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Table set up in school cafeteria with info on alternatives to military service

Militarism in our schools


In the week after the Parkland, Florida, school shooting, Democracy Now interviewed Pat Elder, author of "Military Recruiting in the United States," about militarism in schools. The shooter had been a member of the Junior Reserve Officer Training Corps (JROTC) program at the school, and was part of their marksmanship team. Among the 17 lives he took inside Marjory Stonemason Douglas High School, three were JROTC cadets -- 14 and 15-year-olds. You may remember that the Burlington mall shooter, a 20-year-old Oak Harbor man who killed five people in Sept. 2016, was part of his school's JROTC program.

You can read/watch/listen to the Democracy Now interview here: "Florida Gunman Nikolas Cruz Knew How to Use a Gun, Thanks to the NRA and the U.S. Army". Militarism in schools runs deep. Our Alternatives to Military Service program is one avenue to counter it.

Alternatives to Military Service is visiting schools every week in February and March, reaching 10 schools in two months. We share information with students about ways to make a living, start on a career path, serve their country and community, and earn tuition money, without enlisting in the military.

As requests for us to share this information increase, we are continuing to creatively respond. Our volunteers are dedicated and motivated, and more than half are veterans themselves -- people who understand the positions of youth considering enlistment as well as the realities of military service.

Will you support this important work? We need more volunteers, financial backers, and help educating our school districts and community at large about these issues.
  • The next volunteer orientation will be in April; if you want to attend, please email to be notified when it is scheduled.
  • Donate now through our secure website or mail a contribution to: WPJC, P.O. Box 2444, Bellingham, WA 98227
  • Follow the Alternatives to Military Service Facebook page, share the educational resources we post, and invite your friends to follow the page.
  • Are you part of a group who wants to learn more about alternatives to military service? Invite us for a presentation. Email

Thank you,

Letter-writing session this Sunday

From 2-4 p.m. on Sunday, March 4 at the Whatcom Peace & Justice Center (1220 Bay Street), gather with other people to write a letter to the editor, or to one of your legislators, to promote peace and justice.

There will be some brief, facilitated information-sharing among the participants about their experience with letter-writing and current events. Then everyone will have a chance to write their letter, and we'll facilitate some peer reviews.

Some computers will be available, but please bring a laptop if you have one. Cookies and tea provided!

Congress closer to ending U.S. support for war in Yemen

U.S. support for war in Yemen was never authorized by Congress, and now the Senate is making moves to end it, with Senate Joint Resolution 54, introduced this week by Senators Bernie Sanders and Mike Lee.

Call our senators to let them know you want them to support this resolution to stop U.S. military support for the Saudi-led coalition in Yemen:

Sen. Patty Murray: (425) 259-6515
Sen. Maria Cantwell: (425) 303-0114

In addition to calling, send an email via MPower Change.

4-5 p.m., March 2
Peace Vigil
Corner of Magnolia and Cornwall

10 a.m.-4 p.m., March 3
WWU Performing Arts Center

1:30 p.m., March 4
Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women: Human Trafficking in Indian Country
East Shore UU Congregation (12700 S.E. 32nd in Bellevue)

2-4 p.m., March 4
Letter-Writing Afternoon
WPJC (1220 Bay Street)

11:30 a.m-1:30 p.m.., March 5
Dignity Vigil
City Hall (210 Lottie Street)

6 p.m., March 6
Jobs with Justice monthly meeting
1700 N. State Street

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

4 p.m., March 8

Salish Sea Speaker Series: Pulling Together in Shared Waters
Academic West 204 at WWU

7 p.m., March 8
Hildes benefit concert feat. Linda Allen, Dana Lyons, & Gary Kanter
Bellingham Unitarian Fellowship (1207 Ellsworth)

1-5 p.m., March 11
Students for Action Benefit: March for Our Lives in D.C.
HomeSkillet (521 Kentucky Street)

6 p.m., March 16
Veterans for Peace Monthly Chapter Meeting
Co-op Connections Building (405 E. Holly Street, Room 103)

5:30 p.m., March 18
Middle East Prayer Vigil
First Christian Church/Disciples of Christ (495 East Bakerview Road)

6-8 p.m., March 21
What's Up Doc? We're Dying to Talk
St. Luke’s Health Education Center (3333 Squalicum Parkway)

28 hours to go: Pass state bill to abolish death penalty

After passing the Senate and a House committee, SB 6052 is currently in the House Rules Committee, and needs to be brought to a vote before the House this week. Please call and email your state representatives in support of this bill TODAY.

40th district
Rep. Kristine Lytton: (360) 786-7800

Rep. Jeff Morris: (360) 786-7970

42nd district
Rep. Vincent Buys
: (360) 786-7854

Rep. Luanne Van Werven: (360) 786-7980

More information on this issue is available at:
Local petition to Yeager's to stop selling assault rifles:
Nuclear Weapons, Race, and Justice in the Trump Era

The threat of nuclear catastrophe has grown under the current Administration, and we're now on a path to spend $1.7 trillion over the next 30 years rebuilding our entire nuclear weapons arsenal. At the same time, desperately needed social programs are being cut, and communities of color and low-income communities are hurt the most. Racial justice and nuclear weapons issues have been closely tied since the beginning of the nuclear era, but their connections are often lost.
Join us for an important discussion with Dr. Vincent Intondi, author of "African Americans Against the Bomb," on the intersection of U.S. nuclear weapons policy and the fight for racial equity.

Nuclear Weapons, Race, and Justice in the Trump Era
Monday, April 2, 6-7:30 p.m., Doors at 5:45 p.m.
University of Washington, Bagley hall, Room 131, Seattle, WA 98195
This discussion will explore how African American activists have been involved in the fight against nuclear weapons, how racism, colonialism, and inequity have shaped our nuclear policy, and how this is playing out under our current Administration. You will also learn what's happening locally, and how you can take action.
This event is sponsored by WPSR, Health Alliance International, Ploughshares Fund, the University of Washington Global Health Department, and Town Hall is a promotional partner.
Copyright © 2018 Whatcom Peace and Justice Center, All rights reserved.

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