Grounded…or flying by the seat of our pants?

In recent days, an increased number of military planes have been flying over the US and targeting cities often in clusters to show appreciation to ‘front line workers.’  The Pentagon cooked up the scheme of ‘Operation America Strong’ to mobilize the military in what some refer to as the ‘war on the corona virus.’  The operation was to honor the sacrifices of health care workers who have faced new challenges in their profession in caring for those with COVID-19.  The risks to their lives have increased as the availability of PPE (Personal Protection Equipment) has decreased.  It seems that the US government has passed the buck in its most basic responsibility to protect its citizens.  The federal government missed the […]

NWTRCC’s May 2020 Conference Report

Originally, our May 2020 conference was going to take place in Chicago. With the COVID-19 pandemic, we made the decision to meet online using Zoom instead. (Though I would like to thank the following groups and individuals who had put time and energy into the original Chicago meeting: Su Casa Catholic Worker, #LetUsBreathe Collective, Kathy Kelly, and Rosalie Riegle.) NWTRCC’s first online conference was a success. (Though to be clear, NWTRCC has had an online component to its conferences that allowed folks who were offsite to join us for quite a few years now.) About 50 folks signed up for the conference and 42 attended at least some portion of the conference. We had folks joining us from Alaska to […]

Origins of Mother’s Day

Image of a peace sign drawn in white sand

150 years ago, Julia Ward Howe wrote what later came to be known as the “Mother’s Day Proclamation.” Ward wrote this proclamation as her push to establish a Mother’s Day for Peace following the  US Civil War. Arise, all women who have hearts, whether your baptism be that of water or of tears! Say firmly: “We will not have great questions decided by irrelevant agencies, our husbands shall not come to us, reeking with carnage, for caresses and applause. “Our sons shall not be taken from us to unlearn all that we have been able to teach them of charity, mercy and patience. We women of one country will be too tender of those of another country to allow our sons to […]

May Day

Several men hold hands around a globe that has a banner reading solidarity of labour

There is a call for a General Strike beginning on May 1, 2020. ‘We are the Shutdown’ is a network of organizations calling for an ongoing strike against the increasingly lethal economy. The general strike encourages the use of various tactics like sick outs, rent strikes and certain workers not fulfilling part of their job responsibilities.New worker collectives have emerged including Amazonians United, Whole Worker and Gig Workers Collective to raise awareness of the working conditions at retail outlets and delivery services. Vanessa Bain, co-founder of the 17,000 member Gig Worker Collective, shared with the Intercept “May Day is not just a one-time symbolic action, but also about building real, vast, and broad sweeping networks of power.”  From We Are […]

Virtually Conflicted

tax day 2020

There’s something to be said for holding a meeting online. Our NYC War Resisters League group usually meets in Manhattan every month or so. We’re a small group with meetings ranging from 6 to 12 people, but at our virtual meeting to plan a virtual April 15th action, 15 people joined, most by video and a few by phone. It was quite a successful meeting with a lot of enthusiasm for virtual tax day protests — and a good deal of hope that we could be out in the streets by July 15. Post-April 15 I’m thinking about the value of virtual protest and having trouble coming up with anything more than: it was something to do better than nothing […]

Tax Day 2020- Let the Actions Begin!

woman holds sign and shares peace sign

For many anti-war folks, Tax Day has been a day to raise awareness that close to half of the US federal budget is spent on the military. Some have created penny polls around Tax Day to ask people how they would like to see their tax money spent. For those who resist paying taxes for war, Tax Day extends to all of the days of the year, but Tax Day often serves as a moment in time to assess what actions we are taking to create more equitable systems. Since the new Tax Day has been extended to July 15th, NWTRCC’s work organizing around Tax Day 2020 has required adaptability and offered more creative opportunities in this extended tax season. […]

Tax Day Press Release 2020

Hi NWTRCC friends and supporters, Below is our press release for tax day. Feel free to adjust it for your own use. If you are having a tax day action, but have not alerted the NWTRCC office, please email the details to nwtrcc@nwtrcc.org, or use the online form. As stated in the press release, we are asking war tax resisters to make their present felt online on April 15th, by posting the call: “Don’t Pay for War!” and using the hashtags, #NoTaxes4War and #NWTRCC. You can post a picture of yourself with a homemade sign or use the ready-made graphic, which can be found here. When posting a picture or graphic, please let folks know they can find out more […]

Time is Up for Business as Usual

woman holding pink sign with black text: "Taxes For Healthcare NOT Warfare"

The trickle of the federal government’s response to the COVID-19 crisis reveals the perverse influence of the military industrial complex. As humanity faces a global pandemic of unprecedented threat, the .01% of wealth holders struggle to maintain the status quo that will reveal itself to be unsustainable. As the bleak situation unfolds, it may become apparent that when humanity emerges on the other side- we must become the change that we have collectively dreamed of.  The current administration is a symptom of a society out of balance. Trump has only exacerbated and laid bare an upside down philosophy that has defunded, dismantled or benignly neglected our environment and basic human needs.  We are at a pivotal moment in our planetary history […]

Protest in the Time of Coronavirus

march 19 Brooklyn NY

On March 19 — just last week before the state really shut down — our NYC War Resisters League group held vigils in three areas of the city. A few of us walked to the busy traffic circle at Grand Army Plaza in Brooklyn and stood with our signs to mark the 17th anniversary of the invasion of Iraq and demand an end to endless war. Because there wasn’t much else going on, drivers zipping by and people walking in and out of the park turned their heads to see what we were up to. Despite some controversy in our group about whether protesting in a time of pandemic was a good idea, we got plenty of supportive honks and […]

The Work That Reconnects and WTR

A few weeks ago I co-facilitated a weekend workshop on the Work That Reconnects. The program was started by Joanna Macy and comes out of her work that spans over 4 decades as an activist largely on anti-nuclear activities. For weeks I had to remind myself that WTR was not War Tax Resistance but rather the Work That Reconnects. We journeyed to the small town of New Harmony, Indiana which had once been a part of a wave of Utopian communities that sprung up in the early 1800s to create a new world here in the US largely by German immigrants. The people envisioned a world in which all would be welcomed.  They were experimenting with the needs of their […]

Report on the International Conference for War Tax Resistance and Peace Tax Campaigns – November 28 – December 1, 2019, in Edinburgh, Scotland

I arrived in Edinburgh on November 28, 2019, just hours before the opening dinner and discussion at the International Conference on War Tax Resistance and Peace Campaigns. Although I was running on zero sleep after 14 hours of travel, I managed to pull through and meet the group at the Quaker Meeting! We were treated to an excellent bagpipe performance, dinner, and a social evening. About twenty people attended the first night, including the staff of our hosts, Conscience: Taxes for Peace Not War (Fay Solichou, Jonathan Maunders, and Karen Robinson), and most of the attendees from around the UK, Germany, and Switzerland. Vijay Mehta, author of How Not to Go to War, was the featured speaker on the first […]

Military Spending- What’s Your Vote?

gun graphic by Leani Auxilio

In the spring of 2019, the Trump administration asked $750 billion dollars for the military budget. The increase would fund the Pentagon’s capacity to provide and enhance domestic security. But just what does $750 billion get us? Where exactly does the money go? As we approach Tax Day and the presidential campaign heats up, it seems fitting to ask these questions. In May 2019, the Nation broke down military spending to better reflect just how much money the Pentagon is operating with. They studied the base, the war, the nuclear, the defense-related, Veteran’s Affairs, Homeland Security, international affairs, and the intelligence budget. Their investigation revealed that a large sum of the Pentagon’s budget is wasted. For example, the Pentagon is […]