SPC in Action

From the September/October 2018 PNL #862

by different authors

Beyond War and Militarism

Beyond War and Militarism (BWaM) is a joint committee of the SPC and the CNY Solidarity Coalition. It draws resources from both parent organizations and enhances their interrelationship

A monthly Alternative Education Series offers perspectives on militarism not covered by corporate media. In July, noted anti-war activist Kathy Kelly made a rousing presentation to 90 people at All Saints Church. She spoke eloquently about the tragic situation in Yemen and expressed general concern about increasing US militarism. In September, Greta Zarro, organizing director of World BEYOND War, spoke on “The Social and Ecological Imperatives of War Abolition.” We look forward to a talk by Professor Frederick Carriere on North Korea on October 9 (see “Keep Trump’s Finger off the Trigger!,” page 3).

In several hours in late August at the entrance to the NY State Fair. BWaM garnered over 230 signatures on a petition to Senators Schumer and Gillibrand. It urged them to do everything in their power to "support a negotiated settlement [in Yemen] and to insist that the United States stop providing Saudi Arabia with logistical support, drones and other weapons."

– BWaM Menber


beyond war and militarism picture
Participant at the August 31 Lockheed Martin demonstration, organized by CodePink, SPC,
 and the CNY Solidarity Coaliton to bring attention to Lockheed Martin's complicity
in the death of 40 Yemeni school children killed when the Saudis dropped a bomb
made by Lockheed on their bus.
Photo: Max Mimaroglu.


SPC Bike Raffle

When my bike chain rusted, the rest of my old bike began falling apart too. Are you in a similar situation, or looking to decrease your carbon footprint? Maybe you’d like to get some exercise, save money on gas, never worry about parking?Win a New Jamis Citizen bike from Mello Velo in SPC’s summer Bike Raffle fundraiser! Raffle tickets can be purchased at the SPC office, Syracuse Real Food Co-op, Mello Velo, ArtRage Gallery, Syracuse Cultural Workers, and Cazenovia’s Pewter Spoon Café. Tickets are 1 for $2, 3 for $5, and 7 for $10. The drawing is September 23 at the Westcott Street Cultural Fair.

– Taylor Gould

A Call for Interns

The new school year is here, and we are looking for eager, self-motivated interns to join our SPC team this fall. We are seeking applicants who have a passion for peace and social justice and are interested in advocacy, activism, public outreach, collaborative governance and more. As a previous SPC intern, this summer has been one of the most formative times of my life, where I had the opportunity to educate myself on a panoply of local and global social issues, create lifelong bonds with local activists and community members, and develop administrative and organizational skills that will help me move toward a career in international relations.

Start dates and work hours are flexible, although we do require interns to work 5-10 hours a week. Applicants from all fields are encouraged to apply. For more information visit www.peacecouncil.net/intern or contact the office.  

– Askar Salikhov

Askar with the Trump Chicken
Askar with the Trump Chicken at the protest in Watertown (see page 15). Photo: Carol Baum.



Keep Trump’s Finger off the Trigger!

SPC’s Nuclear Free World Committee (NFW) is redoubling efforts for Senator Schumer’s support on the Markey-Lieu bill to prevent Trump from launching a nuclear first strike. We have petitioned at numerous events, including the State Fair, and plan to continue. Contact Diane Swords (315-391-4484) to help.

With the Beyond War and Militarism Committee, NFW presents Professor Frederick Carriere on October 9 at 7pm at ArtRage Gallery (505 Hawley Ave., Syracuse). Prof. Carriere will share latest developments with North Korea and how ordinary people can promote diplomacy and prevent nuclear disaster.

Frederick is a political scientist and director of the Korean Peninsula Affairs Center at Syracuse University's Maxwell School and calls the situation between the US and North Korea a “moving target.” He sees the possibility of a significant deal, but also greater peril, as the midterm election approaches and the “limited rational policy-solving ‘bandwidth’ of our political system is maximally strained."

Our August 6 Hiroshima procession magnified the alarm that Trump and his advisors are preparing the US for nuclear war. It also celebrated the hope brought by the UN Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons (brokered by the International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons) and the Nobel Peace Prize ICAN received for the Treaty. At our August 27 potluck at Thornden Park, we floated lanterns to remember all those who have died in the nuclear age and recommitted ourselves to abolish nuclearweapons

.- Diane Swords


enough banner
Photo: Max Mimaroglu.
.One of the many banners carried in this year's Hiroshima Day Procession. Photo: Julio Urrutia.


