People for Peace, Justice, and Healing

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People for Peace, Justice, and Healing meets at 10:00 a.m. on Saturday mornings at the Antique Sandwich Company, 5102 N. Pearl St., Tacoma, WA, 98407.  

We are involved in educational events, lectures, study groups, workshops, and calls for community action. Please consider joining us. All people of good will are welcome!



  • MAJOR EVENT! On Sat., Feb. 8, PPJH brought nationally known whistleblowers Jesselyn Radack and Thomas Drake to the Washington State History Museum to talk about the recent revelations about the National Security Agency.  —  Drake, a high-level NSA whistleblower whose case has figured in films and on "60 Minutes," is an historic figure, and both have visited Edward Snowden in Moscow.  —  It was a memorable evening and more than 160 people came despite the worst snowstorm of the year.  Even if you couldn't make it, you can help us defray the considerable costs we incurred to put on the event for free for the public:
    See here for more information about the event. (1/2/14; updated 2/10/14)
  • RING THE CHIMES for Marriage Equality PPJH held a very successful fundraiser for Referendum 74 (Marriage Equality) on Wed., Sept. 5, 2012, raising more than $5,000.  Special guest: Ryan Mello, Pierce County Co-Chair of Washington United and Tacoma City Councilmember.  Also in attendance: Washington State Senator Debbie Regala. Click here for a printable PDF memento of the event. PJHers will celebrate the suceess of the event at a gathering on Sat., Nov. 10, 2012 — save the date! (8/7/12; rev. 9/9/12)
  • Poem by Karen Konrad Karen Konrad's untitled poem begins "It is time to awaken..." (See below for several other poems.) (8/6/05)
  • Two poems by Karen Havnaer Two poems by poet and playwright Karen Havnaer are published here for the first time.  People of Sadr City is addressed to the inhabitants of a district of Baghdad.  For Sgt. Brian Turner — Third Brigade, Second Infantry Division, is dedicated to a visitor to PPJH who is now a well-known poet.

  • Karen Konrad, "Winter at Nisqually" Karen Konrad's recently completed poem, Winter at Nisqually, published here for the first time, captures hauntingly the painfulness of change and the strength change can bring. -- Her meditative poem entitled Breathe into Life, made available on this web site last May, continues to find readers who appreciate it as an antidote to the difficulties and sorrows of the present time.

  • The Northwest Detention Center See the UFPPC website for more information about the Tacoma's new prison, the "Northwest Detention Center," located at 1623 E. "J" St. The prison was built by a Sarasota, Florida, corporation with an extremely problematic record, Correctional Services Corporation (NASDAQ symbol: CSCQ), and purchased by a rival firm, Geo, in July 2005. -- If you haven't seen this sinister complex of windowless buildings built on a Superfund site whose toxic effects may still be posing risks to detainees and employees alike, make an effort to do so. All Tacoma residents should see it for themselves. Given our heritage of "the Tacoma Method" (1885) and Executive Order 9066 (Feb. 19, 1942), we owe it to ourselves -- and to others -- to be vigilant. (To that end, please note that members of the public -- with 2 pieces of picture ID -- are entitled to enter the Northwest Detention Center on Wednesdays to witness legal proceedings (hearings). Time to show up: 9:30 a.m.) (3/10/04; revised 10/11/05)

  • Martin Luther King Jr. United for Peace of Pierce County has posted a collection of inspiring sayings by Martin Luther King Jr. (1/19/04)

  • Tacoma City Council votes to defend the Bill of Rights On Dec. 20, 2003, PPJH addressed a letter to the seven members of the Tacoma City Council who four days earlier voted in favor of the Resolution to Defend the Bill of Rights of the U.S. Constitution. To read the text of the letter, individual copies of which have been mailed to Mayor Bill Baarsma, Deputy Mayor Bil Moss, and Councilpersons Bill Evans, Connie Ladenburg, Sharon McGavick, Doug Miller, and Rick Talbert, click here. — That the City of Tacoma is currently prosecuting 21 port militarization resistance protestors for exercising their constitutional rights in March 2007 has called into question the significance this endorsement, however. For details, see the web site of United for Peace of Pierce County. (12/20/03; rev. 6/26/07)

  • What is People for Peace, Justice and Healing, anyway?

