In these difficult times of war and violence, it may seem crazy to leave the country at all, let alone voluntarily visit a war zone. Yet from August 15-27 2004, that is exactly what local resident and national drug policy reform activist, Loretta Nall will do when she travels with the grassroots organization, Witness for Peace to Colombia.
Loretta and 20 others will travel to war-torn Colombia, as part of a citizen documentation team to learn about U.S. foreign policy in a region that has fallen out of the headlines, but not out of U.S. strategic interests. In Colombia, Loretta will meet with those affected by U.S. policies: government officials, community leaders, union representatives, farmers and businesspeople, women’s groups and peace organizations. The delegates will spend time in rural and urban settings, staying in family homes and getting to know the daily lives of their hosts. Through this contact they will learn how the policies of the United States affect the most vulnerable in Colombia, and hear ideas for changes.
Loretta’s documentation team will also meet with U.S. Embassy and consular officials in Colombia. They will voice concerns, ideas and dreams of the local communities to policy makers, speaking truth to power.
When Loretta returns to the U.S. she will share what she has seen and heard with the community, media and policymakers.
This delegation is a model for “pre-emptive peace” on the belief that learning about the root causes of conflicts and building relationships can do more to prevent war than military force. In an era of increasingly globalized markets, Witness for Peace works to globalize solidarity and human relationships. Since the 1980’s Witness for Peace has promoted social justice through human contact and education, recognizing that peace cannot be bought with military force or economic pressure.
About the delegate:
Loretta Nall, 29, wife, mother of two children living in?her native?Alabama, became involved in drug policy reform in September of 2002, after enduring a terrifying helicopter raid by local, state and federal agents looking for marijuana.
Mentored and suitably funded?by Canadian philanthropist and anti-prohibition activist Marc Emery, Loretta Nall has founded and organized 35 state chapters of the US Marijuana Party, has hosted the POT-TV.net News (see www.pot-tv.net ) for 12 months , interviewing Jesse Jackson, Dennis Kucinich in regards the drug war in America. Loretta Nall has appeared in Rolling Stone Magazine, lewrockwell.com,? and numerous daily newspapers across America on behalf of her campaign to reduce the destructive effects of prohibition in America. Currently, she is assisting in guiding a medical marijuana bill through the Alabama state legislature in concert with the Drug Policy Alliance and was recently appointed to an advisory board being commissioned at the request of Alabama’s Prison Commissioner.
Mrs. Nall plans to run for Governor of Alabama in 2006.
Contact: Loretta Nall
About Witness for Peace:
Witness for Peace (WFP) is a 16,000 member nationwide politically independent, nonviolent grassroots organization dedicated to peace, justice and sustainable economies in the Americas. Since 1983, more that 10,000 delegates have traveled to Latin America with WFP.