Not in Our Name

A Statement of Conscience Against War and Repression

Revolution #007, June 26, 2005, posted at

This statement appears on the Not In Our Name web site,

As George W. Bush is inaugurated for a second term, let it not be said that people in the United States silently acquiesced in the face of this shameful coronation of war, greed, and intolerance. He does not speak for us. He does not represent us. He does not act in our name.

No election, whether fair or fraudulent, can legitimize criminal wars on foreign countries, torture, the wholesale violation of human rights, and the end of science and reason.

In our name, the Bush government justifies the invasion and occupation of Iraq on false pretenses, raining down destruction, horror, and misery, bringing death to more than 100,000 Iraqis. It sends our youth to destroy entire cities for the sake of so-called democratic elections, while intimidating and disenfranchising thousands of African American and other voters at home.

In our name, the Bush government holds in contempt international law and world opinion. It carries out torture and detentions without trial around the world and proposes new assaults on our rights of privacy, speech and assembly at home. It strips the rights of Arabs, Muslims and South Asians in the U.S., denies them legal counsel, stigmatizes and holds them without cause. Thousands have been deported.

As new trial balloons are floated about invasions of Syria, or Iran, or North Korea, about leaving the United Nations, about new "lifetime detention" policies, we say not in our name will we allow further crimes to be committed against nations or individuals deemed to stand in the way of the goal of unquestioned world supremacy.

Could we have imagined a few years ago that core principles such as the separation of church and state, due process, presumption of innocence, freedom of speech, and habeas corpus would be discarded so easily? Now, anyone can be declared an "enemy combatant" without meaningful redress or independent review by a President who is concentrating power in the executive branch. His choice for Attorney General is the legal architect of the torture that has been carried out in Guantánamo, Afghanistan, and Abu Ghraib.

The Bush government seeks to impose a narrow, intolerant, and political form of Christian fundamentalism as government policy. No longer on the margins of power, this extremist movement aims to strip women of their reproductive rights, to stoke hatred of gays and lesbians, and to drive a wedge between spiritual experience and scientific truth. We will not surrender to extremists our right to think. AIDS is not a punishment from God. Global warming is a real danger. Evolution happened. All people must be free to find meaning and sustenance in whatever form of religious or spiritual belief they choose. But religion can never be compulsory. These extremists may claim to make their own reality, but we will not allow them to make ours.

Millions of us worked, talked, marched, poll watched, contributed, voted, and did everything we could to defeat the Bush regime in the last election. This unprecedented effort brought forth new energy, organization, and commitment to struggle for justice. It would be a terrible mistake to let our failure to stop Bush in these ways lead to despair and inaction. On the contrary, this broad mobilization of people committed to a fairer, freer, more peaceful world must move forward. We cannot, we will not, wait until 2008. The fight against the second Bush regime has to start now.

The movement against the war in Vietnam never won a presidential election. But it blocked troop trains, closed induction centers, marched, spoke to people door to door — and it helped to stop a war. The Civil Rights Movement never tied its star to a presidential candidate; it sat in, freedom rode, fought legal battles, filled jailhouses — and changed the face of a nation.

We must change the political reality of this country by mobilizing the tens of millions who know in their heads and hearts that the Bush regime's "reality" is nothing but a nightmare for humanity. This will require creativity, mass actions and individual moments of courage. We must come together whenever we can, and we must act alone whenever we have to.

We draw inspiration from the soldiers who have refused to fight in this immoral war. We applaud the librarians who have refused to turn over lists of our reading, the high school students who have demanded to be taught evolution, those who brought to light torture by the U.S. military, and the massive protests that voiced international opposition to the war on Iraq. We affirm ordinary people undertaking extraordinary acts. We pledge to create community to back courageous acts of resistance. We stand with the people throughout the world who fight every day for the right to create their own future.

It is our responsibility to stop the Bush regime from carrying out this disastrous course. We believe history will judge us sharply should we fail to act decisively.

