The 10th annual Gandhi-King Conference is in full swing today with almost 400 middle and high school students from our community coming together at the Gandhi-King Youth Conference!
Will you join us tomorrow at the Community Conference? If you’re still undecided take a look at the full schedule below and plan out your day of movement building. Then head on over to theregistration page and let us know your coming. Registration fees are on a sliding scale starting at FREE. We want you to be there, so go ahead and register.
2013 Gandhi-King Community Conference Schedule :: October 19, 2013
7:30am Registration Opens
9:00 – 10:30am Plenary Speaker: Medea Benjamin
10:45am – 12pm Workshop Session 1
12:00 – 1:15pm Lunch
food trucks on-site :: exhibition and tabling space open
book-signing with Medea Benjamin
1:15 – 2:30pm Plenary Speaker: Jaribu Hill
2:45 – 4:00pm Workshop Session 2
4:15 – 5:30pm Workshop Session 3
5:30 – 6:30pm Closing Ceremony and Reception
Location: Bridges, 477 N. Fifth St. Memphis TN
Medea Benjamin :: 9:00-10:30am
Medea Benjamin is a cofounder of both CODEPINK and the international human rights organization Global Exchange. She has been an advocate for social justice for more than 30 years. Described as “one of America’s most committed — and most effective — fighters for human rights” by New York Newsday, and called “one of the high profile leaders of the peace movement” by the Los Angeles Times, Medea has distinguished herself as an eloquent and energetic figure in the progressive movement. In 2005 she was one of 1,000 exemplary women from 140 countries nominated to receive the Nobel Peace Prize on behalf of the millions of women who do the essential work of peace worldwide. In 2010 she received the Martin Luther King, Jr. Peace Prize from the Fellowship of Reconciliation.
Since the September 11, 2001 tragedy, Medea has been working to promote a U.S. foreign policy that would respect human rights and gain us allies instead of contributing to violence and undermining our international reputation. In 2000, she was a Green Party candidate for the California Senate. During the 1990s, Medea focused her efforts on tackling the problem of unfair trade as promoted by the World Trade Organization. Widely credited as the woman who brought Nike to its knees and helped place the issue of sweatshops on the national agenda, Medea was a key player in the campaign that won a $20 million settlement from 27 US clothing retailers for the use of sweatshop labor in Saipan. She also pushed Starbucks and other companies to start carrying fair trade coffee. A former economist and nutritionist with the United Nations and World Health Organization, Benjamin is the author/editor of eight books. Her latest book is called Drone Warfare: Killing by Remote Control, and she has been campaigning to get lethal drones out of the hands of the CIA. Her articles appear regularly in outlets such as The Huffington Post, CommonDreams, Alternet and OpEd News.
Jaribu Hill :: 1:15-2:30pm
Jaribu Hill is a civil and human rights attorney and Executive Director of the Mississippi Workers’ Center for Human Rights (MWCHR), an organization which uses a human rights organizing framework to fight discrimination in housing, employment and voting. The MWCHR is a worker advocacy organization that provides organizing support, legal representation and training for low-wage, non-union workers in the state of Mississippi. Through direct action campaigns, organizing sessions and trainings, it raises awareness among workers as to the many ways their human rights are violated in the workplace and in their communities. Jaribu previously worked with Amnesty International in Oxford, Mississippi as a Soros Justice Fellow where she
did education and advocacy work that focused on issues affecting juveniles and inmates with mental retardation who are on death row. While in law school, Jaribu was an Ella Baker Intern with the Center for Constitutional Rights. After law school, Jaribu became a Skadden Fellow in the Mississippi office of the American Civil Liberties Union. Later, Jaribu went on to direct the Southern Regional Office of CCR.
In addition to founding the MWCHR, Jaribu also founded several other organizations, including the Southern Human Rights Organizers’ Conference, Black Women’s International Roundtable, CUNY Law School Mississippi Project, and the Fannie Lou Hamer Sister Roundtable. She is also a singer and composer and was lead singer with the renowned singing duo Serious Bizness for over 15 years.
