May 132014
 

20140513-185109.jpg

Statement regarding Doc Aviv screening

5/12/14

Note from the producers: We made American Revolutionary to explore the life and work of a philosopher and activist whose story we want to share with audiences everywhere. Until about three days ago, we were unaware that playing in the festival would be an issue for the participants of the film. We respect their position and regret the discomfort this has caused them. We are sharing their statement here.

We stand in solidarity with the people of Palestine, and support their call for cultural and academic boycott of Israel.

As people featured in the film American Revolutionary: the Evolution of Grace Lee Boggs, we were shocked to find the film slated to be screened at the DocAviv festival in Israel on May 13th and 15th. This was scheduled without our knowledge.

We immediately took action to have the film withdrawn from the festival. The festival organizers and film producers informed us that this was not possible and they would move forward with the screening, over our objections.

This film uplifts the life work and legacy of Grace Lee Boggs. She has explicitly stated her support of the boycott and believes this screening is in direct contradiction to her legacy and ongoing work as a revolutionary.

We will pursue opportunities for this film and the ideas within it to be made available in Palestine in a way that supports the movement and will post our response as soon as possible.

Grace Lee Boggs

and

William Ayers

Richard Feldman


Danny Glover

Shea Howell

Invincible

Angela Jones

Scott Kurashige

Jenny Lee

Julia Putnam

Ronald Scott

Stephen Ward

Statement Originally Posted at http://americanrevolutionaryfilm.com/statement-regarding-doc-aviv-screening/

Jun 272013
 

20130627-150816.jpg

Dear Alicia Keys and Rihanna, Paz.

I am writing to you because I am sincerely baffled by your choice to perform in Israel. I want to share with you that your choice has made many of your fans re-evaluate their loyalty to you. Your message to the people of Palestine and their global allies, which are also your fans, unfortunately is not a positive one. It basically looks like you can care less about their ongoing deep and horrific battle against genocide, or as some call it, ethnic cleansing.

I am an Afro-Rican woman who has witnessed and experienced life in colonized Palestine and “Israel”. I understand colonialism and it’s treacherous fangs because my island of Puerto Rico is also a colony and has been raped by U.S. greed and imperialism for over 115 years. Our women have been sterilized for the purpose of population control, we import more than we export, our fathers and sons were sent to the military to fight wars and we can’t even vote for the President of the United States, just to name a few.

I hope that you have taken it upon yourself to carefully research and learn about the critical situation of the people of Palestine and the oppression that they have had to endure by the Zionist movement, the Israeli State. The Zionists created Israel within Palestine BY FORCE. You are pretty much co-signing and agreeing to this outrageous land grab and murder of women, children and men. Yeah ladies, there is no way to sugar coat that.

When I visited the West Bank, Palestine in 2011, I saw the little girls and boys singing and dancing to your songs. I heard your songs in the hookah cafes, clubs, stores and blasting out of cars. It was amazing to see how much music inspires their lives. Music is their escape from the open air prison that they live in.

Ladies… the Palestinians, your fans, live in an open air prison. They can’t come out to Israel to see you perform because they are not allowed to by Israel. In order to come to Israel from the West Bank they would have to ask Israel for permission and get a permit. It is almost impossible to get a permit to cross the border into Israel from Palestine. The sick have died waiting for permits to go to specialized hospitals in Israel. Women have given birth at checkpoints. Goodness! The Insanity!

“The Israeli state practices, and arguably perfects, a logic of territorial and population control and monitoring. One form is high-tech: unmanned aerial drones, X-ray machines, remote-controlled cameras, radars, and surveillance techniques that instill fear and awe; another form is physically and geographically violent: walls, fences, check-points, turnstiles, settlements, bypass roads, fighter jets, bulldozers, and machine guns.”[Tawil-Souri.(n.d) Politics and Materiality of ID Cards in Palestine/Israel. Retrieved from http://academia.edu/661856/Colored_Identity_The_Politics_and_Materiality_of_ID_Cards_in_Palestine_Israel] They have hundreds of roadblocks and checkpoints to obstruct Palestinian movement, even within the Palestinian Territory. I can tell you now that they are not going to give them a permit to come see you rock out. Nope!

