Tuesday, November 18, 2014


Brooklyn For Peace Turns Thirty — And We Celebrate!
Gala Honors Noam Chomsky As PathMaker To Peace.
Saturday, Nov 15, 2014

Oh what a night! An evening to come together, to celebrate, to find old friends, to eat and drink, to listen, to ask, to learn. An evening to remember!

It was Brooklyn For Peace’s annual Pathmakers To Peace gala and there were two very good reasons for the gathering of several hundred people to be there.

First, they came to celebrate the thirtieth anniversary of the founding of Brooklyn For Peace, a most remarkable organization that has been been fighting the good fight for peace and justice for three decades and that is declaring its readiness to continue that struggle as long as the plagues of war, inequality, economic distress, environmental deterioration and social injustice require its attention.

Secondly, they came to witness our Pathmaker To Peace award, this year given to honor the life-long work of  Noam Chomsky, one of the brilliant minds of our times: linguistics professor, scientist, social critic and fierce advocate for peace and social justice.

The positive vibe and warm emotions in the grand Hollis Hall of historic Plymouth Church in Brooklyn Heights were palpable. Gathered here were friends, supporters, members, founders and early-on activists of Brooklyn For Peace, all come together to celebrate the longevity, rare in today’s world, of this community-based peace organization and to laud the dedication and perseverance of the stalwart activists who have made that possible.

They also came to hear the words of Professor Chomsky who painted a picture of the dire times we live in. He described the collapse of our democracy, the domination of society by the one-percent, the destruction and utter exploitation of the environment on behalf of the energy industry’s super profits and he said the tasks confronting progressive activists are enormous and daunting but that we can, and must, overcome if we are to save the people of our planet.

An emotional high point of the evening was the introduction and recognition of the original founders and early activists: the “pioneers” of Brooklyn For Peace. Among that group were today’s BFP Chair, Charlotte Phillips and Vice-Chair, Carolyn “Rusti” Eisenberg. Dr. Phillips received a loving and grateful standing ovation from the assembly for her dedication and perseverance over so many years. Eisenberg told the story of how the group was formed back in 1984 after President Reagan sent U.S. troops into tiny Grenada. Back then the group was called Brooklyn Parents For Peace because it’s founders were mostly young moms (as well as some young dads).

Also attending this evening were allies of our peace group with whom we have worked closely on various struggles – leaders of the movement to preserve Brooklyn’s public libraries, Michael D.D. White and Carolyn McIntyre were there as well as Brooklyn’s Green Party members, Gloria Mattera and Jonathan Fluck. Community activist and former candidate for Congress, Jelani Mashariki, was present and Dan Wiley, representing Congress Member Nydia Velazquez attended. Progressive member of Congress, Representative Yvette Clarke, came in person to honor Brooklyn For Peace on its thirtieth birthday and was welcomed heartily by the assembly.

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