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This week at a glance.

August 29

•1st Indian reservation
•1957 Civil Rights Act
•SNCC registers voters
•Chicano Moratorium

August 30
•Freedom delayed by Dems
•Civil rights hero becomes Justice

August 31

•Back-to-Africa leader
•Don't burn your draft card
•U.S. vs. John Lennon

Sept 1
•Fast For Life
•Stop the weapons I
•Stop the weapons II
•No taxes for war

Sept 2
•Declaration of (Vietnamese) Independence
•Integration: school cancelled
Sept 3
•A slave escapes
•Congress of African People
•Kurdish Peace Train

Sept 4
•No peace on Labor Day
•Governor says no to integration
•Vets say no to war
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August 29, 1758

The first Indian reservation, Brotherton, was established in New Jersey. A tract of three thousand acres of land was purchased at Edge Pillock, in Burlington County. The treaty of 1758 required the Delaware Tribes, in exchange for the land, to renounce all further claim to lands anywhere else in New Jersey, except for the right to fish in all the rivers and bays north of the Raritan River, and to hunt on unenclosed land.
History Of The Brotherton Reservation

August 29, 1957

The U.S. Congress passed the Civil Rights Act, the first such law since reconstruction. The bill established a Civil Rights Commission which was given the authority to investigate discriminatory conditions. A Civil Rights Division was created in the Department of Justice, allowing federal prosecutors to obtain court injunctions against interference with the right to vote, among other things.
African Americans in Milledgeville, Georgia, wait in line to vote following the Civil Rights Act of 1957.
In an ultimately futile attempt to block passage, then-Democrat, former Dixiecrat, and later Republican Senator Strom Thurmond of South Carolina set the all-time filibuster record: 24 hours, 19 minutes of non-stop speaking on the floor of the Senate.
A filibuster is the deliberate use of prolonged debate and procedural delaying tactics to block action supported by a majority of members. It can only be stopped with a 60% majority voting to end debate.
Senator Strom Thurmond with his 24-hour filibustering speech

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August 29, 1961

Robert Moses,
leader of SNCC
The Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC) was pursuing its voter registration drive in Amite County, Mississippi. Of 5000 eligible Negro voters in the county, just one was registered to vote. SNCC leader Robert Moses was attacked and beaten this day outside the registrar’s office while trying to sign up two voters. Nine stitches were required but the three white assailants were acquitted.
Bob Moses recorded the incident Hear Moses recall the time

"By the time I moved to Mississippi in the late sixties, Bob Moses had already left. Everywhere I went, however, I encountered his presence. He was a legend, a hero, a person Beloved. Once again in Mississippi, Bob Moses continues to exemplify the love of our people that has caused us, all these years, to cherish him."

- Alice Walker

¿Habla Espanol?
(Si Se Puede=Yes We Can in Spanish)

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August 29, 1970

Between 15 and 30 thousand predominantly Chicanos (Americans of Mexican descent) gathered in East LA’s Laguna Park as the culmination of the Chicano National Moratorium. It was organized by Rosalio Munoz and others to protest the disproportionate number of deaths of Chicano soldiers in Vietnam (more than double their numbers in the population).
There had been more than 20 other such demonstrations in Latino communities across the southwest in recent months.
Three died when the anti-war march turned violent. The Los Angeles Police Department attacked and one gunshot, fired into the Silver Dollar Bar, killed Ruben Salazar, a Los Angeles Times columnist and a commentator on KMEX-TV (he had been accused by the LAPD of inciting the Chicano community).
The Chicano Moratorium
Ruben Salazar in that day’s LA Times


August 30, 1964

The Democratic Party National Convention refused to seat any delegates from the Mississippi Freedom Democratic Party (MFDP). The Credentials Committee chose to seat the all-white delegation from Mississippi’s regular Democratic Party despite overwhelming evidence of the state party’s efforts to disenfranchise Mississippi’s Negro citizens.
A proposed compromise of two non-voting guest delegates from MFDP was rejected by its leaders.

The dispute, the political intrigue, and the long-term effects

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August 30, 1967

The Senate confirmed the appointment of Thurgood Marshall as the first Supreme Court Justice of African-American descent. Marshall had been counsel to the NAACP Legal Defense Fund, and had been the lead attorney in the Brown v. Board of Education case. He was appointed to the Court by President Lyndon Johnson after having served as Solicitor General of the U.S. for two years, and on the U.S. Court of Appeals for four.
Thurgood Marshall

"Today's Constitution is a realistic document of freedom only because of several corrective amendments. Those amendments speak to a sense of decency and fairness that I and other Blacks cherish."
- Justice Thurgood Marshall

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August 31, 1921

Marcus Garvey, leader of the Universal Negro Improvement Association, often referred to as the Back-to-Africa movement in the U.S., was declared “Provisional President of Africa” in a Harlem (New York City) ceremony.
Black nationalist Marcus Garvey is shown in a military uniform as the 'Provisional President of Africa' during a parades up Lenox Avenue in Harlem, New York City, in August 1922, during the opening day exercises of the
annual Convention of the Negro Peoples of the World.
Hear one of his speeches recorded that summer

August 31, 1965

U.S. President Lyndon Johnson signed into law a bill criminalizing destruction of draft cards. Although it could result in a five-year prison sentence and $1000 fine, the burnings became common during anti-Vietnam War rallies and often attracted the attention of news media.

