Thousands to Rally in the Streets Outside GOP Straw Poll 'Bring the Troops Home Now and Take Care of Them' Says Group

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As antiwar groups around the nation prepare for a September "Peace Surge", Texans lead the way. Texas will host the American People's Poll on Iraq - Texas Townhall, September 1 in the heart of Bush country, Fort Worth, Texas.

As the Bush administration prepares its report on Iraq, Texans will kick off the month of September with a rally featuring Iraq war veterans, Texas musicians, and national opponents of the war, all taking place in General Worth Square, across from the Republican Straw Poll, on Saturday, September lst. The theme will be "Bring the troops home now and take care of them," one which is emphasized in polling that will commence at 9 A.M., and speeches, which will start at 1:30PM. Texans for Peace, which is sponsoring the event, is furnishing water, chairs, tents, water and ice at the site.

Planning has been going on for months, says Charlie Jackson, founder of Texans for Peace, citing the helpfulness of endorsing organizations such as the Dallas Peace Center, Veterans for Peace, Military Families Speak Out, Iraq Veterans Against the War, Gold Star Families for Peace, Peace Action Texas, Vietnam Veterans Against the War, Code Pink Women for Peace, After Downing Street, Air America Radio-Dallas, Grass Roots America, Humanists of Fort Worth, and the Camp Casey Peace Institute. Jackson is quick to point out that there are no partisan political organizations among the group, since Texans for Peace is completely non-partisan, and this event is non-partisan as well. "We're not protesting the Republicans," he clarifies, "we're simply
saying the people have spoken on this issue [the war], and with one voice, they've said that we need to bring our troops home. We're just here to remind the Republicans--and everyone else--that the people have already voted for peace." The event is allied with rallies, marches, and
demonstrations--sometimes grouped together as part of "Stand Up in September" ---that will be staged across the country to coincide with the report due out by General David Petraeus purporting to gauge the success of the "surge."

Major speakers at the rally include Colonel (retired) Ann Wright, who resigned from the State Department to protest the war; Carlos Arredondo, grieving father of Alex, killed in Najaf in 2004; Diane Wilson, Texas shrimper and author of "An Unreasonable Woman"; the Reverend Lennox Yearwood, minister and leader of the Hip-Hop Caucus; Tina Richards, activist and mother of two-tour Iraq Veteran Cloy Richards; Tunde Obazee, 'Grand Poobah' of Empowerment Radio; Leonard Shelton, Hart Viges, and Adam Kokesh, all of Iraq Veterans Against the War; and Father Tim Gollab (Holy Cross Catholic Church), the Reverend Diane Baker, and the Reverend Charles Stovall, chair of the Southern Christian Leadership Council. Additionally, Jackson says, there may be "surprise" speakers. Musicians include the Austin sensation Carolyn Wonderland.

More than a hundred volunteers and dozens of trained "peacekeepers" will maintain order, as well as staff the stage, tables, and booths. Petitioners have been invited to bring petitions on a variety of subjects, and activist groups on everything from the environment to particular candidate advocacy will be tabling. It is hoped, says Jackson, that the atmosphere will resemble an old-fashioned fair, with a children's play area, and lots of family-friendly activities. "After all, " he states, "the future of this country will be written, not by the politicians, but by the people--moms and dads who want the best for their children and for the children of the world. That's what we're all about."

Texans for Peace is a 501 (c) (3) non-partisan organization headquartered in Austin, Texas. It was founded fourteen years ago by Charlie Jackson, a businessman and technology entrepreneur. For more information, please see our website at Interviews with participants and speakers can be obtained in advance. Spanish speakers will be present on site and interviews can be arranged for Spanish Language media. Please contact Alyssa Burgin, 210.381.4021 or aburgin @ to schedule.


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