Sunday, December 5, 2010

How to keep going

Ground the drones activists in the Nevada desert near Creech AFB  take a break from protesting to pet some horses.

This picture is the kind of thing I think about when people (often) ask: "How can you keep going with the peace work? Don't you get tired? Don't you get discouraged?" This is when I think, But I meet and get to work with such interesting people all the time! I feel discouraged at shopping malls, not at peace actions.

Yesterday was like that; a bunch of us stood vigil in front of Bath Iron Works, where General Dynamics pays workers to put Depleted Uranium weapons on warships at your expense. Strong youth presence, great energy, a good turnout, and the CEO saw us as he came out of their administration building (a BIW worker standing with us tipped us off to that). Thanks to Smilin' Trees Disarmament Farm for their organizing and their flyer:
"Although we inflict war on countries thousands of miles away, we live in a fantasy in which we don't see or feel the war is raging. But it is raging and children are dying, and this is our responsibility." 
The vigil will continue each Saturday 11:30-12:30 through the season of Advent.

After the vigil a group got together at Addams-Melman House to think about where the Bring Our War $$ Home campaign is headed, at least in Maine. We had some old hands and some new ones that want to bring the campaign to their local communities. Good discussions about effective communications and timing; Martin Luther King Jr. Day will be the one year anniversary of the launch of BOW$H in Maine. Possible actions: more community forums, perhaps with a women's focus in March; more art and image making; more presence in the Halls of Flags at the State House; flight of the green angels; and a possible "instant consensus" tool for examining political lying. Detailed notes will go out to our lists soon via email, and thanks to Sally for that effort.

With a new governor coming into office in Maine who claims he is going to balance the budget, Bruce urged us to communicate with him via the online tool created to gather input from citizens. Leaders who say they are going to balance a state or town budget without addressing the billions of (borrowed) $$$ wasted on wars are just lying, because it won't be possible.

You can't say half of the federal budget is off the table without impoverishing the programs scrambling for the remaining funds, and let's not pretend otherwise.

One Virginia class submarine = the money saved by freezing all federal government workers' pay. Oops, I meant, all federal government workers except the military.

Speaking of pretending, let's not pretend that kicking WikiLeaks off their server is anything less than caving to pressure from the feds. Kind of like you see the King of Spain doing here in the photo accompanying an excellent article in Mother Jones about the inner workings of pressure to protect U.S. war criminals from prosecution anywhere in the empire upon which the sun never sets.
Francis Ford Coppola could have directed this photo op.
Daniel Ellsberg urges us to follow his lead in boycotting (which will hurt me more than it hurts them, for sure) and letting them know why. The farce of vilifying truth tellers like Bradley Manning, Julian Assange and WikiLeaks, while protecting mass murderers from their day in court, continues.

Here's one last photo from the Nevada desert. Where do I get one of these banners??? Dear Santa....

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