In a little over a month from now (on March 28th) the five Disarm Now Plowshares co-defendants will walk into Judge Benjamin Settle’s courtroom for sentencing.
Sentencing can be defined as the punishment given to persons convicted of a crime. One legal dictionary refers to the primary goals of sentencing as “punishment, deterrence, incapacitation, and rehabilitation.” It is somewhat ironic that one of the goals of sentencing is “deterrence,” the same longstanding stated (and completely misguided) goal of U.S. nuclear weapons policy. And I must admit that the last one, “rehabilitation” made me laugh as I thought of the idea of rehabilitating any of these fine people. Perhaps it would be more appropriate to prescribe rehabilitation for those people engaged in preparations for nuclear war, the ones Thomas Merton once described as:
“…the sane ones, the well-adapted ones, who can without qualms and without nausea aim the missiles and press the buttons that will initiate the great festival of destruction that they, the sane ones, have prepared.”
As for the Disarm Now Plowshares, they will go calmly and willingly to their sentencing, confident in their own sanity, and knowing that their Plowshares action on November 2, 2009 was right both morally and legally, that their trial and the court’s judgement was unjust, and that no judgement or sentencing by the U.S. Government can change the fact that Trident is both immoral (an abomination) and illegal under both U.S. and international law. As the Disarm Now Plowshares said in a 2009 joint statement:
“The manufacture and deployment of Trident II missiles, weapons of mass destruction, is immoral and criminal under International Law and, therefore, under United States law. As U.S. citizens we are responsible under the Nuremberg Principles for this threat of first-strike terrorism hanging over the community of nations, rich and poor. Moreover, such planning, preparation, and deployment is a blasphemy against the Creator of life, imaged in each human being.”
And so the Disarm Now Plowshares 5 prepare for their sentencing. We can support them by being present at their sentencing and bearing witness to the folly of a nation that continues to prepare to commit omnicide. Even now the U.S. government is busy with plans for the next generation of ballistic missile submarines to replace Trident through the year 2082!!! How can we not resist such madness???
Please read below for the most current schedule of events leading up to and including the sentencing of the Disarm Now Plowshares. Please note that changes might occur, and we will keep this schedule updated, so check back the night before each event for any last minute changes.
Please also note that you can still write letters of support on behalf of the Disarm Now Plowshares co-defendants. Go to the “Support Us” page to learn more. Thanks!
Disarm Now Plowshares Sentencing Events
SATURDAY MARCH 26 – 1:00 pm to 2:00 pm. Vigil at the US Naval Base Kitsap-Bangor Main (Trident Ave.) Gate.
SUNDAY MARCH 27 – 10:30 a.m. MASS AT ST. LEO CHURCH, 710 South 13th St., Tacoma, Fr. Pat Lee, SJ, Oregon Provincial
SUNDAY MARCH 27 – 5:30 p.m. FESTIVAL OF HOPE AT ST. LEO CHURCH, Potluck Dinner, Music by St. Leo’s Choir, Irish Mooncoyne, Native American Drummers. Speakers include BISHOP THOMAS J. GUMBLETON, a longtime peace activist and founding member of Pax Christi.
MONDAY MARCH 28 – 9:00 a.m. SENTENCING for all five Disarm Now Plowshares co-defendants begins at the U.S. District (Union Station) Courthouse, Tacoma. 8:00 a.m. Vigil in front of the Union Station Courthouse in support of Disarm Now Plowshares. Come out and support them!
Click here for directions and parking information for the Tacoma Union Station Courthouse.
Post Sentencing Gathering to be determined.
For more information and/or if you need hospitality, please call Bix at 253-304-6612.
Filed under: General updates Tagged: | abolish nuclear weapons, Anne Montgomery, Bill Bichsel, court, Disarm Now Plowshares, illegal nuclear weapons, international law, Lynne Greenwald, Ohio Class submarines, prison sentence, resistance, Sentencing, Steve Kelly, trident, Trident nuclear weapons