November 17, 2016

University of Southern Maine, Wishcamper Center, Portland

Meeting called to order by Richard at 7:05PM

Present: Peggy Akers, Richard Clement, Rita Clement, Dave Crowley, Dan Ellis, David Larsen, Peter Morgan, John Morris, Martha Morrison, Doug Rawlings, Clarence Smith, Regis Tremblay, Peter Woodruff

Richard opened the meeting with a poem by Judy Cassidy about the DAPL Water Protectors

Minutes of the Oct. meeting were accepted as written

Dan gave treasurer’s report. Current balance is $5,498.95

Dan gave membership report. Current total is 122 members (74 paid up)

Richard reported on Maine Share. The Bicycle Coalition of Maine is conducting an on line survey of bicycle use, which can be found on the listserv for anyone who is interested

Regis reported that his documentary “Thirty Seconds to Midnight” should be finished by Christmas. He also reported on his trip to Russia and thanked the chapter for its financial support ( vodka, wild parties, etc.,etc.) His interviews and accounts of the trip can be found on his web site. He also plans a short film “Je Suis Russia” about the trip.

Doug reported that he is exploring possibilities for financial support through the Zinn Grant.

John reported on the status of the ” Zumwalt 12″. Next court appearance is Nov. 22 for discussion of time and length of trial, witness lists, and other logistical details.

Update: Jury selection will be on Jan. 5 with trial probably later in Jan.

Advent Vigil For Disarmament at BIW in Bath will be on Saturdays from 11:30 – 12:30 , Nov.26, Dec. 3, 10, and 17. All are welcome.

A motion was made, seconded and passed to donate $500 to the Wabanaki and Penobscot Nations for their participation in the DAPL protest movement in North Dakota. Peggy will contact them and Richard will make the presentation on Indian Island at a date to be determined. Info on the National VFP action re the protest is on the National web site.

Nov.18 from 12 to 2 at the State House in Augusta – anti-Trump rally “We won’t go back”

Smitty reported that Ross Goldberg has a show every Thursday from 1-3 on radio WMPG and would like to interview a member of VFP. Peggy and Doug volunteered to participate at some future date.

Approximately fifteen VFP members holding flags and banners watched the Armistice Day parade go by in Portland on Nov. 11. The response from parade watchers and (some) marchers was favorable. Peggy was featured in a Portland Press Herald story as part of their Armistice Day coverage. She is also interviewed by Regis in one of his excellent videos in which she recounts her experiences as a nurse, including time in the military in Vietnam.

Doug reported on his lecture to a class at UMF on the topic of compassion and political action and was impressed by the interest of the students. He also reported on the high school teachers Social Studies conference in Augusta during which he sold five copies of Letters to the Wall. He was encouraged by the interest shown by the teachers concerning education efforts by VFP in Maine high schools.

Doug and Peggy attended an Elders meeting. Six more of the “Letters” books were sold. Doug recommends continued interaction between the Elders group and VFP.

Michael Uhl’s presentation of the Brian Wilson film “Blood on the Tracks” was attended by approximately thirty people in Brunswick. Regrettably, no time was afforded for discussion after the film. Peggy and Doug reported on Ann Wright’s lectures in Portland and Brunswick in which she discussed her participation in the recent women’s flotilla to Gaza, as well as her experiences in Korea, Guantanamo, and Standing Rock.

Doug summarized the resolutions, changes to bylaws, and board nominations at the National Convention in California. They were too numerous to be included in these minutes.

Dave Crowley brought up the increase in anti-Muslim sentiment since the election. Doug suggested that VFP show support for the Maine Muslim community wherever possible. He will contact the Imam in Lewiston to offer our support.

Meeting adjourned at 8:55 PM

Next meeting: December 29, 7:00 pm Unitarian Universalist Church of Brunswick, 1 Middle Street, Brunswick.