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Interviews with news makers and discussion of topics important to Southwest Michigan. Subscribe to the podcast through Apple itunes and Google. Segments of interview are heard in WestSouthwest Brief during Morning Edition and All Things Considered

WSW: Working for Peace and Political Engagement

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"Abu Ghraib 56". Licensed under Public Domain via Wikimedia Commons
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One of the leading voices for Quaker advocacy says United States foreign policy should be built more on "peace making" principles.

Diane Randall is Executive Secretary of the Friends Committee on National Legislation. She will speak at the Kalamazoo Friends Meeting Saturday morning at 10:30. Randall told WMUK's Gordon Evans that her group works with other faith-based groups on issues related to the military, but also other policy issues such as immigration. 

The interview with Randall was done on Tuesday as the U.S. Senate Intelligence Committee released its report on torture authorized by U.S. officials. Randall says it's important that the report spells out the practices used by the government after the terrorist attacks in September of 2001. She says the "terrible events" prompted an "over reaction" to  that violence. 

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Interview with Diane Randall - web version

Randall says police tactics in some cases represent a "different form of militarization." She says a program out of the Pentagon providing surplus military equipment to local police forces has contributed to the problem. Randall says the Friends Committee on National Legislation wants that program repealed. She says protests in Ferguson and New York show the fallout from giving military grade weapons to police and what she calls "over policing."

One of Randall's major causes is getting people politically engaged. She says the amount of money being poured into political campaigns is concerning. But Randall says her organization has a track record and a "vibrant network" of people across the country who care about issues and are willing to contact members of Congress. Randall says it's one advantage faith-based groups like hers have over major corporate interests. 

Gordon Evans became WMUK's Content Director in 2019 after more than 20 years as an anchor, host and reporter. A 1990 graduate of Michigan State, he began work at WMUK in 1996.
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