Sunday, December 2, 2012

12-02-12 Activist Calendar

December 2, 2012, Issue #664
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Editor’s note:
1    If you haven’t seen Part 1 of Oliver Stone’s magnificent Untold History of the United States on Showtime you can view it at We consider it one of the very most important video documentaries about modern U.S. history. It’s produced from a progressive point of view, which is virtually unique in terms of the mass media. We don’t know yet if subsequent chapters will appear on YouTube.
2    Activism begins to drop off in mid-December through January, picking up again in February. Enjoy the holidays.

Monday, Dec. 3, OLD CHATHAM: This is a real treat— a free showing of  the moving 116-minute 2005 docudrama "Joyeux Noel," followed by a discussion. Based on a real event, the film tells the story of a temporary battlefield truce declared by the French, Scottish and German troops in the trenches of World War I, and not by their officers, beginning on Christmas Eve 1914. The 7-9 p.m. gathering will be held at Powell House Quaker Conference & Retreat Center, 524 Pitt Hall Rd. It’s sponsored by the Quaker Meeting. Information, 518 766-2992,

Tuesday, Dec. 4, ROSENDALE: Mid-Hudson Amnesty International is sponsoring the documentary "You Don't Like the Truth: 4 Days in Guantanamo."  This 99-minute 2010 film is based on security camera footage from the Guantánamo Bay prison, showing the interrogation of a 15-year-old Canadian citizen accused of killing an American soldier in Afghanistan. The video footage of this award-winning documentary was recently declassified by the Canadian courts. It has never been shown before in the U.S. The Guardian (UK) calls it “a gut-wrenching film.” There will be a Q&A after the screening with Zeke Johnson of Amnesty's Human Rights campaign from Guantanamo. Participants are asked to bring a stamped, hand-written letter protesting human rights violations. This free event begins at 7:15 p.m. at the Rosendale Theater, 408 Main St. Information,,

Tuesday, Dec. 4, NEW PALTZ (SUNY campus): The SUNY N.P. chapter of Oxfam America and the Student Alliance for Social Services is conducting a public “Hunger Banquet” in the Student Union’s multi-purpose room, 6:30-8:30 p.m. The purpose is to raise funds for and awareness of the international hunger crisis. To enter the banquet students and community people are requested to bring food items for Family of New Paltz or a contribution for Oxfam, an international coalition of 17 organizations working in 90 countries against hunger, poverty and injustice. According to Oxfam, “At this interactive event, the place where you sit, and the meal that you eat, are determined by the luck of the draw—just as in real life some of us are born into relative prosperity and others into poverty.” Campus map:

Wednesday, Dec. 5, NEW PALTZ (SUNY campus): A public Symposium on racial profiling and ‘stop and frisk’ policing will start at 4.30 p.m. in the CSB Auditorium. A reception will follow in CSB. The Sociology Department is hosting the symposium in order to discuss the ramifications of this issue for New Paltz students and the community around us. Speakers will include: Gabriel Sayegh, the State Director of Drug Policy Alliance; Chino Hardin, a community organizer from the Institute for Juvenile Justice Reform and Alternatives, in Brooklyn; Alfredo Carrasquillo, an organizer from VOCAL-NY, a statewide grassroots organization which builds power among low-income people affected by HIV/AIDS, the drug war and mass incarceration to create healthy and just communities. Andrew Kossover, the head of the Ulster County Public Defender’s Office, will speak about the local implications of stop and frisk. This event is co-sponsored by the Black Studies department, the Latin American and Caribbean Studies Department, the Student Association, the Black Student Union, the SUNY New Paltz Amnesty International chapter, and Students for a Sensible Drug Policy. Information (845) 257-3756.

Wednesday, Dec. 5, NEW PALTZ (SUNY campus): "Dear Governor Cuomo: A Live Concert and Rally to Protect New York State" will be screened at 8 p.m. in Lecture Center 100. This is a 70-minute documentary on fracking based on an event  last May 15 when a diverse group of N.Y. scientists, musicians and activists gathered in Albany on the governor's doorstep to convince him to join the anti-fracking majority. Following the film there will be a panel discussion led by filmmaker Jon Bowermaster, who directed this documentary. The screening will be preceded by some musical numbers by students . This public event is free “with a $10 donation welcomed.” It’s sponsored by the SUNY New Paltz Environmental Task Force & NYPIRG. Campus map:,,

Thursday, Dec. 6, NEW PALTZ (SUNY campus): “Challenges facing students, labor and the public education system” is the topic of a free public 6:30 p.m. panel discussion at the CSB Auditorium. Speakers include Brian Obach, chair of the Sociology Dept.; Peter Brown, president of the SUNY NP chapter of United University Professions; Ezekiel Perkins, head of Student Labor Dialogue at Bard College; and Barbara Cvenic and Kevin Rodriguez of NYPIRG, which is hosting the event. Campus map:

