CLEVELAND: 50th city against war
The City Council here voted in support of an anti-war resolution, Jan. 27, making Cleveland the 50th city in the nation to do so. The vote was 18 to 0.
The Council passed the resolution after a spirited rally of about 200 supporters was held on the steps of city hall in the freezing cold before the meeting. City council members invited the anti-war demonstrators to attend the council meeting inside.
Cleveland Mayor Jane Campbell addressed the rally crowd, declaring that “the people of Cleveland are making their voices heard, as they must, to stop this war.” The mayor, City Council members and peace activists all decried the loss of resources desperately needed by ailing cities with budgets in crisis that a war on Iraq would bring.
AFL-CIO President Tom Frisbie, a U.S. army veteran, said Bush “hasn’t made his case to the American people. He has not shown us any smoking gun.” Frisbie told the crowd that the AFL-CIO unanimously passed a resolution against the war. “We need a war on unemployment, not a war on Iraq,” he stated.
Ohio State Representative Dale Miller also announced that he has drafted a resolution against the war which he will seek to get passed in the Ohio state legislature in the coming weeks.
JERSEY CITY, NJ: Council votes against Iraq war
The Jersey City Municipal Council voted to adopt a resolution opposing war with Iraq by a vote of 8 to 1. The overflow crowd in the council chambers interrupted those speaking for it repeatedly with waves of applause.
Jersey City, across the Hudson River from Manhattan, is the second largest city in New Jersey with a population of 250,000.
The Hudson County Coalition for Peace and Justice (HCCPJ), who organized the effort, hopes this victory will lead to other resolutions in cities and towns throughout the state.
Efforts are presently underway to introduce a similar resolution at the next meeting of the Newark City Council.
HCCPJ is holding a teach-in on Feb. 6, 7:00 p.m., at the Pope Hall in St. Peter’s College, Jersey City, on “Myths and Realities Behind Bush’s War Drive,” including Rutgers Prof. Stephen Bronner, who has just returned from a peace trip to Iraq. For more info: firstname.lastname@example.org
PITTSBURGH: Freezin’ for peace
For two days, thousands filled the streets – curb to curb – demanding that the Bush administration “give peace a chance,” Jan. 25-26. With temperatures at single digits, 2000 marched through the city’s Southside neighborhoods. The owners of Ethnic Artz and Diva’s passed out hot chocolate to peace marchers and relatives of one of the city’s motorcycle policemen escorting the ‘parade’ were in the crowd. Standing at attention, WW II veteran Regis Schnippert, 79, Southside resident, saluted the march saying, “I think they should stand up and be counted. This is what this country is supposed to be about.”
The next day, 5000 people, amid white-out conditions, took the peace message to the university area, called Oakland. The march ended with a ‘die-in’ creating a realistic but eerie feeling. “I know what Vietnam did to my generation,” said Morgantown, W.Va. attorney Tom Rodd, 57. “It ruined American politics and a lot of families. We should have learned our lesson then that crazy unilateral wars are bad for our nation.”
SANTA BARBARA, Calif.: Nobel scientists say peace, not war
Nobel Prize winning chemists, physicists and medical doctors, responding to Bush’s State of the Union with a press conference, announced their opposition to war with Iraq. Hans Bethe, who won the Ppize in 1967 for his work in physics on building the atomic bomb, the Manhatten Project, is among the signers.
Their statement said in part, “Even with victory medical, economic, environmental, moral, spiritual, political and legal consequences of an American preventive attack on Iraq would undermine, not protect, U.S. security and standing in the world.” 41 scientists have signed so far.
UNIONTOWN, Pa.: Neighbors demand justice
African American and white neighbors of 12 year-old Michael Ellerbe protested on the courthouse steps, Jan. 27, after a Fayette County coroner’s jury found that two state police officers were “justified” in shooting the child in the back on Christmas Eve. Ellerbe died.
Holding his 10-year-old son’s hand, Donald Brown said, “Michael (Ellerbe) was my son’s friend and I’m here to support my friend. Some people don’t give a damn about what happened, but a lot do. This needs to be heard and people are getting the idea of what’s going on. There’s too many things about Michael’s death that don’t make sense.”
CAMERON, W.Va.: Mine blast kills three workers
Construction workers excavating a 940 foot deep air ventilation shaft for Consolidation Coal’s McElroy mine hit methane gas, January 22, setting off an explosion that killed Richard Mount; 37, Dave Abel; 47, and Harry Roush III, 23.
Three workers, Benny Bair; 23, Richard Brumley; 51, and Aaron Meyer, 28, were rushed to area hospitals for burn treatment.
The deadly explosion, under investigation by the West Virginia Office Miner’s Health and Safety and the federal Mine Health and Safety Administration, occurred at the bottom of the shaft.
Cameron Mayor Thomas Stern, a 29-year veteran coal miner and member of the United Mine Workers union at McElroy, described the scene as “gruesome.”
WASHINGTON, D.C.: Over the road drivers take strike vote
Beginning Jan. 20, 65,000 members of the Teamsters’ union began casting their ballots to authorize their bargaining committee to strike if an agreement is not reached with freight companies by March 31. Balloting ends Feb. 2.
“I voted to strike because the companies need to know that our negotiators represent our interests at the bargaining table and that we support our negotiators 100 percent,” said Teamsters Local 41, Kansas City, chief steward Linda Giles. Giles drives coast to coast for Yellow Freight.
National clips are compiled each week by Denise Winebrenner Edward who can be reached at email@example.com.
Bahman Azad contributed to this week’s clips.