Kate Anne FOR Peace, Justice and Nonviolence ~ Weblog
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Welcome to my peace blog!

This blog is my online peace journal with information and reflection on a variety of peace topics -- personal, local, global -- as well as peace and justice related links that I find helpful and/or inspiring. For more formal information on peace, justice and nonviolence, I urge you to explore the webpages of The Fellowship of Reconciliation USA (see FOR), of which I am a member and join our New York Fellowship of Reconciliation (see NYFOR) listserv. Also, check out my alternate Peace Hugs blog as well as my links page.


"The God of Peace is never glorified by human violence."
-- Thomas Merton

"While you are proclaiming peace with your lips, be careful to have it even more fully in your heart."
-- St. Francis of Assisi

"There is no longer a choice between violence and nonviolence - there is only a choice between nonviolence and nonexistence."
-- Martin Luther King, Jr.

War is Costly, Peace is Priceless !!!
Spend money to help, not hurt, humankind

Cost of the War in Iraq
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Friday, July 30, 2004

Conventional News

Positive, upbeat, hopeful -- that was the tone of the Democratic National Convention, as caught on the radio, C-Span, and the web -- but not on the mainstream media [OUR airwaves which THEY use for free -- shame on THEM for the lack of coverage!]. Some may say more should have been said tackling the hard problems, but I can express appreciation of anyone who accentuates the positive and seeks to eliminate the negative (Let's all sing together!). While I am not comfortable with the military aspect of John Kerry's speech (and will let him know that), I was overall very pleased with his vision for a better America and am also pleased that he answered those who have proclaimed he plans to raise taxes on the middle class (NO!).

We must spread the news that audio and video of some of the good speeches are available on the web, both at Truthout's site -- http://www.truthout.org/dnc04.shtml and at John Kerry's site -- http://www.johnkerry.com -- These also include speeches by Nobel Prize winner Jimmy Carter and Teresa Heinz Kerry (inspiring -- do see it) and Barack Obama, but I would love to know if and where the audios and/or videos of those of Dennis Kucinich and Al Sharpton are on the web. Dennis has the transcript on his site but his presentation was magnificent. And of course, Rev. Al was Rev. Al and worth hearing.

So now we await the Republican convention and see how they present themselves. And we will be out there, en masse, on August 29th to protest the Bush agenda (and remind Kerry we oppose war). How will they respond? We shall see -- but in the meantime there is much work to be done. Please see the ACTION page on this site or go directly to the United for Peace and Justice site -- http://unitedforpeace.org and do whatever you can for peace, justice AND nonviolence -- thanks!

Blessings & peace hugs,
Kate Anne
8:30 am edt

Thursday, July 22, 2004

Making more Whoopi COMMENTS

Slim-Fast has contacted me -- See the letters below -- But I am not buying. We must hold them accountable, and not simply forgive and forget, however our liberal progressive hearts would like to do so. For sure the Far Right would NOT. If it makes you feel better, forgive -- but don't buy Slim-Fast.

===> My response and their original letter:

Dear Ms. Eckler,

If Ms. Goldberg's comments on her own time cost her the Slim-Fast position because you bowed to Far Right pressure, then her freedom of speech is hampered -- so you are wrong.

I will continue to boycott Slim-Fast and avoid any product that has any attachment to your company AND urge others to do likewise. When I see any progressive, thoughtful, and/or Democratic friend having anything to do with your products, I will tell them to "Remember Whoopi". Furthermore, I will also ask stores I frequent to avoid your products and do anything I can to cause you the economic hardship you thought you would avoid by firing Ms. Goldberg.

Pressure can be a two-way tool. Slim-Fast must realize that by bowing to pressure from the Bushites you have crossed the line and must be held responsible for YOUR actions. Don't just tell me that it doesn't matter. It matters.