The 10th annual Gandhi-King Community Conference will feature three tracks of participatory workshops, panel discussions and presentations:
- Personal Nonviolence: Interactive workshops and personal explorations of nonviolence in our personal lives.
- Nonviolence in Academia: Scholarly talks on current topics in nonviolence.
- Revolutionary Nonviolence: Participatory workshops, training opportunities and discussions on the role of nonviolent resistance in movements for social change.
Sessions are marked below according to their tracks.
Session 1 :: 10:45-12:00
War on Earth! Atomic Appalachia and the Militarized Southeast: Environmental Impact: Clare Hanrahan and Coleman Smith, New South Network of War Resisters
Visually engaging PowerPoint presentation of toxic environmental legacy of Military Industrial Complex in Southeast, depicting devastating scope of social, economic, racial, environmental and cultural injustices & accommodations thrust upon the region in the name of War and National Sacrifice. The real cost of war is contrasted with empowering examples of creative nonviolent Direct Action and Civil Resistance. Stimulates discussion of homegrown action ideas and facilitates horizontal networking of collaborating Environmental Justice / Peace Activists and War Resisters throughout Southeast.
Community-Police Relations: Building a community led vision: CPR Memphis, MSPJC and Playback Memphis
CPR brings together members of the community and law enforcement to build relationships to address distrust between the two. CPR is hosting forums for various communities and constituencies around the city, hearing stories of experiences with community-police relations and gathering suggestions for solutions to these issues. The next phase will be the development of Recommendations to have these solutions implemented. In this workshop, participants will experience a CPR dialogue circle and learn more about the project.
Peace and Justice to the End of Life: Dr. Jeanne Jemison
For many patients and their families, End of Life Care in the medical world lacks dignity and justice. In this workshop, participants will learn about current medical practice at the end of life: why it is worse for those with less medical knowledge and connection, how this came to be, and what they can do about it. Participants will gain knowledge and skills to enable them to make a real difference in this for themselves and their loved ones as well as learn what they can do to help promote societal change in this critical and growing area of concern.
Public Transit Reform: Building a People Led Movement: Memphis Bus Riders Union
The Memphis Bus Riders Union is an organization made up of those who are dependent on public transportation and supporters who stand together to put pressure on the officials of MATA and our city government to improve transit services for ALL Memphians! Come hear stories from members, learn about recent campaigns and find out how you can get involved.
Nonviolent Communication: Elaine Krueger
Elaine Krueger will be leading a workshop on Nonviolent Communication. She will introduce you to a way of communication that creates interdependence and power with others to meet the needs of all concerned. NVC is both a skill and a consciousness that helps to create connection with others through compassion rather than through criticism, blame and demand. The skills learned through NVC are useful in all relationships including our own internal dialog. Elaine is a national certified counselor who has been studying and teaching NVC for 5 years.
Session 2 :: 2:45-4:00
“Getting Naked:” Vulnerability and Realness in Organizing: Miguel Carpizo, Greater Birmingham Ministries
The purpose of this workshop is to break the walls that we have built through many years in order to uncover our real self and be able to come stronger together with our fellow organizers and show another kind of leadership; one that identifies with the struggle of the people, so they can see who we really are.
Interfaith Roundtable Discussion: moderated by David Waters of Faith Matters
Panelists: Dr. Bashar Shala, Rev. Dorothy Sanders Well, Dr. Mark Muesse, Pastor David Breckenridge, Rakesh Goorha and Chip Ordman
This panel will explore the importance and challenges of interfaith within various religions and how interfaith can play a greater role within our communities.
Nonviolence and Nonviolent Intervention Training: Elliott Adams, former President of Veterans for Peace and Co-chair of Creating a Culture of Peace with Meta Peace Team
Nonviolence works in theory, but what about in practice? In this workshop, participants will explore the basics of nonviolence; gain experiential expertise in nonviolent conflict de-escalation; and grow in awareness of the power of nonviolent alternatives through the work of peace teams.
