WIRT Newsletter: May & June Events

Dear comrades,

Please consider participating in these upcoming May and June events.  We will send a separate announcement about the third annual Tar Sands Solidarity Journey, on June 25 to July 1, to and from the fifth and final Tar Sands Healing Walk, June 27 and 28 near Fort McMurray, Alberta.  Also anticipate pending alerts about eco-performer Dana Lyons and activist Matt Krogh of ForestEthics bringing their Oil Train Tour to Moscow on Tuesday, June 24, to Spokane on Wednesday, June 25, and to Sandpoint on Thursday, June 26.  Check the Wild Idaho Rising Tide (WIRT) website page, Events Calendar, often for updated WIRT schedules.

May 16: WIRT Activists House Party

Instead of WIRT’s usual, third Thursday, monthly potluck meeting, we invite you and your friends and family to our humble base camp house, for a Friday evening gathering to celebrate our collective’s amazing activists and allies, and to strategize and energize for a summer of successful actions.  Bring beverages, snacks, or entrees to share with your comrades, for a lively night of radical fun on a beautifully balmy May Moscow evening.  The party starts at 7 pm on Friday, May 16, and continues far into the evening, with potential to enjoy home-made acoustic music playing, dancing, relaxing, and enjoying the company of friends.  WIRT would be delighted and infinitely grateful for the honor of your presence (especially on Helen’s birthday and with a tenuous Highway 95 megaload victory)!

Thanks to everyone who has contributed toward the success of the hundred-year-old, two-bedroom house serving as our organizational hub over the last two years.  With your myriad provisions of essential furniture and household goods, we have accommodated several traveling presenters, performers, and activists in our downtown abode beneath a huge cottonwood tree.  The WIRT Activists House is open daily between noon and 8 pm, to provide our group a combined working space, monthly meeting place, information resource center, and visiting/resident climate activist home.  We are again searching through our network for one or two house mates to support some of the monthly rental and utility costs.  Please contact us at 208-301-8039 with your suggestions and questions about the house party, its location, and other WIRT business.

May 18: John Crock Memorial Service

This note comes to us from John’s long-time partner and recent wife, Laurene Sorensen, P.O. Box 9826, Moscow, Idaho 83843: “John departed on his last adventure on Monday, April 28, shortly after noon.  He was traveling light, carrying only a smile.  We’ll be celebrating his life on Sunday, May 18, from noon to 4 pm at the Palouse-Clearwater Environmental Institute (PCEI), 1040 Rodeo Drive, Moscow, Idaho.  We’ll start with a potluck lunch and then have an informal, outdoor memorial service.  Please bring a dish to share, a picnic blanket, and your stories and pictures.

If you are traveling from out of town, you are welcome to camp on the PCEI grounds or at my farm.  The nearest airports are Pullman (seven miles away) and Lewiston (35 miles away); you can also fly into Spokane, but that’s about 80 miles from Moscow.

We’ll be setting up from 3 to 5 pm on Saturday, May 17, and there’ll be a barbecue and beer for anyone who’d like to help.  Please accept/decline by email to Laurene Sorensen at laurenesorensen@gmail.com, or to Lauretta Campbell at hyperspud2@yahoo.com.”

May 21: No Oil Trains People’s Hearing

Washington state and city government agencies have again dismissed opportunities for public scoping hearings in Spokane and the inland Northwest, as communities risk their health and environments along the sacrifice zone rail lines of potentially explosive unit trains, each transporting 3.36 million gallons of oil.  In January 2014, Imperium Terminal Services and Westway Terminal Company requested environmental reviews of their proposed crude oil terminals and bulk storage facility expansions at the Port of Grays Harbor in Hoquiam [1].  Proponents of the Grays Harbor Rail Terminal proposed by U.S. Development also submitted permit applications and a State Environmental Policy Act (SEPA) checklist to the City of Hoquiam in April 2014.  Per SEPA, co-lead agencies Washington Department of Ecology and the City of Hoquiam are conducting ongoing, statewide, Environmental Impact Statement scoping processes, accepting public comments between April 10 and May 27, 2014 [2].  But they only held public scoping meetings in Hoquiam and Centralia, Washington, respectively on April 24 and 29, even while trackside Idaho and Washington cities from Hope and Sandpoint to Spokane Valley, Spokane, and Cheney lie in the project crosshairs.