Thursday, Dec. 6, MILLBROOK: A free public showing of the newly released 70-minute documentary "Chasing Ice" will take place at 7 p.m. the Cary Institute auditorium (2801 Sharon Turnpike/Rt. 44). This is the story of National Geographic's James Balog’s mission to photograph disappearing Arctic glaciers. Using time-lapse recorders set up across the brutal Arctic landscape, he has created a visually-stunning record of climate change impacts. "In the first few months, he said, we were seeing mind-boggling change, and as years went on we realized this is a powerful piece of history. We've got monumental change happening in front of our eyes." Space is limited for this free event  and you may wish to arrive a bit early; doors open at 6:30 p.m. Information,

Friday, Dec. 7, TROY: "Building Independent Working Class Politics: The Labor Party and Lessons for Today" is the topic of a 7:30 p.m. talk by Mark Dudzic, a labor activist for over 30 years. Dudzic currently serves as the national coordinator of the Labor Campaign for Single-payer Healthcare. The talk will be at the Oakwood Community Center (former Presbyterian church), 313 10th St. Bethlehem Neighbors for Peace is the sponsor. A donation of $5 is requested, $2 unemployed and students. Information,  (518) 505-0948,

Saturday, Dec. 8, HIGH FALLS: A concert fundraiser for Amnesty International will begin at 9 p.m. at the High Falls Café, 12 Stone Dock Rd. Music will be provided by "Questionable Authorities," a band of SUNY New Paltz professors playing classic rock hits. The event is sponsored by Mid-Hudson Amnesty and the band for the purpose of “working to end inhumane treatment of political prisoners.“ Say the organizers: "the band will bring their brand of loud noise — with many special guests— to help the cause! Come hear live music and support this important work of the local chapter." The event is free but donations are welcome, with the band donating their $250 fee to the chapter. Information (845) 687-2699,

Sunday, Dec. 9, ALBANY: Scott Kellogg, author of “Toolbox for Sustainable City Living,” and founder of the Radix Ecological Sustainability Center, will be presenting an overview of environmentally sustainable, community-based city living. His 11:45 a.m.-12:45 p.m. talk will be at the First Unitarian Universalist Society of Albany's Green Sanctuary Forum, 405 Washington Ave. It’s sponsored by the society and is free. Information,

Monday, Dec. 10,  MT. KISCO: Exploring The Palestinian Territories” is the topic to be addressed by three Westchester women recently returned from the West Bank who will offer personal accounts of daily life under occupation and nonviolent resistance. Jewish Voice for Peace is sponsoring the event that begins at 7 p.m. at the Presbyterian Church of Mt. Kisco, 605 Millwood Rd. Speaking will be (1) Nada Khader on a bicycle tour and return to her family’s village of Zababdeh with The Siraj Center; (2) Priscilla Read on a Sabeel Witness Tour of the Holy Land with a contemporary focus; and (3) Felice Gelman on a bus tour with the Jenin Freedom Theatre as it gives voice to Palestinian aspirations. Hand embroidery by Palestinian women will be available for sale to benefit the Sulafa Women’s Cooperative in Gaza. Information, (914) 449-6514,

Wednesday, Dec. 12, POUGHKEEPSIE: Take part in a free reading group focusing on Michelle Alexander's controversial and best-selling 2010 book "The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness." The group meets  6-8 p.m. on the second and fourth Wednesdays at the Sadie Peterson Delaney African Roots Library, Family Partnership Center, Suite 218, 29 North Hamilton St. The readings are organized by the End the New Jim Crow Action Network. An extensive outline of the book is available at Information, (845) 452-6088, ext. 3343,

Saturday, Dec. 22, ALBANY: Are you interested in a film that "reveals how U.S. corporations have been able to hide over a trillion dollars and how a grassroots movement has arisen to make corporations pay their fair share.?” If so, don’t miss the 98-minute 2012 documentary "We're Not Broke," which will be shown at 7:30 p.m. at the First Unitarian Universalist Society of Albany, 405 Washington Ave. We’re informed: “The film exposes how the U.S. government has allowed corporations to avoid paying taxes, its economic impact on individual Americans, and the growing wave of discontent that it has fostered. The film follows seven angry citizens as they take their frustration to the streets … and vow to make the corporations pay their fair share.” This free public screening is backed by the Solidarity Committee of the Capital District, Bethlehem Neighbors for Peace, and Upper Hudson Peace Action. Information, (518) 426-0883,