Unsung Newscycles

There were obviously big things afoot this past week, what with President Obama announcing his first Supreme Court nominee. If you are of a slightly wonkish persuasion, then perhaps you meditated on what it might mean for Secretary of State Clinton to have spoken very firmly to the Israeli leadership about curtailing the growth of settlements. A doctor known as an abortion provider was killed. And all this above the steady hums of Iraq, Guantanamo, healthcare, recession.

So pardon me using this space to briefly highlight two minor blips on the news screen that are, in their own way, pretty heartening. Timely and interesting, too—but their power to make us feel a little better about the world is much in demand.

First, local press got great coverage, most of which was not picked up nationally, of the post-Prop 8-court-decision protests. San Francisco’s protest was especially dramatic, resulting in a number of arrests for disrupting traffic. Apparently, the first arrested were local clergy, including Rabbi Sydney Mintz of Congregation Emanu-El of San Francisco, who, as she was led off in wrist cuffs, said, “It’s the right thing to do.” Talk about a role model.

Second, and perhaps even less glamorous, is the launch of a new and amazing fusion of labor and Middle Eastern politics. Meet TULIP—Trade Unions Linking Israel and Palestine, whose website not only provides information about the organization (which basically seeks to advocate for a two-state solution with strong co-operative unions) but also provides media that re-frames so much about the conversation, shifting almost entirely to an economic view of the conflict and related labor initiatives. Read the articles and reports they provide, and re-vision the power of workers. It’s pretty amazing.

Blips worth noting, no?

–Mel Weiss

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