Message to the Grassroots: Money for Jobs, Education, Human Needs: Not for War in the Middle East!

An episode of Message to the Grassroots, a cable access talk show produced & hosted by Michael Zinzun form 1988-1998 at Pasadena Community Access Corporation, which is now Pasadena Media.

00:00Copy video clip URL Slate

00:13Copy video clip URL Opening title and music.

00:42Copy video clip URL Host Michael Zinzun introduces the show and guest panelists.

04:23Copy video clip URL Panelist Don Wheeldon introduces himself and his view on war in the Middle East and the Black community’s opposition.

06:47Copy video clip URL Roll-in footage. Dr. Naseer Aruai talks about the colonial legacy of borders drawn in the Middle East and the creation of Kuwait. Dr. Aruai also discusses the strategic geopolitical significance of Kuwait’s border decisions and the historic struggles between nationalist Arab governments and Western imperial powers.

09:57Copy video clip URL Return to the panel. Bobbie Hodges, with the American Friends Service Committee, on the costs of war and the AFSC’s work counseling community members. Hodges considers the multi-generational concerns of deploying military troops as well as the racial composition of deployed forces. Hodges describes what is called the “poverty draft” or “poverty conscription.”

18:00Copy video clip URL Second roll-in tape. Ramsey Clark speaking on the “politics making for war.” Clark denounces war crimes committed on behalf of the United States. Ron Kovic gives a passionate chant against the United State’s foreign policy decisions that favor war.

22:16Copy video clip URL C-SPAN footage from the U.S. House of Representatives Persian Gulf Debate. Representative Major Robert Odell Owens (D-New York) talks about the targeting of lower class Black Americans for military recruitment and service, as well as the importance of giving names to the lives of soldiers.

26:56Copy video clip URL Speech by Rep. Maxine Waters (D-California) expressing her opposition to the Gulf War. Reverend Jesse Jackson speaks in opposition to Bush’s foreign policy and the ailments of poverty and death in America.

30:33Copy video clip URL Return to the panel. Ralph McKnight describes the numerous racial slurs used against people in the Middle East, along with President Bush’s investment in offshore drilling near Kuwait and Bush’s racist justification for war.

34:00Copy video clip URL Margaret Prescod. Prescod talks about the double standard of the United State’s power over international relations, the military-industrial complex, the draining of resources from Third World countries, and the racist motivations behind dominant white leaders of Western imperial powers. Prescod connects the  “peace dividend” to the movement for reparations in African-American communities and the devastation of directing taxpayer funds towards military ventures. She further outlines the numerous hardships and oppressive circumstances facing African-American communities, highlighting the lived experiences of women of color. 

42:28Copy video clip URL Gilbert Moreno. The double standard of imposed by the United States’ foreign policy under the guise of human rights. Moreno implies that President Bush’s plan to send troops to Kuwait provides a convenient distraction from domestic scandal.

47:52Copy video clip URL Glen Omatsu. Economic and social costs of the Persian War. Omatsu mentions a recent news story where that Arab-American community leaders were interrogated by the FBI, connecting it with the interrogation, internment, and discrimination faced by Japanese-Americans during and after World War II.

51:08Copy video clip URL Zinzun redirects the conversation and poses a question to Wheeldon. Wheeldon talks about the importance of Black community voices speaking out in opposition to war.

53:00Copy video clip URL Zinzun makes closing remarks. Zinzun declares the need for Black unity.

57:23Copy video clip URL Commercial break. Ad by Physicians for Social Responsibility/Los Angeles.

57:55Copy video clip URL Ad depicting representatives from across multiple faith traditions calling for peace and opposition to the Gulf War.

58:54Copy video clip URL CNN coverage of the Message to the Grassroots panel. Anne McDermott reports live for CNN. 

60:20Copy video clip URL More news coverage from CNN depicting scenes from worshiping communities and peace demonstrations across the United States.



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