Scioto Peace and Justice to honor couple

By Wayne Allen

October 4, 2013

Wayne Allen

PDT Staff Writer

Scioto Peace and Justice is set to host an event today to honor Alice and Staughton Lynd.

According to released information for the event, “Alice and Staughton Lynd, of Youngtown, Ohio, are Quakers, historians, educators, legal scholars, labor lawyers, and activists in civil rights, peace movements, anti-death penalty and prison reform.”

In biographical information provided by Scioto Peace and Justice, “Alice Lynd served as a draft counselor during the Vietnam War years and edited We Won’t Go: Personal Accounts of War Objectors. Trained in early childhood education, she directed day care and health centers in Chicago. As a paralegal and later a lawyer, she advocated on behalf of workers victimized by companies and left unprotected by run-away steel mills and declining labor unions. Along with Staughton and others from the community, Alice helped workers organize grassroots efforts to meet their most urgent needs. Most recently she served as co-counsel in a major class action lawsuit, which challenged the constitutionality of conditions at Ohio’s “Super-Max” prison in Youngstown, Ohio.

During his time as a Yale University professor that Staughton Lynd became most active in his opposition to the Vietnam War. As a pacifist and conscientious objector, he spoke out and marched against the war and on one occasion he traveled to Hanoi in hopes of clarifying the peace terms of the Vietnamese government and the National Liberation Front.

As a result of his anti-war activism, he was denied tenure at Yale and blacklisted from teaching at other universities. At that point, Staughton became a lawyer and began advocating for the legal rights of workers, especially those most hard hit by the steel mill closings in the Mahoning Valley. As prisons, including the new “Super-Max” have become a leading industry in Ohio, Staughton Lynd has sought to understand prison politics and the enigmatic workings of the justice system. His book, Lucasville: The Untold Story of a Prison Uprising, is a definitive history of the longest prison uprising in the U.S. and its aftermath.”

According to organizers of the the event will start at 6:30 p.m. and will be held at the West Portsmouth Community of Christ, 2237 Russell Avenue, West Portsmouth and is free and open to the public.

Wayne Allen may be reached at 740-353-3101, ext. 228, or tallen@civitasmedia.com. For breaking news, follow Wayne on Twitter @WayneallenPDT.