged, accountability established, and forgiveness and reconciliation facilitated.”
In service to the entire Greensboro community, and in accordance with the principles described above, we accept the responsibility given us.
For additional information, please contact Cynthia Brown at (919) 225-5073 or the Commission office at (336) 275-6462.
Download DOC version of press release.
December 9, 2004 - page created by Charlie Jenks