I first met a representative from Voters for Peace at the 2006 Libertarian Party national convention, in Portland. They're a non-partisan peace activist group.
They've now created a Peace Movement listsev on Google Groups. Peace activists of any and all political backgrounds may consider joining it.
Here's the Voters for Peace email to me:
We received many excellent comments from our last mailing about what an effective antiwar movement would look like. We have decided to set up a group to allow further discussion.
You can join the group by visiting Google Groups Peace Movement.
There was a lot of support for the ideas put forward in our last mailing; see America Needs a Patriotic, Broad-Based, and Politically Independent Opposition to War. In particular, people emphasized:
-- Organize on a congressional district level. Organize locally, talk to neighbors, and focus on elected officials at home. Reach out to groups with a range of interests including education, transit, housing, business, and jobs. Get across how funding militarism undermines their agendas. Change comes from the bottom up.
-- Be credible and broad-based so that we represent the majority of Americans who question or oppose U.S. war and militarism. We should seek to include people from across the political spectrum who share these views. The antiwar movement needs former military officials from private to general who can speak out against war.
-- Relate antiwar spending to the domestic economy and jobs at home. What does it cost the citizens of the United States for America to be an empire? Here is an exercise that could be duplicated throughout the country at churches, synagogues, mosques, civic associations, business groups, and community meetings: [Stanford Oreos].
-- Political independence from the two parties is very important. Both major parties have been captured by the corporate-military-media complex. The peace movement must not hesitate to support candidates from third parties, even if they are considered 'unelectable.' We have to build for the future and get out of the habit of voting for the lesser of two evils.
-- Build infrastructure so antiwar advocacy is ongoing. Recognize that opposition to one war is not the only issue; building broader opposition to militarism is needed. Put in place infrastructure that can consistently educate, organize, and outreach as well as one that can escalate its activities whenever the drums of war beat anew.
These are just some of the ideas. In addition to forming a group to allow our members to discuss creating a more effective peace movement we are already pursuing some of the ideas you have suggested and will be announcing them as projects come to fruition.
Thank you for your help so far. I hope you will join the discussion group so we can get into more detail and deeper thinking on these issues. And, I hope you will support us with funding. Please make a donation today so we can continue to build effective antiwar advocacy.
Voters for Peace
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