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Alarmed

In response to Harvard University’s refusal to divest from its fossil fuel stock, a recent mayor of Seattle, Mike McGinn, commented, “[pullquote]We're the first generation to see the effects of climate change, and the last generation who can do anything about it.[/pullquote] To refuse to use every tool at our disposal in this fight – to embrace inaction – is to endorse a trajectory that will lead to suffering, privation, and calamity. We owe it to those who our institutions and investments serve and will serve in the future to do everything we can to prevent this crisis.” With an unprecedented drought ongoing throughout the West, we might be directly experiencing this crisis already.

On Production (May 2014)

Attending to the Intersections of Oppression

This article was written on behalf of North Pacific Yearly Meeting’s Peace and Social Concerns Committee: Kate Hunter (Clerk), Tom Ewell, Cims Gillespie, Rose Lewis, Steve Willey, and Ruth Yarrow.

On Pride (July 2014)

Tension of Money and Faith

An interview with Jeff Perkins

On Balance (May 2017)

The Airtight Cage of Poverty

“We are tired of smothering in an airtight cage of poverty in the midst of an affluent society,” said Reverend Martin Luther King, Jr., in his “Letter from Birmingham Jail” (1963). To address this crisis, Dr. King (along with Quaker activist Bayard Rustin) launched the Poor People’s Campaign, focusing on economic justice, especially around jobs and housing. In February 1968, King announced the Campaign’s specific demands: $30 billion for anti-poverty programs, full employment, guaranteed income, and the annual construction of 500,000 affordable residences.

On Captivity (January 2018)

Steel to Flint

“For the last time, I am ordering you to depart the grounds of Griffiss Air Force Base or you will be subject to arrest.” On a crisp spring morning in 1984, I came to realize – in a hands-on, hand-cuffed kind of way – that I was not just a participant in conflict; I was also its student. The tension in the air that day was as taut and clear as the bright blue line demarcating the base. I had just crossed that line, along with my nonviolent comrades, and I realized I had things to learn.

On Conflict (January 2023)

U.S. Combat Drones – Immoral and Illegal

Leah Bolger is a former National Board President of Veterans For Peace and continues to serve on the VFP board.  She is currently touring the U.S. to promote the work of VFP’s “Drones, Robots, and Future Weapons Working Group.”  Leah has worked with Quakers on many common causes over the years, and she spoke with Western Friend by phone on January 25, 2013.

On War (January 2013)

Feeling the Challenge

Dear Editor: I am on page 12 of the May/June issue of Western Friend, and already my husband, Edwin, and I feel the challenge. I inherited some money recently and this issue of the magazine is helping me to ask how I can invest in the 7th generation rather than just our own comfortable retirement. “Leap into Wings” is a great model for limiting transportation and electrical use. Edwin and I have a long ways to go, but slowly and with some kicking and screaming we have been following a few of our leadings, i.e. we turned off our city water and used water we gathered from the roof this past winter. I also appreciated the letter to the editor from Peg Morton in that Edwin and I were faced with paying taxes for the first time in 25 years, and I wept as I sent off the checks. All this is to say,  “Keep keeping on.” This issue has been more relevant than you know. With appreciation, Barbara Christwitz

On Superiority (July 2013)

Privelege, Interrupting

Some Western Friend readers may have already met RantWoman, an official Quaker holy terror known for telling too much of the Truth about all kinds of things, at rantwomanrsof.blogspot.com. Recently a call went out for Friends to write articles about the 14th White Privilege Conference, held near Seattle in April 2013. RantWoman was stirred to venture into print and even agreed to let the editor of Western Friend have a crack at making her slightly more presentable than she appears in her electronic journal.

On Superiority (July 2013)