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I was walking home yesterday
and this black cat was sitting in the tall prairie grass staring at me and follwoing me with its metallic yellow green eyes, it looked like a moving bat-man hat in the grass.

there are some people that sit next to me in art class and they were talking about
some drugs that they like and I'm pretty sure that Pot makes holes in your brain, right? so I told them that Pot makes holes in your brain, but they said that Pot is not a drug and doesnt make holes in your brain, am I wrong? Pot does something to your brain doesnt it? They are very...independent people or hippie wannabes or something but lets be happy without putting holes in our brains please, lets not tarnish the protest movement with...brain holes?. well, I dont want holes in my brain (alcholhol puts holes in your brain too)or the trouble of finding drugs, or deal with the dulling of my senses over time and jail and everything else that happens. but you all already know that, lalalalalalalala

if you ever get lost in the rain forest,
the things you have to worry about the most are not alligators or tigers eating you, because these animals will avoid you unless you go after them...but the things you have to worry about the most are bacteria and poisinious mini lizards, mosquitos and other bugs, the small things. That is interesting, we normally don't notice the problems around us until they get big, don't we? or at least that is the time that we actually feel motivated to do something about it, kind of like procrastinating on your homework only sometimes much more serious consequences can result. yet we survive, most of the time, so we think it will be okay next time also (but you only need one mess up for it all to be over). but say you get skin cancer, and dont do anything about it until its too late. so lesson of the day is: Dont do drugs, if you think you have cancer anywhere, get it checked out so you survive (even if your not completely sure) and drink pomogranete (spelling?) Or cranberry juice because that contains antioxidents that help prevent cancer, especially in the intestines, like colon cancer (which is the second leading cause of cancer deaths)

ahem

u know guys, I've been saying Annie got a 37 on the ACT? I'm sorry, she only got a 36.

I callled Annie today :) shes such a busy girl usually but today since it was after the APUSH test she was willing to relax at bit also. by the way, she is 50 points away from a perfect on the SAT (its my job to brag since she won't do it herself) and since most of you havent met her (except for Preethi of course, our loverly twin sister :), she misses you ALOT by the way.) , I want to brag a little bit more :)I've been so lucky to have a friend like her in my life, she has never been fickle or back stabbing like those horror stories you hear about with teenagres and on TV. we have seen each other in person the grand total of two times (once for three hours and once for a day) in more than a year but I don't feel any more distant from her and hopefully she feels the same way. we can laugh about nearly anything, its like she has this effect on me of alleviating any stress or heaviness, I'm normally rather serious and quiet but she just doenst know that, because whenever she's around I feel like being silly, or finding a new rule to break. Once we piled up enough random boxes and stools that we found around my house to climb into the hole in my ceiling we call an attic. i was very scared to climb down but she had no problem at all :P even though it was my idea... we captured a garter snake together and sucessfully hid it from my parents for over a year. We found ways to scale office buildings and how to run away from people that would see through the windows, or talked about how pathetically obsessed she is with Inu-Yasha (sigh) Theres so many memories of laughing over stupid things no one else would find as funny, or mulling over serious topics, some that often scared us, but still feeling secure. We have kept some secrets from each other, and there was a time I made her cry (when we were very young though)by just being too bossy and full of myself. Most people would probably see her as just 'very smart and a little shy' but I know theres more to her than the perfect schoolgirl she appears to be. There's someone who can really enjoy life while being mature enough not to hurt others in the process, no offense, but no one else i know is as concened with the emotional well-being of those around her. And unlike some of us (coughmecough) that meddle around and probably just make things more complicated she knows what she's doing. Theres so much more I could say, It would probably have to be a novel; the smell of the breeze from a five story high pine tree, the light ,the night before we were banned from seeing each other which compelled us to share some things we'd been keeping to ourselves and what a releif it was. once she randomly said "nothing is perfect but everything is bueatiful" and I keep that in my mind especially when feeling dissillusioned. So thank you, forces of the world. All of my friends are so awesome in thier own way and each friendship kind of enhances the others, please dont feel like I'm excluding anyone, its just sooo fun to brag about her behind her back since she's too modest. lala tomatoes! cheese! crack! Bubbles!

life

~
Hello friends! go to C202 on Tuesday may 9th at 7 pm for a paying for college presentation, its very comprehensive. :) BE THERE! >:0




"welcome to Neuqua Connections,
today's guest is activist leader Andy Thayer..." Andy was awesome! the talk show went so well that we used up TWICE the allowed time for the talk show because the people in the control room (the director, switcher, music person) wanted to know more :), i was nervouse it wouldnt work out or I would mess up, I have new respect for talk show hosts.
"THE BEST WAY TO STAND UP FOR OUR FIRST AMENDMENT RIGHTS IS TO USE THEM!"

