Tuesday, January 8, 2008

Peace Pole, Vigil, and Valentines

Good morning and happy new year! 2008 looks exciting already...the peace symbol turns 50, America chooses a new president, and more! Locally, the Ojai Valley continues to embrace Peace as a cultural value thanks to the tremendous efforts of many in a variety of endeavors.
i look forward to working with you in this coming year to create the world we want for ourselves and for our children: one that's safe, green, sane, smart, empowered, and actively compassionate.
Let's start here, with our own minds and bodies and community, then work our way outward.

· Ojai Peace Vigil - every friday evening from 5-6pm under the Pergola in front of Libbey Park. Bring a candle and a sign, and dress warmly!

You know Ojai House as THE local place for an eclectic collection of peace-justice-environment themed treasures, gifts, resources, and outright liberal propaganda (featuring unique work by local artists and a sanity-saving dose of wit and humor!)

With the help of the Ojai Peace Coalition, it'll also be the site of our valley's newest Peace Pole! In the spirit of the custom-made pole at the Ojai Art Center, and in keeping with the zany nature of its location, i am proposing that we design and create our own unique pole to be planted in the first half of this year!

Submit your environmentally-friendly designs or ideas (meaning both that we'd like to minimize the use of chemicals AND that it needs to withstand being outdoors in the elements) to me via email to get this ball rolling! As this progresses we'll likely have a face-to-face meeting for those who'd like to contribute.

Last year we participated in celebrating the 40th anniversary of Latin America's greatest gift to the world: a treaty which designated it Planet Earth's first nuclear-weapon-free zone. The Atomic Mirror is again helping us recognize this milestone in Peace history by sending our hand-made valentines to Mexico City as part of the celebration of the Treaty of Tlatelolco.

Obviously we need to have these valentines made and sent before Valentine's Day (Feb 14), so WE NEED A HOST for a valentine-making party! If you have some space to share, please let me know so we can plan this OPC-exclusive event!

As of now, there have been 3,911 U.S. soldier deaths in Iraq. The following are from the minutes of the VC Stop the War meeting held Saturday January 5th:

Proposal: 1. Produce flyer for commemoration plans 2. set-up website and cellphone text messaging, and put information on the flyer 3. outreach in Oxnard (friendly suggestion: flea market/swap meet on a Wednesday)
Passed 7 in favor

Proposal: Mario appointed to interface with other organizations
Passed 7 in favor

Discussion included plans to date: The evening after the day 4,000 soldier deaths in Iraq are announced, we'll hold a rally at Ventura City Hall, march through downtown, and vigil on the beach with candlelight. Reiterated: We must commemorate the Iraqi and Afghan dead, and other recent veteran deaths. March with two coffins, one with US flag, the other with Iraqi flag.
John T. reported that only ANSWER confirmed forwarding the email announcement about the event to its list: No other groups confirmed alerting their members. Groups mentioned to seek participation: Cafe on A, groups Francisco is in, Veterans For Peace, Citizens for Peaceful Resolutions, MEChA, Catholic church.

The Ojai Peace Coalition is a member of VCStopTheWar, and we need to decide whether we'd like to strengthen this Ventura-based commemoration OR hold one of our own more locally. i have no specific plans for a local vigil, but it's relatively easy to do. PLEASE SUBMIT YOUR VOTE - VENTURA OR OJAI! (IF YOU VOTE FOR OJAI, PLEASE CONSIDER INCLUDING COMMEMORATION IDEAS)

The California Democratic Council and the Democratic Party of Ventura County present a Democratic Leadership Training on Saturday January 12 2008 from 8am to 6pm in the EP Foster Library's Topping Room in Ventura.
The training will include such topics as The California Democratic Party Structure, How to Run a Meeting: Robert's Rules of Order, Club Finances, Increasing your Membership, Reaching Out to Youth, Technology, and The Progressive Challenge.
The Training is FREE ($10 suggested donation to cover food and materials costs)
Please RSVP by January 10 to training@cdc-ca.org or 1-800-446-9709.

The following is the proposed agenda for the upcoming meeting on 1/15/08 at Chaparral School Rm. 6, 7PM. If you have any input or changes for the agenda please contact Jon Cotham

Ojai Valley Green Coalition
Building and Construction Committee Meeting
1/15/08, 7-8:30 PM
Ojai Chaparral School Rm. 6
Chair of meeting- Jon Cotham
1. Jon Cotham: Welcome, circulate sign in sheet, overview of agenda, and recap highlights from the last meetings minutes.
2. Carolyn Hernandez: Update on the status of the lecture series and what our group needs to do to support this event.
3. Reggie Wood: Ambassador to the City of Ojai about the status of a Green building program.
4. Aaron Clapp: Alternative building codes, straw bale, in the City and County.
5. Wayne Pendrey: Recycling of Sheet rock in the deconstruction process.
6. Carolyn Hernandez: Establish benchmarks to measure the future progress in promoting Green building in the Valley.
7. Open discussion and comments.
8. Confirm next 2 meetings for Feb. 5 & 19
9. Adjourn meeting at 8:30 PM

Is Election Day a National Holiday for you yet? California's primary election is February 5, and you can participate in your Democracy by becoming an Election Officer or sponsoring a Polling Place! Individuals and organizations are welcome: call 805-654-2784

Please remember to provide the requested feedback, either as a comment right here or via email!

evan austin
Ojai Peace Coalition

January 8, 1961
The people of France - in a 75% majority - voted to grant Algeria its independence in a referendum after more than 130 years of French colonial control of the north African country.
More from This Week in Peace History

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