Scott Ritter 10/14; HCC Students+Police Brutality; 10/2 PeacePagoda; 10/6-Radiation Risks-Ernest Sternglass; 10/7 DU film; 10/8 Conf inCambridge; 10/10-Congress Gone Fishin!

Oct. 2 is Gandhi’s birthday.
Traprock Peace Center, 103A Keets Rd, Deerfield, MA 01342
http://traprockpeace.org

Wonderful photographs are now posted of the march on Washington to stop the war against Iraq. “COLLEGE, NOT Combat!” And also photos of Civil resistance at the White House on Monday.

Today we celebrate and appreciate Catherine Donaghy for heroic work answering questions about four buses headed for DC. Thanks to volunteers from 4 states and DC who worked at the NO DU booth. What tremendous dedication. Thanks to donors who helped.

Today we fondly remember Charlotte Kitownski, a dear friend and activist, who died after a car accident in Windsor, VT. Once she helped stop a major interstate from coming through a beautiful wilderness in Connecticut. We heard her inspiring story on International Women’s Day.

NEWS HIGHLIGHTS

1. Yesterday, Sept. 29, 2005, HCC Student Demonstration Quashed by Police Full details in a letter to Dr. William Messner, President of Holyoke Community College, below from Members of the Anti War Coalition at Holyoke Community College.

Please see below.*

2. Scott Ritter’s talk “War against Iran,” originally slated for tonight, is rescheduled for 7PM Friday, OCTOBER 14, at the Jones Library in Amherst, MA. Please consider the most a) effective, b) ustainable, and c) creative ways you can help prevent another full-blown war. Make reservations by mail now or online soon for a dinner at 5PM. Thanks for contributing. Movement work
requires investment of our energies, and our dollars to make big changes.

3. Sunday, Oct. 2, Gandhi’s birthday and 20th Anniversary Celebration at the Leverett Peace Pagoda! 100 Cave Hill Road, Leverett, MA. Boston City Council Member Chuck Turner will speak. He speaks echoing Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and is an advocate for human rights who strongly opposes the construction of a Level 4 bioweapons lab among the poor in Roxbury, MA. Bring your letter of gratitude for friends at the Pagoda, photos for inclusion in a scrap book, or offers to help finish construction of their temple, replacing one burned to the ground about 14 years ago!

4. Thursday, Oct. 6, Radiation Health Risks, Downwinders in the Nuclear Age! At 6:30 PM, Dr. Ernest Sternglass speaks at All Soul’s Church, 399 Main Street at Hope and Main, across from the Greenfield Courthouse and Public Library. Sternglass will show many transparencies on the incidence of breast cancers, cancer deaths, autism, etc. A room will be available for children’s activities, including making ‘tooth fairies’. Discussion follows on how to prevent the dangerous increase in risks proposed at the Vernon reactor. Thanks to All Souls for co-sponsoring this
important event. How do you want to help prevent instituting an 18-second melt-down margin between emergency shut down and the beginning of a melt-down. Please announce this event to school nurses, physicians, health and safety officials, teachers, bus drivers, nursing home and medical attendants.

… REFUSE TO BE A RADIATION REFUGEE.

5. Friday, Oct. 7″The Doctor, the Depleted Uranium and the Dying Children” On Traprock’s 26th Anniversary of incorporation as a not-for-profit, this stunning documentary made for German Public Television will be shown Friday, at the Media Education Foundation, 60 Masonic Street, in downtown Northampton, MA, by the Northampton Committee to End the War Against Iraq.
Frances Crowe and colleagues discuss what each of us can do now to end the brutal use of toxic and radioactive waste in ammunition. (This film is available for purchase for home use only, and we invite groups to co-sponsor public viewings which require $2/person contributions. This documentary will shown Oct. 8 at the Taos Mountain Film Festival as their favored film on DU, deadly, ‘depleted’ uranium.)

6. Saturday, Oct. 8, 11AM – 4PM Bring Our National Guard Home Now: a state-wide campaign to bring the Massachusetts National Guard home from Iraq, Organizing Meeting in Cambridge, 11 am, October 8, 2005, FEATURING: A panel of Military Families Speak Out members including Nancy Lessin, Charlie Richardson and MA National Guard Families and Interactive workshops, at the Cambridge Friends School, 5 Cadbury Road, Cambridge. See complete details, three strategies to be discussed and contact info for organizers on our calendar at
http://www.traprockpeace.org/calendar

7. Monday, October 10, may be the anniversary of those remarkable remarks by Senator Byrd, as he spoke in the US Senate, paraphrased here … “If you sign this piece of rag (skirting direct responsibility for declaring war on Iraq) you might as well hang a sign over Congress … ‘GONE FISHIN’!!'” Where is Congress as the blood flows, dark and red? Please consider where you might stand with a sign this holiday, to help end war, and rebuild everywhere.

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*To Dr. William Messner, Pres. of Holyoke Com. College,

We are writing to express our deep outrage at the events of September
29, when campus police assaulted peaceful student protesters and
sprayed one student with mace.

