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Peace Fair 2011

The Seventh Annual Brooklyn Peace Fair

Featuring Key Note Speaker Juan Gonzalez.


Peace Fair logos design by Sarah Sills

The 7th Annual Brooklyn Peace Fair at Brooklyn College Student Center brought hundreds of people together for a day of learning and sharing on issues of peace and social justice on Saturday, May 7th, 2011. The Brooklyn Peace Fair offered workshops on a variety of issues, peace and justice resources, discussions, art exhibits, music, poetry, spoken word, informational tables, children’s activities, button making and more.

The theme of this year’s Brooklyn Peace Fair was Cut the Military Budget: We Need New Priorities! Opening remarks were given by Margaret Hughes, the Executive Director of Brooklyn Congregations United. Juan González, Democracy Now co-host and New York Daily News columnist, analyzed the current economic crisis, connecting it to long-standing U.S. policies of militarism and unfair taxation. “Massive military spending is nothing new. It’s part and parcel of the development of this country from its beginning,” said González during the speech.

The Brooklyn Peace Fair brought together a wide range of community organizations to discuss a wide range of local and international issues—the current economic crisis, budget cutbacks, wars and conflict, and how to strengthen the peace movement. "This is the moment ... the perfect storm, when raising the issue of ending the wars and cutting the Pentagon budget, can push the door open for the peace movement,” according to Judith LeBlanc, Field Organizer of Peace Action and Brooklyn Peace Fair workshop participant.

The Brooklyn Peace Fair Workshops included discussions about the economy, budget cuts, the military, war, veterans' issues, blogging and activism, music as an organizing tool, conflict resolution, building local peace and justice movements, Nuclear Zero, Islamophobia, Haiti, Cuba, Honduras, poetry, yoga and Zen meditation. Informational tables included peace, social justice, activism, wellness and community organizations.

Exhibits included A Child’s View from Gaza, which featured drawings created by children living in the Gaza Strip, who experienced the trauma of “Operation Cast Lead,” the 23 days of bombardment and invasion of Gaza during December 2008 and January 2009; Windows & Mirrors: Reflections on the War in Afghanistan, reproductions of over 40 panels created by international artists and US students to help us imagine the experience of Afghan civilians, from death and destruction to hopes for peace; Peace Posters by the students at The Ethical Community Charter School in Brooklyn, highlighting what Peace means to them; and Nuclear Zero, an exhibit highlighting issues associated with nuclear weapons and nuclear energy.

The Brooklyn Peace Fair concluded with a performance by the Raging Grannies and a Peace Parade led by the Rude Mechanical Orchestra, which led people through the Flatbush neighborhood to one of the nearby military recruiting stations.

The Brooklyn Peace Fair was sponsored by Brooklyn For Peace and co-sponsored by Iraq Veterans Against the War (IVAW) and Brooklyn College Student Center (SUBO). IVAW is a nationwide organization composed of service-members and veterans who have served since September 11, 2001. Their mission is to mobilize the military community to withdraw its support for the war and occupation in Iraq. SUBO has a rich history of community service and educational and social activities and is a hub of student life on the Brooklyn College campus.

Brooklyn For Peace has been working in Brooklyn since 1984. We are committed to eliminating war and the social injustices that are its causes. Through active education on international and domestic issues, we empower our community and ourselves to be a productive force in securing a peaceful future for generations to come by building a world where peace is the first response to conflict. We promote U.S. policies based not on coercion and violence, but on peace, justice, democratic advancement, human rights and respect for international law.

Melissa Corbett
Brooklyn For Peace

See photos
Photo credit to Matt Weinstein.
High resolution photos available upon request

Peace Fair 2011 Highlights

Brooklyn Peace Fair 2011

Sponsored by:

Brooklyn For Peace
41 Schermerhorn St., PMB 106
Brooklyn, NY 11201

Co-sponsored by:

Brooklyn College Student Center and
Iraq Vets Against the War

E. 27th Street and Campus Raod
Brooklyn, NY 11210

Convenient Transportation from all over Brooklyn
Subway: 2,5 to Flatbush Ave/ Brooklyn College, Q to Ave H
Bus: B6, B103, B41, Q35, B44, B11, BM2 See a map.
From 2/5 train, Flatbush Avenue Station (at Nostrand Ave)
Locate Hillel Place, direction Brooklyn College; turn right at Campus Road
Student Center is on the right, at Campus Rd & 27th Street
See a map of the campus