Popular Resistance Newsletter – Uniting Our Struggles
This was a busy week for Popular Resistance on a number of fronts. We are working with a coalition of net neutrality advocates to continue to pressure the FCC. Yesterday, an FCC spokesperson stated that more than a million public comments are not enough to make them reclassify the net as a common carrier.
Click here to tell the FCC to listen to the people directly by holding regional hearings before they make their decision. It takes less than a minute to sign. Then forward the link to people who want an Internet with equal access for all.
The Internet is a fundamental tool in the struggle for justice. As we will explain below, it is changing the power structure in favor of the people and must be preserved as a public commons. This is the message that activists delivered this week at two Obama fundraisers in California.
There are ongoing efforts to control the Internet and restrict access and sadly, leading civil rights group sold out their constituents by siding with the telecom fat cats. Giant Telecoms are jockeying to further monetize the Internet so that people can only access content based on what they can afford. Another effort is to prohibit public providers of Internet service. In the US, Giant Telecoms provide poorer and more expensive service than small independent providers, and the best and least expensive Internet service is from municipal providers. Once we save net neutrality, the next step is to remove barriers to municipal Internet.
Democratized Media Exposes Pro-Israeli Propaganda
One of the reasons that an equal Internet threatens the Plutocrats is that it prevents them from lying to and manipulating the public. The growing democratized citizen’s media and direct communication through social media allow us to share information directly outside of the control of the corporate-militarist propaganda machine.
The citizen’s media has been instrumental in exposing the lies about the Israeli attack on Gaza. As Dylan Byers writes, the citizen’s media allows people to share stories directly and
“Corporate media representatives on the ground also respond quickly on social media sometimes getting themselves into controversy. If the network reacts and removes the journalist it creates an immediate reaction that spreads rapidly through the social media and undermines the credibility of the media outlet.”
Palestinian Professor Mazin Qumsiyeh describes the distress that he and others are feeling. We added a video interview to his piece by a student living in Gaza. Ynet, an Israeli outlet that publishes independent journalists, broke the story of the Israeli student union ‘war room’ where 400 volunteers spread Israeli propaganda around the globe. And this week, MSNBC was exposed for dropping a frequent guest because she questioned their coverage of the attack.
The world continues to send the message to Israel to stop the attack and to the US to stop supporting it. This week, members of Veterans for Peace protested at the Israeli Embassy in Washington, DC, Jews occupied the Israeli Army Support Office in New York and peace activists pushed the Bellingham City Council to vote on a resolution against the attack on Gaza. Even Israeli Reservists are stepping out and refusing to participate. And on August 2, a national march is being planned in Washington, DC.
Efforts to stop protests are failing in this case and in others. For example, even though pro-Palestinian protests were banned in France, people continued to march and rally in Paris. And the organizers of the yearly vigil at the School of the Americas in Fort Benning, GA say that the refusal to give them a permit this year will not stop them. Please join them in telling the sheriff to grant the permit.
It’s Time to Clean Up The Mines!
Popular Resistance and the Clean Up The Mines! Team had a successful week in Washington, DC. Clean Up The Mines! was launched on Earth Day this year to raise awareness of “America’s Secret Fukushima,” the more than ten thousand abandoned uranium mines throughout the US that are poisoning our land, air and water and causing high rates of cancer, birth defects and disease. This week, the Navajo Nation Tribal Council voted to prevent uranium mining on their lands as they continue to push for effective cleanup of the hundreds of abandoned mines in Arizona and New Mexico.
The nuclear industry is pushing hard to position itself as a solution to the climate crisis, but nuclear energy is too dirty, too expensive and too dangerous. We must not be fooled by their greenwashing. There is a lot of misinformation about nuclear energy and its risks. This week, International Physicians for the Prevention of Nuclear War (IPPNW) published their report on Fukushima which exposes the flaws in the United Nation’s report. And a physician from Tokyo describes the extent of radiation-related illnesses that he saw which caused him to move away and declare that Tokyo is uninhabitable. Of course, we cannot rely on our own Nuclear Regulatory Commission to protect the public’s interest. Right now, one of the commissioners continues to be a voting member although he has been hired by a pro-nuclear organization.
And to Converge Our Movements to Mitigate Climate Change
The climate is a ticking time bomb and it is up to us to stop it. We must end the era of extreme energy extraction and move to real renewables such as wind, solar, tidal and geothermal. It can be done quickly but so far, it is not happening fast enough.
We applaud efforts by many people across the nation who are organizing and mobilizing to stop fossil fuel expansion. Every week there are actions and victories. This week there were actions to stop fracking and pipelines in Texas, Vermont and Tennessee. In Utah, twenty-one people were arrested blockading the excavation of the first tar sands mine in the United States. And South Portland passed a law blocking the export of tar sands bitumen from their port.
We also need to come together to create a people-powered movement of movements to act with intention to end extreme energy extraction and create a carbon-free, nuclear-free future. One opportunity to further build such a movement will be in New York City this September. Many groups are organizing a Peoples Climate March on September 21 just before the United Nations meets on climate. We are working with a number of groups to create a Climate Convergence on the 19 and 20. There will be space to talk about the obstacles we all face in our sub-movements for health, worker rights, racial justice and more and solutions to these crises. And there will be space to network and plan steps to build stronger movements.
Please join Popular Resistance at the NYC Climate Convergence or plan a solidarity event in your area if you can’t make it. Contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org if you are interested in organizing a group to come to New York or a solidarity event at home.
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