Civil Liberties

Perhaps because of the large number of outspoken and thoughtful people in our community, we have often found ourselves at ground zero in battles over civil liberties. In the 1980's Chapel Hill elected the first openly-gay elected official in the state, but Carrboro bested that by electing North Carolina’s first out mayor a decade later.

More recently, Chapel Hill grappled with free speech issues in the wake of 9/11, approved and then dismantled red light cameras in 2003-4, and was challenged by fundamentalists over support for gay marriage in 2005.

Protest the recruiting station today

Guest post by Tamara Tal

Exactly one month ago, a new Army recruiting station opened its doors. Today, the Town of Chapel Hill-Carrboro Chamber of Commerce will officially 'welcome' this station into our community.

What motivations should the Chapel Hill-Carrboro Chamber of Commerce have in celebrating the arrival of this institution into our community?

In addition to the nearly 3000 young Americans who have lost their lives, a recent study based upon household surveys reports that 600,000 Iraqi civilians have been killed thus far during this most recent Gulf War (Burnham G. et al. Lancet. 2006 Oct 21; 368 (9545):1421-8). A sustained flow of youth from communities like ours is necessary to continue occupying Iraq, resulting in the continued loss of both American and Iraqi lives, as well as the near complete destruction of Iraq's infrastructure.

Free Sima

I was outraged when I learned about the detention of an Iranian woman who has been peacefully living in Carrboro for several years.

Sima Fallahi, 48, was detained last week after living in the United States for two decades. Her 104 Shelton St. duplex is a few blocks from Carrboro Elementary School, where she served in the Parent Teacher Association, and Weaver Street Market, the local natural foods hangout. Her paintings have hung in Town Hall.

Now Fallahi sits in a Mecklenburg County federal prison.

Her Western ideals, out-of-wedlock daughter and Unitarian beliefs would cause her to be "persecuted, tortured and/or killed" if deported, Fallahi wrote in a 1998 application for political asylum.

Mayor Mark Chilton and state Sen. Ellie Kinnaird urged Price, a Chapel Hill Democrat, to intervene.
- | Fate of mom, girl worries Carrboro

Homeland Insecurity

Announcement from Peggy Misch

Ira Chernus
University of Colorado

Homeland Insecurity:
From Terror and Fantasy to Hope and Reality

Wednesday, September 13, 7:30 PM
Chapel Hill Town Hall Council Chambers
405 Martin Luther King, Jr. Blvd.

The Bush administration's War on Terror has undermined our civil liberties at home and created more enemies abroad, especially in the Middle East.

Commemorate September 11 and Constitution Day, September 17. Reconsider the War on Terror, its consequences, and some alternatives.

Presented by the Curriculum in Peace, War, and Defense and the Orange County Bill of Rights Defense Committee

Cosponsored by Charles M. Jones Peace and Justice Committee of the Community Church of Chapel Hill UU, Coalition for Peace with Justice, Committee to End the Cycle of Violence, Elders for Peace, Jews for a Just Peace-NC, Peace 1st, Students United for a Responsible Global Environment, Women's International League for Peace and Freedom-Triangle Branch

For more information: 942-2535

What is Public Space?

Here is one definition:
"A public space or a public place is a place where anyone has a right to come without being excluded because of economic or social conditions." [Wikipedia]

That last part is important, "without being excluded because of economic or social conditions". The economic part means that a public place ideally should not charge anything, money or services, in return for the use of the space. No entrance fees, no minimum purchase, no reservation fee, etc. The social conditions part encompasses a lot. Mainly it stipulates that no one can be barred from entering or using a public space because of their race, appearance, movements, gender, political affiliation, loudness, hair color, clothing choices, etc.

Keep dancing - Wednesdays on Weaver Street

Guest post by Michal OsterweilWe're still here... and we still want to dance!For more of that community magic and power...Same time, same place, same dance... let Carr Mill know that we still care about this issue and we are not going to just get bored and go away. Lets make this one even bigger.Bring your friends, musical instruments... and your dancing shoes!WSM lawn, Wednesday, September 6, 5:30 PM, the Carrboro community dances back!Please forward widely.



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