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It is with very mixed feelings that those of us out here on the river respond to the news that the mill is shutting down. Yesterday, Boise Inc (formerly Boise Cascade) announced that the pulp and paper mill in St Helens will be "restructuring" operations. This translates to the permanent closure of much of the mill, and the laying off of 300 workers (out of 470). This comes on the heels of an announcement, two months ago, that the Boise veneer mill, a few blocks away, would be closing down as well.
This is a terrific blow to the local economy out here in St Helens. Aside from 300 mill jobs being gouged out of such a small town, there will also be an economic domino effect as the rest of the community adjusts to the shakeout. Some local officials estimate that, for every Boise job loss, there will be an additional 1.3 jobs lost in other sectors, including loggers who supplied the mill with wood, salespeople who served the mill families, restaurant jobs in the places where mill workers ate their lunch....
This "Winter Soldier" thing was modeled after a tool developed during the rise of the Vietnam protests of the 60s/ 70s. When will this stuff die? It seems a heaviness of heart is generated when we step onto the go-back-machine, i.e. the latest that I'm aware of -- Recreate 68 - yawn, mumble grumble.
Contrary to my preconceptions about Winter Soldier, it is a beyond profound movement. This is where the resistance resides, an invisible undercurrent of humans of all kinds infecting this society with slow intensity. The first Neo-Winter-Soldier event took place in Silver Spring, Maryland, March 13 to March 16, 2008, timed to highlight the 5th anniversary of the 2003 invasion.
Some 200/300 people showed up. Many elderly, a definite lack in youth presence. First panel - on stage - there we saw youth.
Amongst the shattered humans on that panel, nine men, as different from one another as can be imagined - a display of the beauty of humanity right there. Each brought their story, their confessions, their way of talking, seeing, feeling - straight shooters. Nothing but being there, in the flesh, can enable a person to grasp the enormity of the all-encompassing spectacle of war; we gotta own it, our wars. Radio, television, any intermediary form is an obstruction to the process of learning with something like this.
Background, I believe that all but one fellow on the panel was seventeen or eighteen years of age when they joined the services, including National Guard. Below, I've provided a few bits, from just a few people.
On April 21 the Corvallis City Council passed a resolution opposing the Bureau of Land Management's Western Oregon Plan Revisions. The draft Plan would increase old growth logging in Western Oregon by 700% and reduce riparian reserves and habitat for endangered species. In March, members of the Coast Range Association and the Benton Forest Coalition presented the resolution to councilors, who referred the measure to the Legislative Committee. After hearing testimony from seven local residents, including a forester, a plant pathologist, and representatives from the American Hiking Society and the Audubon Society, the Legislative Committee returned the resolution to the Council with a stamp of approval.
The City Council voted unanimously to adopt a slightly modified version of the Eugene resolution, originally penned by Josh Laughlin of the Cascadia Wildlands Project. Councilors cited concerns about ecotourism and the impact of proposed increases in logging on BLM lands on adjacent city owned watersheds.
I attended the march in Olympia on May Day. As I was involved in absolutely no illegal activity on that day, I feel no fear in speaking my mind. I saw everything that happened and was present from the beginning to the end of that day's activities. What I saw inspired, sickened and encouraged me. There were many good things that happened, just as there were many bad things. But most of those bad things were initiated and enacted by the police. I do not wish to give a blow-by-blow recounting of the actions of those involved, given that others have done this already. I wish to ask some questions.
"BRING THE WAR HOME!"
-Theme of the 1969 Days of Rage
This series on Revolutionaries takes place each Tuesday night for ten weeks. This is the 3rd class. This week we will learn about and discuss the SDS and the Weather Underground. Cathan Zerzan will share her memories & experience of organizing with Eugene SDS.
5 years ago this morning, many people were mourning the loss of our dear friend Sparrow, aka Carson McCann. We have been mourning him ever since.
But that does not mean we have not put our sorrow into action - and the action began just a few days after his death as you can see in this previous post.
Sparrow is in our thoughts and in our hearts with every day that passes, every precious forest that we hike through, and every sparrow that flies across our path. We love you and miss you Sparrow.
