Why have we spent $10 trillion on nuclear weapons over 70 years, when that could have been used for life-enhancing alternatives?
—  Sister Megan Rice, an 85-year-old Catholic nun, spent two years in prison for breaking into the Y-12 nuclear facility in Oak Ridge, Tennessee, in 2012. Four days after her release from prison, she spoke to Democracy Now! about the experience.
Two Knots To Nowhere

Caleb’s brother, Cage, lives in Boothbay Harbor, Maine, an hour away from where I was this weekend. I tried to see him, but he recently got engaged to a woman. Knowing Zipperers as I do now, I know that this woman is his everything. They were having a romantic weekend, and not answering calls, so instead, Cage’s best friend Tyler came to visit me.

I knew Tyler through stories. That he had grown in Savannah, and then joined the military. According to Caleb, he moved up to Maine to be near Cage. What I didn’t know was that for many years, Tyler was stationed in Connecticut with the Navy. There, he had two sons, and an ex-wife. When his duty was done, he wanted to stay near them. He was sick of Connecticut. The Boston area is full of “Massholes.” Instead, he chose Maine, where the rents are cheap, the schools are good, and he knew he could find work as a fisherman.

Almost immediately after he arrived, he was offered a job by a man who owned a cod boat. Although Maine is known for lobsters, there are fishermen of all types in the water. Less cod fisherman these days, given that the government has reduced the amount they can take from the ocean. Ten years ago, 25,000 pounds. Today, 1,100.

The life of a fisherman is not easy. In the summer, they make money, and in the winter, they must make the money last. By March, it becomes difficult. In his sparetime, Tyler makes his own furniture, takes photographs, spends time with Cage and his son Jonah, and attends art school.

Knowing Zipperers as I do now, I knew Tyler would be sweet. And he was. When he arrived at my friend Kate’s house, he settled in. We offered him wine. He began telling stories.

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(to the Plowshares 8, with love)

Some stood up once, and sat down.
Some walked a mile, and walked away.

Some stood up twice, then sat down.
“It’s too much,” they cried.
Some walked two miles, then walked away.
“I’ve had it,” they cried.

Some stood and stood and stood.
They were taken for fools,
they were taken for being taken in.

Some walked and walked and walked –
they walked the earth,
they walked the waters,
they walked the air.

“Why do you stand?” they were asked, and
“Why do you walk?”

“Because of the children,” they said, and
“Because of the heart, and
“Because of the bread,”

“Because the cause is
the heart’s beat, and
the children born, and
the risen bread.”

Daniel Berrigan, S.J. (1921–2016)

(Photograph by William E. Sauro [1929–2001]: Rev. Daniel J. Berrigan gave an anti-war sermon at St. Patrick’s Cathedral in New York, 1972. Thank you, New York Times.)

Dangerous Nun, 84, Gets 3 Years For Assaulting ‘Merca’s Precious Freedom Nukes

by Doktor Zoom

Swift justice, after nearly two years, for three peace activists who broke into a federal nuclear weapons facility in July 2012. Once inside the super-secure Y-12 plant in Oak Ridge, Tennessee — they got in using wire cutters — the three members of the Plowshares Christian pacifist movement painted peace slogans and threw human blood on the outside of a uranium-processing building. Then, while waiting for someone to show up and arrest them, they had a snack.

The three radicals, Sister Megan Rice, who turned 84 on Jan. 31, Michael Walli, 64, and Greg Boertje-Obed, 58, were convicted of “sabotage” although they did not actually break any machinery (and were not even wearing or throwing wooden shoes). Walli and Boertje-Obed were each sentenced to five years and two months, and Sister Rice was sentenced to 35 months, which should teach her a valuable lesson about messing with Uncle Sam.

You're in the Hole: A Crackdown on Dissident Prisoners

It was September 19, 2001. Elizabeth McAlister had not heard from her husband, Philip Berrigan, in more than a week. Such silence on Berrigan’s part was “most unusual,” she says. Convinced that something was wrong, she telephoned the Federal Correctional Institution in Elkton, Ohio, where the seventy-seven-year-old peace activist is serving a sentence of a year and a day for hammering on a military aircraft while on probation for a similar action in another state.

“It took ten phone calls to the prison to get them to admit to me that he was in segregation,” she says. McAlister also learned that Berrigan was being denied all phone calls and visits, even from family members. “I was not told why or for how long.”

Philip Berrigan was placed in solitary confinement on 9/11/01, with no notification given to his family and no rationale — other than John Ashcroft’s use of the tragedy to further isolate leftist prisoners.

(I never even knew this happened.)

(Long ago) Earth…had better things to offer - crops without cultivation,
fruit on the bough, honey in the hollow oak.
No one tore the ground with plowshares
or parcelled out the land
or swept the sea with dipping oars - 
Clever human nature, victim of your inventions,
disastrously creative,
why cordon cities with towered walls?
Why arm for war?

-Ovid, The Amores, Book 3 Elegy 8: The Curse of Money

The papers nailed to the doors of many buildings, including the Courier offices, held these words: “Beat your plowshares into swords and your pruning hooks into spears. Hasten and come, all you surrounding nations, and gather yourselves there for slaughter. Behold, my Lord comes in fire with a wrath like whirlwind to render His anger and fury with pillars of flame. He will execute judgement by fire and sword on flesh, and those slain will be many and all. Praise him, the End of Azeroth.”

Lat tears the note down and chuckles. “Well…this guy needs a hobby. May I recommend underwater  basketweaving? And The End of Azeroth? but I just started DATING Azeroth!” She was mostly making jokes for herself, but brought the note into the office for them to see and get their opinion. She was a wee bit worried, but not that much. Doomsayers were a common phenomenon…but doomsayers at the same time as these odd fel magic events? Mm….might be something legit there.

@skystoneseat @risrielthron @dasia-reeves @weston-pryor (cannot remember Bethanne’s new blog. :/)