Actions against the Occupation of Iraq have been announced world-wide for Saturday September 24th, spawned in Washington, this exciting prospect for a peaceful anti-war gathering has proppelled me in to further action.
Much of the last week I have spent aranging a gathering of friends, associates and anyone I know who is against the current state of war in Iraq.
It will be held next month on Sunday, June 26th in a lovely park(The Esplenade) in the port-side town of Fremantle here in Western Australia.
The purpose of this meet-up is mostly to get to know each other, and combine our hopes and ideas for a peaceful end to this brutal invasion/occupation of Iraq.
One of the only things on the agenda for this meet is the September 24 rally, and the prospect of how to get the word out. I am working on getting the local media (ABC TV, ABC RADIO, Fremantle Radio, community newspaper, etc) involved in the campaign to build this rally/vigil/anti-war-picnic!
My hope is that with the right combination of people, far-lefties and moderates, children teenagers and adults, high-school students and teachers, primary school students, uni students, uni lecturers, bakers, radio presenters, bloggers and anyone else who is accepting of others and also against war, we can build a solid base from which to work towards peace.
The inspiration and drive that comes from a successful gathering or rally can be amazingly strong. I have felt it myself before and lived off it for weeks at a time.
I am hoping that June 26 will show that people from all walks of life are still interested, and can work together to fight against this war. I also aim to remind everyone and that every little contribution, be it an hour a month, and hour a week, and hour a day or even just one small smile makes a difference.
Confidence is one of the keys for success, and a smile is definately a confidence booster, and a "well done" or an "I agree" or even a CONSTRUCTIVE disagreement can have underlying effects on those involved.
Many hands make life work, and no congregation will ever agree 120% of the time on all issues indefinately, and thus the need for inclusiveness,responsibility and reasoning, are essential to the survival and effective working of any group.
From my view, this is particularly so in an anti-war group, where opinions are often conflicting and people are often polarised.
This is why I am bringing parents, teachers, and other responsible adults or reasonable people together with activists, children, teenagers and the likes.
The combined qualities of these people have great potential for work and activism alike.
Children (like my 12 year old sister) offer simplicity and common sense. They also tend to bring a happy atmosphere to places that THEY CHOOSE to go to, and a somewhat different perspective on life that can occasionaly prove them wise beyond their age.
Teenagers are energectic, often optimistic go-getters with contacts and access to resources and other students at High School. As we found out in 2003, this is a largely undiscovered resource that is actually quite huge and active.
Uni Students - the stereotype of anti-war activists is the uni student, and with good reason since they are often the most active, are highly resourcesful and intelligent members of the movement. Their resourcefullness and close relations to other parts of the activist community are an essential for building a peaceful future.
Seniors command respect merely for being who they are. There is something about the wisdom gained with age that is humbling. The experience from before our times is sure to come in handy, as it did indeed prove to be in 2003. We also need to be in contact with seniors, to find out what their views are and/or why, this will also help us to build credibility amongst the general population and definately stump the media that have previously labelled YSAW as "radical youths".
Parents worry for their children, and this worry bring on many thoughts, many wisdoms that cannot be replicated any other way. Parents also mould the lives of future generations, and influence other parents to do so similarly. Definately another credibility builder, and another group that command respect and are excellent at humbling ego's before they even surface.
Teachers/Lecturers are an interesting addition that I think adds strength and resolve to any related students, members of the same uni/school and DEFINATELY helps to identify any parents/students who also disagree with the war in Iraq and other such war-related issues.
Ultimately the idea is to diversify and be inclusive, allow people to feel like they can be openly involved in Youth and Students Against War, whether they are a Youth, a Student or not. Though the group was sparked and built by youth and students, without the help of older experienced persons, it is easy for the media to discredit YSAW as just another radical student movement.....
I am also still taking donations and want help for fundraising for the Jarrar' Family Project, which is a fully transparent operation buying medical supplies in Jordan, and transporting them directly to hospitals treating WOUNDED CIVILIANS. All transactions, the medicines themselves etc are documented by the Jarrar family online, accessible to the general public :here: