Thursday, October 1, 2009

Activist Calendar Oct. 1, 2009

ACTIVIST CALENDAR, Oct. 1, Issue #150A
Of the Hudson Valley Activist Newsletter

Current and back copies of the Activist Newsletter as well as the Activist Calendar are at Send event announcements to
Editor's Note: A number of new items have been scheduled for the first half of October since our last calendar, Sept. 21. Along with them we have included a few previously noted items from the earlier calendar which also fall within this time period — up to Oct. 19. A new calendar will appear around Oct. 18.

Saturday, Oct. 3, WEST POINT: Antiwar picketing and leafleting to people arriving to attend the Army-Tulane football game starts at 10:30 a.m. at the Thayer Gate. (Thayer Gate is accessed by exiting Rt. 9W at the exit marked as the "Highland Falls, West Point.") RSVP (914) 806-6179,

Saturday-Sunday, Oct. 3-4, KINGSTON: A free, weekend-long festival celebrating the contributions of African Americans to the Hudson Valley will take place this weekend with music, dance and dramatic performances. New Paltz Professor A. J. Williams-Myers will kick-off the event at 11 a.m. Saturday with a one-hour lecture on the topic of African American History in the Hudson Valley, focusing on the social and economic contributions of African Americans to the region for the last 400 years. The event is sponsored by New York State Parks as part of the Quadricentennial-year celebration in the Hudson Valley. Events take place 11 a.m.-4 p.m. both days at the Senate House State Historic Site at 296 Fair St. in uptown Kingston. We’re told the weekend will be “filled with live music, dance, drama, and spoken word performances, as well as art, hands-on activities, food, and free tours of Senate House. Some of the scheduled artists include Voices of Glory, a young a cappella threesome, and recent finalists on the TV show, America’s Got Talent; performers Kim and Reggie Harris; The Voices of Praise choir, the Ulster County Community Choir; the Energy Dance Troupe, the SUNY New Paltz Shades Step Team, Kibola Sougei African Dance Troupe, and historical dramatists Carolyn Evans (as Sojourner Truth) and Terry Gittens (as Bessie Mae).” This event occurs rain or shine. Information, (845) 338-2786,

Sunday, Oct. 4, POUGHKEEPSIE (Vassar College campus): Jewish Voice for Peace and CodePink are backing the U.S. tour of two Israeli women, Maya Wind and Netta Mishly, who have refused service in their country’s armed forces. These women will discuss their situation 4-6 p.m. at Rockefeller Hall room 200 on campus. (Cars may use the Raymond Ave. entrance). The tour is titled “Why We Refuse,” referring to their decision to “refuse to rule over an occupied people, to detain Palestinians without charge, to guard checkpoints, to enforce a siege, and to usher in a humanitarian disaster.” We’re told, “They will provide personal accounts of how they came to be “Shministim” — young people who have signed a letter stating their refusal to join the Israeli army. This was not a decision they came to lightly because they knew they would pay a price: prison.” Information,

Sunday, Oct. 4, NEW PALTZ: The anti-democratic coup in Honduras, the outcome of which is still in question, is the topic of a 6 p.m. public meeting tonight at New Paltz Village Hall, 25 Plattekill Ave., a block south of Main St. (Rt. 299). The speaker is Reina Victoria Estrada, a Honduran activist and health professional now based in the U.S., who has worked with unions, peace groups, the displaced, prisoners, and victims of torture. A potluck supper for those interested begins at 5 p.m. Sponsored by the Caribbean and Latin America Support Project (CLASP). Information, (845) 255-0113.

