Recruitment Center Closed for Peace

A collection of photos from my lunch break on Wednesday, March 5, 2003, the day of the National Moratorium to Stop the War on Iraq.

The Santa Cruz County recruiting offices for the Army, Navy, Air Force, and Marines remained closed all day due to a large rally and civil disobedience action held outside their offices at 41st and Clares Streets in Capitola.

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Corporate Walk of Shame

On Tuesday, February 26, 2003, more than 30 people showed up in downtown Santa Cruz to express their opposition to Corporate America. Santa Cruz was one of many cities participating in a day of action to reform Starbucks. In addition to Starbucks, Borders and the Gap were also targeted on Pacific Avenue because of their significant roles in the exploitative neoliberal “hands off” global economy.

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International D.I.Y. of Action

We know that the mainstream media will not do a quality job of covering the peace movement or any other movement involving social and economic justice.

SANTA CRUZ, CA – I was delighted to see thousands of people marching from the Santa Cruz County Building to the Mission Plaza. There has not been a demonstration this large here in many years (Bruce Bratton, are you in?). I believe this is only a small taste of organized mass resistance to war in Santa Cruz.

Most of my time was spent conversing with people and distributing flyers about Santa Cruz Indymedia. Most people I spoke with were very excited to learn about Santa Cruz Indymedia. I specifically made a point to try and explain Indymedia to the hundreds of photographers and videographers that participated in the march and rally.

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Reverend James Lawson Jr’s Call for Non Violent, Direct Action

Reverend James Lawson Jr. at Santa Cruz Civic

“I say we must have a movement that brings those troops home and launch a crusade to transform our school buildings, we launch a crusade to see to it that every citizen has adequate and affordable housing, we launch a crusade to make universal health care. We need not soldiers anymore in the world. We’ve had enough of them in western history.”
— James Lawson Jr., Santa Cruz Civic Auditorium

On January 21, 2003 at the Santa Cruz Civic Auditorium, Reverend James Lawson Jr. discussed his forty plus years as an activist for civil rights and human rights during UC Santa Cruz’s annual Martin Luther King Jr. Convocation.

Selected quotes of the presentation given by Rev. James Lawson Jr., are published below.

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The Maize Maze in Mexico

NAFTA has forced millions of subsistence farmers to migrate to other parts of Mexico and the US. Before NAFTA went into effect in 1994, Mexican farmers had been protected from the inexpensive, low quality, and mass-produced corn grown in the US.

Narrative Description

The purpose of my paper is to demonstrate that corn grown in the United States has flooded into Mexico and displaced traditional Mexican agricultural workers. The Maize Maze in Mexico does not fit into one particular subject, but is rather an interdisciplinary paper with elements of anthropology, ecology, and political economy. Starting with the rich cultural traditions directly related to maize, I detail the long history and importance of maize and subsistence farming to the people of Mexico.

At the heart of this paper lie the affects that the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) has had on Mexican cultures, communities, and farming. NAFTA has forced millions of subsistence farmers to migrate to other parts of Mexico and the US. Before NAFTA went into effect in 1994, Mexican farmers had been protected from the inexpensive, low quality, and mass-produced corn grown in the US. US corn not only drives down the price of corn in Mexico, it also erodes the vast genetic diversity of maize since people can no longer afford to maintain the diversity through traditional growing methods.

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Defiant Santa Cruz Distributes Medical Marijuana

Santa Cruz citizens tell the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) to get the “Drug War” out of the Wo/Men’s Alliance for Medical Marijuana (WAMM).

Tuesday, September 17, 2002 — “Citizenship Day” — 3:00 p.m.

The energy radiating from the Santa Cruz City Hall could be felt from far away. Hundreds of people came together to express their support for the medicinal use of cannabis and the Wo/Men’s Alliance for Medical Marijuana (WAMM) in particular. Santa Cruz residents, including physicians, politicians, and caregivers, addressed today’s crowd in strong support of WAMM and the rights of California voters who passed the Compassionate Use Act of 1996.

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Beyond Biodevastation: Through the Mind and Eyes of a Demonstrator

[ Image detail from “Biodevastation” poster created by the Beehive Design Collective. ]

Sunday the 25th of June 2001 was the day the Biotechnology Industry Organization (BIO) began a conference to discuss the use of biotechnology in the future. BIO consists of representatives from the world’s largest and most influential multinational agricultural and pharmaceutical corporations, as well as some smaller national corporations. These corporations all share the desire to use biotechnology as a tool to create and patent genetically modified forms of life in their effort to make enormous profits all around the world.

In response to the BIO conference, political and social activists of all ages, well respected authors, dedicated farmers, investigative reporters, university educators, students, parents and workers joined together at a church in the Hillcrest section of San Diego and then at San Diego City College to learn from each other about the harmful repercussions of biotechnology and promote sustainable organic farming methods. The event was called Beyond Biodevastation and 2001 was the fourth year that people came together for this annual teach-in and demonstration. Many in attendance were local to San Diego, while other people traveled from the eastern United States and other countries such as India. It was wonderful to experience all the people gathered together, sharing their ideas with one another in discussions and by distributing written pamphlets, books, newspapers, bumper stickers, and t-shirts. The display of amazingly artistic murals and street theatre performances were inspiring, informative, and entertaining.

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