Winners of ethecon´s annual awards for 2011 announced:
Tribute for Angela Davis - Censure for Tsunehisa Katsumata and other accountable people from TEPCO
The recipients of this year´s two ethecon awards have been chosen: The „International ethecon Blue Planet Award 2011“ goes to the American „political icon“ Angela Davis. The „International ethecon Black Planet Award 2011“ exposes and condemns Chairman Tsunehisa Katsumata, other accountable executives, and the major stockholders of TEPCO.
Since 2006 „ethecon - Foundation Ethics & Economics“ bestows two international awards annually. A positive prize, the „Blue Planet Award“ recognizes extraordinary efforts to maintain and save the „Blue Planet“. Its negative counterpart, the „Black Planet Award“, exposes and condemns actions responsible for the ruin and destruction of the „Blue Planet“.
The „Blue Planet Award 2011“ will be given to the Afro-American civil- and human rights activist Prof. Angela Davis. She first gained public awareness in 1969, when she assumed a teaching position at UCLA, the university of Los Angeles. The then governor of California and later US president, Ronald Reagan, as well as the Board of Regents had unsuccessfully tried to prohibit the appointment of Davis, a member of the US communist party. In 1970, after a unsuccessful hostage-taking with several deaths, in which she actually did not take part, Angela Davis was placed on the FBI´s list of the Ten Most Wanted Fugitives. The public prosecutor called for the death penalty, causing a hitherto unknown deluge of solidarity movements under the motto „Free Angela“. Due to the untenability of the accusations, she was acquitted in 1972.
Influenced by her own situation and that of other prisoners, she has since advocated untiringly for the rights of prisoners and against the death penalty. She is particularly concerned about the prison-industrial complex, criticising the increasing privatisation of prisons by regular „prison corporations“ and the exploitation of the extremely underpaid inmates for the benefit of corporation profit.
The Fukushima tragedy is the reason why ethecon criticises Tsunehisa Katsumata, chairman of the Japanese Tokyo Electric Power Corporation/TEPCO; Masataka Shimizu, the company's president at the time of the disaster; other accountable executives; and the major shareholders behind them with the Black Planet Award 2011. They all callously sacrificed safety and social justice in the interest of maximal profit and were thereby responsible for the hitherto largest industry-caused human catastrophe in the history of mankind. The victims numbered in the thousands, large areas of Japan were contaminated, the long-term impact is unforeseeable, and the damages immeasurable. Particularly perfidious are TEPCO´s policies of concealment and cover up and the collusion with government and political leaders.
The award ceremony will take place during the ethecon conference on Saturday, November 19, in the „Pfefferwerk“ in Berlin. Angela Davis will personally accept the award.
The bestowal ceremony is to begin at 2:00 p.m. in the „Großer Saal“ (Large Hall), Schönhauser Allee 176. Admission is free, but pre-registration is required.
With its positive prizes ethecon honored in past years Diane Wilson/USA (2006), Vandana Shiva/India(2007), José Abreu und Hugo Chávez/Venezuela (2008), Uri Avnery/Israel (2009) as well as Elias Bierdel/Austria (2010). The censure awards went to the owners, shareholders and executive management of the following companies: Monsanto/USA (2006), Nestlé/Switzerland(2007), Blackwater (Xe)/USA (2008), Formosa Plastics Group/Taiwan (2009) and BP/Great Britain (2010).
In contrast to many corporate, family, church, political and state foundations, ethecon is one of the few foundations empowered by ordinary citizens. There are currently 21 endowment contributors. Following the credo „for a world without exploitation and oppression“, it see its mission in its responsibility toward coming generations. The young foundation is financed through endowment contributions, donations and sustaining memberships.