Sunday, Oct. 4, NYACK: A “Healthcare For All Rally” is scheduled for 4:30 p.m. at Nyack Memorial Park. Musical Guests include Pete Seeger, Tom Chapin, Emory Joseph and the Roues Brothers. Organized by Health Care for All Now — a grassroots group including Fellowship of Reconciliation, NAACP, Rockland Progressive Dems, Organizing for America and WESPAC. Information,

Monday, Oct. 5, OLD CHATHAM: The documentary, "Body of War" will be screened at Powell House Quaker Conference and Retreat Center, 524 Pitt Hall Rd. from 7-9 p.m. The film tells the story of a young American veteran who returns home from the Iraq war paralyzed by a bullet to his spine. He learns to deal with this disability, and indicts the government's handling of the invasion. Sponsored by Old Chatham Quaker Meeting. Information, (518) 794-0259, Directions,

Tuesday, Oct. 6, NATIONWIDE: A group called World Can't Wait is calling for Anti-Recruiting Efforts in High Schools across the country today. They say: "Help stop the propaganda being professed by recruiters in High School, where serving the country in the military is a 'life with purpose,' but what purpose?" Information, (866) 973-4463,

Wednesday, Oct. 7, NATIONWIDE: Students for a Democratic Society is calling for a "U.S. out of Afghanistan! End the War Now" nationwide student protest today to commemorate the 8th anniversary of the Afghan war. Information,,

Thursday, Oct. 8, WOODSTOCK: The Middle East Crisis Response group of Hudson Valley residents opposed to Israeli and U.S. policies toward the Palestinians meets 7-8:30 p.m. at the Public Library, 5 Library Lane. All welcome. Information, (845) 876-7906, ,

Saturday, Oct. 10, POUGHKEEPSIE: A free screening of “The 11th Hour” takes place 7-8:30 p.m. at the Poughkeepsie Friends Meeting, 249 Hooker Ave., followed by an audience discussion. “Narrated by Leonardo DiCaprio, this captivating documentary explores the perilous state of our planet, and the means by which we can change our course.” It’s sponsored by the Dutchess Peace Coalition. Information, (845) 454-6431, (845) 454-2870.

Saturday-Sunday, Oct. 10-11, WASHINGTON, D.C.: The National Equality March and related rallies will take place in many parts of the nation's capital. The main event is a 12 noon on Sunday, culminating in a 2 p.m. rally Capitol West Lawn. From the organizer: "We will gather in Washington from all across America to let our elected leaders know that now is the time for full equal rights for LGBT people. We've had a moment thrust upon us by the election of President Barack Obama and the spirit of hope and change, and also by the sense of entitlement in the new generation of grassroots organizing. This march is a vehicle to a larger goal. We want to work to bridge the gap between the national organizations and the grassroots community organizers. We will gather. We will strategize. We will march. And we will leave energized and empowered to do the work that needs to be done in every community across the nation." For transportation from New Paltz, Binghamton, Poughkeepsie, and Monroe contact for more information. For a complete schedule of events, For local actions in NYC, (718) 768-7306,

Monday, Oct. 12, WESTERN HEMISPHERE: This is Trade Action Day. Say the organizers: "People throughout the Americas, including a majority of U.S. citizens, reject the destructive model of the North America Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA). Yet it continues to profit the few at the expense of the many. On Oct. 12, Indigenous Peoples Day, social movements across the hemisphere will launch coordinated actions to call for this failed model to be replaced with trade that actually benefits the majority. Host a movie night, do some street theater, or join a demonstration." At various locations. Sponsors: Witness for Peace, Nicaragua Network, Stop CAFTA Coalition, others. Information, (202) 403-1752, and

Tuesday, Oct. 13, NEWBURGH: A slide show and discussion of urban organic gardens in Havana and organic farming in the Cuban countryside will be presented by three people who visited Cuba in July on the Pastors for Peace 20th Caravan. They are Nora Gallardo, Alison Bodine and Manolo de Los Santos. Cuba is recognized throughout the world for its organic agriculture. The free, public 7-9 p.m. event takes place at the Newburgh Free Library, 124 Grand St. between 2nd and 3rd Sts. Information (845) 452-0557, (212) 926-5757. Endorsed by CLASP/Caribbean and Latin American Support Project

Friday, Oct. 16, NEW PALTZ (SUNY campus): Brazil is considered the leading country in Latin America in terms of its size, economy and influence, so what goes on there is of interest throughout the Americas. A discussion of “University Quotas and Racial Identity in Rio de Janeiro,” Brazil’s biggest city, is the topic of a discussion By Vania Penha-Lopes, an associate professor of Sociology at Bloomfield College. It will be held 12:15 p.m.-1:30 p.m. at the Honors Center in College Hall on campus, sponsored by the Latin American Studies Program and several scholastic departments. A map of campus is at Information, Benjamin Junge at

