Search Results for hate

Maine Currents 3/2/21: The State of Hate

Producer/Host: Amy Browne

Today, nearly 2 months after the insurrection in DC, we’re talking with Andy O’Brien and Nathan Bernard, reporters for Mainer covering far right extremism and hate groups in the state.

Some of the articles discussed in this program, include:

Anti-Maskers Waging “Spiritual War” Statewide

Maine White Nationalist Charged in Capitol Attack Shares Racist Views of State GOP Leaders

Chief of Maine’s Capitol Police Radicalized by Far-Right Conspiracies

Disgraced Capitol Chief Abused His Power to Police Protests

About the host:

Amy Browne started out at WERU as a volunteer news & public affairs producer in 2000, co-hosting/co-producing RadioActive with Meredith DeFrancesco. She joined the team of Voices producers a few years later, and has been WERU’s News & Public Affairs Manager since January, 2006. In addition to RadioActive, Voices and Maine Currents, she also produced and hosted the WERU News Report for several years. She has produced segments for national programs including Free Speech Radio News, This Way Out, Making Contact, Workers Independent News, Pacifica PeaceWatch, and Live Wire News, and has contributed to Democracy Now and the WBAI News Report. She is the recipient of the 2014 Excellence in Environmental Journalism Award from the Sierra Club of Maine, and the First Place 2017 Radio News Award from the Maine Association of Broadcasters.

Maine Currents 11/3/20: Mark Potok on Hate Groups in the US

Producer/Host: Amy Browne

We’re continuing our series on hate groups this month, with a talk by Mark Potok sponsored by the Maine Jewish Film Festival, the Jewish Community Alliance, the Maine Jewish Museum and the Holocaust and Human Rights Center of Maine. He spoke about hate groups in the US and the current political climate on October 7th, 2020.

An excerpt from Mark Potok’s bio: “Mark Potok is an internationally renowned expert on the American radical right who for 20 years helped lead the legendary Southern Poverty Law Center in exposing hate groups, right-wing terrorism, and the rapidly increasing infiltration of extremist ideas into the political mainstream. In that role, Potok faced numerous death threats from white supremacists and constant vilification by leaders of the far-right media — a remarkable measure of just how effective his work was. Potok has been described in one book on social justice activists as having ‘a reputation as the preeminent editorial commentator who follows the American radical right’ In 2018, a year after leaving SPLC, he joined the Centre for Analysis of the Radical Right as a Senior Fellow.

As the director of the SPLC’s Intelligence Project and, later, Senior Fellow at the SPLC and Editor in Chief of its award-winning Intelligence Report investigative magazine, Potok was a key spokesman for the SPLC, a civil rights organization based in Alabama. He has testified before the U.S. Senate, the United Nations High Commission on Human Rights, the Helsinki Commission, and in other key venues. An acclaimed and dynamic speaker, he has given scores of keynote talks in university, government and other settings throughout the United States and Europe. They include such prestigious forums as the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum.”

Potok was featured in the award-winning 2018 film “Alt-Right: Age of Rage”

Barbara Merson, Executive Director of the Maine Jewish Film Festival was the moderator

About the host:
Amy Browne started out at WERU as a volunteer news & public affairs producer in 2000, co-hosting/co-producing RadioActive with Meredith DeFrancesco. She joined the team of Voices producers a few years later, and has been WERU’s News & Public Affairs Manager since January, 2006. In addition to RadioActive, Voices and Maine Currents, she also produced and hosted the WERU News Report for several years. She has produced segments for national programs including Free Speech Radio News, This Way Out, Making Contact, Workers Independent News, Pacifica PeaceWatch, and Live Wire News, and has contributed to Democracy Now and the WBAI News Report. She is the recipient of the 2014 Excellence in Environmental Journalism Award from the Sierra Club of Maine, and the First Place 2017 Radio News Award from the Maine Association of Broadcasters.

