Amnesty International Group 22 Pasadena/Caltech News
Volume XXII Number 4, April 2014

  Thursday, April 24, 7:30 PM. Monthly 
Meeting. We meet at the Caltech Y, Tyson 
House, 505 S. Wilson Ave., Pasadena. (This is 
just south of the corner with San Pasqual. 
Signs will be posted.) We will be planning our 
activities for the coming months. Please join 
us! Refreshments provided.
  Sunday, April 27, 6:30 PM. Book Discussion 
Group. For April we read "On Saudi Arabia" 
by Karen Elliott House.
  Tuesday, May 13, 7:30 PM. Letter writing 
meeting at Caltech Athenaeum, corner of Hill 
and California in Pasadena. This informal 
gathering is a great way for newcomers to get 
acquainted with Amnesty.
  Sunday, May 18, 6:30 PM.  Rights Readers 
Human Rights Book Discussion group. This 
month we read "A Tale for the Time Being" by 
Ruth Ozeki.


Hi All

It is with sadness that we note my co-
coordinator of Group 22, Lucas Kamp, passed 
away last month.  Words cannot express how 
much he meant to our group and will be missed.  
Please see members' tributes to Lucas in this 

On a lighter note, some of our members went to 
hear Ruth Ozeki give a talk at the Pacific Asia 
Museum a few months ago on the book we are 
reading for May.  Based on that talk, I was 
inspired to check out 2 of her other novels from 
the library and read them!  (which I enjoyed)

Con Carino,

Human Rights Book Discussion Group

Keep up with Rights Readers at

Next Rights Readers meetings:
Sunday, April 27, 6:30 PM 
Sunday, May 13, 6:30 PM
Vroman's Bookstore 
695 E. Colorado, Pasadena

Lost and Found
'A Tale for the Time Being', by Ruth Ozeki
Published: May 10, 2013 
The New York Times

Nao, a 16-year-old schoolgirl, is in a cafe in 
Tokyo, writing in her diary. She is, she declares, 
a "time being," with all the ambiguity that 
phrase implies. Many months later, after Japan's 
devastating earthquake and tsunami, a 
Japanese-American novelist named Ruth, living 
on an island off the coast of British Columbia, 
finds a barnacle-encrusted freezer bag washed 
up on the beach. It contains, it appears, a copy of 
Proust's "In Search of Lost Time" and a broken 
watch, along with some letters. But Proust's 
book is no more than a cover. Inside is Nao's 
diary, written in purple ink. 

Whenever the word "time" comes up - 
"wasting time," "about time," "in time" - the 
reader must stop and think about the many 
angles of approach to that subject in Ruth 
Ozeki's delightful yet sometimes harrowing new 
novel, "A Tale for the Time Being." Ozeki's 
quirky and passionate first novel, "My Year of 
Meats," introduced a Japanese-American 
television producer to a Japanese housewife; her 
second, "All Over Creation," was set in rural 
Idaho. Now she sets out again to link two 
people on opposite sides of the Pacific. 

Nao has spent most of her life in Sunnyvale, 
Calif., where her father was a Silicon Valley 
highflier. When the dot-com bubble burst, he 
lost his job and his money, forcing his family to 
return to Tokyo and a cramped two-room 
apartment at the wrong end of town, a situation 
that, as Nao puts it in her irreverent style, 
"totally sucked." An unhappy schoolgirl who 
questions everything, Nao writes down 
whatever enters her head, making her diary 
read like an extended series of e-mails. When 
her great-grandmother and a fellow nun come 
on a visit from their Zen temple, she records her 
response: "Yo, Dad! There's two bald midgets in 
pajamas here to see you." 
In her new Japanese school, Nao is an outsider, 
violently bullied by her classmates until she's 
covered in cuts and bruises. Her father's 
wounds are more deeply hidden: he lies to the 
family, saying he's found a new job, then sits in 
a park all day. Finally, he jumps in front of a 
train, but even his suicide attempt is 
unsuccessful. Nao also wants to die, but first she 
intends to write the biography of the Buddhist 
great-grandmother, who claims to be 104 years 
old. Yet there's another reason to relish her visit 
to the old woman's temple near Sendai, on the 
coast north of Tokyo: learning a way to 
overcome obstacles and enemies by developing 
"supapawa" (superpowers) through Zen 

Nao's future reader, Ruth, has left Manhattan to 
live with her husband on the aptly named 
Desolation Sound in a community of refugees 
from the modern world. There she reads the 
diary slowly, at the same speed she imagines 
Nao wrote it, and gradually the teenager's 
world impinges more and more on Ruth's. The 
watch turns out to be not broken but merely in 
need of winding, and when Ruth translates the 
characters engraved on the back - "sky" and 
"soldier" - it's clear that it must have belonged 
to a kamikaze pilot. At the mountain temple, 
Nao meets the ghost of that pilot, her great-
uncle, and is given letters he sent from a training 
camp to her great-grandmother. "My being is 
attuned only to one thing," he informed his 
mother, "the relentless rhythm of time, 
marching toward my death." 

Many of the elements of Nao's story - 
schoolgirl bullying, unemployed suicidal 
"salarymen," kamikaze pilots - are among a 
Western reader's most familiar images of Japan, 
but in Nao's telling, refracted through Ruth's 
musings, they become fresh and immediate, 
occasionally searingly painful. Ozeki takes on 
big themes in "A Tale for the Time Being" - not 
just the death of individuals but also the death 
of the planet. In doing so, she ranges widely, 
drawing in everything from quantum mechanics 
and the theory of infinite possibilities in an 
infinite number of universes to the teachings of 
the 13th-century Zen master Dogen Zenji. 
There's even a crow with possibly magical 
powers. All are drawn into the stories of two 
"time beings," Ruth and Nao, whose own fates 
are inextricably bound. 

Lesley Downer is a British journalist who writes 
about Asia. Her latest book is a novel, "Across a 
Bridge of Dreams."
Author Biography

RUTH OZEKI is a novelist, filmmaker and Zen 
Buddhist priest, whose award-winning novels 
have been described as "witty, intelligent and 
passionate" by the Independent, and as 
possessing "shrewd and playful humor, luscious 
sexiness and kinetic pizzazz" by the Chicago 

The daughter of a Japanese mother and a 
Caucasian-American father, she was born and 
raised in New Haven, Connecticut. She attended 
Smith College and graduated with degrees in 
English Literature and Asian Studies. She 
received a Japanese Ministry of Education 
Fellowship to pursue graduate work in classical 
Japanese literature at Nara Women's University. 
During her years in Japan, she worked in 
Kyoto's entertainment or "water" district as a bar 
hostess, studied Noh drama and mask carving, 
founded a language school, and taught on the 
faculty of Kyoto Sangyo University.

In 2006, Ozeki received an honorary doctorate 
from Smith College. She has been a contributor 
to the New York Times op-ed page, and her 
essays and short fiction have appeared in a in a 
number of anthologies. She frequently speaks at 
colleges and universities. Ozeki serves on the 
Creative Advisory Council of Hedgebrook, a 
women's writing retreat center on Whidbey 
Island, Washington, and on the Advisory 
Editorial Board of The Asian American Literary 
Review. Starting in 2015, she will be the Elizabeth 
Drew Professor of Creative Writing at Smith 

A longtime meditator, Ozeki was ordained as a 
Soto Zen priest in 2010 by her friend and 
teacher, Zoketsu Norman Fischer, with whom 
she continues to study. She is affiliated with 
the Brooklyn Zen Center and the Everyday Zen 
Foundation, and is the editor of the Everyday 
Zen website. She is married to the German-
Canadian environmental artist Oliver 
Kellhammer. A dual citizen of Canada and the 
United States, she divides her time between 
Cortes Island, British Columbia, and New York 

Gao Zhisheng

by Joyce Wolf

At the Group 22 April letter-writing meeting, we 
signed a 50th birthday card for Gao Zhisheng 
and mailed it to him in Shaya Prison in remote 
northwestern China. Last week we received an 
announcement of an action that other Amnesty 
groups are taking to acknowledge Gao 
Zhisheng. This action does not close until April 
30, so there's still time for us to participate. AI 
groups in Seattle and Brazil have posted their 

Dear all,
This is just a reminder that it's Gao Zhisheng's 
50th birthday on 20 April, and we have developed 
an action to coincide with this date. See the 
update below for details.
Gao Zhisheng will turn 50 years old on 20 April. 
But he will be spending his birthday behind bars. 
Read below for details of a birthday action.
What we would like you to do:
Ask activists to take a photo of themselves 
wishing Gao Zhisheng a happy birthday. We 
encourage them to be as creative as possible! Bake 
a cake for Gao, design a birthday card for him, or 
hold a birthday party in his honour. Or simply 
hold a birthday message him, such as: "Happy 
Birthday, Gao Zhisheng. We haven't forgotten 
you," or 
Photos can be emailed to (in the body of the 
email, not as an attachment) and then they will 
automatically appear here.
In addition to sharing the photos with his family, 
we hope to be able to show them to Gao Zhisheng 
after his release. We will also post some of the 
photos on Chinese-language social media 
platforms, in order to highlight the action and 
increase the online dialogue about his case.
Photos can be sent anytime from now until 30 
Any questions?
If you are able to take part in the action, or have 
any questions, please contact Patrick in the China 
team ( and Claire in 
the Individuals team (

Let's take some photos for this action at our 
April 24 meeting! For thos of you who have not 
yet seen it, the DVD of the Gao Zhisheng 
documentary Transcending Fear will also be 
available to borrow at our meeting.


by Robert Adams

Recommendations for International Human 
Rights Law and US Surveillance Practices
April 14, 2014

Amnesty International USA and the American 
Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) thank the Privacy 
and Civil Liberties Oversight Board (PCLOB) for 
the opportunity to submit this statement for the 
record regarding the application of international 
human rights law to US surveillance practices.

In this submission, we briefly set out reasons the 
PCLOB should assess US surveillance practices 
in an international human rights law 
framework; summarize key characteristics of 
Section 702 of the FISA Amendments Act; 
describe international human rights law on the 
right to privacy; identify human rights concerns 
with the collection, storage and use of 
communications under Section 702; and explain 
that US human rights obligations are legally 
binding and applicable to US surveillance 
practices. We conclude by urging the PCLOB to 
recommend the repeal of Section 702 as well as 
other measures to substantially reform US 
surveillance practices.


The ACLU and Amnesty International USA urge 
the Privacy and Civil Liberties Oversight Board to 
recommend the repeal of Section 702 of the FISA 
Amendments Act. As the ACLU explained in its 
March 19, 2014 submission to PCLOB, Section 702 is 
unconstitutional. Moreover, as Amnesty 
International USA and the ACLU have explained in 
this submission, Section 702 permits arbitrary and 
unlawful interferences with the right to privacy in 
violation of international human rights law. In sum, 
Section 702 violates international obligations to 
protect privacy guaranteed by Article 17 of the 
ICCPR for the following reasons:
*	Public Transparency: Section 702 fails to 
establish clear and precise limitations on the 
scope of surveillance authority granted; to 
the contrary, it provides broad and 
effectively unfettered discretion to US 
authorities to conduct surveillance;
*	Proportionality and Necessity: Section 702 
permits the collection and storage of personal 
data, including of "about-the-target" 
communications. This involves the copying 
and scanning of virtually any message 
entering or leaving the US, without any 
consideration of the danger to national 
security posed by the intended target.
*	Independent oversight and redress: The 
FISC reviews only general procedures, not 
specific targeting decisions, making its 
review wholly inadequate under the ICCPR.
*	Non-discrimination: Section 702 denies any 
protection whatsoever to non-US persons 
outside the US, apparently based solely on 
the flawed premise that the US government 
does not owe any privacy protections to non-
US persons-a premise that the President has 
recently rejected.
At the very least, Section 702 should be 
amended to prohibit surveillance without 
individualized suspicion and prior review by a 
competent, independent and impartial tribunal. 
Section 702 should also provide strict limitations 
on the scope and duration of surveillance, and 
use, retention and dissemination of personal 
communications. The definition of "foreign 
intelligence information" should be amended 
and strictly limited to, for example, information 
pertaining to espionage or national security.
The ACLU and Amnesty International USA 
also recommend that the Executive Branch 
disclose the legal authority and scope of all 
signals intelligence practices of non-US 
persons outside of US territory. All signals 
intelligence collection-regardless of nationality 
or the location of individuals-should be 
authorized in a publicly accessible law setting 
out the potential scope and duration of 
surveillance, rather than by secret executive 
orders or other non-accessible rules. At the very 
least, the President should direct the disclosure 
of a meaningful unclassified description of the 
targeting procedures used in collecting 
memoranda and FISC opinions interpreting 
Section 702, with only those redactions 
necessary to protect legitimately secret 

The ACLU and Amnesty International USA 
urge that all branches of the US government 
recognize and adhere to US human rights 
obligations with regard to surveillance 
operations that impact people across the world. 
Any surveillance measure must comport with 
international law, and human rights protections 
should not be denied solely on the basis of 
nationality. Section 702 fails to provide any 
protection to non-US persons outside US 
territory and US law should be changed to 
reflect, at minimum, the necessary protections 
required by international law. Notwithstanding 
the US official position on extraterritorial 
application of international human rights law 
generally and obligations to respect privacy 
specifically, the Executive Branch should, as a 
matter of policy, commit to meeting human 
rights standards protecting the rights to privacy 
and freedom of expression and opinion as it 
conducts surveillance inside and outside of US 

Background, per the Electronic Frontier Foundation 
"FISA was passed in 1978 after the Church 
Committee, a special investigative committee, 
uncovered illegal and unconstitutional spying 
by the NSA and CIA. FISA created a secret court 
called the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance 
Court (FISA Court) to oversee the targeted 
spying on specific and identified agents of foreign 

After 9/11, President Bush bypassed the FISA 
Court and began illegally mass spying on 
domestic communications. Journalists and 
whistleblowers exposed the illegal surveillance a 
few years later, but Congress failed to stop the 
spying. Instead, it passed the 2008 FISA 
Amendments Act (FISA AA) to justify more 
spying. In particular, Section 702 is used to 
justify mass collection of emails and phone 


By Laura Brown and others

Kalaya'an, Lucas and Kathy. November 2010

I don't think I'll be able to go to an Amnesty 
letter writing without thinking of Lucas. He was 
so dependable on those occasions on the lawn of 
the Athenaeum or in the Rathskeller, toting his 
bag filled with paper, envelopes, postage and of 
course, Urgent Actions. And he liked to greet 
members with a cold pitcher of beer or a menu, 
making sure orders were placed and delivered. 
During the writing, he would share his 
fascination with place names and political 
happenings in all corners of the world.

When Group 22 was chosen for Local Group of 
the Year, I believe it was due in large part to 
Lucas' careful oversight and outreach for AI in 
Pasadena. He kept up the email list and sent out 
monthly reminders for each of our three regular 
events: letter writing, general meeting, and book 
group. He also promoted and attended regional 
and national AI conferences, and joined forces 
with like-minded organizations, such as anti- 
death penalty groups. He reached out to 
students in many ways, such as hosting a table 
at Cal Tech or speaking to young people at 
Flintridge Prep. Often, Cal Tech students have 
showed up for letter writing and they were 
always greeted warmly and welcomed by Lucas.

Though described by his family as one who 
disliked crowds, Lucas participated in Doo Dah 
parades and other demonstrations, setting aside 
his preferences for the greater good of being a 
community activist. His apartment on Catalina 
wasn't large, but it fit an impressive array of 
books, board games, and also people when he 
made it available for film screenings or to use as 
an alternate site for the book group. If one thing 
came across loud and clear at his April 5 
memorial service, it was his generosity. He 
shared his time and possessions with family, 
friends, the cause for human rights, and 
specifically with Group 22. We'll miss you, 
Lucas, but we'll remember your dedication to 
our group and try to carry on the good work 
that you accomplished in Pasadena.  
--Laura Brown

From Kalaya'an Mendoza, AIUSA Field 
"Lucas Kamp will always be remembered as a 
human rights champion. I was lucky enough to 
know Lucas through his leadership with 
Amnesty International. He was a thought 
partner, an ever ready activist and a quiet leader 
who helped others reach their potential. It 
breaks my heart to think that another beautiful 
human being left this world behind but I know 
that Lucas left it better than when he came into 
it. He has always been a positive and kind force 
for human rights in Southern California. In his 
honor and legacy I would like to continue his 
work by bringing more people into the human 
rights movement. Lucas, you will never be 

From Joyce, Member of Group 22:
"Ave atque vale. Hail and farewell, dear Lucas. 
'I will not say, do not weep, for not all tears are an 
evil.' -- J.R.R. Tolkien"

From Kai, Member of Group 22:
"Lucas Kamp March 15, 1946 to March 30, 2014. 
Much respect to my brilliant friend Lucas. He 
was an amazing scientist and loved fighting and 
working for peace and justice. I will be thinking 
of him and singing songs and reflecting on his 
wonderful spirit. To the light he goes."

MEMORIES OF LUCAS will be continued in 
next month's newsletter, including more 
selections from the tributes posted in Facebook. 
Look for an article from Larry Romans, best 
friend and former Group 22 coordinator who 
introduced Lucas to Amnesty back in 1998. 

Group 22 has received many messages from 
members of other Amnesty groups 
acknowledging his dedication to human rights 
and his work for AIUSA for over a decade. We 
also need to thank friends and colleagues of 
Lucas for donations made to Group 22 in his 

By Stevi Carroll

Jerry Hartfield

When Jerry Hartfield was sentenced to death in 
1977, a swift execution of that sentence would 
have kept him from having his sentence 
overturned in 1980.  A woman with reservations 
about serving on a jury that could lead to a 
man's execution was unconstitutionally barred 
from that jury; however, a retrial did not follow.  
Mr. Hartfield's conviction was formally vacated 
in 1983, and Governor Mark White moved to 
have Mr. Hartfield's sentence commuted.  This 
sounds like a story with a happy swift ending 
peeking right over the horizon, but alas, no.

Somehow the lines of communication did not 
buzz with this information, and the Board of 
Pardons and Parole, as well as the governor's 
office, did not know about these events.  So why 
didn't Mr. Hartfield bring attention to it?  First, 
after his conviction, he had no lawyer.  Second, 
he is a man with an IQ of 51.  He had no one to 
advocate for him until other inmates came to his 
aid in 2006.  Seven years later the Texas Court of 
Appeals acknowledged he had been wrongly 
imprisoned and that his right to a speedy trial 
violated.  He should have a new trial, yes?  Well, 
the murder weapon has been lost so the case 
hinges on a coerced confession.  A person with 
an IQ between 60 and 70 has the scholastic 
equivalent to the third grade and remember Mr. 
Hartfield's IQ is 51, so what might his emotional 
and mental state have been when the authorities 
extracted that confession? And no re-trial was 

According to Andrew Cohen in his article 
"Texas has been holding this man hostage for 
12,600 days", no cross-check existed for this 
situation and in some twisted logic, officials for 
the State believe Mr. Hartfield deliberately kept 
himself imprisoned so that one day he could use 
the lack of a speedy trial in court.  Additionally, 
while Judge Craig Estlinbaum has 
acknowledged the court system in Texas had 
been negligent in its handling of this case, he 
also said, "there is no evidence that Hartfield 
has suffered any anxiety relating to his pretrial 
detention," a detention since 1977.

At this writing, Mr. Hartfield is still in prison.  
Imagine if he had had a speedy execution.

90 Million Strong

The National Coalition to Abolish the Death 
Penalty has put together the personal stories of 
people who oppose the death penalty.  These 
stories are as brief as "It's wrong" to as long as 
many paragraphs. Some contain religious 
reasons, including one with this line from the 
Lord's Prayer, "forgive us our trespasses as we 
forgive those who trespass against us" that 
allowed a woman to see her imprisoned father-
in-law not simply as a convict on death row, but 
as a human being who committed a horrible 
crime and is nonetheless someone to love.

These stories can be found at If you are so 
moved, you can add your thoughts at this site.

Take Action: Frank Walls  AI online

Frank Walls, a 46-year-old man who has been on 
death row in Florida for 25 years, is seeking 
commutation of his death sentence. If clemency 
is rejected, the governor will sign an execution 
warrant. He is a remorseful prisoner with brain 
disorders that have left him functioning at the 
level of a 12-year-old.

Stay of execution
26	Charles Crawford	Mississippi
27	Charles Warner	Oklahoma (until 
4/29 to allow time to find a supply of lethal 	
			injection drugs)
27	Michelle Byrom	Mississippi

16	Stephen Edmiston	Pennsylvania 
22	Nickolus Johnson	Tennessee

26	Jeffrey Ferguson	Missouri
	lethal injection**
27	Anthony Doyle	Texas	
	lethal injection**

3	Tommy Sells		Texas	
	lethal injection**
9	Ramiro Hernandez*	Texas	
	lethal injection**
16	Jose Villegas		Texas	
	lethal injection**

*foreign national
**1-drug - pentobarbital

UAs                        30
POC                        11
Total                      41
To add your letters to the total contact


Amnesty International Group 22
The Caltech Y
Mail Code C1-128
Pasadena, CA 91125

Amnesty International's mission is to undertake research and action focused on preventing and ending grave abuses of the 
rights to physical and mental integrity, freedom of conscience and expression, and freedom from discrimination, within the 
context of its work to promote all human rights.