[pjw] REPORT BACK: Popular opinion-No war! Friday rally #63 under (modified) stay-at-home orders

Peace and Justice Works pjw at pjw.info
Sat Jun 5 16:11:17 EDT 2021

PJW supporters

First off, I spent much of Friday's rally thinking about Tom, a member of 
the IAG who helped out at/ attended several of our demonstrations, came to 
meetings and assisted with mailings who died this past Sunday after a year 
of health issues. We will miss him.

A combination of nice weather, loosening pandemic restrictions, and 
Portland quirkiness led to a very high level of support for the five of us 
who participated in yesterday's Friday Rally for Peace and Justice. Seeing 
as there are still orders to stay masked up and distanced on public 
transportation, we're continuing to do so for the time being.

In addition to many, many drivers who honked as they saw the rally, a bevy 
of bicyclists participating in Portland's decentralized "Pedalpalooza" 
rode by and thanked us for being there. Two out of towners stopped to ask 
about the event. The first, from Tampa, FL said their movement isn't 
organized enough to have weekly rallies but appraciated us being there. 
The second, from Washington, DC, took photos of us to prove that not every 
protest in Portland is about setting downtown on fire. Also, a Palestinian 
woman thanked us especially for the sign expressing support for 
Palestinian rights.

Here's what we talked about at this week's event:

--A recent poll shows that concerns about "terrorism" have fallen from 
people's #1 concern to #6, just behind #5 ending the endless wars. So, the 
long arc of history bends toward our ongoing efforts.


--In Afghanistan, the US may end up having an excuse to stay if a report 
by 18 countries in the United Nations saying the Taliban is still working 
with Al Qaeda turns out to be (a) influential and (b) true.


--The US admits to having killed only 23 civilians in its many bombings of 
various countries (Iraq, Syria, Somalia, Afghanistan) in 2020, but the NGO 
Airwars says it is at least 102 (which still seems low).


--In Iraq, the US is mulling how to defend against/respond to drone 
strikes against their bases. As noted before, part of the slow response is 
because nobody's been killed. Another reason is, ironically for the 
country that started the drone wars, it's hard to protect against drones.


--In semi-related news, last year an autonomous drone hunted down and 
killed a human without being directed to do so. Welcome to Skynet! (That's 
a reference to the Terminator, where robots develop into killing machines)


--In its ongoing efforts to rile up new Cold / hot wars with China and 

---the US Air Force is asking to ditch the bombs it uses against ISIS and 
get more they can use against China.


---and led by the US on our Memorial Day, NATO aircraft flew over all 30 
NATO countries on Monday as a show of strength against Russia.


In local news, a woman who was twerking in a bike lane during a protest in 
2019 had hear case heard by the Citizen Review Committee. While they 
couldn't prove her arrest was improper, that excessive force was used or 
that the woman was racially profiled, they did vote to add debriefings to 
all the findings so that the three officers who charged her with 
Disorderly Conduct might get talked to. In addition they recommended that 
one of the officers be disciplined for writing that the woman was the only 
person standing in the street (she wasn't) and that no force was used 
(even though it's clear the officers at least put their hands on her and 
pushed her arms up to cuff her).


When we got tot he part of the march where we talk about Israel/Palestine, 
I noted that even though President Biden already promised to replenish 
Israel's "Iron Dome" defense missiles, 55 House members (from both 
parties) wrote a letter asking to send even more military aid.


In the final block, talking about money for human needs not war, I relayed 
the information that "ending" the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan is "only" 
expected to save $3.2 billion next year, which is miniscule compared to 
the Trillions spend on the wars and the $700B+ defense budget. Hopefully 
that money will be spend on healthcare, housing, the enviroment and 
infrstructure... but they'll probably just use it to "fight" China and 

We finally got around to a multi-part experiment to see why the Ann 
Huntwork Peace Memorial Sign keeps freezing up and going out. Here's 
what we learned:

1--It's not that the generator is turning off; a cliplight plugged in to 
the second outlet kept shining even when the sign shut off.

2--Shielding the sign in foil offers some protection from whatever's 
causing the problem; foil taped to the back of the sign appears to have 
kept it from turning off at the Gucci store (SW 4th/Morrison) but didn't 
stop it from freezing up/shutting off around the corner at Pioneer Place 
Mall/the closed MAX station (SW Yahmill between 4th/5th). We also put foil 
over part of the power cord.

3--Using an actual energy detection device, there may be some kind of low 
level electromagnetic field there, but honestly the sign itself puts out a 
larger wave and there didn't seem to be a spike in the places the sign 
shut down.

So, more investigating to do.

Oh, I also used the rally, the wagon, and the Ann Huntwork sign to promote 
our upcoming June 24 livestream event with David Swanson, which we sent 
info about earlier this week.


We continue to invite folks to join us at the corner of SW Yamhill and 
Broadway any Friday at 5 PM. It is not only spiritually uplifting to 
promote peace, but also to feel so appreciated. The Governor is expecting 
more COVID restrictions to ease by the end of this month... but only show 
up if you feel comfortable doing so.

dan handelman
peace and justice works iraq affinity group

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