Peace On Earth
This article about the PERC ran in 2018 in V3 Magazine. https://readv3.com/2018/12/peace-on-earth/
If you’ve ever tinkered on a brightly colored, slightly out-of-tune piano on a corner of Broad Street during the hot summer months, then you’ve already been PERC-ed.
The same goes for if you’ve tuned into your favorite radio channel and heard local actors – people you run into at the grocery store and sit next to at your kid’s school functions – delivering a heartwarming rendition of the beloved holiday classic, “It’s a Wonderful Life.”
You may have been PERC-ed all along in several ways, but you just didn’t know it. Through a plethora of multi-hued artistic endeavors balanced skillfully with activism and expression, Peacefully Engaging the Rome Community is doing just what its name proclaims to do. With events that highlight different ethnic groups, causes and bring to light Rome’s robust artistic nature, PERC is a gift to the community that keeps on giving.
PERC was actually born from an activism movement, Turn Your Back on Hate. When a Neo-Nazi hate group, the National Socialist Movement, announced in 2016 that they were going to hold a rally in Rome, Jessie Reed was angry.
Reed didn’t want her children, family and friends exposed to that kind of hate, and tried to figure out some way to combat it in a peaceful way. She decided to channel her disgust into a counter protest and rallied the help of her fellow community members to Turn (their) Backs on Hate, silently. The peaceful protest drew more than 150 people.
“After the protest, it was clear there was a huge group of people who were interested in doing more around community activism and bringing people together,” says Reed. “The overwhelming question immediately after the protest was ‘What are you doing next?’” Reed developed a small team of people to establish what would become PERC, taking the reactive nature of TYBOH and flipping it.
“We decided we were going to change our name to be something that we stood for instead of what we stood against,” she says. “PERC is appropriate for an organization that’s proactive and designed to bring people together.”
Read Full Article: https://readv3.com/2018/12/peace-on-earth/