So yeah, I’m hoping that you just had no clue about the truth. But maybe you know all of this and are not moved, touched and inspired to make a stand for human rights. Well, and if you do choose to rock, know that genocide is happening while you are performing on that stage. While you are singing your heart out, someones home is being bulldozed or a family is loosing a male figure in their household because an Israeli soldier felt like taking someones life away by imprisoning them or killing them.

The point I would like to drive into your soul is that by making the choice to perform in Israel you have also chosen to disregard a whole population of your fans who are touched by your music. You have a fan base in Palestine that will not be able to attend your concert, not because they don’t want to, but because they can’t.

Question: Are you also going to do a concert in Palestine? Is that in the plans? If you are going to really perform in Israel then I encourage you to do a FREE concert in Palestine.

I sincerely hope that you ladies think this one through for the sake of humanity and for our precious children who hum you tunes.

Sisters, I pray that you find the strength and the courage to stand up for what is right. Human Rights! We are women, we are women of color and we must protect our children!

I humbly ask you to rethink this one.

Luz Y Paz,
Lah Tere

May 302013
 

20130530-210227.jpg

Dear Alicia Keys,

I have learned today that you are due to perform in Israel very soon. We have never met, though I believe we are mutually respectful of each other’s path and work. It would grieve me to know you are putting yourself in danger (soul danger) by performing in an apartheid country that is being boycotted by many global conscious artists.

You were not born when we, your elders who love you, boycotted institutions in the US South to end an American apartheid less lethal than Israel’s against the Palestinian people.

Google Montgomery Bus Boycott, if you don’t know about this civil rights history already. We changed our country fundamentally, and the various boycotts of Israeli institutions and products will do the same there. It is our only nonviolent option and, as we learned from our own struggle in America, nonviolence is the only path to a peaceful future.

If you go to my website and blog alicewalkersgarden.com you can quickly find many articles I have written over the years that explain why a cultural boycott of Israel and Israeli institutions (not individuals) is the only option left to artists who cannot bear the unconscionable harm Israel inflicts every day on the people of Palestine, whose major “crime” is that they exist in their own land, land that Israel wants to control as its own.

Under a campaign named ‘Brand Israel’, Israeli officials have stated specifically their intent to downplay the Palestinian conflict by using culture and arts to showcase Israel as a modern, welcoming place.

This is actually a wonderful opportunity for you to learn about something sorrowful, and amazing: that our government (Obama in particular) supports a system that is cruel, unjust, and unbelievably evil. You can spend months, and years, as I have, pondering this situation. Layer upon layer of lies, misinformation, fear, cowardice and complicity. Greed. It is a vast eye-opener into the causes of much of the affliction in our suffering world.

I have kept you in my awareness as someone of conscience and caring, especially about the children of the world. Please, if you can manage it, go to visit the children in Gaza, and sing to them of our mutual love of all children, and of their right not to be harmed simply because they exist.

With love, younger sister, beloved daughter and friend,

Alice Walker

Nov 302012
 

Sign Petition Here 

Thank Stevie Wonder for canceling your performance for supporters of Israel celebrating the Israeli Terrorist Forces war crimes against the Palestinian people.

We as supporters of human rights and justice in Palestine would like to thank you Mr. Stevie Wonder for reconsidering your performance for supporters of Israel celebrating the Israeli Terrorist Forces war crimes against the Palestinian people.

Apartheid was wrong in South Africa and today it is wrong in Palestine. Stevie Wonder made the right choice then and we thank him for making the right choice again.

http://www.change.org/petitions/thank-stevie-wonder-for-canceling-performance-supporting-israel