Extraordinary women's health advocate, activist, journalist, writer founder of NWHN died Febraury 28. Barbara Seaman, author of "The Doctor's Case Against the Pill" and "The Greatest Experiment Ever Performed on Women" has died. She was 72.
"The Case Against the Pill" resulted in hearings on the risks of birth control pills, and warnings placed on birth control pill packaging. She disclosed the risks of cancer and Hormone Replacement Therapy in "The Greatest Experiment Ever Performed on Women". She compares use of HRT in the US and Europe. In Europe, HRT is treated for a short period of time and women are told to taper off the medication once menopause is over. In the United States it has become a money making industry, with doctor's prescribing long-term, cancer inducing medication to women. Menopause in the US is treated like a disease.
Seaman founded the National Women's Health Network in 1975.
She was a journalist, activist, organizer, mother and grandmother.
To read more about Barbara Seaman go to womensspace.wordpress.com
That Tuesday, there was no fresh international news. My modest message to the people of Monday, February 18 had no problem being widely circulated. I began to receive news from 11:00 a.m. The previous night I slept like never before. My conscience was at rest and I had promised myself a vacation. The days of tension, with the proximity of February 24, left me exhausted.
Today I shall not say anything about people in Cuba and the world who are close and who expressed their emotions in thousands of different ways. At this point I am dedicating myself to the adversaries. I enjoyed watching the embarrassing position of all the candidates for the United States presidency. One by one they were obliged to announce their immediate demands of Cuba in order not to risk losing a single voter.
Half a century of blockade seemed little enough to the favorites. "Change, change, change!" they cried in unison. I am in agreement, change! but in the United States. Cuba changed a long while ago and will follow its dialectical route. "No return to the past ever!" exclaim our people.
We arrived at the house to find the front entrance closed with a sign pointing to a "secret" entrance through a side door. We were greeted with a "Welcome to the Monkeywrench Cafe," a DIY menu, and the ambiance of glowing candles and flickering from the fire. Two large rooms were quickly filled with people of all ages, from toddlers to elders. We sat near the fire and sipped tea and hot chocolate waiting for the storytelling to begin.
We listened to a wide range of stories from activists of different ages. Some shared serious opinions on tactics and critical perspectives at the movement's evolution. Some shared light hearted stories of pesky bear encounters while tree-sitting. Sometimes the stories were so hilarious and the tellers were enjoying telling so much that you could hardly hear the story through all the laughter. Two speakers were on the bill for the night, but with impromptu storytellers, we heard from half a dozen folks sharing memories and ideas.
July 10, 2007 (TurtleIsland). Corbin Harney Spiritual Leader of the Western Shoshone Nation crossed over at 11:00 a.m. this morning in a house on a sacred mountain near Santa Rosa, CA (Turtle Island). He had dedicated his life to fighting the nuclear testing and dumping. That battle claimed his life through cancer.
Before he passed, he said to remember:
"We are one people. We cannot separate ourselves now. There are many good things to be done for our people and for the world. It is important to let things be good. And it is important to teach the younger generation so that things are not lost."
The day Kyle and I finished the device, we decided to test-fire it in what we perceived to be a safe location in the nearby area. The location was ideal. It was on a dirt lot away from any property or timber that could be damaged, an area I had practiced target shooting with my bow years prior. It was an area that a lot of local kids, like I had done, visited frequently to light off firecrackers and shoot slingshots without getting into huge trouble or burning something down.
Kyle and I put the launcher into the cab of my Ford Ranger and, followed by my father (who decided to come along to take pictures), headed to the area which was located just down the road from our house. As we pulled into the lot, the ignition switch was touched somehow and the rocket ignited in the truck, filling the cab with smoke, resembling a particular scene from a Cheech & Chong movie. No damage done. At that exact moment, however, a squad car pulled in behind us and turned his lights on.
My truck was searched, the launcher was seized and given over to the State Police. From there, it was handed over to the FBI in Salem. Little did we know, the property I had been visiting for years was newly-acquired airport property. Now it was a matter of National Security.
According to the latest read out from You Tube, "28 Seconds: The Killing of Fouad Kaady" has now been downloaded and viewed at least 587 times. If you have not yet done so, now is the time to view it for yourself.