Maine Currents 10/6/20: Hate Groups in Maine

Producer/Host: Amy Browne

CORRECTION: Shenna Bellows previously worked for the ACLU, not the AFL-CIO

On this edition of Maine Currents, we embark on a series of discussions about hate groups in Maine

Guests:
Crash Barry is an investigative journalist, author, and podcaster. He is the former editor-at-large for Mainer News and has worked as a print, radio and web reporter for over 25 years, with a focus on the seamy side of Maine life. First as a muckraker for Portland alt-weeklies, then as a news-talk show producer, followed by a stint as a national correspondent for a radio network. During the early 2000s, Crash went undercover for a series of stories for the now-defunct Casco Bay Weekly, staying in homeless shelters, working day labor, cleaning nasty apartments, and for a brief period, flipping burgers at McDonalds. (His first shift started at noon, on September 11, 2001.) From 2005 onwards, he contributed films, investigative cover stories and columns to The Bollard, a Portland alt-monthly and wrote extensively about Maine’s path to cannabis liberation for leafly.com. Crash is the author of three books, the rollicking novel Sex, Drugs and Blueberries, the gritty memoir Tough Island and the true story Marijuana Valley.
Crash is also a filmmaker and directed the adaptation of his novel Sex, Drugs and Blueberries. View his work here

Andy O’Brien is a former state legislator, former managing editor of the Free Press in Rockland and the current communications director for the Maine AFL-CIO. His writings have been published in Down East, Huffington Post, Labor Notes and Mainer Magazine. He is also the co-founder of O’Chang Studios, which produces the popular cartoon web series Temp Tales as well as animations for a variety of businesses, government agencies, educational institutions and nonprofits. He also does freelance reporting on far-right groups in Maine. Links to some of his recent related work is below “related articles from Mainer News” section

Shenna Bellows is the Executive Director of the Holocaust and Human Rights Center of Maine Shenna joined the Holocaust and Human Rights Center of Maine in June, 2018. Shenna is also a State Senator for Senate District 14 in Kennebec County. Shenna led the ACLU of Maine as Executive Director for eight years and served as Interim Executive Director for LearningWorks. Most recently, Bellows owned a nonprofit consulting firm providing services to a range of nonprofit organizations ranging from the Maine Women’s Lobby to the Maine Immigrants’ Rights Coalition. She was a key leader on the successful 2012 marriage equality campaign and co-chaired the successful 2011 statewide ballot campaign to restore same day voter registration. She served as a volunteer with the Peace Corps in Panama and AmeriCorps VISTA in Nashville.

Steve Wessler founded the Civil Rights Unit in the Maine Attorney’s Office in 1992 and led the Unit for 7 years. In 1999 he left the formal practice of law and founded the Center for the Prevention of Hate. The Center worked in Maine and across the USA. Since 2011 he has been teaching and consulting on human rights issues in colleges and around the world. He is also the host of Change Agents on WERU-FM, the 1st Thursday of every month at 4pm

Related articles from Mainer News:

Hatebook – The Facebook group that promoted violence and death threats against Safiya Khalid, the first Somali-American elected to the Lewiston City Council

Leaks Show Mainer’s Online Radicalization By Neo-Nazi Terrorist Cult

UMaine College Republicans Caught in MAGA Civil War

Maine GOP Leadership Goes to Bat for White Nationalistic College Club

About the host:
Amy Browne started out at WERU as a volunteer news & public affairs producer in 2000, co-hosting/co-producing RadioActive with Meredith DeFrancesco. She joined the team of Voices producers a few years later, and has been WERU’s News & Public Affairs Manager since January, 2006. In addition to RadioActive, Voices and Maine Currents, she also produced and hosted the WERU News Report for several years. She has produced segments for national programs including Free Speech Radio News, This Way Out, Making Contact, Workers Independent News, Pacifica PeaceWatch, and Live Wire News, and has contributed to Democracy Now and the WBAI News Report. She is the recipient of the 2014 Excellence in Environmental Journalism Award from the Sierra Club of Maine, and the First Place 2017 Radio News Award from the Maine Association of Broadcasters.

Democracy Forum 10/18/19: Hate and Fear in Politics: How fear and Anger Endanger Democracy

Host: Ann Luther, League of Women Voters of Maine
Engineer: Amy Browne

Program Topic: Hate and Fear in Politics: How fear and anger endanger democracy

Key Discussion Points:

We talk about hate and fear in politics and whether they undermine democracy:
How panic and fear make space for abandoning the rule of law and the regular order;
How when we demonize the opposition, it makes room for extraordinary measures to stop them.

