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Indybay Feature
3/4/04 Books Not Bombs!
by Books Not Bombs!
Friday Jan 23rd, 2004 6:33 PM
On March 4th, 2004, demand:
On March 4th, 2004, demand:

What's in this message:
I. March 4, 2004 "Books not Bombs" Call to Action.
II. The "Books not Bombs Agenda" (i.e., our demands).
III. How YOU Can Help Make This Happen.

On March 5th, 2003, thousands of young people in more than 450 high
schools and colleges nationwide participated in a Student Strike for
Books Not Bombs and against the impending war on Iraq. The strike was
initiated by the National Youth & Student Peace Coalition (NYSPC), a
broad coalition fighting back against the militarization of our lives
and our world.

One year later, it has become even clearer that our generation will
continue to be betrayed by this government's drive to make our country
an empire.

So we will stand up as a generation on March 4th because...

*There's always enough money for building weapons of mass destruction
and for locking up young people, but there's somehow never enough for
education. For every new missile or prison built, another public school
is allowed to crumble, and another class of students can't afford to pay
for rising tuition.

*We are losing our basic freedoms and constitutional rights one by one,
as the government expands its power through Patriot Acts and detention
camps. Those who speak out are treated like criminals, innocent people
are rounded up from their homes, and we're all being watched--yet we are
no safer.

*In place of decent jobs and schools, young people have been given
military recruiters, who get students' information without their
permission. Low-income youth and youth of color have been extensively
targeted by military recruiters just as they have been consistently
denied access to higher education.

*Our colleges and universities are complicit in the war machine and the
infringement of our rights, from performing research for the Pentagon to
turning in students' records to investing in killer corporations. Our
schools are supposed to be independent, but many now serve these
military and corporate interests instead of the public good.

We believe the US can be better than this. But unless we take action,
the threats to our lives and liberties will only continue to grow.

Our generation can join together now in questioning and resisting the
course that has been set for us--against our interests, against our
will, and against some of our most deeply held values. As young people
have before, we can ignite real change starting in our own schools and

**Because NYSPC recognizes that the war at home is directly related to
the war abroad, the March 4th Day of Action this year will be organized
in solidarity with and leading up to United for Peace & Justice's March
20th Global Day of Protest Against War & Occupation.**

Endorsed by: 180/Movement For Democracy and Education, Black Radical
Congress Youth Division/TransAfrica, Campus Greens, Coalition to
Demilitarize the University of California Muslim Student Association of
the US and Canada, National Youth Advocacy Coalition, New York Youth
Bloc (New York City), Not With Our Money, Student Environmental Action
Coalition, Student Peace Action Network, Students Transforming and
Resisting Corporations, Students United For a Responsible Global
Environment, United States Student Association, United Students Against
Sweatshops, Uptown
Youth for Peace & Justice (Manhattan), Young Communist League, Young
Democratic Socialists, Young People's Socialist League, Youth PAWR


*Funding for Education, not Empire.

Currently only $.02 of every federal dollar is devoted to education
funding. We demand funding increases for education, especially programs
targeting low-income youth such as the Pell Grant, TRIO, and GEAR UP.
Further, we demand that the drug provision in the Higher Education
Act--which denies federal education funds to convicted drug
offenders--be repealed, and that Congress pass legislation (such as the
DREAM Act and the
Student Adjustment Act) that would increase educational opportunities
for undocumented youth.

*No Military Recruitment in our Schools

College administrations should support the ongoing legal challenge to
the Solomon Amendment, and both colleges and high schools should make it
campus policy to prominently advertise the rights of students and
parents to opt out of having student information released to military

*Respect our Civil Liberties

Provisions that violate youth and students rights in the Patriot Act
must be revised. School student governments and administrations should
pass resolutions to oppose the implementation of such provisions.

*Campuses for Peace, not War
Campus administrators must publicly disclose all military-related
research and all financial relationships with weapons manufacturers.
Campus administrators must pledge to work towards severing these
relationships and agree to a freeze on any new military research or
additional dealings with weapons manufacturers.

*Schools not Jails

College administrators must divulge all university business relations --
including contracts and investments--with companies that profit from or
finance prison construction or operations. College administrations
should set up recruitment and retention programs for communities
adversely affected by incarceration, specifically low-income youth and
youth of color. Lastly, state governments must invest more money in
education and rehabilitation programs instead of prioritizing


Across the country, on March 4th and the weeks leading up to it, we will

*winning student government, faculty, and administration resolutions in
support of the Books Not Bombs agenda, and demands like cutting tuition,
divesting from militarism, and keeping the Pentagon and the Patriot Act
out of our schools.

*registering voters for peace and freedom, and calling on young people
to build our political power in 2004 to show that our government can no
longer ignore us.

*organizing demonstrations, parties and concerts to bring people
together, have some defiant fun, and help build our movement.

*publishing articles in newspapers, creating artwork for people to see,
performing poetry and theater against the war at home, fusing our
culture with our cause.

*reaching out at neighboring schools and other places where youth
congregate, to raise consciousness of what's going on and bring more
people into this struggle.

*thinking about what actions will send the most powerful statement on
March 4th, uniting our local communities around the campaign, then going
out and organizing up a storm.

GET INVOLVED! For more info and resources, and to connect with other
young people who will be making this campaign happen, check out and Contact us at
info [at], or 215-222-4711. Let's do this!
We are 100% volunteer and depend on your participation to sustain our efforts!


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