Saturday, Oct. 17, KINGSTON: A region-wide antiwar rally, commemorating the 8th anniversary of George W. Bush's ill-advised invasion of Afghanistan — a stalemated war that has lasted longer than World Wars I and II combined, with no end in sight other than the inevitable quagmire — will take place at Academy Green Park, 1 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. (rain or shine). There will be speakers, singers, literature tables, petitions — the works. It is sponsored by Peace & Social Progress Now! (PSPN), the new group organized by the Hudson Valley Activist Newsletter, and endorsed by a number of local peace and justice organizations. As well as a protest, this rally is an effort to reinvigorate the Mid-Hudson regional peace movement, which has seen better days, as has the national movement. "Whether our action succeeds or not depends in certain measure on the thousands of readers of this calendar throughout the Hudson Valley, so join us for the sake of peace!" This protest is one of many taking place in the United States Oct. 17 (including in Albany, see below) in response to a call from the National Assembly to End the Iraq and Afghanistan Wars and Occupation, the ANSWER Coalition, and a number of other national peace organizations. Academy Green Park is in the Uptown section of Kingston. From the traffic circle at NY Thruway Exit 19, go around the circle and emerge via the Chandler Drive outlet. At the first traffic light, turn right on Albany Ave. for about a block and you're there. Park in the lot of a small shopping center or on area streets. Arrive a bit early for the best parking. If you wish to distribute leaflets in your town before the rally or help out on the day of the event, contact us as soon as possible. Information,, and (845) 255-5779. National information, and

Saturday, Oct. 17, ALBANY: A Capital District coalition is sponsoring a 12 noon-3 p.m. antiwar protest here at Capitol West Park (west side of Capitol building), demanding: "Bring all the Troops Home Now from Iraq, Afghanistan and Pakistan." The event begins with a noon rally, followed by a mach up Lark St., then back to the park. This protest is sponsored by the Northeast Peace and Justice Action Coalition. Information, (518) 439-1968 and

Saturday, Oct. 17, BEACON: The annual Dissident Folk & Arts Festival will return for its fourth season to Beacon's Howland Cultural Center, 7-11 p.m. The Festival ‘s theme this year will be Looking Forward: In Praise of Activism. Its goal is to act as a bridge between socially-conscious arts and progressive philosophy, toward political awareness and social change. Performers include this year’s headliners, the progressive Hip-Hop artists Readnex Poetry Squad, from New Paltz and Newburgh; protest song ensemble The Flames of Discontent; folk expansionists Hope Machine from Peekskill; Beacon’s Alvin Bell and Chris Rhue's Freedom Song Review; and other poets, musicians and groups. The Howland Cultural Center is at 477 Main St. Admission is $10, seniors $7, unemployed by affordable donation. Information, (845) 831-4988, (845) 591-2161,,

Sunday, Oct. 18, NEW ROCHELLE: Women in Black will conduct a Palestine Solidarity Vigil 2-3 p.m. today— “for the Children of Gaza” — at Main St. and Memorial Highway. “Wear black if you like. Women and Men are welcome. We will stand on Main St. by the little park. Be a Voice for those whose voice is silenced.“ Sponsors are CodePink Westchester and WESPAC. Information, (914) 654 8990.

Monday, Oct. 19, NEW PALTZ (SUNY campus): “Confronting the Climate Crisis: Challenges and Solutions,” is the topic addressed Dr. Steven Leibo, Professor of Modern International History and Politics at the Sage Colleges in New York. He will present a slide show following up on “An Inconvenient Truth,“ Al Gore’s Academy Award-winning documentary on climate change. His presentation will take place at 7 p.m. in the Auditorium of the Coykendall Science Building on campus. Free and public. A map of campus is at Information, (845) 257-3447. Sponsored by the SUNY New Paltz Environmental Task Force.