Healthcare Not Warfare

On July 30, SPC joined the CNY AFL-CIO (Syracuse), Democratic Socialists of America, the CNY Alliance of Retired Americans, 1199SEIU and Physicians for a National Health Program CNY Chapter to celebrate the 53rd anniversary of Medicare and Medicaid. The rally called attention to the impact of Republican tax cuts for the rich on funding for Medicare and Medicaid.

SPC summer intern Askar Salikov spoke on behalf of the Peace Council about the need to cut the military budget and invest in universal healthcare. Other speakers shared personal stories about rising health insurance premiums and how Medicaid and Medicare had helped the families.

SPC is one of hundreds of organizations supporting the Campaign for New York Health, a statewide effort to pass and implement universal, single-payer healthcare in NYS. Learn more at www.nyhcampaign.org.

– Ursula Rozum

Alliance for a Green Economy

Alliance for a Green Economy (AGREE) works for a carbon-free, nuclear-free, energy-efficient future. Currently we’re:

• Working to save community solar by fighting “Darth VDER,” the complicated and discriminatory Value of Distributed Energy Resources policy that’s thwarting community solar in many parts of NY. VDER has caused hundreds of community and commercial solar projects across NY to come to a halt. Stay tuned!

• Drawing attention to the Cuomo administration’s nuclear bailout and making a strong case for building renewables instead of propping up last century’s problematic energy sources. (www.tinyurl.com/ycqxhsm2). Sign on to support choosing 100% New York renewable energy instead of paying nuclear subsidies at www.allianceforagreeneconomy.org/100NYGreen

• The people who brought you Solarize team up to bring you NYSERDA's program for heating (and cooling) buildings using ground-source or air-source heat pumps! Check out the www.HeatSmartCNY.org for upcoming events.

SPC is represented on AGREE’s Steering Committee.   

– Andra Leimanis

UJTF and Allies Stood Up for Jobs

On August 21, the Urban Jobs Task Force and its allies showed up for two SIDA (Syracuse Industrial Development Agency) hearings regarding the tax benefits requested by two developers. One was VIP Structures for its $31 million redevelopment of the Post-Standard building, and the other was Gerharz Equipment for its $5 million consolidation at 222 Teall Ave. of its two business locations.

In return for these tax benefits we asked the developers to include city residents on their projects. A week before the SIDA hearings, we contacted VIP Structures. The day before the hearing VIP met with us and committed to work with us again as it did on the South Ave. PriceRite build. That 2016/2017 collaboration resulted in 30% city residents and 30% minorities building the grocery store. We asked Gerharz to follow VIP’s example.

– Aggie Lane

Trump is “Welcomed” to Upstate NY

As Air Force One set down in Central NY, the jester-in-chief was met by hundreds of voices in opposition to his administration. SEIU Local 1199 initiated a demonstration in Watertown and Indivisible Mohawk Valley initiated one in Utica. Members of the Syracuse Peace Council and the CNY Solidarity Coalition joined both actions to express their resistance. Both groups organized carpooling to the protests.

In Watertown, the opposition focused on healthcare with the prominent sign “Trump Care = No Care.” Speakers, including numerous veterans, contended that the tax money should be spent on the needs of the residents of Watertown and Jefferson County.

The Utica rally was large (estimated 500-2000) and highly spirited. Demonstrators focused on a wide range of concerns as expressed with many creative signs and banners.  

– Ron Van Norstrand

Activist Appreciation: Caroline Kim Tihanyi

Since joining SPC through her work with immigrants’ rights, Caroline has been a diligent member of the Steering Committee for two years and a constant supportive presence at rallies and protests. She played an important part in creating our first Membership and Visioning Meeting in January, helping coordinate an uplifting event. This summer, we were thrilled that she joined in organizing our annual Hiroshima Day Procession. She connected this year’s procession with the local refugee community by facilitating a party for kids in the Northside CYO summer program to make paper dove props to carry in the procession, and was phenomenal as our media spokesperson.

Caroline always brings an aura of warmth and mindfulness, keeping our spirits up during times of political turmoil. A strong advocate for immigrants and refugees and a dedicated proponent for peace, we thank Caroline for her efforts and energy!  

activist appreciation
Caroline (l.) and Ursula Rozum at the Pre-Eid Bazaar held by the Islamic Society of CNY in August, 2018.


