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News & Public Affairs

WPKN White Rose Political Calendar – December 5, 2016

Welcome to this week’s edition of the White Rose Political Calendar. The calendar takes its name from the White Rose, a resistance group in Nazi Germany that worked to educate and organize opposition to the horrifying agenda of the Third Reich. In the spirit of the White Rose, WPKN offers its weekly Political Calendar in order to give voice to the struggles for political, social, economic and environmental justice. Here are some of the listings for the week of December 5, 2016.


Anticipating an assault on women’s reproductive and health rights under the coming Trump administration, several demonstrations are being planned. On Monday, December 12, women throughout the United States are planning a targeted boycott and a day of protest. Participants will also reach out to elected officials to protest Trump administration nominees who have histories of racial injustice and/or misogyny. More information about one local action, happening on the New Haven Green at noon on Monday, the 12th, can be found by searching for “Women Strike Out and Protest New Haven” on Facebook. Many other demonstrations are happening nationwide.


Searching for “Women’s March on Washington” on Facebook will lead to details about a massive march and rally planned in Washington, D.C., by women (and their friends) on January 21, the day after the inauguration. Searching for “Women’s March Connecticut” on Facebook or Google will lead to links for buses travelling to the event. Searching for “Women’s March NYC” will lead to a local event happening in New York City on the same day.


In this era when First Amendment rights are being threatened, New Haven’s ArtSpace will hold a public forum to discuss the viability and significance of community-minded public artworks that take a political stance. This meeting is the second taking place after an artwork installed during October’s Open Studios came under criticism by local police officials. The forum takes place on Tuesday, December 6, beginning at 6:00 p.m. More information about the initial incident and the forum is at artspacenh.org.


The groups Citizen’s Campaign for the Environment and Save Our Water are hosting a showing of Tapped, a movie that explores the bottled water industry and its effects on our health, climate change, pollution, and reliance on oil. This event takes place on Tuesday, December 6, at 7:00, at the Thornton Wilder Hall of Hamden’s public library. More details are at hamdenlibrary.org, under “calendar.”


Members of the Working Families Party are organizing “Emergency Community Meetings” across the country to anticipate cuts to health and social justice programs after President Obama leaves office. It is also believed that regulations and tax burdens for large corporations and wealthy individuals will be loosened, leading to increased financial pressure for people in the working class. More information about local meetings can be found at workingfamilies.org


The group Human Rights Watch has set up an emergency alert system for hate crimes. Individuals witnessing hate speech or aggression that is racist, sexist, and/or homophobic are encouraged to text “CallItOut” to 82257. Human Rights Watch will be working with the Southern Poverty Law Center to investigate and take actions after the reports. More information is at www.hrw.org/callitout.


The group Showing Up for Racial Justice (or “SURJ”) is one of many organizations working to protect the rights of people of color, a challenge that will become even more urgent after the inauguration of the next president in January. SURJ continues to organize actions throughout the region, more information about which can found by searching for “S-U-R-J Connecticut” or “New York” on Facebook.


The Connecticut Fund for the Environment (or CFE) is fighting a new power plant that is being planned for Killingly. NTE Connecticut is trying to build a new gas-powered electric plant in Killingly, and has applied to the state Siting Council for approval. According to CFE, building a new fossil fuel power plant now is the wrong direction for Connecticut at a time where the state should be moving more toward renewable energy. They say that the area around Killingly is already overburdened with lots of power plants, and the application is incomplete and misleadingly minimizes the plant’s possible effects. More information about this controversy can be seen at the website notanotherpowerplant.com or by looking for the Connecticut Fund for the Environment Facebook page.


New Haven’s Healthy City/Healthy Climate initiative is encouraging individuals to make small changes to their lives that will conserve energy and further a healthy lifestyle. Citizens of New Haven… or any locality… can visit healthyclimatechallenge.org to take a personal pledge to cut down on automobile use, choose renewable energy sources, eat less meat, recycle household materials, and become involved in environmental organizations. Small changes taken by many people can improve the overall health of our planet.


Connecticut’s utility companies are continuing their aggressive tree removal in neighborhoods throughout the state. Their goal is to fell the entire tree if any part of that tree’s structure is within eight feet of a power line. Homeowners have rights to protect trees on their own property or within their neighborhoods. The Garden Club of New Haven has been taking action to protect trees in the state, and their informative website at tinyurl.com/saveatree2016 includes a list of tree wardens throughout the state as well as actions a homeowner can take if they are approached by a utility.


Most of WPKN’s public affairs, community programs, and cultural programs are now available by podcast. WPKN has a talented pool of programmers who are deeply curious about the world around them. Their interviews are lively, timely, and a perfect companion for your morning run or afternoon car trip. You can find out more information by going to wpkn.org and clicking on the podcast link. More than ever, community radio stations like WPKN will be essential to provide an outlet for alternative political and cultural points of view.


To list your group’s local, regional or national events, send announcements, one week in advance when possible, to the White Rose Political Calendar, at valrichardson@wpkn.org. This week’s calendar was produced by Valerie and Rod Richardson.