    People for Peace, Justice, and Healing
    Endorses the Earth Charter

    PPJH decided to endorse the Earth Charter on Feb. 8, 2003, and has conducted a sustained examination of the Earth Charter to deepen our understanding of its sixteen principles. Our study of the document has deepened our belief that the Earth Charter offers a vision of how the U.S. can live in peace with the other nations of the planet while moving toward a safer, healthier, more just future for us and those who come after us.

    As of Nov. 6, 2011 tens of thousands of groups, organizations, and individuals around the world had endorsed the Earth Charter. Despite a virtually total blackout of news about it in the corporate-controlled mainstream media, this document continues to develop momentum. In November 2003 the Fourth Summit of the Nobel Peace Prize Laureates issued a statement supporting the Earth Charter. Click here to view this fascinating list. The beginning of the "T" list gives a sense of the variety of the 5,293 organizations that have so far embraced this call for a worldwide change of mind and heart in people around the world as humanity's best hope for the future:

  • T.E.I. of Epirus, Greece
  • Taipak (restaurant), Mexico
  • Taiwan Christian Institute, Taiwan
  • Taiwan Ecological Stewardship Association, Taiwan
  • Taiwo Adewole and Associates, Nigeria
  • Tall Grass Farm (business), United States
  • Taller Laboral Brisas del Mar, Chile
  • Taller Laboral Candelaria, Chile
  • Taller Laboral Las Arbejitas, Chile
  • Taller Laboral Las Arañitas, Chile
  • Taller Laboral Vista al Mar, Chile
  • Tamberly Mott, MFT (private practice), United States
  • Tao Mountain (business), United Kingdom
  • Tarea de Escuela (school), Mexico
  • Tartu University, Estonia
  • Tasmanian Environment Steadman, Australia
  • TAUWP - University of Wisconsin, Oshkosh, United States
  • Taygeta Editora & Consultoria, Brazil
  • Te Awamutu Peace Group, New Zealand
  • Teachers Without Borders, United States
  • Teaneck Creek Conservancy, United States
  • Tearo de Amadores de Pernambuco, Brazil
  • Technicalities (business), Canada
  • Técnico de la Dirección Ejecutiva de Igresos, DEI, Honduras
  • Tecnológico de Monterrey, Campus Chihuahua, Mexico
  • Tecnoterra Adobe y más para la construcción, Mexico
  • TELC Girl's Hr. Sec. School, India
  • Teleosis Institute, United States
  • Telescundaria "José Soledad Hernández," Mexico
  • Televisoras Grupo Pacifico (business), Mexico
  • Temple of Eilish (business), Australia
  • Temple Hindu - Sivananda Ashram, Spain
  • Tenemos Retreat Center, United States
  • Tennessee Clean Water Action, United States
  • Terra Curanda (magazine), Netherlands
  • Terra Images Inc., Canada
  • Terra Sana (business), Spain
  • Terra-1530, Moldova
  • Terralink International, Philippines
  • Terrasante Village, United States
  • Terrawatu, Tanzania
  • Terre d'Humanité, France
  • TESA, Taiwan
  • Tesi Environmental Awareness Movement, India
  • Tetra Tech, Inc., United Staets
  • Texas Nature Project, United States
  • textkonstrukte (business), Germany
  • Thailand Environmental Institute, Thailand
    . . . and the list goes on!
  • With its themes of

    -- respect for life
    -- ecological and environmental concerns
    -- social justice
    -- peace
    -- democracy

    with its exemplary international genesis, and with its comprehensive outlook on the humanity's problems, PPJH hopes that the Earth Charter can offer a positive vision of the nation's and the world's future -- and an alternative to the vision of national security through global domination that has been embraced by the short-sighted leaders of the current U.S. administration.

