Professor George Lakey produced a video this summer drawing on the Global Nonviolent Action Database for a new curriculum being developed by the United Nations Institute for Training and Development (UNITAR) in Geneva, Switzerland. The video outlines three different applications of nonviolent action/civil resistance.
Advising is coming up, and Prof. George Lakey will be offering a new course in Peace and Conflict Studies for Fall 2013!
SECURITY AND DEFENSE: NONVIOLENT STRATEGIES
PEAC 040 / SOAN 040 H
Threats to security exist on many levels: environment, community, nation, human rights, and others. People naturally mobilize for defense, but often choose among a very narrow set of options. This course broadens the framework to focus on modes of nonviolent defense which have had concrete application sometimes involving millions of people, but which remain “off the radar” of most strategic analysis.
The course will learn from cases of successful nonviolent defense of nations, communities, environmental resources, and human rights under threat. Students will research and write “forgotten cases” for publication in the Global Nonviolent Action Database, giving them experience with the data of civilian resistance. They will also take an example of threat in today’s world and begin to explore how a nonviolent strategy could be devised given the circumstances. Through these activities students will gain research skills and broaden their view of the dynamics of struggle.
I come from Bangor, a Pennsylvania slate mining town, and identify with the hard work, strong community, and bonding with nature in my heritage. When I visit Appalachian people I see those same qualities, but I also see the horror of beloved mountains blown up, cancer rates rising, and jobs lost.
I’m sad to imagine what it’s like to have your water and air contaminated by poisons, your town on the skids, the jobs disappearing, and 500 mountains destroyed while more mountains are on the kill list.
I was proud to join others in starting the Earth Quaker Action Team (EQAT) in 2010 with its first campaign targeting PNC Bank: Bank Like Appalachia Matters!PNC is one of the major funders of mountain top removal coal mining.
I also figured that I was doing something for the future of my four great-grandkids, who will join the miners in the catastrophes of climate change if PNC and our country don’t convert to renewable energy.
In the beginning of this year I was led to step up my own commitment. I felt called to walk to Pittsburgh to challenge directly the corporate CEO of PNC Bank: “Why would you rather fundfewer jobs – while blowing up mountains and spreading cancer – than fund more jobs for clean wind power from those same mountains?”
EQAT supported my calling, and is initiating the
Green Walk for Jobs and Justice
Start: April 30 in Philadelphia, walking 200 miles of the route
Arrive: May 16, at PNC Bank’s headquarters in Pittsburgh
Stops at PNC branches along the way.
Please sponsor me on this walk, and join me for part of the Walk or events along the route if you can. Financial sponsors are needed to make the Walk possible.
I also want to know from bank officials: “If PNC calls the destruction of Appalachia ‘responsible banking,’ why should any of us do business with you?” I pledge to close my account in PNC on June 1 if it does not promise to stop funding mountain top removal coal mining.
The Earth Quaker Action Team (eqat.org) is committed to Shining the Light on PNC Bank’s investments in companies that practice mountaintop removal coal mining — a practice that has devastated Appalachian communities, causing increased rates of poverty, unemployment, health symptoms, cancer and birth defects.
George Lakey,Lang Research Fellow and Visiting Professor of Peace and Conflict Studies, along with about seven other core walkers from EQAT, will be making the 200 mile journey on foot, holding nonviolent actions at PNC Banks and collecting Green Your Money pledges from consumers who are ready to move their accounts.
Quakers practice a Testimony of Simplicity that is embodied in their “Leading” to walk across the state of Pennsylvania for an end to mountaintop removal. The goal is to build a statewide movement of people of conscience. The walkers will be meeting with Quaker Meetings, allied congregations, fracking organizations, student groups, and others along the route who share an interest in helping PNC become the “Green Bank” it claims to be.
Their schedule is as follows:
Depart from Philadelphia: Monday, April 30, 2012
Day of Action In Harrisburg: Monday, May 7
Arrival in Pittsburgh: Tuesday, May 15
Final Day Of Action: PNC Headquarters, Pittsburgh: Wednesday, May 16
Earth Quaker Action Tea will secure logistics, hospitality, and events for the walkers, and invite all interested Friends and friends of Friends to walk alongside the walkers for any length of time — and to join them during their days of action.
Occupy protesters were evicted in Philadelphia and Los Angeles overnight. We’ll get an update on the latest news of the confrontations between protesters and police and we’ll take stock of the Occupy movement, what it’s done and failed to do, how it fits into U.S. political mainstream and social movement history, and how it doesn’t, and the messages the campaign has sought to project vs. the message we in the media have conveyed vs. the messages received by the public at large. Joining us in studio is GEORGE LAKEY, longtime nonviolence activist, founder of Training for Change and research associate at Swarthmore College’s Lang Center for Civic and Social Responsibility. And we’ll also hear from WILL MARSHALL, president and founder of the Progressive Policy Institute, a leading intellectual of the American centrist left and a critic of the Occupy movement. And finally, we’ll hear from MATTATHIAS SCHWARTZ, a writer whose examination of the roots and dynamics of the Occupy movement, “Pre-Occupied,” was published in this week’s The New Yorker.