Approximately thirty activists, many of them members of Holyoke
Community College‚s Anti War Coalition, exercising their First
Amendment rights to “assemble and petition government for redress of
grievances,” participated in a planned, peaceful picket of Army
National Guard recruiters in the lobby of the college cafeteria.  This
was a diverse group of students, black, white, latino, gay, straight,
men and women, united in peaceful and vocal opposition to US policy in
Iraq, the spending priorities of the US political system, and the
College’s hypocrisy in giving preferential, and we believe illegal,
access to military recruiters whose enlistment policies bar gays and
lesbians– in violation of the college’s own anti-discrimination
policies. Furthermore, we believe that the college‚s policies violate
Massachusetts laws that prohibit discrimination on the basis of sexual
orientation.

Students at HCC are encouraged to voice their opinions, and yet in this
case, when students did exactly that, they became the victims of police
brutality.  Students who had passed through the cafeteria at 7:30AM
noted then that the police were already present ˜even though recruiters
were not scheduled to begin tabling until 10AM.  

The police assault on the students began when one student standing in
front of Officer Landry held aloft with both hands a hand-lettered,
poster board sign reading „Cops are hypocrites.‰  The sign had no stick
attached to it.   At that point, Peter Mascaro, head of Campus
Security, reached over Officer Landry‚s head, snatched the sign from
the student‚s hands, saying „That is inappropriate!‰    In surprise the
student tried to reach for his sign.  At this point the campus police,
led by Officer Landry, assaulted the student.  Mr. Mascaro ordered
Officer Landry, „Let him go.‰   Officer Landry heatedly replied „Are
you serious?‰ The police officer‚s inappropriate grabbing of the sign
constituted the battery.

Three other officers joined Officer Landry in grabbing each of the
student‚s limbs and hoisted him off the ground.  Other students
instinctively tried to protect the student being assaulted.  When the
officers lost their grip on the student, he backed away and raised his
hands in the air indicating his non-violent posture.  At approximately
that moment, Officer Landry maced a different student, one who was not
doing anything or making any gestures to do anything at the time.

Both of the students who were battered by campus police are upstanding
members of the HCC community.  One is a tutor in the CAPS Center. The
other received the David James Taylor Excellence in Philosophy Award,
is Vice President for Academic Affairs on the Student Senate, is a
member of the College‚s Learning Communities Committee, and is a
frequent contributor to the student newspaper.  Several of the
activists involved observed that the student who was maced had
consistently played a moderating role in the protest.

As the assault was taking place, approximately a dozen College
Republicans were moving forward, pumping their fists in the air,
shouting and encouraging the Officers on. It should be noted that the
Officer Scott Landry (HCC Badge Number 4), the officer who used mace on
the student, is also an Advisor to the College Republican Club at HCC. 
Throughout the morning, the campus police force ignored the activities
of the College Republicans and were only deployed against the
protesters. 

At approximately this time college officials appear to have called
local and State Police, and  at least twenty state police arrived in
riot gear and gas masks. Officer  Landry looked at one of the
protesters and, observing that he was wearing a button reading “Lesbian
and Gay Liberation,” loudly uttered an obviously homophobic taunt: 
“He’ll have fun in jail.”  As Officer Landry is an employee of the
college, we believe that his taunt constituted illegal and actionable
discrimination under Massachusetts laws. 

By this time, the protesting students were trying to peacefully
disperse and attend to the traumatized students who had been battered
by campus police.  Riot police amassed in the cafeteria with boxes
labeled “gas masks.”

We want to know the if the police were preparing to deploy gas in the
cafeteria˜a place where there were many students, cafeteria workers,
and some children present.

With riot police threateningly lined up in the stairwell, groups of
students hostile to the protesters surrounded and came close to rioting
against the small crowd who had left the building and were trapped in
the courtyard outside.

During this time, one student reports that he went to get a drink of
water in the student lounge and ten to fifteen police in full riot gear
pointed their guns at the student and said “we’re not letting anyone in
or out of here.”

We demand 1) an immediate, unconditional public apology from the
college; 2) a pledge of non-retaliation against the activists involved;
3) a thorough and impartial investigation into these incidents; and
finally, 4) that the military recruiters not be allowed back to our
college,  as their actions and those of the military discriminate
against people based on their sexual orientation, in violation of
Massachusetts law and college policy. Furthermore, the military is
engaging in an economic draft against working class and poor people in
an attempt to buttress this nation‚s illegal war against Iraq. 

Thank You,
Members of the Anti War Coalition at Holyoke Community College

(To peace workers getting this email, please call Holyoke Community
College to register your concerns.)
HCC Main Number     1-413-552-2600
President Messner      1-413-552-2222

————————————–
Underlying other news of the day this question remains:
What wouldn’t you do to prevent a melt-down?

Background:
The Vernon, Vermont reactor is just 15 miles from here.
In June the Vermont legislature gave away the store, and linked
payments for new radioactive waste storage on the shores of
the Connecticut River to a 20% increase in power output.
No reactor we know of has achieved this much power increase.
What can you do to stop the loss of a back-up cooling pump,
increased water pressure and operating temperatures, and
the reduction of the ‘safety’ margin from emergency shut-down
to the beginning of a melt-down to only 18 seconds.
Why aren’t these details front page news, this week?

Request:
We appeal for your initiative to preserve this land, these communities
we love. Please call a reporter, editor, or media news desk, and ask your
question!

Best regards,

Sunny Miller, Executive Director, 413-773-7427
Charlie Jenks, Web Site Manager, 413 773-5188 x. 2
Peter Letson, President,

2000+ visitors daily
http://www.traprockpeace.org

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in a Neighbors’ Network to End War