    Please read the Earth Charter and see whether you, too, are willing to embrace its principles. PJHers will also want to review the Earth Charter USA Campaign, whose national secretariat is based at the Center for Respect of Life and Environment in Washington, DC. Individual members may be interested in becoming Earth Charter Facilitators, which they can do through the above link.


    Support United for Peace of Pierce County!

    People for Peace, Justice, and Healing continues to support the work of United for Peace of Pierce County, which organized the "The World STILL Says No to War!" rally in McKinley Park in Tacoma on March 20, 2004, and which was a very visible presence in the antiwar rallies in Seattle on Mar. 19, 2005, and in Tacoma on Mar. 19, 2006.   —   UFPPC is a local group affiliated with the national coalition United for Peace and Justice. In the aftermath of the Iraq war, UFPPC adopted a new mission statement: "We nonviolently oppose the reliance on unilateral military actions rather than cooperative diplomacy." Many PJHers are members of UFPPC. Visit the increasingly popular UFPPC website (which recently passed 12,000,000 hits) for more information, including information about UFPPC's book discussion group, Digging Deeper, which has been meeting weekly since the summer of 2004.

    United for Peace of Pierce County was founded on Nov. 14, 2002, to oppose nonviolently a war on Iraq. UFPPC was the organizer of a successful March around the Mall on Dec. 8, 2002, and of a full afternoon of anti-war and pro-peace activities on Feb. 15, 2003, which included a rally with speakers and singers in McKinley Park, a march from McKinley Park to the Federal Courthouse in which more than a thousand people particpated, and an elaborate and unprecedented Celebration of Peace in the Washington State History Museum from 4:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m. that was very well attended. Like the March around the Mall before it, UFPPC's events made the front page in News Tribune. Tacoma was one of more than five hundred cities around the world participating in the largest peace demonstration in the history of humanity.

    Some photographs:

  • The rally (Flo Ariessohn)
  • The march (Flo Ariessohn)
  • No Iraq War sign (Tom Bates)
  • The crowd near the stage (Tom Bates)
  • Vance Lelli performing (Tom Bates)
  • Rally at the Federal Courthouse (Adam Bray)
  • The "No Iraq War" plane! (Adam Bray)
  • More shots (Flo Ariessohn)
  • Still more shots! (Brian Smith)
  • Feb. 15 peace demonstrations around the world.
    Links to other photographs of peace demonstrations around the world.

  • In fact, there were not 600 separate demonstrations on February 15. In reality THERE WAS JUST *ONE* DEMONSTRATION FOR PEACE, AND *THE WORLD* WAS WHERE IT WAS TAKING PLACE!
  • UFPPC sponsored a June 21 concert at the Antique Sandwich Company featuring Jim Page, Steve and Kristi Nebel, and Holly Gwynne Graham, and on July 15 the very successful "Save Our Nation" event attended by hundreds of people, and featuring noted activist Medea Benjamin, and in the fall sponsored the visit of Bay Area activist Jan Adams.

    MEETINGS OF UFPPC take place on the first and third Thursdays of each month at First Congregational Church (209 South "J" St., Tacoma), at 7:00 p.m. Check out the UFPPC website!

    Join in the struggle for peace! Activism does make a difference!


    What is "People for Peace, Justice, and Healing"?

    People for Peace, Justice, and Healing is a group of people living in or near Tacoma that began meeting in September 2001.

    If you, too, are concerned about the direction this country has taken and are interested in local efforts to help this nation return to its core values of liberty and justice for all, we hope you will consider joining us in seeking paths that lead to peace, justice, and healing for the United States of America and for the world.

