BREAKING NEWS FROM SEATAC!

We have news from Bix and Lynne and Susan!

Bix and Steve are in the same cell.  Bix is in very good spirits, and has access to his most critical medications.   There are a few medications he needs that are not as critical that he has not gotten yet.  They are so expensive that even most pharmacies on the outside do not keep them in stock.  Joe Power-Drutis is working through the public defender’s office to coordinate with the jail’s clinic, to see if they will allow Joe to bring Bix those medications.  Bix will be okay for a few days if it takes that long.

Anne and Susan are also roommates.  Lynne is pleased to have been placed on a quiet floor where she is near Anne and Susan.  They have plenty of access to each other.  Lynne reports that the group received a friendly welcome at the FDC when somebody placed a “No Nukes” sign below the American flag. Continue reading

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Letters to the Jailbirds

Friends,

Many people have been asking about how and where to send letters to our dear friends now that they are beginning their journey through our nation’s glorious Criminal Justice System (think Rube Goldberg).  It’s going to be a while before they are settled.

They are currently (temporarily) residing at the luxurious Federal Detention Center (FDC) in Sea Tac in Seattle.  Click here to see a photo of this lovely five star property.  It’s hard to estimate just when they will be moved to the prisons where they will stay for the duration of their sentences. Continue reading

Visit to FDC SeaTac

For those who can join us – a group will be at FDC SeaTac tomorrow, Tues March 29th, from 3pm-4pm, to stand outside and send our support through the prison walls to the members of Disarm Now Plowshares.  For those who would like to caravan from Tacoma, a group will be leaving from Jean’s House of Prayer at 2pm.  Email disarmnowplowshares (at) gmail (dot) com if you need transportation.

Map – Jean’s House of Prayer
Map – FDC SeaTac

Guardians of this sacred place

John K. La Pointe, character witness for Bill Bichsel
Words of solidarity at sentencing
March 28, 2011

Peter Blue Cloud, a Mohawk poet, once wrote,

“Will you ever understand the meaning of the very soil beneath your feet?
From a grain of sand to a great mountain, all is sacred.
Yesterday and tomorrow exist eternally upon this continent.
We Natives are guardians of this sacred place.”

Hail to the Sunrise - photo by dawnzy58 on flickrSo much has changed in our world since Peter Blue Cloud’s words challenged the collective conscious of America as it struggled through its own adolescence.  From a worldwide viewpoint, America is yet a very young nation which continues to demonstrate its short-sightedness and illusions of invincibility.

Blue Cloud’s words resonate still today, like a desperate parent pleading with their adolescent child to open their eyes before their own self-grandeur destroys them and any hope for the transference of wisdom, wisdom that can only be achieved through the collective conscious of our elders through countless generations.

As a Native American, I can say, there is at least one universal teaching that still exists among the First People of this youthful nation.  We are still taught and continue to teach our youth to not only respect our elders, but most importantly to listen to them.

There was a time, now long past, when Blue Cloud’s words reigned true as he wrote, “We Natives are guardians of this sacred place.”  Sadly today we can only plead for the support and advocacy of others.  Progress and the American dream have left the guardians of old decimated, reduced to a perpetual state of mourning and recovery.  We continue to mourn the relentless tyranny of domination that ravages our mother earth.

Today our elders stand tried and convicted by a system that fails to hear their plea, just as we failed to hear Peter Blue Cloud decades ago.

Today we stand in solidarity with our elders and guardians, Susan Crane, Anne Montgomery, Lynne Greenwald, Steve Kelly, and Bill Bichsel, as they challenge the collective conscious of today, asking, “Will we ever understand the meaning of the very soil beneath our feet? Will we ever fully fathom the threat and breadth of destruction our nation’s nuclear arsenal is capable of inflicting on humankind, our mother earth and all of creation?”

Our elders are pleading with us.  They are pleading for us to open our eyes and our hearts, they are telling us to grow up and start caring for one another in a global manner.  Please listen to them with compassion for they are our wisdom teachers, they are the guardians of this sacred place.

Sentencing: 6-15 months confinement, 1yr supervised release

The Disarm Now Plowshares activists who entered U.S. Naval Base Kitsap-Bangor to symbolically disarm the nuclear weapons stored there were sentenced today at the Tacoma Federal Courthouse, receiving sentences of 6 months to 15 months confinement, plus one year supervised release.  About two hundred fifty people gathered at the courthouse to support the Plowshares activists with their presence, song, and prayer.  After the trial, they sang peace songs and processed out as a group, celebrating the beacon of hope the five activists have been for their community. Continue reading

Photos – Festival of Hope, day before sentencing

[click below to scroll through the photos, or click here to view a full-size slideshow]

Photos – Liturgy, day before sentencing

[click below to scroll through the photos, or click here to view a full-size slideshow]

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