Peace Movement Grows, Conference Planned 

"It just seems that people in Richmond have so many skills that can be used to educate and activate a lot of people," organizer Jen Lawhorne says.

Lawhorne, a member of Food Not Bombs, says the idea was sparked by activist Rania Masri, whose November speech at Virginia Commonwealth University stirred her audience. Masri said she would return if she could be part of a larger event. So Food Not Bombs members got to work.

"There's a lot of momentum pushing the movement forward in this country and abroad so we must take the time to equip people with the knowledge and skills to confront the government's blatant abuse of its power," Lawhorne wrote in a recent e-mail asking for help in planning the event.

Even in Richmond, a city not historically known as a hotbed of activism, peace groups are seeing a surge in activity and membership. The November march drew 300 to 750 protesters (depending on who's counting).

Food Not Bombs, which typically sees 15 to 20 people at its weekly meetings held at VCU's Pace Center, had 115 new people show up last week, Lawhorne says. The Richmond chapter of the international group Women in Black has seen the numbers rise at its Saturday afternoon peace marches on the Boulevard, says member Camille Harris.

The Richmond Peace Coalition, a partnership of several groups, is working to place anti-war billboards in the area. The first billboard company the coalition approached turned them down, saying it was "too controversial," says member John Gallini, but now they believe they've found one that will post their messages. The first proposed design says "War on Iraq? Not in MY name," on a bright red background.

Constant effort is necessary to spread the anti-war message, Lawhorne says. "This isn't something you do just every once in a while. It's kind of like a daily revolution." —


Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

Connect with Style Weekly

Most Popular Stories

  • Museum Makeovers

    Museum Makeovers

    How four Richmond museums are being transformed.
    • Jul 20, 2021
  • To Have and To Hold

    To Have and To Hold

    Wrestling returns to Richmond with UEW’s ‘Resurrection.’
    • Jul 20, 2021
  • One Stop Shop

    One Stop Shop

    Jackson Ward’s beloved Stoplight Gelato set to reopen this fall with a new partner, Richmond Seltzer Co.
    • Jul 13, 2021
  • Deep Dive

    Deep Dive

    A writer attempts to find the best dive bars in town.
    • Jul 13, 2021
  • More »

Copyright © 2021 Style Weekly
Richmond's alternative for news, arts, culture and opinion
All rights reserved
Powered by Foundation