    Our activities include a vigil for peace every Wednesday, from 5:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m. in front of the Federal Courthouse on Pacific Avenue in downtown Tacoma, across from UWT. The Federal Courthouse is the most visible symbol of the authority of the federal government in the city of Tacoma. Join us at the Federal Courthouse with signs and make visible your stand for peace and justice!

    The principal locus of action of People for Peace, Justice, and Healing is the weekly Saturday morning meeting, where we share concerns and plan activities. We are involved in educational events, lectures, study groups, workshops, and calls for community action. (The formation of the leading anti-war group in Pierce County, United for Peace of Pierce County, grew out of a call from People for Peace, Justice, and Healing in early November 2002 to people and groups in Tacoma and Pierce County to form a coalition against the war on Iraq.) Please consider joining us next Saturday morning. All people of good will are welcome!

    How does PJH function? We are a deliberately leaderless group in which decisions are made by consensus at the weekly Saturday meetings. We always welcome new participants.

    A word about "healing" and beliefs. People for Peace, Justice, and Healing does not advocate a particular set of beliefs, is not pursuing a political program, and does not endorse candidates in political campaigns. We call on all people of good will to join us in trying to further our common understanding of the challenges we face in finding the paths to lasting peace and social justice, a commitment that led to our recent endorsement of the Earth Charter. But valuing peace, justice, and the health of the earth are not, in our opinion, enough.

    We live in a nation born of a bright dream, but also marred from the start by the historic wrongs of genocide and slavery -- wrongs that have for too long been denied or neglected. Leadership in our contemporary society, misshapen by the powerful and violent institutions of patriarchy, exploitation, and militarism, continues to be marked by the manipulation and reinforcement of patterns of prejudice and fear that help maintain these institutions. PJHers tend to believe that peaceful progress toward addressing these matters depends on finding ways to heal the wounds that have too often blighted and stymied our dearest hopes. This is not always possible, of course, and our efforts often fail to bear immediate fruit. But we have faith in their long-term efficacy nevertheless. Our emphasis on "healing" signifies a recognition that progress toward peace and justice, if it is to be enduring, must involve learning about the harm that has been done (and is being done). Reconciliation can only come through acknowledgment of the truth, however painful that may sometimes be.

    People for Peace, Justice, and Healing was prominently featured in an October 4, 2002 article in the Tacoma News Tribune.

    On October 1, 2002, People for Peace, Justice and Healing sponsored a full-page ad in the Tacoma News Tribune questioning the wisdom of U.S. policy toward Iraq, and calling on citizens to contact their elected representatives in an effort to influence Congressional action on the pending war resolution.

    The ad and the subsequent attention helped swell the numbers of people who turned out for a Special Peace Vigil on Monday, October 7, which commemorated the loss of civilian life in Afghanistan and rallyied opposition to the impending war on Iraq. -- To see some pictures of the October 7 vigil, click on Local Events. -- The event also produced an incident that led to an exchange of letters with the commanding general of Fort Lewis. People for Peace, Justice, and Healing sponsored the visit of Kelly Campbell, a co-founder of September 11 Families for Peaceful Tomorrows on May 18, 2003; other sponsored speakers have been Jan Adams of War News, Stan Goff of Bring Them Home Now!, and Robert P. Ericksen of Pacific Lutheran University. On Thursday, September 30, 2004, PPJH co-sponsored the visit to Tacoma of Daniel Ellsberg, Medea Benjamin, and Norman Solomon, who spoke to a packed house at UPS's Schneebeck Concert Hall about 'What's at Stake in the 2004 Elections -- and Beyond."

    Your support for our work for a peaceful, hopeful, and just future is greatly needed and can be expressed through a donation to further our efforts. Please send contributions: PPJH, c/o Sallie Shawl, Associated Ministries, 1224 South "I" St., Tacoma, WA 98405.


    Poetry for Peace, Justice, and Healing

    the path of sideways trees and my tribe has many fingers were written by PJHer Karen Konrad.

    Jerusalem was written by PJHer Sheila Renton.