Guests:
Joanne Freeman, Professor of history and American studies at Yale University history.yale.edu/people/joanne-freeman
Steve Wessler, Maine human rights educator, trainer, and advocate specializing in conflict resolution www.stevewessler.com/

To learn more about this topic:
Trump and the Politics of Fear,” Molly Ball in The Atlantic, September, 2016.
America Descends into the Politics of Rage,” Joanne Freeman in The Atlantic, October, 2018.
The Upside of Anger,” Isaac Chotiner interviews Martha C. Nussbaum for Slate, August, 2018

The all-volunteer team at the League of Women Voters – Downeast who plan and coordinate this series includes: Starr Gilmartin, Maggie Harling, Ann Luther, Maryann Ogonowski, Pam Person, Leah Taylor, Linda Washburn

FMI re League of Women Voters of Maine: www.lwvme.org

Change Agents 1/6/22: Kristalalnacht, the book “The Night of Broken Glass” & anti-Semitism in USA schools including Maine schools

Producer/Host: Steve Wessler

Conversations with Human Right Activists: Discussion of Kristalalnacht, the book “The Night of Broken Glass” & anti-Semitism in USA schools including Maine schools

CONTENT WARNING: During our interview we read experts from the book The Nights of Broken Glass. The book contains many first person accounts of Kristtalnacht. The readings are deeply disturbing.

In the second part of the interview we discussed the disturbing level of anti-Jewish comments and so-called jokes about Jews in middle and high school. Many of the jokes are about the Holocaust. We ended the interview by discussing how to reduce the incidence of degrading comments and jokes about Jews and also about people of color, girls and women, LGBTQ people, Muslims and immigrants….

Guests:

Amy Sneirson has been the Maine Human Rights Commission’s Executive Director since late 2011. Prior to that, Amy practiced law with a focus on employment, education, and civil rights issues in private firm, nonprofit agency, and state attorney general settings in both Maine and Missouri. Originally from Massachusetts, Amy received her undergraduate degree from the University of Rochester in New York and her law degree from the School of Law at Washington University in St. Louis.

Mike Levey, a retired lawyer from Winthrop ME. In 1976, Michael J. Levey began private practice in Winthrop, Maine, as a primary care general practice lawyer, , principally under the name of Levey and Wagley, PA (now Levey, Wagley, Putman and Eccher, PA).. In mid-2019, after 43 years in that practice, he transitioned into full retirement.
He served on Maine’s Family Law Advisory Commission for nine years, having been appointed to the Commission by Chief Justices Daniel Wathen and Leigh Saufley of the Supreme Court of Maine. He also served on Maine’s Commission on Domestic and Sexual Abuse for three years, having been appointed to the Commission by Governor Angus King.
In 2006, he was awarded the MSBA Family Law Section’s Outstanding Achievement Award and the Maine Judicial Department’s Advocate for Justice Award. He was awarded the Volunteer Lawyers Project Director’s Award in 2017.

About the host:
Steve Wessler will soon will be starting his 28th year of working on human right issues. He founded the Civil Rights Unit in the Maine Attorney’s Office in 1992 and led the Unit for 7 years. In 1999 he left the formal practice of law and founded the Center for the Prevention of Hate. The Center worked in Maine and across the USA. He and his colleagues worked to reduce bias and harassment in schools, in communities, in health care organization through workshops and conflict resolution. The Center closed in 2011 and Steve began a consulting on human rights issues. For the next 5 years much of his work was in Europe, developing and implementing training curricular for police, working in communities to reduce the risk of hate crimes, conflict resolution between police and youth. He has worked in over 20 countries. In late 2016 he began to work more in Maine, with a focus on reducing anti-immigrant bias. He continues to work in schools to reduce bias and harassment. Wessler teaches courses on human rights issues at the College of the Atlantic, the University of Maine at Augusta and at the School of Conflict Analysis and Resolution at George Mason University in northern Virginia.

Change Agents 12/2/21: American Jews Advocating for the Rights of Palestinians

Producer/Host: Steve Wessler

This December edition of Change Agents focuses on American Jews supporting the rights of Palestinians. Stefanie Fox is the director of Jewish Voice for Peace. JVP advocates for the rights of Palestinians. JVP supports the call of Palestinians to boycott, divestiture and sanctions against Israel. Rabbi Brant Rosen founded a non-Zionist synagogue in Chicago. He is a member of JVP. Both guests are anti-Zionist.