Most sincerely,
Kate Anne
Sunnyside, New York

-----Original Message-----
From: Kathi Eckler <keckler@slimfast.com>
Sent: Jul 21, 2004 6:27 PM
Subject: Slim-Fast response

July 21, 2004

Thank you for contacting us to share your comments about our relationship with Ms. Goldberg. We do read all e-mails and take them seriously. We also appreciate the opportunity to clarify our position.

Ms. Goldberg's remarks created a great deal of negative media and consumer attention and this affected Ms. Goldberg's ability to positively communicate our message of weight loss. Because of this, we decided to conclude the current advertising campaign. Slim Fast believes its decision in no way impacts Ms. Goldberg's freedom of speech, now or in the future.

Thank you for taking the time to voice your concerns.

Kathi Eckler
Consumer Support
8:36 am edt

Thursday, July 15, 2004

Whoopi Yes - Slim Fast No
I posted this to several listservs as Freedom of Speech is imperative:

Learning that the Far Right had decided to organize a successful boycott against Slim-Fast, demanding that they fire Whoopi Goldberg as a spokesperson because of her comments at a recent political rally, I became incensed and googled: Slim Fast, Whoopi Goldberg protest. I found some interesting things (one thing posted below, fyi) and followed them to make a pro-Whoopi/Freedom of Speech comment. The free number seems to be dead for now [1-800-Slim Fast], but being really upset that Slim Fast caved in to such Far Right demands I called their main number: 561.833.9920. It is a Freedom of Speech issue and the Liberal and Progressive folk should let Slim Fast know how WE feel. To just "leave it" is letting the Far Right get away with it. As I am currently reading Ted Rall's book, Wake Up, You're Liberal and he basically says that unlike the Far Right, we Liberal / Progressive folk have been too nice too long, I would urge folks to speak up for Freedom of Speech and do similarly. If you are going to allow politics to influence your employment practices, Slim Fast, you better recognized that ramifications can come in all sorts of directions.


FYI, when I called the 561 number I spoke to Betty in the Consumer Affairs Dept. and learned that the person noted below (F. Daniel Abraham) has not owned Slim Fast for four years so there is no need for anyone to be hesitant about the impact of a Liberal Progressive boycott on a Freedom of Speech Issue. Consider using your cell phones and calling Slim-Fast and/or go to Slim-Fast.com site and leave a web form comment. Or write them a snail mail note.


My web form remark used the subject "Whoopi Yes -- SlimFast No"


I posted:

As someone with a weight problem who believes in free speech, you can be sure that I will no longer be using Slim-Fast following your caving in to Far Right demands until and unless Whoopi Goldberg is reinstated.


Shame, shame, shame!!!


Most sincerely,

[Full contact info -- be proud of freedom of speech!]


FROM GOOGLING, this Rightist Comment Was Found.


Whoopi/SlimFast Boycott


Some Republican activists are launching a boycott of SlimFast diet products to protest SlimFast spokeswoman Whoopi Goldberg's X-rated rant against President Bush at a New York fund-raiser for Democrat John Kerry last week. SlimFast executives yesterday didn't respond to questions about whether they intend to keep Goldberg as spokeswoman. Company president F. Daniel Abraham is a major Democratic donor who, with his wife, has given $1.2 million to groups working to defeat Bush. Full Story
Mailing Address:
Slim·Fast Foods Company
P.O. Box 3625
West Palm Beach, FL 33402
phone number: 561.833.9920
[End of Googled cutting]
6:36 pm edt

Wednesday, July 14, 2004

Waking Up Mid Month

The cost of the Iraq invasion has risen $2 billion since my last posting, but I am back, re-energized, and ready for action! My guests Carolyn Bolton and daughter Kimberly McFerron of Salem, Oregon are out the door and, while sad to see them leave and end my mini-vacation, I am happy to pick up Ted Rall's Wake up... You're Liberal! book and continue my quest for a vibrant, vital, more compassionate America. Yes, it can be done, but we must return to our traditional liberal values.