Cat has done a much more thorough job of telling how this young man was murdered by the police than I could ever hope to do. It should be required viewing for anyone who ever hopes to make this world a better place. Of course, if you were fortunate, as I and so many others were, and able to view the film in it's entirety, on a large screen, with a lot of other company, so much the better.
I know that the film will be re screened many times in this area, and you really NEED to see it.
28 seconds : The Killing of Fouad Kaady Now On Youtube
In the early afternoon of September 8, 2005, police encountered Fouad Kaady shortly after he was in an accident that left him in shock and bleeding, burned over much of his body. Rather than calling for medical help, the police commanded him to lie on the pavement, even though they could see the burned flesh hanging from his body, and even though they said he appeared to be "in a catatonic state." When he did not comply with their orders, but instead continued to sit on the ground in a daze, they tasered him repeatedly. And then, they shot him to death.
In a report that was typical of the corporate media's response to this killing, Channel 8's ever-mealy-mouthed Kyle Iboshi held up a wad of papers left over from the "investigation" into the death, saying, "you can see how extensive this investigation was." He then commenced to highlight (literally, with a yellow highlighter pen) what he claimed to be the relevant details of the case. Not surprisingly, Iboshi was very selective in what he chose to focus on. He accepted, without question, everything that the PIO had told him to say. He never asked a single question about why two officers might have shot an obviously unarmed man to death. And, he concluded his report by implying that Kaady must have been "on drugs" at the time of the killing, as if that might excuse the officers' behavior.
on april 12, 2002, horehound (beth o'brian) hiked through the snow to a treesit in eagle creek. it had been announced that the sale she was protesting was to be cancelled, but since we can't trust those f'ing bastards to tell the truth, the treesit would stand until the ink had dried on the paperwork.
shortly after ascending, horehound slipped and fell 150 feet. she survived the fall, and died in transit after being airlifted out.
five years in, i still miss her every day... i'm still agonized over the friendship we never got to nurture... i'm still furious that the world is currently constructed in such a way that it's necessary to put lives on the line like this.
It is with sadness I eulogize Kurt Vonnegut, jr. today. He was an impressive sitting up mud! I used to cut classes in high school, to go sit under a tree and become engrossed in Vonnegut's wonderful novel, "Cat's Cradle." I have used lines from "Cat's Cradle" and "Breakfast of Champions" as life references since the 1970's. Terms such as "karass," "sitting up mud," "bad chemicals," and "Bokononism" have become commonplace in my life, due to my exposure to Vonnegut at an early age. My father gave me "Cat's Cradle" to read, and I handed it to my teenaged son to read as well. I normally do not enjoy fiction, but Vonnegut was an exception for me. I delighted in his plots and twists, all heavily laden with sarcasm and political angst. "Cat's Cradle" is a fictional story about what scientists and their families did the day America dropped the A-Bomb on Japan. I love the dark humor throughout "Cat's Cradle." And the child's game "cat's cradle" has never seemed the same after reading that book! In the book, the father who rarely speaks to his children, walks up to his son and leans into the kid, in a frightening manner, and holding a cat's cradle made of strings in his fingers, says, "See the cat? See the cradle?!" Yes, that in a nutshell, is the madness and beauty of Vonnegut's writing style.
Today is the fourth anniversary of Rachel Corrie's death, murdered while peacefully standing in defense of a Palestinian home, murdered by an Israeli soldier, murdered with a US-made Caterpillar 'dozer.
It is outrageous that the typical American knows all about Spears & Smith, but nothing of brave & wonderful Rachel Corrie. Olympia remembers. We should all remember, what injustice brings.
I'll be at my best corner in Vancouver today during afternoon rush, with Rachel's picture, a Palestinian flag, & other stuff. I can't do nothing on this sad day. Not much on my part. She gave everything.
The Zapatista community is selling GMO-free Mayan corn. The seed is being sent all over the world in an effort to save an old lineage. Mutated corn seed is being planted by corporate interests to destroy this old lineage. The money from the sale of the corn will be used to build Chiapas schools. Sow the seeds of resistance and join the growing movement against transgenic contamination of Mayan corn in Chiapas, Mexico!
