The following is an excerpt from Part 4 of “Fighting For Hope” by the late Petra Kelly, founder of the German Green party/movement. Although this was written 34 years ago — and for a different purpose — much of what Petra writes here is remarkably prescient in how it resonates with our current state of affairs.
On the eve of the inauguration of Donald Trump as the 45th President of the United States, this message can serve several purposes for us as Greens:
- It’s a practical guide to what we can do and how we can conduct ourselves in the coming months under this administration, and in these times in general.
- It’s a reaffirmation and reminder of the principles and values upon which the Green party and movement was founded, and why we chose to become Greens.
- It’s a cautionary message that urges us to stay sharp and focused.
- It’s a timeless message of hope, peace, love, and determination…and of the inspired vision that Petra left as a legacy, and as a mission for us to carry out.
From Petra Karin Kelly and Hermann Verbeeck at the Nuremberg Tribunal against first-strike weapons and other instruments of mass destruction in East and West. 20 February 1983
The implication of our resolution, our decision, here for me as well as for Hermann Verbeeck, and I hope for all Green parties on an international level, is an appeal to ourselves, to all of us, to each and every individual that we finally do something. Both Hermann Verbeeck and myself have attempted in this appeal to express that which should inspire us, mobilize us, in our non- violent struggle against militarization and nuclear proliferation.
- We call upon countries and cities everywhere to organize tribunals, such as this one in Nuremberg, condemning weapons of mass destruction.
- We call upon people everywhere never to accustom themselves, never to allow themselves to become accustomed, to the idea of war and the preparation for war.
- We call upon people to renew their forces in a non-violent effort of resistance and civil disobedience. These forces are to be stronger and more far-reaching than anything which history and the world have experienced before. We must convince the old established authorities of a new enlightened authority: the power of reason, of communal awareness, of moral conscience. Never again will people be able to say, “We didn’t know.”
- We call upon people to find their way back to the deepest spiritual dimension of all religions: love. And love demands that we accept one another, that we come together in harmony, and celebrate the differences among human beings. We must recognise that it is only within an atmosphere of freedom that individuals are able to change themselves.
- We call upon the younger generation to put their intellectual and moral power to work in an active contribution to non- violent resistance. Through this commitment to peace, even fear itself may perform a useful service by being transformed into a creative force. We need a courageous kind of fear, a vitalizing fear, which instead of making us seek the safety and security of our homes will send us into the streets. It is a loving fear which is not simply concerned about what might happen to us, but reaches out to the whole world.
- We call upon women everywhere, our sisters young and old, for they recognize that our governments are constantly breaking the law. Governments are unable to sustain and guarantee us peace. The women at Greenham Common, England formed a living chain, a chain of human beings, around a military base for nuclear weapons. We call upon women to form a chain around the world, and further not only to resist those who say that war is inevitable, but only to love those men who are willing to speak out against violence. We invite all men who oppose violence to join us in our cause for peace; we urge them to break out of their rigid patriarchal institutions. I appeal to women not to let themselves become corrupted by male power. Emancipation is something more than a “ticket” to serve in the army; it is not an entrance for women to militarization.
- We call upon people everywhere to work for peace, to forget the quiet comfort of their homes, to leave behind their fears and feeling of powerlessness, their privileges and possessions, and join us as active participants and co-workers for peace.
- We call upon people to build and develop communities of peace everywhere. Everyone must know that without the community, survival is impossible, that for thousands of years communities of people have practiced peace, and that the community will always be there, even when one is thrown into prison and is cut off from loved ones and comrades. If you practice non-violent resistance you are not alone: many others are always there.
- We call upon people to join the peace movement and become active in our non-violent protest against weapons and atomic energy. It is important to know that the world powers are afraid of nuclear war. But what they are even more afraid of are people, the thousands of people who are living for that day, for the light of day when peace will finally dawn. One should also know that at present our drive for Peace has already grown so strong that the powers in both East and West have already begun to change their tactics.
- We call upon people to practice non-violent resistance in protest against nuclear research centres and laboratories, the arms industry, NBC-military bases, and other military installations.
- We call upon people to make use of all legal, non-violent, and imaginative means or methods in order to ensure peace and justice. These nonviolent methods must accord with our non-violent goal of peace.
