Thursday, September 6, 2012

Take Action: Tell the Chapel Hill Town Council to Keep Our Ads Running!

If you live in the Chapel Hill-Carrboro, NC area, then please sign the petition to the Chapel Hill Town Council to keep the bus ads running that call for ending U.S. military aid to Israel.

Town Councilwoman Penny Rich is really banging the drums to kill these ads. She told Indyweek that the ads are a "manipulative way to essentially call for the destruction of Israel." Check them out below and judge for yourself.

Please read on for an appeal by Rev. Mark Davidson, of the Church of Reconciliation, to help mobilize political support for next week's key Town Council meeting, whose outcome might determine whether the ads are allowed to continue running, or if they will be censored.

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By now, you’ve probably heard about the controversy that was generated by our Chapel Hill bus ad campaign to end U.S. military aid to Israel. In case you missed it, here’s a sampling of local media coverage.

The congregation I serve, the Church of Reconciliation, with endorsements from the Coalition for Peace with Justice, Jews for a Just Peace NC, and North Carolina Veterans for Peace, put these ads in the entire 98-bus fleet in Chapel Hill and Carrboro. They read: “Build Peace with Justice and Equality. End U.S. Aid to Israel.”

After a few weeks, the ads were temporarily taken down by the transit authority because its officials wanted us to add more contact information to the ads.  We did so and we’re happy to report that the ads are back on the buses as of last weekend.

However, we’re concerned that the Chapel Hill Town Council might take action next Wednesday, September 12, 7PM at its next meeting to change the advertising guidelines to prohibit non-commercial ads. If this happens, then our ads might get taken down again!

We can't let that happen. I need you to sign this petition to the Town Council calling on it to maintain non-commercial ads on Chapel Hill's buses and to continue running our ads for the one-year duration of the contraction we signed.

After you sign the petition, you’ll be given the chancto forward it via email, Facebook, Twitter, etc. Please share this petition far and wide so that we can show the Town Council how much community support exists for these ads.

We’ll deliver your petition signature at next week’s Town Council meeting. At the meeting, we’ll also be speaking about U.S. policy toward Israel and the Palestinians and the importance of keeping these ads running.

These ads to end U.S. aid to Israel have sparked an important community conversation around this issue. It’s an important conversation that we need to have. Please keep this conversation going by signing the petition to the Town Council to keep the ads running.

I hope to see you at next Wednesday’s Town Council meeting.

Sincerely,

Rev. Mark Davidson
Church of Reconciliation, Chapel Hill