More Community Rights Information

This page starts a list of links to valuable reference information in the area of community rights. There is a great deal of self-study material available, both in the form of articles and videos (some short and some not-so-short).

Note from Karen Edson: There is some history involved because it is important to discover HOW we wound up in the mess we are in before we try to get ourselves out. Thus, if you are looking for a 140 character fix, this is probably not the place to start. Try the 3 hour workshop instead.

Videos and Audio Files:

From (Community Environmental Legal Defense Fund)

*  So Your Community is Going to be Fracked, Mined, Factory Farmed, or fill in the blank… 

*  Thomas Linzey's hour-long keynote speech at the annual Public Interest Environmental Law Conference in Eugene, OR, on March 2, 2013

* "Democracy Matters" weekly PODCAST - The Community Environmental Legal Defense Fund produced a groundbreaking weekly 45-minute radio show on KYRS Community Radio in Spokane, WA, until March 2012, when they had to retire the series, but its archives are still listenable online. It is truly outstanding audio. I can't emphasize enough how worthwhile these shows are to listen to. Click here: <>. In CELDF's words: "Each week we bring you stories from the frontlines as communities bring rights-based organizing to their communities - asserting their local self-governing authority to make the critical decisions that affect their lives and their community."

 *  Mari Margil, associate director of Community Environmental Legal Defense Fund (CELDF), speaking in November 2008 about why communities are considering local ordinances and CELDF's role in evolving this new movement. It's just 10 minutes long.

*  Thomas Linzey speech at Bioneers - Feb 2010 Parts one through four, about 35 minutes total:

 *  Thomas Linzey being interviewed by Amy Goodman about his organization's legal work in PA & WA:

* Mari Margil, associate director of CELDF, speaking at the Bioneeers Conference in Fall 2009  -  The associate director of the Community Environmental Defense Fund (CELDF) describes the inspiring, groundbreaking work she and CELDF are doing to recognize Rights of Nature in law in both the U.S. and Ecuador, which recently became the worlds first nation to enshrine such rights in its constitution.  Her talk is split into three short sections:


*  Talk by Thomas Linzey, attorney with Community Environmental Legal Defense Fund (CELDF) speaking in Seattle February 10, 2005.

Part II of this talk...


(Or you can click here <> for many recent links on CELDF's site.) 


From Paul Cienfuegos:

**Check out his NEW (5/2017) website:!

* Check out his new "Community Rights TV" channel on youtube, and click on "Subscribe" on that page, so you'll be informed every time he adds another video!

(Or you can click here  <> for his recent links.)

* Paul's brand new two-part short interview on youtube that went viral - 14 minutes each:

Part One:

Part Two:

* Paul's best full-length live TV interview, with Jim Lockhart, on Portland Community Access TV in February 2012. Informal, engaging, uplifting. Another great intro for folks you know who may not be ready to read a long article.


* What is Community Rights?, a concise 5-minute intro on youtube with Paul Cienfuegos

*  Paul Cienfuegos' speech in front of 6000 people at the Millions Against Monsanto rally in Portland on May 25, 2013. Organic Consumers Association has helped it to go viral. Please keep it spreading!



*  Paul's internationally broadcast speech on David Barsamian's 'Alternative Radio' show the Fall of 2011, titled "We Need Much Bolder Thinking and Action to Wrest Our Country Back From Corporate Rule". You can read the speech HERE. or listen to it HERE or buy it on CD or mp3 HERE. It's an excellent way to introduce this critical topic to your friends and family who seem doubtful that there's anything that can be done about this growing crisis.

* Paul's 57-minute speech in Portland (on Feb 26th, 2010) as an audio file on Portland FM radio station KBOO's website:  It's followed by 16 minutes of Q&A.  The title of his speech is: "Is a Truly Sustainable Society Achievable As Long As Corporate "Rights" Trump the Rights of People?"

* An excellent example of how you can introduce this groundbreaking work to others in just four minutes flat!Paul Cienfuegos' 4-minute speech at the Pink Martini rally/concert in solidarity with Occupy Portland (10/28/11):

And his 15-minute presentation at the follow-up session in Pioneer Square, downtown Portland, Oregon (11/1/2011):


From (Community Environmental Legal Defense Fund)

*  Local Lawmaking: A Call for a Community Rights Movement by CELDF

 *  The February 2013 feature article in The Nation magazine about our growing movement, titled "Rebel Towns":

 *  Sins of the Fathers: How Corporations Use the Constitution and Environmental Law to Plunder Communities and Nature by Thomas Linzey

*  Sheep in Wolf's Clothing by Jane Anne Morris

*  Help!  I've Been Colonized and I Can't Get Up...! by Jane Anne Morris

 *  Timeline of Personhood Rights and Powers by Jan Edwards This timeline was developed by Jan Edwards. It's a great educational tool to explain how corporations have used the legal system to gain constitutional "rights" through court decisions and how people have organized to gain constitutional rights through amendments (with a few exceptions).

From the link below, you can print it out on a regular home printer as an 8-page pdf, or send this link to your specialty printer to have them produce a 2 foot by 11 foot timeline, or a 3 foot by 17 foot timeline!

A more extended 22-page Chronology of judicial decisions about "rights" can be found here:


ALSO SEE:  the Corporations vs Democracy Committee's Corporate Personhood Timeline and Study Guide. NOTE: You may have to email the committee chair on this but it is worth the effort! The timeline is must the same as the Move to Amend one but the study guide is FANTASTIC! It can be spread over several weeks, and a facilitator from your local WILPF chapter may be available to lead the discussion!!!! (Karen Edson note)

* Personalizing the Impersonal: Corporations and the Bill of Rights  by Carl J. Mayer (This lengthy law review article offers the most thorough legal analysis to date of the process by which corporations have seized specific constitutional rights.)

* Populist History introductory readings

* Statement on Efforts to Amend the U.S. Constitution following Citizens United (CELDF's 2012 response to the MoveToAmend and FreeSpeechForPeople campaigns.)

* An introduction to the Anti-Federalists, who were adamantly opposed to losing their hard-fought-for Articles of Confederation to the second US Constitution and other related docs on a special CELDF page:

From Paul Cienfuegos:

* A speech by Paul Cienfuegos to the Transition Portland (Oregon) group on January 18, 2012. It's titled "When the Transition Movement & the Community Rights Movement Start Collaborating, Watch Out!"

* Taking Care of Business: Citizenship and the Charter of Incorporation by Richard L. Grossman and Frank T. Adams  (This is the pamphlet that launched the movement to end corporate "rights" back in 1993.)

* Why a Green Future is "Unconstitutional" and What To Do About It   by Jane Anne Morris

* The Pink Oleo Saga: Why So Many Good State Laws Are "Unconstitutional" (and What We Should Do About It) by Jane Anne Morris

* Labor Organizing Must Challenge Corporate Rule  by Peter Kellman


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