17 January 2011
We'd like to speak with the commander.
Saturday 15 January 2011, Bangor Kitsap Naval Base
On Saturday I participated in a protest against nuclear weapons. Here is a short recount of the events from my perspective:
The six of us crossed the line holding hands and walked abreast toward the gate sentry. we were confronted in a rapid manner by base security personnel, and I spoke to them, "We'd like to talk to the commander." The security detail seemed to do a double-take, visibly flinch, and then we were told, "sorry, that's not an option." We were then given a chance to "reconsider." We looked at each other and smiled. The security personnel took this as a queue to take us into custody, whereby we were each held by our arms and walked approximately 50 meters or so to a nearby van, where we were processed. I handed over my driver's license and gave them my current address, phone number, full social security number, and current weight. They took photographs, mug shots, straight on and each profile. I tried to smile, but I'm not sure how they turned out.
I hope the soldiers were able to sense that I do not view them as the enemy, and that my concern for their well-being is real. I believe that we are all victims of militarism, racism, and economic injustice—whatever our skin color, or economic background. A system that is based on competition for economic resources, and involves exploitation of labor and other economic abuse is not serving life.
We need a system that serves life, and values the intrinsic dignity and worthiness of every single human being. We are all members of the human family.
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