Happy Birthday Kingian Nonviolence

April 4, 2013

Today, April 4th 2013, marks the 45th anniversary of Dr. Martin Luther King’s assassination.  45 years since a bullet was fired into his chest.  And 45 years since the bullet missed its mark.

That bullet may have killed the man, but his legacy lives on through the millions of us who have stood for justice since that fateful day.  His legacy lives on through elders like Dr. Bernard LaFayette and David Jehnsen, who authored the Kingian Nonviolence philosophy to ensure that the assassin missed.  His legacy lives on through the hundreds of college students who were exposed to Kingian Nonviolence during the three-week Alternative Spring Break program we just finished up, and the hundreds of high school youth who will be trained this summer.  His legacy lives on though each and every single one of you, who have supported us in our effort to ensure that we carry on his message.

As many of you already know, Kingian Nonviolence was born out of a conversation Dr. King had with Dr. LaFayette just hours before his assassination.  So while April 4th marks the death of Dr. King, it also marks the birth of Kingian Nonviolence.  As we commemorate his death, let us also celebrate the 45th anniversary of the birth of this important legacy.  Let us celebrate how much Dr. King taught us, how much he continues to teach us, and let us recommit ourselves to fulfilling his dream.

A few of the college students recently exposed to Kingian Nonviolence

PPWN will be recognizing this important day across the nation, from Atlanta to Oakland.  In Atlanta, PPWN Founder Jonathan Lewis will be on a panel discussing gun violence with the organization started by Dr. King, the Southern Christian Leadership Conference.  In Oakland, members of the PPWN community will be attending an event organized by one of our biggest supporters, the East Bay Meditation Center.  And we will be continuing to celebrate Dr. King’s legacy next week as we return to the San Bruno County Jail to work with a new group of 40 men.

Dr. King’s dream is far from having been realized.  As the community in New York struggles against stop and frisk in the wake of another police shooting (this time of 16-year old Kimani Gray), as the battle rages on over same sex marriage and LGBT equality, as the president signs into law the “Monsanto Protection Act,” as communities around the country protest the Keystone XL Pipeline in the face of yet another oil spill – we are reminded daily how far we still have to go.

It is for this reason that PPWN remains committed to living out Dr. King’s vision, and continuing to push forward towards his dream of a Beloved Community.  It is for this reason that we not only honor his death, but we honor the birth of his living legacy: Kingian Nonviolence.

Over the coming months and weeks, we will be sharing with you more news about what we’ve been up to recently (working with 200+ college students from 20 schools in Selma, working to institutionalize Kingian Nonviolence at the University of WI River Falls, etc.) and where we are going (upcoming work in Japan and Colombia, ongoing programming in the Bay Area, trainings for hundreds of High School youth over the summer).  We look forward to connecting with all of you, and helping to ensure that those who wanted to kill Dr. King’s vision missed their mark.


Join Us at Sonoma State Univeristy!!

February 12, 2013

Join PPWN and the Metta Center for Nonviolence for a two-day introductory workshop in Kingian Nonviolence!!!

Over 1,200 people attended this workshop in 2012, with participants ranging from incarcerated men and women, students (middle school, high school and college), activists, former city mayors, anarchists, meditation teachers, school teachers, and people from every walk of life.  Each walked away having learned a skill that will help them with whatever conflicts they are dealing with in their lives and in their work.

Find out more about Kingian Nonviolence here.  These workshops are offered on a gift economics basis, so no one will be turned away due to a lack of funds.

Come join us!

Two-Day Kingian Nonviolence Workshop
Sonoma State University (register for exact location)
Sat & Sun, February 23rd & 24th
10AM – 6PM both days
Cost: Gift Economics (No one turned away due to lack of funds)
Register Here!!!

Carpools are being organized from the Bay Area.
Contact emailkazu@gmail.com or (510) 967-4710 for more info.

Four More Days to Pie!!!

January 28, 2013

Peace Pies and Prophets is almost here!  Part of a national tour promoting peace and raising funds for organizations working towards it, the evening will feature a performance of “I’d Like to Buy an Enemy,” a witty satirical theater skit playing off how society keeps us in control by keeping us afraid of some “enemy.”  And there will be an auction of home-baked pies!!!

Make sure to join us this Friday at 7 PM at the First Presbyterian Church of Oakland, 2619 Broadway.  Tickets are a suggested donation of $12, but no one will be turned away.  This event is a joint fundraiser for PPWN and Christian Peacemaker Teams, who sends nonviolent peacekeeping forces into war torn regions such as Iraq and Palestine.

We Still Need Your Help!!!  If you can bake us a pie (or two) or volunteer at the event, please send an email to emailkazu@gmail.com ASAP!!!

Click here for more info and to reserve tickets, here to watch a preview of the show, or here to see the Facebook event.

Come watch this great performance before going out to First Friday and help us spread the word!!!

Congratulations to our new assistant trainers!!!

January 21, 2013

On this Martin Luther King Jr. Day, PPWN got to celebrate by certifying a new group of assistant trainers in Kingian Nonviolence!!!  These new trainers will help us with our ongoing and expanding work in the local jails, with local youth groups, and with the community here in the Bay Area and beyond!

