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The Justice & Peace eWeekly is a weekly survey of upcoming events, local news and activism opportunities. Feel free to forward this to anyone you know who might be interested.

 


Week of February 4, 2019


 


Enrollment Still Open for LEAD Excellence Academy

Friday-Saturday Classes Launched Feb. 1

PPJPC is partnering with Grace Be Unto You Church to create a LEAD Excellence Academy to help challenge the cradle-to-prison pipeline, a key mission for PPJPC in 2019. Our first students signed up in mid-January, but we are still accepting admissions. Excellence Academy programs have been launched nationwide to provide a mix of physical-facility-based education, as well as resources for home-schooled and online education programs. More information is available by contacting Victoria Stone at (719) 632-6189.

 

INF Treaty Suspension Could Challenge Future Disarmament Efforts

The formal suspension of the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces (INF) Treaty, announced by Secretary of State Mike Pompeo Feb. 1, was hardly a surprise. Like the abrogation of the Iran nuclear treaty before it, the Trump administration had signaled its intent to leave the treaty. Since the hints first were dropped in late 2018, the U.S. held low-level backchannel talks with Russia, who did not want to leave the treaty, but those talks went nowhere. On Saturday, Russia announced that it would respond by abandoning the treaty, too.

It is important to remember that the INF suspension does not mean the end of strategic arms treaties like START. Both the U.S. and Russia retain limits of 2,500 deliverable strategic warheads in their arsenals. Nor does it mean that the U.S. or NATO will instantly deploy new weapons in Europe. The INF Treaty was negotiated in response to the proliferation of a new generation of cruise missiles and Pershing 2 missiles in Europe during the 1980s. Today, there is more interest in deploying missile-defense weapons than new classes of intermediate-range nukes.

But suspending the treaty carries a different kind of danger. Both the U.S. and Russia are developing new classes of low-yield nuclear weapons which might be deployed in low numbers without an INF Treaty. The danger in low-yield nukes is that they erase the so-called “firebreak” between conventional and nuclear warfare. If the distinction gets fuzzier, it may be more appealing for an irrational leader to go nuclear in a regional dispute. And the efforts by groups like ICANN to move to a complete nuclear freeze look farther away than ever.
 

Democratic Party Launches New Veterans Group

The El Paso Dems have asked Democrat Kent Jarnig to start an El Paso County Democratic Veterans group.  Without going into too much detail, Colorado State Democratic rules require that he get the names of 20 interested veterans.  He sees this group as both endorsing Democratic candidates (after vetting) and as a civic endeavor to support Veterans (suicide prevention team, food bank, help getting into VA Healthcare and VA Disability, Christmas gifts for Veteran's children in need, etcetera).  This would be open all active duty Military and Veterans that live in El Paso County.  Kent sees this as a force to help all Veterans.

Kent is asking any active duty Military or Veterans to contact him at kent@dvd-cdinc.com and provide him with name, address, email address, and phone (information will be kept private). There would be no dues or requirements to attend meetings.  The group would be its own 501C-3 (non-profit) and although it would be supported by the El Paso Dems and the Colorado Democratic Party, it would remain totally independent.  Once we have Party approval, monthly meetings will begin.
 

Studio 809 Presents Twelfth Peak Environment Podcast on Permaculture

Our friend and partner Dave Gardner presents the twelfth in the “Peak Environment” series from Studio 809, featuring PPJPC friends Becky Elder and Ellen Johnson-Fey, giving a brief intro to permaculture. What is permaculture? According to Becky Elder, co-founder and chair of Pikes Peak Permaculture, it’s not what you do, but how you think about what you do, using nature as a guide. Elder joins host Ellen Johnson-Fay for a very brief permaculture primer. The conversation includes a great tip on eliminating some or all of your lawn. Also, why you may not need or want to do battle with weeds. Becky provides an interesting perspective on those “weeds.”

You’ll find this newest episode at
 http://studio809radio.com/peak-environment-12-intro-to-permaculture/

The latest podcast also is on Facebook, https://www.facebook.com/studio809radio/

For access to recent Growthbusters podcasts, visit http://growthbusters.org/podcast

Also, keep watch for a new PPJPC podcast to be produced in association with Studio 809!
 
 

Urban Experience Walk Set for Feb. 16

Urban Experience is off to a rapid start this year, with a private walk for a Buddhist group scheduled for  Saturday, Feb. 16. The Urban Experience also is offering special workshops for Pikes Peak Library District, tentatively Feb. 23 and March 23. We will be offering open Urban Experience walks later this spring, contact our offices for more information.

Next Food for Thought Series Begins Feb. 28

Many PPJPC members have participated in Food for Thought, a program to bring together people from different political and cultural backgrounds to share meals and ideas. The next series of meals begins on Feb. 28, with a kickoff meeting from 6 to 8 p.m. at UC Health Memorial Administrative Center, 2420 E. Pikes Peak Ave. To register, or for information, visit https://foodforthoughtcs.org/
 

PPJPC Offers Sound System for Community Group Rental

PPJPC has partnered with Studio 809 to purchase a portable sound system appropriate for indoor or outdoor use. If you are interested in arranging the use of this sound system, contact Victoria at (719) 632-6189.
 

Blankets Needed at Homeless Shelters

Our Colorado Springs City Council recently voted $500,000 for additional beds at the Colorado Springs Rescue Mission and the Salvation Army RJM Center!  This latest taste of cold and snowy weather lends urgency to helping those in our community without shelter from the coming winter. 

Besides needing beds, there is always a need for blankets.  If you would like to donate a blanket, quilt, comforter or throw, it would be much appreciated at the shelters. Besides individual people donating, a sewing or needlework group could also help.   Sometimes the shelter sends along a blanket when a homeless person leaves, and they are also given out to those turned away due to lack of bed space.  If you have a heart to help a person be warm please consider donating a new or gently used blanket.

The Rescue Mission has a donation warehouse one block west of their campus at 111 W. Las Vegas St.  Look for a DONATION DROP OFF sign with white letters on black. Suggested times are Mon- Fr 9:30a to 4:30p, and Sat 9 to 11a.  The Salvation Army accepts donations at their R.J. Montgomery Center, 709 S. Sierra Madre, near Cimarron, behind the power plant.  Best time is between 9 am and noon Mon - Fri.
 

Help Sought for Immigrant Children in Site Inspections

The Reunify nonprofit is seeking help nationwide to inspect sites where children from separated immigrant families are being housed.  The volunteer help of lawyers, paralegals, and interpreters is particularly needed. Several thousand unaccompanied and separated immigrant minors remain detained under the Trump Administration's zero tolerance policy in over 60 facilities around the country. The 1997 Flores Settlement sets the national standards for the detention and release of minors. As class counsel we can appoint volunteer lawyers and paralegals to inspect detention facilities and to interview detained minors. We are recruiting volunteer lawyers, paralegals and interpreters to inspect the detention sites listed below on the dates indicated. To volunteer for one or more days at one or more of these detention site inspections, please register or sign in to reunify.org, where you can select the detention site you wish to inspect.
 

StartDis Podcast Features Local Cultural and Political Activists

Several Colorado activists have launched StartDis, “for people of conscience who value education.” Recent episodes have featured JD Covert, Tahmina, Mike Kleba, and Monica Rivera. Check out the latest podcast HERE 
 
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