Andy works in a civil rights law firm as
an office manager and is an activist leader and cofounder of LGBT liberation in Chicago and Coalition against war and racism. THere is still alot more racism going on than i thought :( and much more than most people realize, or want to realize. on the way home from school yesterday, i passed by a group of girls on my bike, they were probably fifth or sixth graders and one of them called out "I KNOW YOU!" so i turned around to say hi, but then she said "hey! Your CHINEEESE ! Or Korean! ChOUMINGCHUNGJUNG!" in this very mocking sort of way, as if it was bad to be asian? I yelled at them and fought off the urge to beat them up but I think it bothered me more than it should of considering their age. or maybe it WAS thier age that bothered me; it brought back memories that probably should be gone by now. many of the kids I knew as an elementary and middle school student were the same, unaccepting of differences, i was treated like crap because i had a strange name. People always say that kids are the innocent ones and they learn discrimination from thier parents, but they also learn it from each other. Is there some deep human condition or instinct that tells us that we must not make ourselves out to be the 'odd ones out' and that one of the ways to do that is to join in with the jeering and name calling? I know that most of us have been on the other side of the pushing, shoving, and name calling, and that has contributed to how we got together; we were floaters, like lonely cereal peices in a bowl of stark and colorless milk that gets stuck to each other by some inexplicable force.

yo!

Go to C202 at 7:00 on Tuesday May Ninth for a paying for college presentation.

College finance

FOR THOSE OF YOU WORRYING ABOUT PAYING FOR COLLEGE!
there are some people who go around giving presentations about planning for college financially and they are nonprofit and dont want anything from you except that you learn something. i went to a presentation a few months ago and it was very helpful. they are having one on: april 11th (next tuesday) at
the Nichols library community room.

the phone number is 968-2323, they tell you to call to reserve a seat but last time only about five people showed up so its probably unnecessary.

the protest continued

so how do I feel about this?
i feel that we are not alone, there are so many of us. and we cant do anything
thats truly meaningful alone anyways.
i feel that theres something inside of them that drives them to try and do the right thing, even if it puts them in danger sometimes.
I think that by trying to bring justice to certain areas like palestine and peurto Rico and the phillipines they are preventing future wars.
I think that wars are fought when for some reason one side feels that they arent being given justice and they arent satified and they want something.
I think that in order to prevent future wars people need to be more proactive than they are now. sure you can argue that we can't foresee everything, the antiwar movement seems reactionary in itself, but it isnt a lie that Americans are very apathetic compared to other countries.
I think we could blame our media since We only get a few seconds soundbite on international events on our TVs every night, other countries get he full story, and how that story can tie into thier own lives.
I think we should blame ourselves because the media only makes money off of what people want to see.
I think that environmentalism is strongly connected to ending wars.
i think that is because we need to feel connect to the earth and to each other.
I think its very sad that people can be killed for resources that could be equally available to anyone if we werent so afraid of changing our ways of life.
I think that politics get into miserable states because people are afraid of change
i think we solve problems by fighting wars because we are afraid of change
I beleive that the most dangerous thing isnt those that are trying to use force to acheive thier goals in spite of those they harm, but that the most dangerous thing is that people sit around and do nothing. force can be toppled.
i beleive that there are those that are afraid to fight and those that beleive fighting is the only way and
I beleive that we are neither.
I beleive that we can be warriors in a different kind of war.
we can put as much effort into doing what is practical to end wars as people put into fighting them. thats not just by using protests and noise, but by connecting this world to ourselves. some understanding, some communication, and by helping the people in oppressed areas overthrow thier dictators themselves. we always say it was a good thing we took out Saddam because he was a bad leader that murdered his people. but what was really murdering his people after the gulf war was the UN opposed sanctions on Iraq choking trade.
they killed far more children than Saddam ever did. even many torture testimonies used to justify going to war were later proved false.
the hospitals did not have enough equipment, people were too worried about getting food to be worried about thier goverment. Some people in the US beleived that by choking Iraqs economy we were forcing them to rebel against Saddam. but if i was struggling to feed my family i wouldnt try to make it out to Chicago on a cold saturday either. and there are other ways to acheive justice other than using force, what about Kruschev and the Soviet union? the soviet union was a force without sufficient ideas and real power backing it up, feeding on the acceptance of citizens already used to insane Csars (sorry JJ the Russians are amazing, but its just some of thier leaders...)what about Mandela and Gandhi and King and the Vietnam pain-in-the-asses like Kevin? and I hope that Palestine and the ISM will be on this list someday as well. and Peurto Rico and the Phillipines.
I hope Iraq will have the chance at self determination without an occupying army and politicans attempting to form schisms between Sunnis and Shias. and I hope that the American people will see that Iran may be just a little mad at us because we backed Iraqs former leader (Saddam) against them in a
way too long war where nine year old Iranians had to fight to protect thier country.
I hope you can see that we are not like the appeasers from WWII we are not afraid to stand up for what we beleive we are not wimps many of us are too
willing to risk our lives for what we beleive, we are not going to ignore the atrocities going on in the world but on the contrary stick them in your face and put some pressure on our goverment to see what they're doing thats acrocious. and btw several nonviolent activists tried to tell FDR to do something about the concentration camps long before anyone else cared.
I know I am still young, inexperienced, people think I'm naive and shy and I know I'm barely inspiring or interesting but
I will do what I can.
the protest continued...