About the host:
Steve Wessler will soon will be starting his 28th year of working on human right issues. He founded the Civil Rights Unit in the Maine Attorney’s Office in 1992 and led the Unit for 7 years. In 1999 he left the formal practice of law and founded the Center for the Prevention of Hate. The Center worked in Maine and across the USA. He and his colleagues worked to reduce bias and harassment in schools, in communities, in health care organization through workshops and conflict resolution. The Center closed in 2011 and Steve began a consulting on human rights issues. For the next 5 years much of his work was in Europe, developing and implementing training curricular for police, working in communities to reduce the risk of hate crimes, conflict resolution between police and youth. He has worked in over 20 countries. In late 2016 he began to work more in Maine, with a focus on reducing anti-immigrant bias. He continues to work in schools to reduce bias and harassment. Wessler teaches courses on human rights issues at the College of the Atlantic, the University of Maine at Augusta and at the School of Conflict Analysis and Resolution at George Mason University in northern Virginia.

Change Agents 11/4/21: Kristallnact, the book “The Night of the Broken Glass” and Anti-Semitism in US schools

Producer/Host: Steve Wessler

Program Topics: Kristallnact in light of narratives in the book “The Night of the Broken Glass” and anti-Semitism in US schools

-The book “The Night of the Broken Glass” causes many people to realize that the violence of Kristallnact was far more deadly.
-Anti-Jewish degrading language and so-called “jokes” are used in US schools.
-The use of degrading language about Jews negatively impacts some Jewish students

Guests:
Catherine Share. She teaches a course on the Holocaust at Congregation Bet Ha’am in South Portland, Maine. Natalie and Julia are 8th grade students who are in Catherine Share’s class.

About the host:
Steve Wessler will soon will be starting his 28th year of working on human right issues. He founded the Civil Rights Unit in the Maine Attorney’s Office in 1992 and led the Unit for 7 years. In 1999 he left the formal practice of law and founded the Center for the Prevention of Hate. The Center worked in Maine and across the USA. He and his colleagues worked to reduce bias and harassment in schools, in communities, in health care organization through workshops and conflict resolution. The Center closed in 2011 and Steve began a consulting on human rights issues. For the next 5 years much of his work was in Europe, developing and implementing training curricular for police, working in communities to reduce the risk of hate crimes, conflict resolution between police and youth. He has worked in over 20 countries. In late 2016 he began to work more in Maine, with a focus on reducing anti-immigrant bias. He continues to work in schools to reduce bias and harassment. Wessler teaches courses on human rights issues at the College of the Atlantic, the University of Maine at Augusta and at the School of Conflict Analysis and Resolution at George Mason University in northern Virginia.

Change Agents 10/7/21: The struggle for basic rights for Maine farm workers

Producer/Host: Steve Wessler

-Examining the conditions for farm workers in Maine
-Discussing the racial bias against farm workers imbedded in US laws
-Discussing the important pending legislation in Maine to provide farm workers with greater rights

Guests: Thom Harnett and Mike Guare are both lawyers from Maine who have and continue to work to provide farm workers with the same rights that other American workers have. Thom is a state representative from Gardiner. Mike works for Pine Tree Legal Assistance.

About the host:
Steve Wessler will soon will be starting his 28th year of working on human right issues. He founded the Civil Rights Unit in the Maine Attorney’s Office in 1992 and led the Unit for 7 years. In 1999 he left the formal practice of law and founded the Center for the Prevention of Hate. The Center worked in Maine and across the USA. He and his colleagues worked to reduce bias and harassment in schools, in communities, in health care organization through workshops and conflict resolution. The Center closed in 2011 and Steve began a consulting on human rights issues. For the next 5 years much of his work was in Europe, developing and implementing training curricular for police, working in communities to reduce the risk of hate crimes, conflict resolution between police and youth. He has worked in over 20 countries. In late 2016 he began to work more in Maine, with a focus on reducing anti-immigrant bias. He continues to work in schools to reduce bias and harassment. Wessler teaches courses on human rights issues at the College of the Atlantic, the University of Maine at Augusta and at the School of Conflict Analysis and Resolution at George Mason University in northern Virginia.