- We call upon people to demonstrate non-violently outside factories, military bases industrial complexes, governmental organizations, embassies, etc.
- We call upon people to participate in memorial peace services, and to organize silent “stand-ins” for peace in public places.
- We call upon governments everywhere, upon people in responsible positions, politicians, researchers, and military personnel only to act in the service of peace and to boycott those institutions which are involved in preparation for war, and in particular for a war with weapons of mass destruction.
- We call upon all nuclear powers in the world and above all the two superpowers to begin taking step towards unilateral disarmament, without waiting for the other side.
- We call upon all civilian and military personnel who work in any of the armed forces throughout the world to consider their responsibility and to recognize their duty towards non- violent resistance and civil disobedience.
- We call upon people to be loyal to one another, to people in both blocks, and not simply along government lines. We must preserve our loyalty to human dignity, and that means never being partial in our treatment of human rights.
- We call upon people to oppose strongly their governments, which are all jointly responsible for nuclear armament.
- We call for a new attitude in which public opinion will view every conscientious objector as a hero; in terms of emancipation they are heroes.
- We call upon people to demonstrate that we have !earned from the experience of the Nuremberg War Tribunal.
- We call upon people to recognize that we do not need nuclear weapons and other instruments of mass destruction in order to exalt ourselves.
- We call upon people to reject that blind faith which makes us quietly assent to mass suicide and nuclear holocaust.
- We call upon people once again not to wait until it is too late to begin thinking about world peace, the peace movement, and becoming an active worker for peace.
In 1952 Bertolt Brecht wrote to people everywhere:
Mankind’s memory for the suffering people have already endured is astonishingly short. Our capacity to visualize future suffering is even more limited. The worldwide horrors of the 1940s seem to be forgotten. “Yesterday’s rain won’t make us wet today,” say so many people. It is exactly this hardened indifference which we have to fight against, as death is its most extreme consequence. Far too many people already seem dead to us today, like people who have already gone through that which actually still lies before them, so little have they done against this.
The following Green Party candidates will be on the ballot for the Nov. 8th General Election in the Bronx this year:
- President / VP: Jill Stein / Ajamu Baraka
- U.S. Senate, NY: Robin Laverne Wilson
- U.S. Congress: Daniel Vila, CD13 (Manhattan/Bronx)
- NY State Senate: Carl Lundgren, SD34 (Bronx/Westchester County)
- NY State Assembly: Daniel Zuger, AD85
I want to thank everyone who attended and participated in the Bronx County Green Party Annual Meeting that took place this past Sunday. I particularly want to express my gratitude to Lou Rocco and the members of the Westchester Square Civic Association for not only graciously allowing us the use of their space, but also for their hospitality in providing us with refreshments, helping us set up, and actively and enthusiastically participating in the meeting. This is what community is all about.
The meeting was primarily for attending to BCGP business but we had time for some interesting discussions about the Green Party, Bronx politics, and issues facing the community. We talked about the steps needed to run as a Green candidate in the Bronx; information about the use of Opportunity to Ballot petitions and how they can be used to hijack our ballot line; the pros and cons of the GPNYS Sustaining Members program in relation to Bronx County; and a call for help with petitioning for our endorsed candidates. We may have even found a potential candidate for State Senate or Assembly in one of the meeting attendees.
The membership approved amended and revised bylaws and rules that will now be submitted to the NYC Board of Elections, for the purpose of recognizing BCGP as the official Green Party organization in Bronx County. This was made necessary by the Green Party of New York State having regained ballot status at the last gubernatorial election. We also conducted elections for officers, committee chairs, establishment of new committees, and endorsement of 2014 candidates for public office. Here are the results:
- BCGP Officers:
- Chair: Carl Lundgren
- Secretary: John Reynolds
- Treasurers: George Deane, Mike Popowich
- Committee Chairs:
- Bylaws, Rules and Policies Committee – Carl Lundgren
- Campaign Committee – John Reynolds
- Green Living / Ecology Committee – Fay Muir
- Platform & Program Committee – Tony Gronowicz
- New committees approved:
- Nonviolent Social Defense Committee – Carl Lundgren, Chair
- Public Education Committee – Mark Surabian, Chair
- Candidate Endorsements:
- Daniel V. Rivera, U.S. Representative, CD13 (Bronx/Manhattan)
- Carl Lundgren, NY State Senate, SD34 (Bronx/Westchester)
- Lili Gronowicz, State Committee Representative
- Tony Gronowicz, State Committee Representative
As per our bylaws, the BCGP officers, Committee Chairs and SC Reps serve as the BCGP Coordinating Committee.