Over 15,000 people have now signed this statement. Among the signers are:

Rabab Ibrahim Abdulhadi [director, Center for Arab American Studies, U. of Michigan- Dearborn]
James Abourezk [former U.S. Senator]
As`ad AbuKhalil [Cal. State-Stanislaus]
Janet L. Abu-Lughod [prof. emerita, New School]
Michael Albert
Stanley Aronowitz
Edward Asner
Ti-Grace Atkinson
Michael Avery [president, National Lawyers Guild]
Russell Banks
Amiri Baraka
Rosalyn Baxandall [SUNY at Old Westbury]
Medea Benjamin [cofounder of Global Exchange and Code Pink]
Phyllis Bennis [Institute for policy studies]
Larry Bensky [Pacifica radio]
Michael Berg
Terry Bisson
Jessica Blank & Erik Jensen [playwrights, The exonerated ]
William Blum[author of Rogue State]
Blase Bonpane [Director, Office of the Americas]
Wayne C. Booth[Professor emeritus, U. Chicago]
St. Clair Bourne
Yvonne Jacquette Burckhardt
Judith Butler [UC, Berkeley]
Leslie Cagan [national coordinator, United for Peace and Justice]
Kathleen & Henry Chalfant
Ben Chaney [president, James E. Chaney Foundation]
Bell & Paul Chevigny
Noam Chomsky
Ramsey Clark [former U.S. Attorney-General]
Marilyn Clement [Campaign for a National Health Program NOW]
Robbie Conal
Ry Cooder
Blanche Wiesen Cook
Clare Coss
Peter Coyote
John Cusack
J. Keay Davidson
Angela Davis
Sheila DeBretteville
Diane di Prima
Muriel Dimen
Carl Dix [Revolutionary Communist Party]
Tom F. Driver [Prof emeritus, Union Theological]
Ronnie Dugger [Alliance for Democracy]
Roxanne Dunbar-Ortiz
Michael Eric Dyson
Luise Eichenbaum
Deborah Eisenberg
Nora Eisenberg [author of The War at Home ]
Daniel Ellsberg
Kathy Engel
Eve Ensler
MartÍn Espada
Michelle Esrick
Nina Felshin [author of But is it art? The Spirit of Art as Activism ]
Lawrence Ferlinghetti [City Lights Bookstore]
Laura Flanders
Carolyn Forché
Michael Franti
Su Friedrich
Boo Froebel
Peter Gerety
Frances Goldin
Lynn Gonzalez [Military Families Speak Out-San Diego]
Vivian Gornick
Kélina A. Gotman [Columbia]
Jorie Graham
Wavy Gravy
André Gregory
Michelle Gross [v.v., Communities United Against Police Brutality]
Marilyn Hacker
Jessica Hagedorn
Sam Hamill [Poets Against the War]
Suheir Hammad
Donna J. Haraway [History of Consciousness, UC-Santa Cruz]
Christine B. Harrington [Politics and Law & Society Program, NYU]
David Harvey [anthropology, CUNY]
Rev. Louise B. Higginbotham
[Pastor, United Church on the Green, New Haven]
Julia Butterfly Hill [Circle of Life Foundation]
Danny Hoch
Connie Hogarth [Connie Hogarth Center for Social Action]
Marie Howe
Thomas Dudley Hurwitz [verger, Cathedral Church of St. John the Divine]
Abdeen Jabara [past pres., American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee]
Alice Ann Jardine [Harvard]
Jim Jarmusch
Bill T. Jones
Hettie Jones
Rickie Lee Jones
David Kazanjian
Evelyn Fox Keller [history of science, MIT]
Robin D.G. Kelley
Mark Kesselman [Columbia]
Bill Keys [pres., Madison (WI) School Board]
Ynestra King
Barbara Kingsolver
C. Clark Kissinger [Refuse & Resist!]
Hans Koning
David Korn [author of Kornshell]