Last night before one last vacation hurrah at New York's Hard Rock Cafe (such fun and relatively cheap for NYC), Kim and I attended United for Peace and Justice's overflowing planning session for the August 29th march and rally against the Bush agenda. Such wondrous things are being planned but sooooo much to accomplish! We must get out into the streets and spread the word that the lying liars are coming to town and we aren't going to take them or their far right, terrorist-attracting agenda sitting down! (Read the first chapter of Ted's book, and especially page 33, for more insight into this.) Mind you, the Dems are certainly not off the hook. The message is meant for them, too. Money for people not war -- money for schools, seniors, daycare, housing, hospitals, parks: live preserving and enhancing things and NOT for death and destruction and corporate profit.

I've got to go to work for corporate America right now -- haven't won Lotto or written a best seller or joined the Catholic (or Anglican?) Worker, but I shall be writing up last night's notes for both NYFOR and WQIDC. You can read them soon at the open listserv archives (see links) but a version of these is likely to be joining Lenny in the Essays section of this website. In the meantime, I leave you with the words of my classic Hard Rock Cafe button: Save the Planet - Love All - Serve All.... YES! Onward, Liberals, and let's save our Earth by taking America back from the very wrong Right. Read on -- and ACT!

~ ~ ~

"By all rights, this liberal voting bloc -- people who care about people and the things around them more than they care about entries in a ledger -- ought to enjoy majority status on both a national and local level in virtually every state." --Ted Rall
9:36 am edt

Friday, July 2, 2004

Transition and Summer Reading

Iraq has supposedly changed hands but as we know, with 140,000 US troops there and contracts in the hands of Bushites, the occupation continues. More reason to look forward to August 29th and protesting the Bush agenda. (Can we fathom that Mayor Bloomberg will deny us the permit to gather? Will we be denied freedom of speech and freedom of assembly? Will we in the US also be denied some semblance of Democracy?? Word is to be given us today -- breathe....)

In the meantime, I discovered Ted Rall's book, Wake up...You're Liberal! and denied the sense of waiting until similar titles get read: I bought it. Hey, with a foreward by George McGovern and Ted's Credo preface, I was sunk. Or rather inspired. The subtitle is "How we can take America back from the Right" and God knows that is essential for the benefit, indeed the preservation, of humankind. So more to read, along with a book of essays edited by Mark Green: What We Stand For: A Program for Progressive Patriotism -- "with contributions from 17 leading scholars, advocates & experts". Ted / Mark, Ted / Mark: what to read first?? Well, I am more inclined to reclaiming the wonderful title "Liberal" -- see the Essays section of this blog. And while I enjoyed Mark's preface, I love Ted's Credo, including this excerpt:

"Any country that pays women less than men, that executes children, and whose landscape is dotted with racially segregated housing has a long way to go before telling other countries what to do."

The US needs justice itself, economic justice and racial justice -- but such things wouldn't benefit Bush's campaign contributors. Ah, for campaign finance reform and more Clean Money laws. Donate to Arizona (see June 27 entry), read books about Liberal/Progressive vision (and ACT upon such insight), do some housework, do some paid work, catch up on more email -- and find a little time for fun and sleep. Mega Lotto is up to $290 million -- ah the good liberal stuff I could do with mega bucks.... Barring that, I remember the epithet of my great grandmother and I do what I can. Please, God, grant me some guidance on what to read and what to do -- so many possibilities. Peace hugs, one and all! -- Kate Anne
9:04 am edt

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ARCHIVES ABOVE -- Right now, if you click on the above numbers, you SEE my earlier posts. I still have a lot to learn but I intend to make changes to this site on a regular basis, sharing news, views, experiences, photos...whatever occurs to me. Check back often! Peace, love, and all good things in abundance!!

June 2003

"Our country currently lives under a single-party form of government. One ideology (pro-corporate, coddling the rich, neglecting the middle class, patronizing the poor) is governing like there's no tomorrow. Should they continue, they'll be right."

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"We must be the change we wish to see
in the world." -- Mahatma Gandhi