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Beyond protest politics

By Amaka Okechukwu I arrived at Detroit 2012 ready to leave protest politics behind. I was tired of and felt disempowered by demands that those in power change our conditions. At most, protests lead to policy reform, but do not restructure anything in a society that desperately needs transformation. I was not willing to compromise with state and corporate authorities when it came to our humanity — too much ...

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15th Annual Detroit Agriculture Network Tour of urban gardens and farms

By Elizabeth White The Detroit Agriculture Network has announced its 15th Annual Tour of urban gardens and farms in Detroit. The Aug. 1 event will highlight a diverse section of the nearly 1,400 gardens that currently participate in Detroit’s Garden Resource Program and the dedicated gardeners and farmers tending these backyard, school, community and market gardens. The efforts of these urban gardeners and ...

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Environmental Justice through Tribal Sovereignty

By Victoria Goff This is the next article in a series of articles exploring the “principles” of Environmental Justice as they intersect with food or digital justice. Environmental Justice Principle No. 11 recognizes a special legal and natural relationship of native peoples to the U.S. government through treaties, agreements, compacts and covenants affirming sovereignty and self-determination. Not many non- ...

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Field reports from Detroit 2012: No. 1

By Re-Imagining Revolution Activists Tai Amri and I arrived in Detroit last evening and drove straight to the opening of Detroit 2012 after nearly 12 hours of travel. It was 93 degrees and humid as we packed into the Ecumenical Theological Seminary to hear the opening remarks. Near the front, dressed in a T-shirt that said {R}Evolution, was Grace Lee Boggs, in her wheelchair, sweating alongside the rest of ...

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Detroit food businesses fuel growth

By Olga Stella Perhaps the world knows Chevrolet, Ford and Chrysler, but here in Detroit we are just as familiar with brand names such as Vernor’s, Faygo and Better Made. That’s because Detroit has great skills in making food, not just enjoying it. As the automotive industry is finding new strength in Detroit, so is our food industry. In fact, a major focus of the recent Detroit Food Policy Council Second A ...

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Our kind of government, from the block party to the United Nations

By Gregg Newsom This is the latest in a series of columns discussing the Environmental Justice Principles drafted and adopted by delegates to the First National People of Color Environmental Leadership Summit held Oct. 24-27, 1991. Environmental Justice Principle 10 considers governmental acts of environmental injustice a violation of international law, the Universal Declaration on Human Rights, and the Uni ...

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Welcome to the Motor City

By Sara Perryman Because The Michigan Citizen readers are probably curious about those visiting our city over the next two weeks for Detroit 2012: {Re}Imagine the World, Transform Ourselves, Fight for the Future! I’d like to introduce you to a few of them. Since a primary motivation for this gathering is to build an ongoing network of like-minded folk, it seems important to find out what other people are up ...

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What’s on your plate?

By Phil Jones The question “What’s on your plate?” can mean different things to different people, but two thoughts usually come to mind when I’m asked this question or hear it asked of others: What we have to do or what do we have to eat. Both are compelling interpretations that deserve some thought. It is the mission of the DFPC (Detroit Food Policy Council) to engage the community on both and we take that ...

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We the people of Detroit support Crittendon’s legal action over men in masks

By Patrick Geans-Ali This week we’re looking at EJ Principle No. 10, which “considers governmental acts of environmental injustice a violation of international law, the Universal Declaration On Human Rights, and the United Nations Convention on Genocide.” If only local governments listened to their citizens, there would be no need to appeal to the rule of higher law — whether it’s city, state, federal, inte ...

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RE-imagining Work: Another Production is Possible

By Richard Feldman, Boggs Center In 1963, in his first book, “The American Revolution Pages from a Negro worker’s Notebook” Chrysler worker Jimmy Boggs challenged labor and rights activists to recognize that the elimination of jobs by HiTech was not only creating a permanent underclass in our cities but requiring workers to redefine them/ourselves as citizens, making a life and not just a living. In 1970 , ...

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