Downtown Ferndale to Promote Peace
(Crystal A. Proxmire, 2/12/2011)
The weather was crisp but sunny as two dozen activists – known as Women in Black Detroit – gathered in front of The Ferndale Public Library to organize for a silent march through Downtown Ferndale to bring attention to war and violence supported by America in other parts of the world.
Led by the somber rhythmic beat of a single hand-held drum, a group of around twenty demonstrators, mostly women, walked single-file from The Library up to Ferndale Foods and back. They were greeted with horn-honks of support and handed out fliers to dozens of pedestrians.
“We are women of varied ethnic and racial heritage who gather to oppose the use of violence and terror as a means to political ends,” reads the bright orange handout. “We wear black in the spirit of Women in black of Israel and Palestine who call for a dialogue to restore the human rights of the Palestinian people, and of the Argentine mothers of the Plaza de Mayo who gathered to demand that the military regime be held accountable for their children who had ‘disappeared.
‘We join other women of the earth who oppose the war mentality by revealing its catastrophic rationale. We are determined to expose the hypocarcy of leaders who condemn terrorism and the killing of innocent civilians while they employ the same means for their own political violence….
‘We oppose the expansion of military operations into other countries. We oppose the suspension of civil liberties and the detention of individuals based on their religion or ethnicity. We denounce the wars against Afghanistan and Irqu and condemn the US-backed Israeli occupation of Palestine.”
Joann Schwartz of Eastpointe was among the Women in Black. “Why are we doing this?” she said. “Because someone has to!” Schwartz has been involved in the group, and other anti-war movements, for nine years. “I try to come out every Monday for the Peace demonstrations on 9 and Woodward. People need to remember that there is violence in the world that we need to stop.”
Women in Black travels to cities throughout the area for a monthly march on the second Saturday of each month at noon. On March 12, 2011 they will meet in SW Detroit at Clark Park at the corner of Vernon and Clark. On April 9, 2011 they will be in Hamtramck at Pope Park at the corner of Jos Campau and Belmont. On May 14, 2011 they will be at Eastern Market at the corner of Russell and Wilkins.
The march through Ferndale was peaceful and lasted about an hour.
For more information on the movement, sign up for their Yahoo group at http://groups.yahoo.com/group/WIB-Detroit/.