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 January 16, 2017.
Numerous rallies and protest marches are being held this week in anticipation of the Trump inauguration on Friday, January 20 and the senate confirmation hearings of his cabinet nominees.
Groups are calling for a general strike on inauguration day, and there will be rallies across the country to protest the incoming president and his administration. In New Haven, a rally will be held at 2 pm in front of City Hall, and there will be a march at 5:00 p.m. In addition consumers are encouraged to boycott Trump-related companies. An app is available for numerous smartphone platforms listing all businesses with Trump connections.
A massive march and rally is planned in Washington, D.C., by women (and their friends) on January 21, the day after the presidential inauguration. Participants in the so-called “Women’s March on Washington” are hoping for a strong turnout to protect women’s rights in many areas. More information can be found at www.womensmarch.com. Searching for “Women’s March” and an individual state name will lead to Facebook pages organized for specific regions.
There are also more than 300 “sister” marches planned in locations around the country. In Hartford, a rally and march will be held at 1:00 p.m. on Saturday in front of the State Capital.
In its ongoing efforts to protect the environment, the North Fork Environmental Council will kick off a speaker series on Friday, January 27, with Kevin McAllister, founding president of DefendH2O. As a coastal scientist, he will address the physical and ecological implications of climate change. The talk will address the projected changes in sea level and tell what it means for Long Island’s local communities. The event, which starts at 6:30 p.m., is taking place at the Jamesport Meeting House in Jamesport, New York.
The legislative session is starting in Connecticut. For the third year in a row, sharp budget cuts are expected, which will affect funding for social justice, the arts, and the environment. The Connecticut Fund for the Environment lobbies for protection of land, air, and water, and they have established a “Climate First Responder” list. You can go to tinyurl.com/climateresponder to sign up and to ctenvironment.org for details about many other activities that are underway. In particular, they will be putting out information about committee hearings and opportunities for public input throughout the six-month long session.
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.
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 firstname.lastname@example.org. This week’s calendar was produced by Valerie and Rod Richardson.