Success Story

Eau Claire votes to amend the Constitution

On election day, more than 70% of Eau Claire residents voted yes on the question:  "Should the U.S. Constitution be amended to establish that regulating political contributions and spending is not equivalent to limiting freedom of speech, by stating that only human beings, not corporations, unions, or PACs, are entitled to constitutional rights?"

Eau Claire wasn't alone!  In every community where Move to Amend-type resolutions were on the ballot November 6th, they passed resoundingly.  Nationwide, 24 communities in eight states voted in favor of real campaign finance reform and against corporate "personhood."

Kewaunee nuclear reactor to be shut down

The Kewaunee nuclear reactor, near Green Bay, will be shut down in mid-2013, owner Dominion Resources announced.

Dominion had been trying to sell the reactor for a year and a half, but could not find a buyer.

In a statement, the company said the decision to mothball the nuclear reactor "was based purely on economics."

The Chicago Tribune reports, "Kewaunee is the first nuclear plant to shut its doors due to competition from natural gas. Production has jumped in recent years as new technologies like horizontal drilling and hydraulic fracturing, or 'fracking,' enable energy companies to tap the United States' vast shale reserves."

Milwaukee votes to move the money, from wars to community needs!

On September 25, the Milwaukee city council unanimously passed a resolution "urging federal authorities to redirect spending priorities and resources from military operations in foreign countries to domestic programs including housing, health care, education and veterans support," reports WPR.

Among many other jarring facts about U.S. war and military spending, the Milwaukee resolution points out that Pentagon spending could be cut by 80% and still be the largest military budget in the world.

The resolution was suggested by WNPJ member group Peace Action Wisconsin, whose "Move the Money" campaign links runaway war spending to unmet community needs.  It's the first - but likely not the last - such resolution to be considered in Wisconsin.

More information can be found on our Bring Our War $$ Home page.  If you're interested in proposing a similar resolution to your school board, union council, city council or county board, please contact us at (608) 250-9240 or diane@wnpj.org.

SOA Watch Delegation to Discuss the SOA/WHINSEC at the White House mid-Ocotber!

School of Americas Watch news:  Step by step, the longest march can be won.  You did it! After protests and nonviolent direct actions, thousands of petitions, and letters from religious leaders and Members of Congress, the White House has agreed to sit down with an SOA Watch delegation to discuss the School of the Americas / Western Hemisphere Institute for Security Cooperation mid-October. WNPJ has been involved with this movement over the last years, with our former Lifetime Achievement Awardee, Maureen McDonnell, OP leading the way. And longtime WNPJ member Fred Brancel of Monona (photo) served 6 months in a federal prison, for crossing the line at Ft. Benning, GA several years ago. Many of our members have made the annual trip to Geoargia each November in protest, written letters, and made call to our representatives. Thank you all.  Read more below, of what you can do now is support of this upcoming meeting.

NUKEWATCH members, Bonnie Urfer and John LaForge receive the Peace Owl Award

Celebrate International Peace Day with Bonnie Urfer and John LaForge of NUKEWATCH, recipients of the Peace Owl Award. They'll be facilitating a NUKEwatch Nuclear Teach-In during an afternoon of evvents from 1 - 5 pm in Green Bay at the Harmony Cafe, 1660 West Mason St. Program: at 1:30 there's an 'ECO-tour; 2 - Green Party presentation; 2:30 Clean Water Action Council; 3 Fall blessing and lunch break - and at 4 pm, the NUKEwatch thttp://www.nukewatchinfo.org/each-in. All welcome. Contact: Jim Olmsted at 920-264-3779 and learn more about Nukewatch at http://www.nukewatchinfo.org/

WNPJ member to receive the Linda Sundberg Civil Rights Defender Award

On September 18th, Dennis Bergren will receive the Linda Sundberg Civil Rights Defender Award in Madison at Union South, 1308 West Dayton Street. All welcome from 5 - 7 pm that evening to join in the celebration with Community Shares of WI as we recognize this year’s Award Winners: Matt Dannenberg (Wisconsin League of Conservation Voters);  Kim Hogan (Disability Rights Wisconsin); and Dennis Bergren (OutReach).   Backyard Heroes will also be recognized, including WNPJ's Sheila Spears and Mary Beth Schlagheck,   To RSVP by 9/7,  call CSW at 608-256-1066.   Suggested donation is $40. Read more below, about Dennis Bergren, former Board member of WNPJ:

Wisconsin voter ID law blocked

A Dane County circuit court judge has issued a permanent injunction blocking Wisconsin's voter ID law, ruling that it creates a “substantial impairment of the right to vote” guaranteed by the state Constitution. The court ruling was in response to a lawsuit filed by the NAACP and WNPJ member group Voces de la Frontera. The injunction means that the law, which would have required a state-issued photo ID from all voters, will not be in effect for the November election, although Wisconsin Attorney General J.B. Van Hollen has said he intends to appeal the decision.

State Dept. reverses visa denial for peace activist

Reversing their earlier decision, U.S. Consular officers  have now issued a visa for Dr. Wee Teck Young (left) to come to the U.S. for a multi-state speaking tour as part of the U.S.-Mexico “Movement for Peace with Justice and Dignity” organized by Global Exchange. Dr. Young prefers to go by the name Hakim, a name bestowed on him after he served as a public health doctor among refugees on the border between Afghanistan and Pakistan. In the Dari language, “Hakim” means “learned one and local healer.” The visa approval  comes after Voices for Creative Nonviolence, Global Exchange, and Fellowship of Reconciliation urged their members and supporters to contact the State Dept. on Hakim's behalf. Responding to the news, Hakim said, "Your support letters to me and to the U.S. Embassies in support of my U.S. visa re-application encourage me deeply in my wish and work for global peace. Your acts of love show me that without extending our hand to one another, neither simple nor difficult steps towards a better, non-violent world could be taken successfully."

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