Draft card burning, 1967

August 31, 1974

In federal court, John Lennon of The Beatles testified the Nixon Administration had tried to have him deported because of his involvement with anti-war demonstrations at the 1972 Republican convention in Miami.
The U.S. v John Lennon trailer

John Lennon
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September 1, 1986

Angelo (Charlie) Liteky & George Mizo, both Vietnam veterans, began an open-ended Fast For Life on the steps of the U.S. Capitol. They were calling attention to their opposition to U.S. support of the Nicaraguan contras and repressive regimes in El Salvador and Guatemala.

“our expression of a deeply felt desire to do everything and anything we can . . . to stop the war with Nicaragua.”

Charles Liteky George Mizo
Liteky was a Catholic chaplain in the Vietnam War and had received the Congressional Medal of Honor.

Charles Liteky and his subsequent peace efforts

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-Cathy, Terra Haute, IN

September 1, 1987

During a nonviolent protest at the Concord (California) Naval Weapons Station, a Navy munitions train ran over Brian Willson.
An Air Force and Vietnam veteran, Willson and the other protesters were attempting to stop shipment of weapons to Nicaragua and
El Salvador.

Brian Willson bird-watching California, 1997.

They considered U.S. policy in Central America a violation of the Nuremberg Principles. Willson lost both legs and suffered other injuries but has remained an active and articulate leader in the anti-military movement.

Ron Kovic (author 'Born on the Fourth of July')
and Brian Willson (also born on the Fourth of July)

Willson’s testimony before the U.S. House Armed Services Subcommittee on Investigations

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"PAYING THE PRICE FOR PEACE: The Story of S. Brian Willson"

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September 1, 1997

Kurdish and British activists blockaded an arms trade exhibition outside London. 89 members of Campaign Against the Arms Trade (CAAT)were arrested for protesting the presence of Turkish, Chinese and Indonesian government representatives in Britain to purchase weapons. The Labour government had pledged “[We will] not permit the sale of arms to regimes that could use them for internal repression or external aggression . . . .” Great Britain is the world’s second largest arms manufacturer (by dollar volume) after the U.S.

What happened that day

September 1 - International Day of War Tax Resistance.

“Refusing to pay taxes for war is probably as old as the first taxes levied for warfare...”

War Tax Resistance Coordinating Committee


September 2, 1945

Revolutionary leader Ho Chi Minh declared Vietnam a republic and independent from France (National Day). Half a million people gathered in Hanoi to hear him read the Vietnamese Declaration of Independence, which was modeled on the U.S. Declaration of Independence.

note:Ho Chi Minh translates to 'He Who Enlightens'

Read about how it was influenced by the U.S. Declaration

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September 2, 1966

On what was supposed to be the first day of school in Grenada, Mississippi—and the first day in an integrated school for 450 Negro children—the school board postponed opening of school for 10 days because of “paperwork.” Nevertheless, the high school played its first football game that night. Some of the Negro kids who had registered for that school tried to attend the game but were beaten and their car windows smashed.
Joan Baez
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September 3, 1838

Frederick Douglass made his escape from slavery in Baltimore and went on in life to become an abolitionist, journalist, author, and human rights advocate.

The escape from “Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass, An American Slave”

A Frederick Douglass biography

Frederick Douglass

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August 28, 1976

September 3, 1970

Representatives from 27 African nations, the Caribbean nations, four South American countries, Australia, and the U.S. met in Atlanta, Georgia, for the first Congress of African People.
Read more about CAP in historical context

The colors of

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September 3, 1997

The Musa Anter, or Kurdish Peace Train (named after an assassinated Kurdish writer) was organized by peace activists to call attention to the oppression of the Kurdish people in Turkey by their own government. At the time, the Turkish words for Kurd, Kurdish, guerilla and torture were banned, and it was illegal to speak the Kurdish language.

The Peace Train was to leave London and travel through Europe to Diyarbakir in eastern Turkey to celebrate International Anti-War Day there. Germany disallowed passage of the Train through its territory (the Germans and Turks have strong military ties). The group then flew to Istanbul, intending to take a fleet of busses to the Kurdish region. Turkish troops stopped them from reaching Diyarbakir, forcing them back to the capital.

On this day they tried to hold a press conference to discuss the Kurdish issue. The police arrested or beat all present, including foreign diplomats.
The story of the Musa Anter Peace Train

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September 4, 1949

Paul Robeson, scholar, athlete, musician and leader, defying a racist and red-baiting mob, sang to 15,000 at a Labor Day gathering in Peekskill, New York.
Paul Robeson (at microphone) singing to the Labor Day gathering in Peekskill, New York

The story and photographs of what happened

Film from that day narrated by Sidney Poitier

"As an artist I come to sing, but as a citizen, I will always speak for peace, and no one can silence me in this."
- Paul Robeson

September 4, 1957

Elizabeth Eckford and eight other young Negroes were blocked from becoming the first black student at Central High School in Little Rock, Arkansas.

Governor Orval Faubus had called out the National Guard to prevent the court-ordered integration of the public schools in the state’s capital.
President Dwight Eisenhower eventually sent in federal troops to guarantee the law was enforced.
Elizabeth Eckford Read more Elizabeth Eckford followed and taunted by mob, 1957.

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September 4, 1970

Vietnam Veterans Against the War (VVAW) began Operation RAW (Rapid American Withdrawal). Over the following three days more than 200 veterans, assisted by the Philadelphia Guerilla Theater, staged a march from Morristown, New Jersey, to Valley Forge, Pennsylvania, reenacting the invasion of small rural hamlets along the way.

Operation Rapid American Withdrawal 1970-2005: An Exhibition:

with every order

September 4, 1978
Simultaneous demonstrations in Moscow’s Red Square and in front of the White House in Washington, D.C. were organized by the War Resisters League, calling for nuclear disarmament.

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