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Posts from August 2015

Black Lives Matter activist and Bernie Sanders
By: Greg Elliott
Published: August 19, 2015

A white person attending the Bernie Sanders' rally in Seattle last week probably understood what was happening as an unwelcome, uninvited interruption of Bernie’s attempts to speak on social programs. But in the world of Marissa Johnson and Mara Jacqueline Willaford, the two Black Lives Matter activists who took the stage, they weren’t just interrupting Bernie Sanders—they were interrupting white supremacy.

There have been a lot of great articles written on this event, and I encourage you to read as many of them as possible, including...

By: Sara Z. E. Hughes
Published: August 14, 2015

Sara Z.E.Hughes works as AFSC's social media specialist. Sara is an artist, filmmaker and cultural worker who uses art for social change, a tool AFSC uses in our program work in many places including two recent traveling exhibits, Boycott: The Art of Economic Activism and All of Us or None: Responses and Resistance to Militarism. This piece explores several artists who effectively use different media to work for social justice. As we work to change narrative around militarism and racism, art can be a critical...

By: Mike Merryman-Lotze
Published: August 10, 2015

Though this piece, an exploration of working within an anti-racist framework in all work against oppression, but particularly in the movement to end the occupaton of Palestinian territory, is a personal statement by Mike Merryman-Lotze, it does reflect AFSC's organizational position with regard to this issue. Update, Sept. 7, 2016: Alison Weir wrote a response to this blog postWhile the American Friends Service Committee (AFSC) is a member of the US Campaign to...

By: Sahar Vardi
Published: August 7, 2015

In this piece Sahar Vardi reflects in journal form on the recent stabbing of a young woman at a Gay Pride protest in Tel Aviv (the young woman has subsequently died) and the arson attack on a Palestinian home that left a toddler burned to death. Sahar is AFSC's Israel program coordinator based in Jerusalem. - Lucy

July 30th

10 years ago I went to my first pride parade in Jerusalem. I was a 15 year old girl, still figuring out my own identity, still figuring out what my community was, but very much clear on...

Hiroshima aftermath
By: Michiko Kodama
Published: August 5, 2015

Joseph Gerson, Director of Regional Programs in the Northeast Region of AFSC, attended the commemorations of the 70th anniversary of the dropping of bombs on Hirshima and Nagasaki in 2015. In his work for the abolition of nuclear weapons, he has come to know a number of Hibakusha, survivors of the first nuclear war. He invited one of them to offer a reflection for this 70th remembrance. Michiko Kodama wrote this moving testimony and calls for abolition of what she calls, "weapons of the devil." - Lucy

I am a Hibakusha, a victim of the first nuclear war in history. The...