Ghosts of War

war stories, memories

Every war is fought long after the last physical battle. It is the sustained battle for a dominating, ruling story about that war. Why did we go to war? How did we fight? Who were the righteous and glorious? The evil and devious? Who were the victors? What were the costs? War after war, a  repeating pattern. In this United States, it is a lethal pattern propelling us  into acceptance of the next war — and the next. In a period consigned to “commemorating” the American War in Vietnam, we must grab hold of, shake out, and retell that story. We must face the ghosts of war, hear the true memories, create a new pattern. Find out what Veterans For Peace are doing at their site,  Full Disclosure: Toward An Honest Commemoration of the American War in Vietnam.

Rape

RAPE, women, gender, hate crimes,

Violence against women is a hate crime and should be classified as such. Yet, according to the FBI’s Hate Crime Statistics (2012)  hate crimes are based on race, sexual orientation, disability, ethnic/national origin, and religion. Gender is left out. Why? Rape is not sex out of control. It’s an act of hatred, contempt and destructiveness against a specific class of people – women and girls. Mis-categorizing is not an incidental issue as it has an impact on how rapists are viewed and punished and it limits women’s consciousness and solidarity as a targeted people.

Fracking

FrackingOnceFarms

I was moved to design this poster on fracking after watching the documentary, “Gasland,” written and directed by Josh Fox. Listening to the people whose lives have been immediately affected by fracking on or near their property is an eye-opener and a call to action.  While fracking occurs or may begin in many different environs, including in my city, I used the red barn in this image because of the threat to my beautiful beloved home state of New York. I warmly remember countless rides with my grandparents through the luscious countryside, being taught to love nature, to honor our farmlands, to value those distinctive red barns. Those kinds of places are now suffering from or being threatened by  environmental destruction due to fracking.

Austerity

 

Austerity

What is austerity politics? It is crying “NO MONEY” to cut human services,  the oxygen of large segments of humanity,  destroying the life chances of far too many. It is crying “NO MONEY” while the wealthy blatantly engage in a super frenzy of spending. flaunting and hoarding. It is crying “NO MONEY” while the US military spends spends spends to destroy people all over the world. THERE IS MONEY! Put it in the right places.

Which is the Crime?

DetainedCrossing

Hundreds of thousands of immigrants are being kept in immigrant detention centers for crossing a border every year. These centers are increasingly in the hands of private corporations that have profit as their primary goal. It is, therefore, in their interest to keep their population within those walls. This raises the question: Which is the crime? Crossing a border? Or keeping immigrants captive for money? Check out Sara Aguilar’s video of Ana Tijoux singing in solidarity with Chant Down the Walls.

Private Prisons $$$

private prisons, cca, prison profiteering

Private Prison Corporations, such as Corrections Corporation of America (CCA) and the GEO Group, are in the business of making money. One of the ways they do this is to make sure their prisons are filled to the max since they are paid per prisoner. Immigrants, minor offenders, the aged, people up for parole are kept locked up. These companies insert a “lock-up quota” into contracts to ensure states keep their prison 80-100% filled. They work to ensure legislation that will bring more people into the system, and fight against alternatives to jail time by hiring dozens of lobbyists to act on their behalf. Something is not right here.