I decided to go with some veterans of the Palestinian Solidarity movement.
the organizer was Kevin, who was a bona fide draft resister of the Vietnam war, not only did he resist his own draft but the drafts of everyone in his community by sneaking into the recruiting office and stealing all thier documents XD, he ended up being locked up with his friend for several months, during which they had all the jailmates sign a petition for policies (later adopted) between American and Vietnam, and had it smuggled out of jail.
and some guys who had been protesting in front of the Caterpillar bulldozer factory in order to get a full investigation on Rachels death, one was dragged by his handcuffs because he refused to get up when the police came to beat and arrest them.



ok sure, there were some anarchists screaming "CLASS WAR!" but there were mostly families, doctors who would rather see money go to health care and education, parents with children serving sisters with brothers overseas,
marines who beleived that our youth should learn to think for themselves rather than how to march and follow orders,the Peurto Rican community was especially active, thier leader was assassinated by the CIA after all. and Palestinians who have seen the guns and terror an occupying army brings to oppressed countries. There were teachers tired of seeing thier students dropping school to join the military becuase they beleive its the only way and because they live in the poor areas of Chicago, I even bumped into the bona fide IWW (if, Evelyn and Julia, you are reading this) and of course replubicans swearing at us from the sidelines, and police in riot gear surrounding the crowd.
the protesters though, it doesnt matter what people say about them, they are a very courageous group of people that have put alot of thought and effort into what they do. They arent just people that have nothing better to do with thier weekends (like me, lol) or liberal teenagers trying to rebel (the only poeple i saw under 20 were children with thier parents or teenagers marching with older members of thier communuties) they truly beleive in what they are doing and are committed, often because of what they have seen over the years since the start of the war. It is serious business, we arent stupid hippies that dont understand foreign policy, we arent naive, in fact most people who were there had seen many more horrors or suffered more sorrows than normal people should, we just beleive in justice and that acting in justice can help our nation and other nation and stop people from dying needlessly. I was worried at first that the questions i planned to ask them were too specific and that some may not have answers, on the contrary they answered each with so much depth i wasnt able to ask a fourth of the questions at most!

so, the protest...

Iraq, what will we ever do with you?
i want to make this entry poetic and bueatiful somehow
like the streets of Chicago at night or the rhythmic train sounds of...trains.
( i am a train dork, public transportation rocks my socks)hopefully there will not be a protest next year, most of the organizers were weary of doing this but you could never tell from all the energy and courage thats in thier work.

the press release is in my hand right now, there is something different about being behind the camera, people feel a little detached from you, they would love to talk to you, until you press the little red button -then theres no time ( I cannot remember how many times people asked me skeptically whether I was from the press or what network, cant you see I have an...analog sony home camcorder from 1995?). But its worth it, because now I have something to take with me and share. but you can tell that these people want thier voices to be heard- some of the most amazing public speakers that I've ever seen, even on TV, and i have all thier speeches on two precious little 8mm tapes (which almost broke an hour ago) the strength of: (Quote press release)
Juan Torres the father who lost his son in Afghanistan, he looks older than he should be and he still loves his son very very much, he told me he was tired of crying eventually and didnt want other parents to suffer like he did.
Gihad Ali, a poet and several very good rappers. (Mrs Ryder would be proud)
a several anti recruitment activists from college including
Eric Ahlberg the veteran who took part in killing an entire family, except the youngest son who was locked up in what was little more than a small box.
palestinian mothers and Puerto Rican families that have experienced oppression, and are prepared to fight against it.
widowed Akua Njeri, her husband was the Assassinated Black Panther Chairman Fred Hampton.


