Nonviolence News: June 1, 2019

Editor’s Note from Rivera Sun: Often times, we ask ourselves: are we really making a difference? Does nonviolence “work”? Did anything actually change? The short – and long – answer is YES! In this week’s Nonviolence News, several stories highlight both small and significant changes that have come about because of nonviolent action.

A recent study shows that the student climate strikes are shifting people’s hearts and minds in regards to the climate crisis. Even more importantly, climate action is propelling people to change their behaviors, policies, and practices to more sustainable solutions. After decades of organizing, Washington banned fracking and Oregon’s state senate passed a fracking ban (the bill now moves to the House of Representatives). And Monsanto’s Round-up (glyphosate) is now banned or restricted in 17 countries … and the University of California campuses. 

On another note, news headlines gave credit to the #MeToo and #TimesUp campaigns for the recall of the judge who gave a light sentence to rapist Brock Turner. #MeToo and #TimesUp were also responsible for researchers seeing the violence in the United States at a whole different level, propelling the US into the top 10 most dangerous places in the world for women. 

And there’s so much more. As Margaret Mead famously said, “Never doubt that a thoughtful group of committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it’s the only thing that ever has.” Pick up the tools of nonviolence. Get involved in a campaign. Organize for change. Practice nonviolence in your personal life. Apply it in your community.

Never doubt that you can make a difference,
Rivera Sun, Editor

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Here’s what you’ll find in this week’s Nonviolence News:

Victory! Success Stories
Recent Actions & On-Going Campaigns
Peace Action
Climate Action
Women’s Rights
Creative Action
Knowledge & Reflection
Learn & Study

Nonviolence News shares recent success stories so we see and remember that nonviolent action is powerful and effective. 

Global investment in coal tumbles 75% in three years. (And yes, climate activists have a lot to do with this.)  Read more >> 

New Zealand passes paid domestic violence leave to support victims in the face of “horrifying” family violence rates.  Read more >>

Facing international outcry, Nike cancels plan for “Puerto Rican” shoe design that rips off a Panamanian Indigenous design.  Read more >>

#MeToo movement successfully mobilizes voters to recall the judge who gave rapist Brock Turner a light sentence.   Read more >> 

The climate strikes are working. A new study shows student climate strikes are shifting people’s hearts and minds … and actions.  Read more >>

On May 8, Washington Governor Jay Inslee signed into law a permanent ban on fracking and came out in opposition to two major fracked gas infrastructure projects in the state.  Read more >>

Oregon Senate approves 5-year ban on fracking. (Next stop, the Oregon House of Representatives.)  Read more >>

Glyphosate is now banned or restricted in 17 countries around the world.  Read more >>

In response to student pressure, University of California announced a temporary, partial ban on the use of glyphosate  – the active ingredient in Roundup and other weed-control products – on all campuses.  Read more >>

#StopUrbanShield Coalition demilitarizes emergency preparedness program in California. Since 2013, this cross-community coalition has organized tirelessly against Urban Shield — a SWAT team training and weapons expo, that brought together local, regional, and international police to collaborate on, and practice, new forms of military-grade weaponry and tactics of state repression. Recently, they prevented Urban Shield from using disaster preparedness as an excuse to fund militarized police.  Read more >>

Facing outcry from family members of Kent State victims and peace activists, CIA veteran Stephanie Smith steps down as chair of Kent State Memorial Committee. Read more >>

New Hampshire ends the death penalty.Read more >>

Communications Workers of America union stops Colorado and Alabama call center jobs from being off-shored.  Read more >>

Around the world, people are launching nonviolent campaigns
and/or using principled nonviolence to transform their communities
and fight injustice. Here are a few recent stories. 

In Hong Kong, thousands commemorate 1989 Tiananmen Square protests.Read more >>

This community in North London is organizing for the housing it needs.  Read more >>

Wave of creative protests threaten Kazakhstan’s elite ahead of elections. Read more >>

Anti-pipeline resisters launch concerted effort to stop the anti-protest laws.  Read more >>

Dayton, OH counters hate with city-wide effort as KKK holds small rally at courthouse.  Read more >>  And when the Dayton rally was held, it had hundreds of counter-protesters to the nine KKK members.  Read more >>

Appeals court recognizes that farmworkers have a fundamental right to organize.  Read more >>

ADAPT activists protest cuts to Medicaid healthcare services. Read more >>   Here are their demands.

In Kansas, protesters calling for Medicaid Expansion were thrown out of the state senate chambers, along with the press, and lawmakers turned off the lights and ignored the demands of the people. Read more >>

Church members pay off medical debts with RIP Medical Debt – a project that grew out of Occupy’s Rolling Jubilee concept.  Read more >>

Around the world, people are using nonviolent action to de-escalate conflicts, intervene in brewing wars, and wage peace. Here are some of their stories. 

On Memorial Day Weekend, the US Army tweeted “how has serving impacted you?” Undoubtedly, they were imagining glowing stories. Instead, veterans turned the question into a truth-telling, tweeting back real, painful, and horrifying stories about PTSD, suicides, trauma, injuries, and more.  Read more >>

On US Memorial Day, a journal in the UK ran a story about military service members who refused to participate in a massacre of Native peoplesRead more >>

Protection of Venezuela Embassy continues; opposition to US-backed coup builds.  Read more >>

700 people attend Venezuela solidarity event in Berlin, Germany.  Read more >>

Thanks to anti-draft activists, the US Selective Service is under fire again.  Read more >>

With the risk of nuclear war very high, Margaret Flowers and Kevin Zeese speak to the Kings Bay Plow Shares on Clearing the FOG Radio about their direct action to prevent it and what you can do.  Read more >>

Living sustainably and protecting our planet are forms of “nonviolence toward the Earth”, which is inseparable from embodying nonviolence toward ourselves and all others. Here are recent stories of nonviolent climate action. 