Again, my thanks to everyone for helping to make this one of the most successful and optimistic Annual Meetings we’ve had to date.
Carl Lundgren, Chair
Bronx County Green Party Annual Meeting
DATE & TIME:
Sunday, March 9th 3pm – 6pm
Westchester Square Civic Association
2514 East Trenont Ave. (nr St. Peters Avenue)
SUBWAY: #6 train to Westchester Square; transfer to Westbound BX40/42 bus to St. Peters Ave.
BUS: BX 40/42 in either direction to St. Peters Ave. Eastbound bus stops directly in front of 2514.
Join us for our Bronx County Green Party annual meeting. All enrolled Greens in the Bronx are encouraged to attend so that we can conduct our business as democratically as possible.
Business will include:
- Election of BCGP Officers and Committee Chairs
- Vote to Approve amended bylaws
- Endorsement of candidates seeking elected office
We’ll also discuss the need for Election Day poll workers; information on the burgeoning eco-socialist movement; and what you need to know to run for public office as a Green.
Refreshments will be served. Please consider making a small donation to help us defray the costs of refreshments and other expenses associated with organizing the meeting.
They Say “Shutdown”; We Say “Long Live the Green New Deal”! The Green Team 2013 Press Conference: Presenting a Fresh Alternative
Media Advisory For Immediate Release
They Say “Shutdown”; We Say “Long Live the Green New Deal”!
The Green Team 2013 Press Conference: Presenting a Fresh Alternative
What: Press conference introducing the Green Team 2013
Who: The Green Team 2013, a group of candidates currently running for office in New York City under the Green Party of New York State banner
When: Sunday, October 27th, 2013, 12:30 PM
Where: In front of City Hall, 260 Broadway, Manhattan
Summary: A historic occasion will occur in New York City this Sunday afternoon: a group of public servants who cannot be bought, and who have real solutions to offer the people of New York, will gather at City Hall to present their joint program.
The recent government shutdown in Washington did not surprise the Greens. Both sides are acting irresponsibly. The Greens instead offer a plan – a Green New Deal – to help working people, not the banks; the beleaguered soldier, not the Pentagon; the children of our future, not ExxonMobil.
The team’s three citywide candidates for office ‒ mayoral candidate Anthony Gronowicz, comptroller candidate Julia Willebrand and Public Advocate candidate James Lane ‒ along with several New York City Council candidates ‒ will present their ideas to the media and the public. For those bored with the hollow public spectacle of de Blasio vs. Lhota, the Greens offer something quite unusual: a dose of truth.
List of all Green Team New York City Candidates:
Anthony Gronowicz (Mayor) – www.VoteGronowicz.info
Julia Willebrand (Comptroller) – http://www.votewillebrand.info
James Lane (Public Advocate) – http://www.votejameslane.org
Carl Lundgren (Borough President (Bronx)) – http://www.electcarllundgren.info
Henry J. Bardel (Borough President – Staten Island) – http://www.hankbardelforsiboropres.info
Thomas Siracuse (City Council District 6 – Manhattan) – http://www.electtomsiracuse.info
Christina (Stina) Gonzalez (City Council District 7 Manhattan) – http://www.freestina.com
John Reynolds (City Council District 11 – Bronx) – http://www.reynolds4council.info
Trevor Archer (City Council District 12 – Bronx) – http://www.electarcher.info
Walter Nestler (City Council District 18 – Bronx) – http://www.nestler2013.com
Evergreen C. Chou (City Council District 20 – Queens) – http://www.voteevergreen.info
Lynne Serpe (City Council District 22 – Queens) – http://serpeforcouncil.org
Patrick Dwyer (City Council District 43 – Brooklyn) – http://www.votedwyer.info
http://www.greenteam2013.info – Green Team 2013
http://www.web.gpnys.com – Green Party of New York State
[Fringe? I think not! At least I was interviewed.]
