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[Women protesting against the US-backed attempts at a coup in front of the Venezuelan Embassy this week. Photo credit: Codepink.org]
Friends,

Even though the United States is still fighting the longest war in its history in Afghanistan, as well as remaining involved in military operations on every populated continent, some folks in Washington D.C. think that what this country needs in another war. We know that a war on Venezuela would be a disaster just like we knew the Iraq War would end up an epic mess but, if we learned anything from the Iraq debacle, we know that being right by itself doesn't mean we'll win and stop a conflict from spiraling out of control.

That's where organizations like Whatcom Peace and Justice come in. We're not here just to remind you of the importance of peace and justice, we're here to help make those things a reality in our community and in our world. We work to confront militarism in our schools, government, and culture while building positive alternatives to structures of violence in solidarity with so many awesome partners. We want to help you do the same, whether you're interested in volunteering as an individual for one of our programs like Alternatives to Military Service, in getting the support that your grassroots group needs to take effective action, or in helping to put together our beloved International Day of Peace celebration (be sure to check out that appeal below).

This month, there are a lot of great upcoming events listed below as well as a fascinating visual from the Decolonial Atlas entitled "Names and Locations of the Top 100 People Killing the Planet." We've got some big changes in store at the Peace Center in the coming months and are so excited to share with you soon some of the ways that we continue to evolve and grow. Thanks for reading!

In peace,
Josh Cerretti, WPJC Board Member

Learn more about the movement to stop a war on Venezuela.

Mike Yarrow Peace Fellowship

Learn about peace and justice issues, nonviolent movement building, and gain skills such as public speaking, group leadership, media development, conducting surveys, public relations, outreach, and lobbying. After an intensive training June 29 to July 2 at the Seabeck Conference Center on Hood Canal, you get support, including $600, to carry out a nonviolent campaign or project of your choice. 

Open to anyone 14-23 years old. APPLICATIONS ARE DUE MAY 1ST. To apply, email bpruitthamm@gmail.com and request the application.

This past year, Bellingham had two Mike Yarrow Peace Fellows. Read a reflection from one on WPJC's blog.

7-9:00 a.m., May 1
3rd Annual Law Day, LAW Advocates
Northwood Hall (3240 Northwest Ave)

7-9:00 p.m, May 1
International Worker's Day Benefit for RRRF
Localgroup Studio (221 Prospect St)

6:30 p.m., May 7
Racial Justice Coalition meeting
Bellingham Unitarian Fellowship (1207 Ellsworth)

4 p.m., May 9
The Changing Nature of Democracy in 20th Century Colombia
Wilson Library Special Collections, Western Washington University

2-4:00 p.m., May 11
Creating a People's Waterfront: A Socialist Vision for Housing
Academic Instructional Center West, Western Washington University

6 p.m., May 11
Ride the Long WANDER, LAW Advocates
Wander Brewing

8-10:00 p.m., May 15
WPJC Movie Night
Alternative Library (519 E Maple St)

Imagine No Kages - Confronting Mass Incarceration in Whatcom County

Imagine No Kages is a collective of prison abolitionists dedicated to addressing the intersecting oppressions that feed mass incarceration in Whatcom County and beyond. On March 9th they held a card decorating and letter writing event for incarcerated women in honor of International Women's Day at the Whatcom Peace and Justice Office. Participants wrote to a number of women who hold a special place in the history of movements for peace, including Ana Belen Montes and Chelsea Manning.

INK is one of many small community organizations that utilize WPJC's space to facilitate their work. In addition to our office and library, we rent a variety of useful supplies for social movement work including bullhorns, peacekeeper vests, a canopy, and sign making materials. If you think we might be able to help your group do the work that needs to get done, reach out to office@whatcompjc.org.

Members of INK will be hosting a postcard decorating event for incarcerated queer and trans people on May 22nd at Western Washington University as part of a series of Stonewall at 50 events. Email ImagineNoKages@gmail.com for more info.

Honor Walk for Our Murdered and Missing Indigenous Women, May 9, 11:30a-2:00p
Lummi Victims of Crime

From the event page: This will be an honor walk for our missing and murdered indigenous women. Please join us and wear the color red. See Facebook event page for more details and updates.
Names and Locations of the Top 100 People Killing the Planet
 
Inspired by Utah Phillips' statement “The earth is not dying, it is being killed, and those who are killing it have names and addresses," Jordan Engel over at the Decolonial Atlas made this fascinating cartogram. He says "Just 100 companies are responsible for more than 70% of the world’s greenhouse gas emissions since 1988. The guys who run those companies – and they are mostly guys – have gotten rich on the backs of literally all life on Earth. Their business model relies on the destruction of the only home humanity has ever known. Meanwhile, we misdirect our outrage at our neighbors, friends, and family for using plastic straws or not recycling. If there is anyone who deserves the outrage of all 7.5 billion of us, it’s these 100 people right here... The map is in the form of a cartogram which represents the size of countries by their cumulative carbon dioxide emissions since industrialization."
Naomi Wachira performing at Whatcom Peace and Justice's 2018 International Day of Peace Celebration at the Majestic on North Forest.
International Day of Peace 2019 - September 21st
Seeking Volunteers for Planning Committee

Remember how much fun we had last year with that great meal, community gathering, and incredible performance by Naomi Wachira? Well, it's time to get to work on this year's event and we need your help! Due to a lot of great changes in peoples' lives, our committee has shrunk and we're looking for an infusion of new energy, ideas, and networks. 

We need volunteers of all ages, backgrounds, and skillsets, so please consider joining us in building the future of this event if it has moved you in the past. If you'd like to be involved this summer in planning this late September event, please reach out to Josh as soon as possible.
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