Urgent: week of November 26

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Messages which absolutely need to be seen today due to time constraints or breaking news. Remember to check the"new answers" link for the most active topics. This topic will run for a week, and then we will start a new dated "urgent" file.

-- Anonymous, November 26, 2000


A Thanksgiving reminder from Daniel L. Greenberg, president of the Legal Aid Society: "As America sits down to its Thanksgiving dinners, we would do well to remember that the Pilgrims were the first boat people. They came here unwanted, and immediately went on food assistance. Today, our most family-oriented national holiday celebrates the generosity of those Americans already here toward the newly arrived illegal aliens."

-- Anonymous, November 26, 2000

Tobe, I came in just at the end of your discussion with the "Not in our town" woman and was awfully tired, so I don't have any insight there. But I believe she did take your card, right?

I found this link to a piece on talking about diversity to be a very thoughtful one, and describes a lot of the pitfalls we've encountered in the discourse on this local issue.

I've emailed Tom Rosato about this article by Tom Atlee, whose work I first encountered when doing Y2k research. I think it is not only an exciting seed to plant for the way he could run his Board candidacy, but presents useful ways for us to look at the issues differently. I urge you to explore the Co-Intelligence site.

I had an interesting talk recently with Betsy Stang of the Wittenberg Center, who is involved very heavily these days in world interfaith work, much of it involving the UN. She remarked that from what she had seen doing local interfaith work, that the local churches are still at the "Diversity 101" level of awareness of diversity issues, and that we have to realize that and remember that they just aren't aware or used to dealing with some of the levels of consciousness about diversity and tolerance issues that we may take for granted. Means we have to deal with them from where they are, not where we'd hope they'd be.

-- Anonymous, November 26, 2000

Thanks, Carol, for the link to Tom Atlee. What he talks about sounds like something we need badly in our community. Tobe: is this a template for the community dialog we spoke of? What about Rabbi Klingler's ecumenical group?

-- Anonymous, November 26, 2000

Thanks for the thoughtful links, Carol. Curry and I have initiated a conversation with Jonathan Kligler from the Woodstock Jewish Congregation and we hope to be invited to the next gathering of local Woodstock clergy (about 8 person total) where we will present the idea on THEIR sponsoring a project to reach out to all members of the community (!) including other clergy around the district in hopes of sponsoring a community dialogue on diversity, etc. It's our feeling that if STAND were to sponsor a community meeting (or series of meetings) we would get a low response because we are already perceived as having a "side" to take.

Perhaps if the clergy will agree to take on the task, they as a group, can pull in all (or many) viewpoints in a first step or series of steps towards some kind of community "reconciliation." Worth a try? I think so...If we actually get to go to their luncheon, we'll report back what the feeling is...any thoughts to carry with us are very, very helpful.

I don' think this gets in the way of our sponsoring a program like showing "Not in our Town", etc., but broadens the outreach to all parts of ther district.

Carol, the woman did take my card...hope she gets in touch.


-- Anonymous, November 26, 2000

Yes, I think that the Woodstock (and other) clergy need to be the ones to initiate this, we don't have much community leverage at present. You could even let them think it is their idea... Get through as much of the Atlee material as you can, I think there are a lot of ways of thinking there that should be spread around.

When did Sergeant Nuzzo speak? Tobe's car, other two maybe Donna's and Curry's? (hmm, I still haven't heard back after 10 days from the Olive Police Commissioner I wrote to about why my report didn't get to the State Police, guess I'll have to track that down Why am I not surprised?). Was it right at the beginning, when I was still out by the front door handing out the press releases and avoiding being seen avoiding the salute to the flag? Kemble's been quite busy this week, he's also got an article on the Bennett Jazz Ensemble.

-- Anonymous, November 26, 2000

I do not recall, nor does the video tape reveal, any State police speaking at the meeting...maybe Kemble spoke to him alone?? yes, Billy boy is busy...Ed Sanders wrote a perceptive article in this week's Wood Journal and he DID reprint the entire letter and hate article as well...wish it were online...Oh well, only $1 at your favorite news-stand. Townsman had a nasty letter from Rose Taxpayer and mom Ostrander. Accused Lucia of embezzling school funds by putting her kids on Onteora bus after she had moved from the district. Lucia can fill you in, but I understand she had moved about a month before term ended and thought it was legit to finish the term in Onteora.

