[COMM-ORG] Is anyone trying to actually organize in Ferguson?

Discussion list for COMM-ORG colist at comm-org.wisc.edu
Fri Aug 22 09:23:01 CDT 2014

[ed: Thanks to Mindy, Ana, and Peter for responding.]

From: Mindy Chateauvert <dr.mindyc at gmail.com>


Also there's a town hall forum on Monday night at the  Missouri history 
museum in StL 5700 Lindell Ave hosted by Kevin Powell. It's sponsored by 
BK Nation and Project Engage Network.



Ana Garcia-Ashley <info at gamaliel.org>
8/21/2014 2:31 PM
colist at comm-org.wisc.edu

Fire of Faith
Lesson from Ferguson: we must talk about racial equity

Last week, 100-plus participants in Gamaliel weeklong training took part 
in an evening conversation about race and structural racism. At tables 
of 8, facilitated by staff organizers, multi-generational and 
intercultural groups progressed from sharing their first experiences of 
race to how structural racism manifests in their issue organizing.

We believe these powerful conversations show us a way forward that we 
believe illustrates what must happen next for St. Louis to address the 
crisis in Ferguson.

We mourn Michael Brown's killing. We must and we will hold law 
enforcement accountable for what happened. But we have an even greater 
responsibility as community organizers: to focus in like a laser on 
racial inequities of which Ferguson is really a symptom and act to make 
the region fairer for all.

It's not just about policing. Unemployment in St. Louis City stood at 26 
percent for African Americans and 6.2 percent for whites in 2012, 
according to the Census Department's latest available stats. In May, 
area researchers revealed residents of St. Louis zip codes separated by 
only a few miles have up to an 18-year difference in life expectancy. 
The racial disparities in education for St. Louis-area children are 
widely known as well.

Today, our St. Louis affiliate Metropolitan Congregations United will 
hold a news conference at 4 p.m. at the County Justice Center to call 
for the county prosecutor to step aside so that the U.S. Department of 
Justice can lead the investigation into Michael Brown's killing and 
everyone in the region can have confidence in the process.

On Saturday, Aug. 23, they plan a community canvas with clergy and 
leaders from across the region including the Metro East in Illinois, 
Kansas City, and beyond hearing from and speaking with people of 
Ferguson. Also this weekend, they plan to ask faith leaders in St. Louis 
County to preach on racial justice.

Next week they will put all the issues raised the past two weeks front 
and center on the agenda for their upcoming public meeting Thursday, 
Aug. 28, where they will employ the strategies of fire of faith to 
rekindle their economy and generate opportunities and jobs in St. Louis, 
rekindle democracy by mobilizing votes, and rekindle their congregations.

Of course, our thoughts and prayers go with them and the people of 
Ferguson and the St. Louis region. But for those of us who cannot be 
there, this incident on top of so many others in recent years creates an 
opening all of us can seize to talk about the impact of structural 
racism on our economy, our democracy and our congregations.

Join Us on Facebook

  [ https://www.facebook.com/gamalielnetwork ]

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"*Your contribution will make a difference as we work together to secure 
a just society for all!*"


From: Peter Dreier <dreier at oxy.edu>


Todd Swanstrom and I put the turmoil in Ferguson in broader perspective in
this op-ed, "Suburban Ghettos Like Ferguson Are Ticking Time Bombs,"
for the*Washington Post*  today. Ferguson is one of a growing number of
suburban ghettos that are isolated from good jobs, lack affordable having,
have been preyed on by predatory banks, and are trapped in a system of
economic and racial segregation. We suggest two ways to address these
problems -- community organizing and regional cooperation.

The analysis parallels the themes of our book (coauthored with John
Mollenkopf), *Place Matters: Metropolitics for the 21st Century
<http://www.kansaspress.ku.edu/drepl3.html>*.  A third edition of the book,
updated and revised, was published this month by University Press of



Peter Dreier

Dr. E.P. Clapp Distinguished Professor of Politics

Chair, Urban & Environmental Policy Department

Occidental College

1600 Campus Road

Los Angeles, CA 90041

Phone: (323) 259-2913

FAX: (323) 259-2734


New book:  The 100 Greatest Americans of the 20th Century: A Social Justice
Hall of Fame (Nation Books, 2012)

Updated book: Place Matters: Metropolitics for the 21st Century (University
Press of Kansas, 3rd edition, 2014) - coauthor with John Mollenkopf and
Todd Swanstrom

On 8/20/2014 10:02 AM, Discussion list for COMM-ORG wrote:
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> ed:  The corporate media make it seem like no one is trying to 
> organize protests.  Is that the case?
> Randy Stoecker
> moderator/editor, COMM-ORG
> rstoecker at wisc.edu
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