Socialist Workers Party candidate Roger Calero and Green Party nominee Carl Lundgren will face incumbent Ruben Diaz Jr.
ByDenis Slattery / NEW YORK DAILY NEWS
Saturday, October 5, 2013, 4:20 PM
They have little money, less name recognition and no real chance, but these candidates refuse to call their bid to unseat the incumbent Bronx borough president a fool’s errand.
Socialist Workers Party candidate Roger Calero and Green Party nominee Carl Lundgren are challenging Ruben Diaz Jr. in the November general election.
Calero is a two-time U.S. presidential hopeful that mustered a little more than 7,000 votes nationwide in 2008.
Even though he does not have a website and has raised less than $10,000 in contributions, Calero says his campaign has been a success, even if his ideas are a little bigger than the borough.
“Our struggle did not start with the campaign and it doesn’t end with the campaign,” Calero said of his bid, admitting that getting working people motivated to start a movement was the party’s ultimate goal. “It is not just about the Bronx. The problems that people in the Bronx face are the same that people all over the world face.”
The hopeful Socialist was the party’s nominee for U.S. President in both 2004 and 2008. But the candidate would have been ineligible to take office even if he won because he is not a natural born citizen.
The Nicaraguan native has been a permanent resident of the U.S. since 1990 but faced deportation in 2002 stemming from a felony drug offense.
In the 2008 general election Calero received 7,209 votes in the five states where he was on the ballot. But in his hometown of the Bronx, he received only 124 votes.
“The expectations are the same,” Calero said, comparing his current campaign to his earlier attempts at office. “That goal to build a movement is the same.”
Green Party candidate Carl Lundgren offered a more local perspective.
“When you look at what a borough president can actually do, there is no legislative power,” Lundgren said. “But he’s not looking out for the interests of the people. We want more community involvement.”
The architectural draftsman cited Diaz’s support of the city deal to move FreshDirect to the South Bronx and the Kingsbridge Armory ice center plan as examples of what he called the sitting borough president’s “corporate ties.”
The 60-year-old said he was realistic about his chances against Diaz, but believes interest in the Green Party is growing.
“We still have to fight and say that we should have a voice that represents the people, not the business interests,” Lundgren said.
Erin Clarke of NY1 News interviewed me about my run for Bronx Borough President soon after my designating petitions were certified and it was a certainty that I’d be on the ballot this coming Election Day. The interview took place in my neighborhood at the Step In Restaurant in Parkchester. I’m very pleased with the final result which aired on Monday, Sept. 16 and will be repeated all this week for Bronx Week.
In a borough where Democrats hold most of the elected positions, a Green Party candidate has emerged to challenge Ruben Diaz Junior for the Borough President seat. NY1’s Erin Clarke filed the following report.
Carl Lundgren joined the race for Bronx Borough President because he says, “I saw that nobody was running against Ruben Diaz Junior.”
The 60-year-old Green Party candidate says he’s not a traditional politician, just a man of the people. He grew up and still lives in the blue collar neighborhood of Unionport and says unlike Ruben Diaz Junior, he would represent the borough’s interest.
“He’s not here to listen to the concerns of the people and the Green Party stands for that,” said Lundgren. “I will listen to the people. I’m part of the people. I want to see what you need. I want to see what you want. And we’ll work together to try to make those improvements.”
And just how would he do that? First, Lundgren would like to give residents the power to pick community board members instead of the borough president appointing them.
“One of the first things I would try to do is establish community assemblies or peoples assemblies in different neighborhoods and have them decide who they want to be on the community board I think the people have to have a say who’s on their community boards,” Lundgren said.
Lundgren also wants to focus on cleaning up the borough’s parks, instead of promoting projects like the Donald Trump golf course at Ferry Point Park and providing more services for youth.
“We worry about the crime rate, we worry about youth being disengaged from the community, well why is that? Because we’re not providing them with any services and we’re not listening to them either,” Lundgren said.
But Lundgren knows he has an uphill battle running against the incumbent who has already beat out a Democratic challenger in the primary. Despite that, he is confident in his chances, saying the people want more of a say in government.