    Iraq Is Like Crack, Pox Americana, Dominoes Again, I Turn to Prayer, and It Must Be Fate, all inspired by the American adventure in Iraq, were written by R.P. Ericksen, a professor of history at Pacific Lutheran University.

    SNOW member Ann Evans's On the Playground has been selected for inclusion in a forthcoming anthology of anti-war poetry.

    PJHer Ann Philis Murphy read The Path of Peace aloud on Feb. 8.

    UFPPC Member Duane Niatum reflects on Auden's famous dictum that "Poetry makes nothing happen" in a poem dedicated to Elizabeth Bishop: Speaking with an Elder Poet on an Anti-War Poem. In another poem, For Friends Living along the Walla Walla River, Niatum speaks of his search for "songs that would . . . break my wolf's journey to blood tracks."

    Unfortunately, W.H. Auden's September 1, 1939 has taken on new meaning in recent months.

    Robert Bly's recent poem on the Iraq war is entitled Call and Answer.

    A website of poetry against the war has been created: Poets Against the War.


    Cartoon Corner

    Jack Kus presents:

    People for Peace, Justice, and Healing


    On September 21, 2002, People for Peace, Justice, and Healing was one of the first groups to organizationally affiliate with Sound Nonviolent Opponents of War (SNOW -- 'gentle, but it can shut down a city'), a regional coalition formed in Seattle on September 18, 2002. By November 2, 2003, the number of member organizations had swelled to 105. Other member organizations include: Washington Physicians for Social Responsibility; University Unitarian Church Peace and Justice Committee (Seattle); Fellowship of Reconciliation, Seattle Chapter; Pax Christi Pacific Northwest; Church Council of Greater Seattle; Interfaith Network of Concern for the People of Iraq (INOC); the Plymouth Congregational Church Peace Action Group (Seattle); United for Peace of Pierce County; University Friends Meeting (Seattle); and many others. Click here to see a complete list of SNOW member organizations.

    SNOW's 'Points of Agreement':

    We commit to nonviolent actions:

  • We will commit no acts of violence, physical or verbal
  • We will commit no property damage
  • We will behave respectfully to all
  • If conflict is likely, we will strive to have ample trained peacekeepers and legal observers
  • We encourage all participants to be trained in nonviolence
  • If arrest is risked, all participants will be trained in nonviolence

    We condemn human rights abuses including, but not limited to

  • U.S. wars and sanctions against Iraq;
  • Saddam Hussein's use of poisons as a weapon.
    We recognize that the former is far greater in magnitude than the latter but we need to be consistent in defense of human rights for all

    We oppose all weapons of mass destruction including

  • U.S. nuclear weapons, chemical weapons, biological weapons, cluster bombs, landmines, and economic sanctions against Iraq
  • Iraqi, Israeli, Pakistani, Indian, and other countries' nuclear weapons, and other WMD

    We support an International Criminal Court to deal with those who plan and perpetrate acts of terrorism, such as those of Sept. 11, 2001

    We support U.S. foreign policies which promote human rights, economic justice, and self-determination for all people as the best way to prevent future acts of terrorism and to promote global well-being.

    SNOW calls on people in the U.S. to act like giraffes: STICK YOUR NECK OUT! STAND TALL FOR PEACE! -- SNOW meets weekly. Call 206-789-5565 (Fellowship of Reconciliation) for more information, or consult the SNOW website. SNOW also maintains a number of listservs, including a high-volume SNOW-NEWS listserv: information on how to subscribe is available on the SNOW web site.


    Comments or suggestions for the People for Peace, Justice, and Healing website? Click here to write the webmaster, or call 253-535-7219.

    To subscribe to our mailing list, please register with Yahoo. Once you've registered, join our group by going to Yahoo Groups (click "Groups" on the Yahoo website above) and search for "tacomapjh" -- or you can find our group under the Cultures & Community/Issues and Causes/Peace and Nonviolence category.

    Last updated: February 10, 2014