Minds of the Movement

An ICNC blog on the people and power of civil resistance

Tom Hastings

Tom Hastings, Ed.D., is Coördinator of Conflict Resolution BA/BS degree programs and certificates at Portland State University. He is a former member of the Governing Council of the International Peace Research Association (IPRA), former co-chair of the Peace and Justice Studies Association, and current member of the IPRA Foundation Board. He is founding director of PeaceVoice, and has written several books and many articles about nonviolence and other peace and conflict topics. He is a two-time Plowshares resister, a founding member of two Catholic Worker communities, and currently lives in Whitefeather Peace House.

Writings from Tom Hastings

Articles

Ideas & Trends

Respect: What Does It Have to Do with Civil Resistance?

Taking the moral high road as an activist often germinates as an internal commitment to a certain philosophy—the philosophy of nonviolence. Yet observing a certain set of ethics in our movement practice can also bring strategic advantages in asymmetrical conflict between oppressors and the oppressed. The two qualities are inseparable, moral nonviolence and strategic nonviolent conflict being two sides of the same coin. Over the last half-century of being a front-line activist and nonviolent resister in North America, I have begun to discern some of the finer points of civil resistance in practice. […]

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Ideas & Trends

Should We Train Movements when We Disagree with their Goals?

As Covid emerged in 2020 and altered our lifestyles, some of us who offer nonviolent movement trainings in the United States became aware of the anti-Covid vaccine, anti-health mask campaign launched across the Canadian border, in Ottawa. The campaign spread somewhat to the U.S. North, notably resulting in a trucker blockade in February 2022 at the Ambassador bridge connecting Windsor, Ontario with Detroit, Michigan. The phenomenon left many of us trainers asking many thorny questions about ethics. […]

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Ideas & Trends

ความเสียหายต่อทรัพย์สิน ความรุนแรง ปฏิบัติการไร้ความรุนแรง และยุทธศาสตร์

ปัจจุบันเราอยู่ในช่วงเวลาของการเคลื่อนไหวที่มีพลังอย่างมาก และกำลังสร้างแรงกดดันต่อพวกเราทุกคน ไม่ว่าจะเป็นกลุ่มที่เรียกร้องความยุติธรรมและขอให้ตำรวจหยุดเข่นฆ่าคนผิวสีที่ไร้อาวุธต่อสู้ กลุ่มที่เดือดร้อนอย่างมหาศาลจากการแพร่ระบาดของโควิด 19  กลุ่มธุรกิจขนาดเล็กที่ถูกทำลายและปล้นสดมภ์ และกลุ่มที่เพียงหวาดกลัวแม้แต่จะออกไปไหนมาไหนในช่วงเวลานี้

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Ideas & Trends

New Shields, New Swords: The Autocrat Learning Curve

Those of us who study and practice civil resistance need to know that the Academy for Autocrats is also busy learning—in many cases, from us. We share our knowledge in the spirit of offering tools for nonviolent liberation to all, everywhere. There are strengths in our transparency and open approach, but autocrats also try to use this to their advantage, seeking to think several moves ahead of activists. […]

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Ideas and Trends

Daños a la propiedad privada, violencia, acción noviolenta y estrategia

Estamos en una nueva fase de activismo con grandes fuerzas ejerciendo presión sobre todos nosotros. Aquellos que buscamos justicia y el fin de la violencia policial que mata personas negras desarmadas, aquellos gravemente golpeados por la pandemia de COVID-19, aquellos cuyos pequeños negocios han sido destruidos y saqueados y aquellos simplemente demasiado asustados para hacer cualquier movimiento en este momento. […]

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Ideas & Trends

Property Damage, Violence, Nonviolent Action, and Strategy

The opinions about property damage during protests are all over the map. Please entertain mine for a minute, as I’ve been thinking a lot about this since the 1960s, when my friends destroyed Selective Service files to interfere with the draft for the preposterous Vietnam war. I thought about property destruction harder when some of my mentors hammered on nuclear weapons in symbolic disarmament. I followed their footsteps and reflected on it while incarcerated for these sorts of acts. […]

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Ideas & Trends

Necessity Defense and the Climate Crisis: Can a Good Law Be Broken for a Good Reason?

In 2016, James Hansen, revered NASA Goddard Space Center climatologist and official who announced publicly in 1988, “Global warming has arrived,” stood next to me outside a North Dakota courtroom. The trial of Michael Foster, one of the five climate activists who became known as Valve Turners, was happening on the other side of the door. […]

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Ideas & Trends

Does Protesting Do Any Good?

Years ago, when U.S. President Ronald Reagan was fixated on Nicaragua, a U.S. general was quoted in a Talk of the Town column in The New Yorker as saying that conditions were so ripe that a U.S. invasion of Nicaragua would be “as easy as rolling off a log.” We protested. Peace people traveled to Nicaragua to volunteer in […]

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