 ELLISTON, Va. — A grandmother has taken up residence in a tree in Montgomery County to protest the Mountain Valley Pipeline.  Read more >>

Yellow Finch tree-sitters hold strong despite police’s attempt at eviction. The activists are blocking construction of the Mountain Valley Pipeline. Read more >>

Hundreds of civil society organizations – representing an estimated 280 million people – came together this week for the International Day of Action Against Chevron. Read more >>

No-Flying Pioneers ask: could you give up flying for the sake of the planet? Read more >>

Food & Water Watch helped organize “March for Our Lungs: No Meadowlands Power Plant,” a youth-led march and rally in opposition to the massive fracked gas power plant proposed in North Bergen Township.  Read more >>

The Green New Deal revolution. Read more >>

Although the recent US abortion bans – and opposition to them – have been making headlines lately, Women’s Rights covers an enormous territory that extends far past that issue. Here are a few stories on some of those themes. 

US ranked #10 in the world for most dangerous places for women. Researchers say that data revealed by #MeToo and #TimesUp showed horrific problems of sexual assault and harassment.Read more >>

Netflix threatens to pull out of Georgia if abortion ban goes into effect. Read more >>

Feminist tool-kit highlights stories of resistance, resilience, and feminist realities.  Read more >> 

Human beings are endlessly creative … and nonviolence helps that creativity shine. Here are some bold actions that tap into art and creativity to make change.

Palestinians use traditional dabke dance as protest in the Great March of Return to oppose Israeli occupation. Read more >> 

Company creates benches that fold up into shelters and bear welcome signs for the homelessRead more >>   

Jacksonville, FL hosts “Increase the Peace” rap lyrics contest for youth.  Read more >>  

Rivera Sun speaks about the importance of Nonviolence News, peace literature, and changing the story of our culture on Chico Peace & Justice Radio.  Listen here >> 

High percentages of incarcerated women suffer from untreated PTSD. One quickly expanding program is successfully using dance to help them move forward.  Read more >>   

Here are a few recently posted articles that provide insight and reflection on the art and science of waging nonviolence. 

The Bottom Line: Go For the Money. Rivera Sun reflects on shifting from political pressure to financial pressure when working for change. Read more >>

Maria Stephan, coauthor of Why Civil Resistance Works, examines the recent victories in Algeria and Sudan. Listen here >>

Self-care versus Community-care … what do we really need?  Read more >>

Bolivia’s Universal Health Care System is a model for the world, says the United Nations. What can we all learn from this?  Read more >>

Black women have long championed reparations. Here’s some of that history.  Read more >>

Social change requires a multitude of approaches from visionary thinking to creative action to hard-core activism to advocacy and peacebuilding … take a mid-year change-maker assessment and see how you might need to balance out your actions … or even switch roles. Read more >>

Rebecca Solnit on the power of protest.   Read more >>

How can movements effectively counter co-optationRead more >>

Here are some upcoming opportunities to learn more about organizing, nonviolent action, creative tactics, and nonviolent solutions. 

Organizing for Social Change course being offered June 3 – 7, 2019, at the Summer Peacebuilding Institute.  Learn more >>

Peace In Action – Workshop with Scilla Ellsworthy at Findhorn.  Learn more >> 

How to Create Social Movements: Momentum Training hosted by East Point Peace Academy, June 21-23, Oakland, CA.  Learn more >>

Training in Restorative Justice by the River Phoenix Center for Peacebuilding, Gainesville, Florida, June 24-25.  Learn more >>

Fierce Vulnerability Seabeck Conference, June 28-July 1st, Washington State. Learn more >>

Peace Power Training in Greece, July 26th-Aug 24th. Apply by June 10th.  Learn more >>

New Delhi to host international conference on nonviolence education and training, December 2019.   Read more >>

Here are a few campaigns inviting your participation.

Sixth annual Ponca Corn Art planting in the path of the KXL Pipeline on June 6th.  Learn more >>

September 20th, 2019, join the global general strike for climate justice.  Learn more >>

Nonviolence News’ sister project Nonviolence Now is on a roll!

These huge ads hit the streets of Rochester, NY, on public transit buses. The ads will circulate from now through the end of July, delivering a strong, visible message of nonviolence to the community. Nonviolence Now is thrilled to bring its virtual and online work down to the local level.  Find out more about the many ways Nonviolence Now collects and shares true, inspiring stories of nonviolence in action at

About Rivera Sun, Editor

Activist/Author Rivera Sun is a nationwide speaker and trainer in strategy for nonviolent movements. She is the author of nine books and novels focusing on nonviolence, including The Dandelion Insurrection, The Roots of Resistance, and The Way Between.  For four years, she cohosted nationally-syndicated radio programs on nonviolent struggle. Rivera Sun has worked for Campaign Nonviolence, Metta Center for Nonviolence, and Nonviolence Now, among other groups. Find out more about her work at: