Maryland United for Peace and Justice is a left-of-center state-level advocacy organization that functions as an advocacy and education network that works on various issues such as environmentalism, left-progressive social policy, and pacificism.
The organization runs and sponsors numerous events and groups including conferences, fundraisers, businesses and other advocacy organizations. Some of these include its annual conference, Pax Christi Baltimore, Progressive Maryland, and the U.S. Peace Memorial Foundation.
Maryland United for Peace and Justice was founded in the fall of 1985 after peace activist named Jesse Aiken issued a call to other Maryland pacifist groups. Aiken called the meeting to address the need for the other groups all over Maryland to become better coordinated, have greater communication, and establish a fully functioning network of members. During the meeting, the groups came together and agreed to hold a yearly peace and justice conference, organize a monthly calendar of events, and issue a state resource guide. Maryland United for Peace and Justice held its first ever statewide conference in April 1986. 1
Overview and Activities
Maryland United for Peace and Justice supports a large variety of national, local, and regional organizations including Adelphi Friends Meeting, American Friends Service Committee, Baltimore Ethical Society, Cyprus Friendship Program, and Democracy Alliance. MUPJ assists these organizations in forming alliances among themselves. Members of MUPJ’s Coordinating Body, also known as the board, sit on the boards of these organizations and participate in some of the activities. MUPJ also plans and organizes statewide conferences every year to discuss topics related to its left-leaning interests and other unique things such as how “spiritual science” can solve the problem of violence in the economic system of world. 2
As of June 2020, MUPJ was planning a statewide conference to discuss issues such as climate change, corruption, democratic reform, a Green New Deal, and nuclear disarmament. The MUPJ has also coordinated and put together lobbying efforts for other national and Maryland state issues. These issues include addressing conflict through nonviolent means, the reduction of non-nuclear armaments, greater support for treaty negotiations, and the reduction of nuclear weapons. 3
Maryland United for Peace and Justice has frequently collaborated with many kinds of organizations like, for example, Pax Christi Baltimore. Pax Christi Baltimore is the Baltimore chapter of Pax Christi USA, an organization advocating for left-of-center and pacifist positions in the context of the Catholic Church social teachings. 4
MUPJ is also affiliated with Progressive Maryland 5 a left-of-center advocacy group that works towards enacting left-progressive social policy through public education, grassroots organizing and legislative advocacy. 6 Don’t Frack Maryland is another left-of-center group of various organizations that are committed to working towards passing statewide and permanent ban on certain methods of natural gas exploration in the state of Maryland; MUPJ is one of the organizations that supported the coalition. 7
MUPJ is also listed as a one of the organizations that are a part of the US Peace Memorial Foundation. 8 The US Peace Memorial Foundation is an organization that works toward directing a large effort to honor left-progressive American pacifists through a multitude of actions such as awarding the U.S. Peace Prize, fundraising for the U.S. Peace Memorial in Washington, D.C., and publishing the U.S. Peace Registry. 9
- “About/Resources.” Maryland United for Peace and Justice. Last modified February 26, 2018. https://mupj.org/about-2/.
- “Conferences.” Aparigraha – A New Economic Paradigm for a Culture of Peace. Accessed July 6, 2020. https://www.aparigrahaeconomics.org/conferences.htm.
- “Maryland United for Peace and Justice.” Peace Insight. Last modified February 2020. https://www.peaceinsight.org/conflicts/usa/peacebuilding-organisations/maryland-united-peace-and-justice/.
-  “Pax Christi Baltimore.” Pax Christi Baltimore. Accessed May 29, 2020. https://www.paxchristibaltimore.org/about.html.
- “Affiliates.” Progressive Maryland. Accessed May 29, 2020. https://www.progressivemaryland.org/affiliates
-  “About.” Progressive Maryland. Accessed May 29, 2020. https://www.progressivemaryland.org/about.
- “Who We Are.” Don’t Frack Maryland. Last modified 2015. https://www.dontfrackmd.org/who-we-are/.
- “Organizations.” US Peace Memorial Foundation. Accessed May 29, 2020. https://www.uspeacememorial.org/Organizations.htm.
-  “About US.” US Peace Memorial Foundation. Accessed May 29, 2020. https://www.uspeacememorial.org/About_us.htm.