Heard that Doan's dance didn't get a rave crowd...too bad. Tobe PS I say if jamie and susan want to contribute here, let's bring them in...Susan is my sister-in law and jamie is a trusted friend for many many years....fresh blood and fresh ideas...

-- Anonymous, November 26, 2000

Sent an e-mail to Newsweek this a.m./ re: their miserable attempt at journalism.Frankly I was a little surprised to see such blatant bias in a national rag.MM

-- Anonymous, November 27, 2000

Almost a million years ago, in the mid 70's Newsweek did an article on communes, though not slanted, misquoted some friends of mine in such a bad way that it caused a terrible schizm with their housemates. Can we expect anything better from mainstream media?

-- Anonymous, November 27, 2000

Freeman has article on Mike Grehl's thousanddollars has a couple of acid replies.

Article on the Roundout Ganders has a mascot reply.

-- Anonymous, November 27, 2000

What do people think about STAND offering this paper to history teachers to "consider" when talking about American Indian history...???We could give it to Barbara Ruben for her to pass on...wouldn't Joe Doan love it?? Or is there a better way to spread the word?

Tobe http://www.horizons.k12.mi.us/~aim/papers/subterfugeandself.html

-- Anonymous, November 28, 2000

Article from the United Church of Christ newsletter...please share with appropriate clergy and others of faith. Tobe

No more racist sports names!

By Juanita Helphrey November 2000

In 1991, the Eighteenth General Synod passed a resolution asking the church to develop strategies for eliminating all forms of discrimination, particularly sexism and racism, in our church and society. A primary goal was to educate UCC members about the negative effects of racist and sexist stereotypes and imagery on the lives of Native Americans. Particular mention was made of the dehumanizing effects of offensive nomenclature used by professional, amateur and school athletic teams and the exploitation of Native American culture in advertising by its association with consumer products.

Increasing numbers of people support the goals of this resolution, especially among UCC folk. Other ecumenical and interfaith groups are slowly joining our efforts to eliminate this form of racism. We have seen a tremendous amount of progress in K-12 schools and colleges and universities across the country in either renaming their school teams and/or changing mascots and logos. We've seen changes in media presentations—both verbally and the written word—in that some sports announcers and newspaper reporters use only the name of the city the team is from. In some cases, they even have developed policy disallowing use of disparaging or demeaning names.

Even with this progress, we need help more support and more people willing to be more pro- active. We call upon those of you whose minds have been changed to help us change the minds of others. There are only about two million Native Americans in this country and only a few hundred who can wholeheartedly work on this issue. So if you have the heart and mind to do justice work, we have some suggestions for you:

Encourage your church to commit or recommit itself to the goals of the resolution. Advocate change in the use of offensive language, imagery and names by athletic teams in your community.

Plan educational events, demonstrations or boycotts in cities where major league teams use offensive names and/or logos.

Call the national offices of Justice and Witness Ministries 216-736-3721) for educational packets and films and for a list of names and addresses of ball teams/owners for letter writing campaigns.

Write to local universities and school districts that use Native American nicknames and mascots.

Look into education policies for public schools of your state and accreditation polices for institutions of higher education.

Seek justice in areas that may already be protected (such as use of disparaging or demeaning names or racism itself). If there is no such protection, seek amendments to laws or policies.

Refrain from wearing or purchasing anything with a disparaging name or logo—OR put a negation symbol over any that you own, and wear it.

Visit with store owners and explain how marketing such products exploits Native Americans and promotes racism.

Juanita Helphrey is Minister and Team Leader of the Racial Justice Ministry Team in Justice and Witness Ministries in the UCC's national setting. Contact her for resources on racial stereotyping at 700 Prospect Avenue, Cleveland, OH 44115-1100, phone 216/736-3721, e-mail helphreyj@ucc.org.

-- Anonymous, November 30, 2000

Meeting at 7PM (6PM for exec session) on Monday at Phoenicia school...agenda doesn't seem too interesting, but watch out for the usual surprises from the usual sources...Anyone find out if MM actually faxed the "support letter" to Celli or Donoghue on Sept. 21st like he claimed? Tobe

-- Anonymous, December 01, 2000

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