So regional residents are speaking out against these bomb trains and oil ports [3]!  Join Spokane Riverkeeper and allied groups next Wednesday, May 21, between 5:30 and 6:30 pm at the Rotary Fountain in Riverfront Park (507 North Howard Street, Spokane, Washington), for a demonstration, brief speeches by community leaders and elected officials, and to sign petitions and submit scoping comments.  Columbia and Spokane Riverkeepers, Bomb Trains, Spokane Rising Tide, and Washington Environmental Council from Seattle are providing visual props, banners, a sound system, and information tables with comment cards, petitions, flyers, Bakken fact sheets, and oil train spotting guides.  Confirmed rally speakers include Spokane City Council President Ben Stuckart, Reverend Dr. Todd Eklof, minister of the Unitarian Universalist Church of Spokane, Susan Drumheller of the Idaho Conversation League, and moderator Bart Mihailovich of Spokane Riverkeeper.  Other city and tribal representatives may also share their knowledge and concerns about the issue.

Everyone is welcome at the No Oil Trains People’s Hearing, where organizers anticipate 100 participants, assisted by volunteers holding protest signs and other props and guiding people in signing comment cards.  Please share the facebook event far and wide (while facebook has again temporarily blocked WIRT from sending invitations) and forward this action alert and any similar outreach messages to interested folks, for a strong turnout and regional display of resistance to oil terminals and trains.  Contact WIRT before noon on Wednesday for Palouse area carpool arrangements, and reach Bart Mihailovich with your questions and suggestions at 509-464-7614 or bart@cforjustice.org.

May 24: Celebration of Stanley Thomas’ Life

At age 91, longtime Moscow resident Stanley Thomas died peacefully at home on May 7, 2014.  As a member of the Moscow Volunteer Peace Band, Stan often played his trumpet at community events and received the first Rosa Parks Human Rights Achievement Award in 1994.  He served on many University of Idaho committees and organizations and, along with numerous intellectual interests described in his May 10, 2014 Moscow-Pullman Daily News obituary, “he had a passionate desire for the world to become a more peaceful place, and lived his life engaged in community participation and social action.”

Stan’s family is hosting a celebration of his life at 12 noon on Saturday, May 24, at the First United Methodist Church in Moscow.  His grandson, Max, will play Stan’s trumpet at the event, and the Peace Band may join him for a few songs.  Instead of gifts and flowers, his family requests that you express your appreciation for Stan by actively participating in your community and/or donating to the Campus Christian Center, 822 Elm Street in Moscow, and/or to the War Resisters League, 339 Lafayette Street, New York City, New York 10012 [4].

May 31: Remembering Paul D. McPoland

On the last Saturday in May, friends of missed comrade Paul McPoland will gather together to honor the memory of our compassionate, intelligent, and sarcastic, change-making companion, whom many diverse people loved and respected [5].  As an invaluable core WIRT activist, an appreciated citizen journalist for community radio KRFP, and a favorite staff member of his disabled clients, Paul supported and contributed extensively to the progressive culture of Moscow and the world.  His deep understanding and beliefs in the unique, highest worth and ability of all persons and the necessity of open and truthful communication guided his relationships and daily actions that greatly benefitted the lives he touched.

To share comfort, peace, and joy with Paul, his friends, fellow activists, and co-workers, as he continues his spiritual journey on “the other side,” we will meet at the WIRT Activists House at 2 pm on May 31.  At around 4 pm, we will move the gathering to Dave Willard’s house, for a more intimate convergence of Paul’s close friends and family, with a potluck dinner and possible bonfire.

June 14-22: Wild Roots Feral Futures

From Wild Roots Feral Futures organizers: “We are very happy to announce that, for the sixth year running, the Wild Roots Feral Futures (WRFF) eco-defense, direct action, and rewilding encampment will take place in the forests of southwest Colorado, this coming June 14 to 22, 2014 [6-9].  WRFF is an informal, completely free and non-commercial, and loosely organized camp-out operating on (less than a) shoe-string budget, formed entirely of donated, scavenged, or liberated supplies and sustained through 100-percent volunteer effort.  Though we foster a collective communality and pool resources, we also encourage general self-sufficiency, which lightens the burden on communal supplies, and which we find to be the very source and foundation of true mutual sharing and abundance.

We would like to invite groups and individuals engaged in struggles against the destruction of the Earth (and indeed all interconnected forms of oppression) to join us and share your stories, lessons, skills, and whatever else you may have to offer.  In this spirit, we would like to reach out to frontline community members, local environmental groups, coalitions, and alliances everywhere, as well as more readily recognizable groups like Earth First!, Rising Tide North America, and others, to come collaborate on the future of radical environmentalism and eco-defense in our bio-regions and beyond.”

[1] About CBR Project (Port of Grays Harbor)

[2] Environmental Review: Westway and Imperium Expansion Projects (Washington Department of Ecology)

[3] No Oil Trains People’s Hearing (Spokane Riverkeeper)

[4] War Resisters League (War Resisters League)

[5] Remembering Paul D McPoland (Raven Moondancer)

[6] Wild Roots Feral Futures (Blog)

[7] Wild Roots Feral Futures (Message boards)

[8] Wild Roots Feral Futures (Facebook page)

[9] Wild Roots Feral Futures 2014 (Indiegogo)

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