-i decided to shorten this entry by dividing it up, I'll post the rest that I had written here later-

march16...2003

Rachel Corrie, Palestinian Solidarity movement volunteer, was crushed to death in Palestine by Isreali soldiers in a D9 Bulldozer three years ago on this day,
it has largely been made into a political struggle between Isreali's that want to side her with liberal wackos or a tool of terrorists, and activists that publicize her as a martyr, but I think the most important thing about her was her writings, they have been made into a play in the UK and are completely based on her emails, letters and writings she had done over the years, however any productions have been cancelled in the US,her homeland, because some people are afraid to hear her words, copies of her emails are available online, here's one:


Hi friends and family, and others,

I have been in Palestine for two weeks and one hour now, and I still have very few words to describe what I see. It is most difficult for me to think about what's going on here when I sit down to write back to the United States. Something about the virtual portal into luxury. I don't know if many of the children here have ever existed without tank-shell holes in their walls and the towers of an occupying army surveying them constantly from the near horizons. I think, although I'm not entirely sure, that even the smallest of these children understand that life is not like this everywhere. An eight-year-old was shot and killed by an Israeli tank two days before I got here, and many of the children murmur his name to me - Ali - or point at the posters of him on the walls. The children also love to get me to practice my limited Arabic by asking me, "Kaif Sharon?" "Kaif Bush?" and they laugh when I say, "Bush Majnoon", "Sharon Majnoon" back in my limited arabic. (How is Sharon? How is Bush? Bush is crazy. Sharon is crazy.) Of course this isn't quite what I believe, and some of the adults who have the English correct me: "Bush mish Majnoon" ... Bush is a businessman. Today I tried to learn to say, "Bush is a tool", but I don't think it translated quite right. But anyway, there are eight-year-olds here much more aware of the workings of the global power structure than I was just a few years ago.

Nevertheless, no amount of reading, attendance at conferences, documentary viewing and word of mouth could have prepared me for the reality of the situation here. You just can't imagine it unless you see it - and even then you are always well aware that your experience of it is not at all the reality: what with the difficulties the Israeli army would face if they shot an unarmed US citizen, and with the fact that I have money to buy water when the army destroys wells, and the fact, of course, that I have the option of leaving. Nobody in my family has been shot, driving in their car, by a rocket launcher from a tower at the end of a major street in my hometown. I have a home. I am allowed to go see the ocean. When I leave for school or work I can be relatively certain that there will not be a heavily armed soldier waiting halfway between Mud Bay and downtown Olympia at a checkpoint with the power to decide whether I can go about my business, and whether I can get home again when I'm done. As an afterthought to all this rambling, I am in Rafah: a city of about 140,000 people, approximately 60% of whom are refugees - many of whom are twice or three times refugees. Today, as I walked on top of the rubble where homes once stood, Egyptian soldiers called to me from the other side of the border, "Go! Go!" because a tank was coming. And then waving and "What's your name?". Something disturbing about this friendly curiosity. It reminded me of how much, to some degree, we are all kids curious about other kids. Egyptian kids shouting at strange women wandering into the path of tanks. Palestinian kids shot from the tanks when they peak out from behind walls to see what's going on. International kids standing in front of tanks with banners. Israeli kids in the tanks anonymously - occasionally shouting and also occasionally waving - many forced to be here, many just agressive - shooting into the houses as we wander away.

I've been having trouble accessing news about the outside world here, but I hear an escalation of war on Iraq is inevitable. There is a great deal of concern here about the "reoccupation of Gaza". Gaza is reoccupied every day to various extents but I think the fear is that the tanks will enter all the streets and remain here instead of entering some of the streets and then withdrawing after some hours or days to observe and shoot from the edges of the communities. If people aren't already thinking about the consequences of this war for the people of the entire region then I hope you will start.

My love to everyone. My love to my mom. My love to smooch. My love to fg and barnhair and sesamees and Lincoln School. My love to Olympia.

Rachel


\

lololz

oksay
antiwar protest in chicago on saturday, im going to tape it this time
and hopefully its as illegal as it was last time because its so dramatic when there are bazillions of cops in ninja turutle gear and those clear plastic sheild thingers. I want to make some kind of News package or documentary with the footage.
my dad and i got into a shouting match over my being a member of GSA. I can lie low for Annies mom just since Annies in her custody but its way too irritating that my dad talks about it like "you can do something other than *That*, I dont want colleges thinking of you like *that*" I totally told him (very loudly) that the reason we do the day of silence is because someone died because others couldn't accept him and how things were so bad in our school only a year before I arrived. He expects everything I do to have an immediate impact on the world or something, and that these 'shout out' kind of things dont do squat, but how did Martin Luther King Jr and the sit ins, protests and boycotts to anything? and all the vietnam protesters?
I finally put together my news package, three weeks after it was assigned, im just waiting for peter to come do a voice over, hm, I should plug in the microphone, toodles.