David C. Korten [author of When Corporations Rule the World ]
Joel Kovel
Joyce & Max Kozloff
Zoe Leonard
Rabbi Michael Lerner [editor, TIKKUN magazine]
Phil Lesh [Grateful Dead]
Tracy Letts
Richard Levy
Rev. Davidson Loehr [First Unitarian Universalist Church of Austin]
Raymond Lotta [author of America in Decline ]
Craig Lucas
Josh Lucas
Staughton Lynd
Reynaldo F. Macías [chair, National Association for Chicana & Chicano Studies]
Holly Maguigan [Co-President, Society of American Law Teachers]
John Mallinckrodt [Cal. State Polytechnic Institute]
Karen Malpede
J. Patrice Marandel [Chief Curator, Los Angeles County Museum of Art]
Dave Marsh
Maryknoll Sisters, Western Region
Malachy McCourt
Rep. Jim McDermott [Member of Congress, Washington State]
Ellen McLaughlin
Robert Meeropol [exec. dir., Rosenberg Fund for Children]
Robert R. Merritt [Physics Dept., Ohio State]
Arnold Mesches & Jill Ciment
Susan Minot
Robin Morgan
Walter MosLey
Wayne Nafziger
Jill Nelson
Mike Nussbaum
Efia Nwangaza [Afrikan Amerikan Institute for Policy Studies & Planning]
Frank Quimby Orrall
Daniel Ostling
Randy Ostrow
Mary Pallant [Pres., Valley Democrats United]
Sheldon Patinkin [Theater Department, Columbia College]
Janice Elaine Perlman [The Mega-Cities Project]
Rosalind Petchesky [Hunter College & the Graduate Center - CUNY]
Eric L. Peters [Ecology & Environmental Biology Chicago State Univ.]
Guy Picciotto [Musician/Fugazi]
Jeremy Pikser
Fred L. Pincus
Howardena D. Pindell
Frances Fox Piven
James Stwart Polshek
William Pope.L
Francine Prose
Jerry Quickley
John T. Racanelli [Retired Presiding Justice California Court of Appeal]
Michael Ratner [pres., Center for Constitutional Rights]
David Riker
Howard A. Rodman
Stephen Rohde
Jonathan Rosenbaum
Matthew Rothschild [editor, The Progressive magazine]
Bernard & Jane Nicholl Sahlins
Lus Sante
James Schamus
Juliet B. Schor
Peter Dale Scott
David Michael Seaborg [World Rainforest Fund]
Roberta Segal-Sklar [comm. dir., National Gay and Lesbian Task Force]
Regina & Peter Serkin
Frank Serpico
Betty Shamieh
Wallace Shawn
Gregory G. Sholette
Sister Annette Marie Sinagra, O.P.
Zachary Sklar
Peter Sollett
Jack Steinberger [Nobel Laureate, Physics]
Pat Steir
Tony Taccone
Michael T. Taussig [Columbia]
Studs Terkel
Mary Ann Tétreault [Trinity University]
Jennifer Tipton
Grace Tsao
Concepcion Monreal Valadez [UCLA]
Chuck Wachtel
Rosemarie Waldrop
Alice Walker
Rev. Dr. Marlene R. Walker
Naomi Wallace
Immanuel Wallerstein
Leonard Weinglass
Cora Weiss
Peter Weiss [pres., Lawyers Committee on Nuclear Policy]
Timberlake Wertenbaker
Cornel West
Haskell Wexler
C.K. Williams
Saul Williams
Brian Willson
Martha Wilson [founder of Art Space]
Mike & Bonnie Wisniewski [Los Angeles Catholic Worker]
Krzysztof Wodiczko [director, Center for Advanced Visual Studies, MIT]
Damian Woetzel [principal dancer, New York City Ballet]
Barry Yourgrau
David Zeiger [Displaced Films]
Howard Zinn
Julie Zuckerman
[ Organizations for identification only ]

Contact Not In Our Name at:

305 West Broadway,
PMB 199,
New York, NY 10013