We had an amazing 5-Day Advanced Training in our new office, with an incredibly diverse group of people all coming together to help continue the legacy of Dr. King and keep working towards the Beloved Community.

Thanks to everyone who was a part and who supported this process!  Please consider supporting this work and helping our programs expand into new communities!  Click here to see more pictures from this training.

Positive Peace,


My 30-day fast to promote Dr. King’s revolutionary nonviolent message

January 2, 2013

This statement was authored by Carol Bragg and is being reposted here with permission.

An Appeal to the President, U.S. Congress, Governors, and State Legislatures to Embrace Dr. King’s Revolution in Values and Commitment to Nonviolence

On January 1, I shall begin a 30-day fast to appeal to the president of the United States, the U.S. Congress, and the governors and legislatures of the 50 states to embrace the revolution in values and commitment to nonviolence that are part of the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.  January 1 is the 150th anniversary of the Emancipation Proclamation.  January 30 is the Memorial Day for both Mahatma Gandhi and Coretta Scott King.

The year 2013 is an historic year, marking the 50th anniversary of events that forever changed America: the assassination of our beloved President John F. Kennedy, the March on Washington where Dr. King delivered his inspiring I Have a Dream speech, and the Birmingham, Alabama campaign in which black schoolchildren were met with high-pressure fire hoses and police dogs, perhaps the best example in our nation’s history of the power of unarmed love to defeat the forces of violence and evil. In addition, Dr. King published his collection of sermons, Strength to Love. In the wake of the recent tragedy in Newtown, Connecticut, 2013 is a year that cries out for national action. Read the rest of this entry »

PPWN Statement on CT Shooting

December 16, 2012

A vigil for the CT shooting

As so many others have already expressed, there are no words that can properly convey the overwhelming sense of sadness we all feel as we find out more information about the tragedy that took place in Newton, CT.

As we took the weekend to mourn those that have passed, we remind ourselves that this tragedy must be viewed as a cry for help from a sick society.  If we are able to allow this incident to catalyze us to look deeply at the soul of our society and commit to healing from the pain that causes mass shooting after mass shooting, then we can ensure that the 20 children and 7 adults who died did not die in vain.

This tragedy wasn’t just about Adam Lanza, the 20-year old gunman who was once himself a 5-year old child.  This tragedy is about the society that raised Adam, the same one that raised Jacob Roberts, Andrew Engeldinger, James Eagan Holmes, Wade Michael Page and any other number of men who have recently gone on shooting sprees.

In the fall of 1963, Dr. King addressed a crowd at the funeral of three of the four young girls who were killed in a church bombing in Birmingham, AL.  He reminded us that, “we must be concerned not merely about who murdered them, but about the system, the way of life, the philosophy which produced the murderes.”

So how do we begin to look beyond the “lone shooter,” and address the root causes of violence?

Who is the “victim?”
Before we begin to point fingers and assign blame, we must realize that all of us as a society are impacted by these types of tragedies.  What impacts one directly affects all of us indirectly.

And yet, our hearts go out particularly to those who were directly impacted: the children, their parents, and the community around Sandy Brook Elementary School.  The first thing many of us did when we heard about the tragedy was to think of the children in our own lives, and there is little we can say that will bring comfort to those who lost loved ones.

But there is perhaps another victim that we need to consider, and that is Adam Lanza himself.  In a phone call with Dr. Bernard LaFayette Jr. this morning, he said that “the last person [Adam] killed was himself, but the first person to die was himself.” Read the rest of this entry »

PPWN Featured in Street Spirit!

December 7, 2012


The December edition of Street Spirit is hot off the press!

The December edition of Street Spirit is hot off the press!

Street Spirit is a monthly news magazine published by the American Friends Service Committee, and given out to homeless men and women throughout the Bay Area for free so that they can sell it on the streets as a source of income.

Two months ago, Street Spirit covered Dr. Bernard Lafayette’s visit to the Bay Area with a long interview and an article about his visit.

This month, they were kind enough to profile the work of PPWN and post an interview with Operations Director and Bay Area Coordinator Kazu Haga.

Check out both articles online below, and if you live in the Bay Area, make sure to pick up a copy if you see it being sold in the streets!  Help to spread the word about our work, support a person struggling with homelessness, and support a great magazine all at the same time!

Bringing Dr. King’s Message to a New Generation
This is how a legacy is passed on to a new generation: Martin Luther King gave his life to spreading the message of nonviolence. After he was assassinated, Bernard Lafayette picked up the fallen torch, and passed it on to Kazu Haga. Now Kazu shares this vision with the next CLICK HERE TO READ MORE

Building the Positive Peace Warrior Network: The Interview with Kazu Haga
Kazu Haga is dedicated to spreading Martin Luther King’s vision of the Beloved Community to the next generation. Rev. King believed that his philosophy of nonviolent resistance could be effective not just in the struggle against segregation, but also in the struggle against militarism, and in the struggle against economic CLICK HERE TO READ MORE