War on Poverty and Homelessness: Homeless Organizing for Power and Equality
HOPE is a grassroots group made up exclusively of individuals who have formerly or are currently experiencing homelessness who are organizing and confronting issues that affect the unsheltered community in Memphis and Shelby County. Members will be leading a workshop on the dynamics of homelessness and poverty and discussing the different projects the group has been developing, which include the HOPE Women’s Caucus, The Garden Crew, Street Wise INK, and Street-Watch.
Completing the Circle in King’s Sociology: The Case for Cultivating Nonviolent, Integrative Dispositions: Thomas McGowan, Rhodes College
The purpose of this presentation is to 1) describe the basic, sociological nature of King’s work, 2) suggest that King’s teachings may find renewed, contemporary relevance by extending the principle of nonviolence to the common, everyday world of social experience, and 3) describe the main features of the Rhodes workshop on the cultivation of interpretive competence and nonviolent, integrative dispositions.
Teaching the Holocaust as General Education: The Second Step: Tim Hacker, University of Tennessee at Martin
The study of the Holocaust rightly begins with the experiences of the victims. But inevitably students want to try to understand the motivations of the perpetrators. A general education course that takes this second step is the topic of this presentation. It will discuss materials and tasks and the relevance of Holocaust studies that students see in their own lives.
Session 3 :: 4:15-5:30
De-stressing with Yoga: Caroline Schmidt, Midtown Yoga
This workshop will offer techniques to help manage stress and support clarity through the stress, demands and challenges of life. These techniques are designed to support successful, vibrant living.Interactive teachings will include asana- physical postures, pranayama- breath exercises and meditation- clarity.
Civil Disobedience and Direct Action in the TN Immigrant Rights Movement: Echoes of the Past, Pointing to the Future: Tennessee Immigrant and Refugee Rights Coalition, NAACP & Communidades Unidas en Una Voz
This workshop will focus on the connections between the escalating civil disobedience in the immigrant rights movement and the use of civil disobedience in the civil rights movement. Panelists and participants will storytell and situate themselves in a historical timeline in the history of nonviolent resistance and CD. Participants will also leave with skill building resources in Spanish and English about the history and tactics of civil disobedience.
Transformative Justice and Social Movements: Matthew Johnson, Conflict Resolution Center of Montgomery County, MD
Restorative and transformative justice are philosophies and practices representing alternatives to retributive justice that emphasize the needs of those harmed, the obligations of those responsible for the harm, and the context in which the harm occurred. This session will focus on their practical application, particularly to cases of sexual and gender-based violence, in the context of social movements.
The Patient Protection Affordable Care Act & Beyond: Dr. Art Sutherland
This presentation will educate the participants regarding the passage and the ongoing implementation of the PPACA Law (Obama Care). We will analyse the law, and point out areas of benefit and/or harm to certain segments of our population. We will discuss the social justice implications of the law, and finally we will explore the continuing national healthcare reform debate to try to see what the USA can do to develop meaningful and moral national healthcare reform for all people living in America.
Gandhi’s Programme-King’s Justice: Richard Harnack, Lindenwood University, MO
“Gandhi’s Programme – King’s Justice” will focus on each man’s practical applications of NonViolence to lead toward a peace-filled and just society. Part of the focus will be on current issues surrounding economic and political inequities world-wide.
Love Walks: Pilgrimage as Political Spirituality: Beverly Pratt, University of Maryland, College Park
This presentation attempts to understand the act of pilgrimage as a potential act of political spirituality. In doing so, the biographies of (in)famous social movement leaders – i.e., Mahatma Gandhi, Martin Luther King, Jr., Malcolm X, Ernesto “Che” Guevara, and César Chávez – will be explored, as each of these leaders journeyed on pilgrimage at pivotal moments along their political and spiritual histories.
We hope that you are as excited as we are to do some movement building this weekend. Register now to reserve your space!