CNY Solidarity Coalition

Since its infancy, the CNY Solidarity Coalition has had two main goals―to provide legislative momentum to counteract the harmful Trump era agenda and to promote connection and outreach to communities. Ideally, the work of outreach serves to inform the legislative work. This requires continued effort to learn from and understand local communities.

Recent community-centered Coalition meetings have focused on understanding impacted communities’ needs and on learning about the organizing and advocacy already occurring there. We met at the Northside Learning Center and learned about the services provided and the inspiring work of the New Americans Forum. At another meeting, Workers Center members spoke about the impacts of not having drivers’ licenses on local immigrant communities. The Coalition is working to be responsive to communities’ expressed needs.

In addition to a weekly legislative action alert, the Coalition publishes a weekly community outreach event calendar where community events, political education, meetings and fundraisers are shared. Learn more at www.cnysolidarity.org. and sign up to receive our alerts and meeting schedule.

– Marianna Kaufman

NOON Is Bursting with Energy

Neighbors of the Onondaga Nation is reprinting our Neighbor to Neighbor, Nation to Nation 80-page booklet as we are almost out of the 10,000 copies originally printed. We hope to revise and update it in the next few years.

NOON sponsored a facilitator training hosted at the Firebarn at the Onondaga Nation for the Witness to Injustice KAIROS Blanket Exercise. 30 people attended, representing communities in several regions in NYS as well as representatives from the Onondaga Nation. This two-hour group exercise uses participatory education to help participants experience the impacts of European colonization in what is now known as the US. To schedule the Witness to Injustice KAIROS Blanket Exercise for your group or organization contact Cindy Squillace at cindysquillace@gmail.com

Indigenous Peoples Day will again be celebrated in Syracuse on Monday, October 8 at 4:30 in Columbus Circle, downtown Syracuse. Stay tuned for more details.

NOON continues to support the Onondaga Nation in its goal to have those responsible clean Onondaga Lake and return at least part of the land surrounding the lake to its rightful stewards; the Onondaga people. We are pursuing creative ways of helping to achieve this goal.

– Cindy Squillace

Justice for Palestine’s Fall Activities On September 16, the Justice for Palestine committee hosted an informal presentation and dinner discussion entitled, “No Good Morning, No Good Night,” with SPC activists Julia Ganson, Julia Fuleihan, Mary Kuhn and Ron Van Norstrand at the Pewter Spoon Café in Cazenovia. We heard about their recent visit to the West Bank and their account of occupation, oppression and popular resistance to the ongoing Nakba (“catastrophe”) in Palestine.

Meanwhile, as Palestinians’ protests along the Gaza-Israel border have continued, following their “Great March of Return” protests this past spring, we stand in solidarity with them every 1st and 3rd Thursday of the month from 4:30-5:15 pm at the corner of E. Genesee St. and Erie Blvd in DeWitt. Join us!

Street Heat- Speak Out, Stand Up

September and October are our last months of twice a week Street Heat, our regular public presence against war and for social justice. In the colder months of November through March, we’re out only on the first Tuesday of the month (at Hancock Airbase). So please join us! Make a sign yourself or use one of ours. Contact Ann or Ed, 315-478-4571.

Tuesdays 4-5:15pm:

September 28 Erie Blvd. E. and E. Genesee St., DeWitt

October 2 Hancock Airbase (6001 E. Molloy Rd.)

October 9 Adams and Almond Sts., Syracuse

October 16 Hancock Airbase (6001 E. Molloy Rd.)

October 23 Adams and Almond Sts., Syracuse

October 30 Adams and Almond Sts., Syracuse

Saturdays 9-9:45am, through October 27:

Regional Market main entrance (Park St.)

November through March:

First Tuesday of the month, 4-5:15pm at Hancock Airbase (note: we skip January 1).


Three More Ways to Be a Part of SPC

This issue’s focus is on things we need, that you might have and be willing to part with.

  • IPad 5+ or Android 5.0+ tablet. SPC is joining the 2000s with a new way to easily offer credit card options when we sell merchandise or event tickets. A tablet will make it work even better.
  • Color printer or access to color copying. Help us upgrade the appeal of our written materials―either by printing on your own color printer, or one you have access to. We’re happy to supply the paper.
  • A small light-weight table, with small, light-weight chairs. Petitioning at the State Fair (and elsewhere) is often more effective when there is a small table for the petitions, information, etc.. But it needs to be easy to carry from the car or bus to the petitioning site.

– Carol Baum