By planting Zapatista corn, you become a part of a global effort to preserve a vital genetic heritage that has evolved over thousands of years. You can plant these powerful Zapatista corn seeds in your community, farm, home, school, or family gardens. These seeds have been donated by Zapatista farmers who hope and pray that people of conscience around the world will provide respectful sanctuary for this living part of their cultural heritage. Despite massive importation from the USA of corn carrying genetic modifications, the autonomous Mayan communities in Chiapas are dedicated to keeping their corn pure and natural.
To find out more about this seed go to:
In memory of Harriet Nahanee, age 71: A community is in mourning following the death of a great-grandmother who fought to defend aboriginal rights and the environment. Activist Harriet Nahanee died at St. Paul's Hospital in Vancouver on Saturday, February 24, one month after she was sentenced to fourteen days in jail for protesting the destruction of a wetlands for a highway bypass. Fellow activist and great-grandmother Betty Krawczyk, age 78, was among those who attended a prayer vigil for Nahanee Friday night. "Me and Harriet really bonded" at the Eagleridge Bluffs blockade, she told me. "We were the only great-grandmothers there. It was up to us to bring it forward...Harriet believed Eagleridge Bluffs belonged to the Squamish Nation, and she felt her band" the elected chiefs "were trading the land away for development... She wanted the land preserved for her great-grandchildren. She put her life on the line for that."
Krawczyk reports that Nahanee was "challenging the right of the elected chiefs of the Squamish Nation to negotiate away traditional Squamish Lands off the Squamish Reserve, lands that include Eagleridge Bluffs. This action potentially has serious ramifications for the entire band concerning who has the right to negotiate away traditional Squamish Indian lands," she wrote in her blog.
On March 5th, Justice Brown will sentence Krawczyk for her own part in the Eagleridge Bluffs protest. Krawczyk expects to be sent to the same Surrey jail as Nahanee.
There will be little, if any, remembrance of the men and women who fought for freedom in far more aggressive, and militant ways. While some may hear the occasional names, usually they too are softened and sweetened with time, to make them safe historical morsels for white, and corporate consumption.
For years, decades now, folks have celebrated Black History Month, with a plethora of events. There will be movies, book readings, poetry events, concerts and the like. Coming, as it does, on the heels of the nation's celebration of the life of Martin Luther King, Jr., much of what will be heard will no doubt echo that event.
But Black History is far richer, and far deeper than King.
"When a cause comes along and you know in your bones that it is just, yet refuse to defend it--at that moment you begin to die. And I have never seen so many corpses walking around talking about
justice." - Mumia Abu-Jamal
Martin Luther King Jr., a hero of the Civil Rights Movement, was assassinated in Memphis, TN, on April 4, 1968. His impressive legacy, however, lives on. For the last 25 years, the Enoch Pratt Library in Baltimore has honored his memory with a commemorative lecture. On Jan. 13, 2007, Dr. Suzan Johnson Cook filled that role with distinction. She called on her audience to do their part, "to make a difference," and to be "strengthened by our struggle."
Government Found Guilty of Martin Luther King Murder in Federal Court - 12/8/99
Undisclosed conspirators for the governments of the United States, the State of Tennessee, and the City of Memphis were found liable for the murder of Martin Luther King, Jr. on December 8, 1999, in a federal circuit court. The federal government never appealed the decision. The mainstream media in the U.S. never covered the assassination conspiracy verdict, even though the implications of the story were greater than Watergate. The family requested a subsequent independent investigation to be set up by President Bill Clinton (who has since established office in Harlem), but he refused the request.
Watching the TV news and reading the print and e-media coverage of the death and several funerals (?) for former president Gerald Ford has presented what I believe to be one of the most teachable moments in modern American history. Instead, we are treated to a highly polished act of historical whitewash. It starts with the sanitization of history that precedes the death of any past American president, when the major media prepare the official picture of the decedent's import to the office and the nation. [more]
media circus -- Hey, I am old enough to remember the deaths of several presidents, from FDR forward, and yet... The only time that I remember more than a couple of days of mention was when JFK was shot, in office. This thing has gone on for over a week, and they are just now getting round to putting him in the ground. There were several presidents in there that were ACTUALLY elected, and who actually did something positive for the country. Is my memory faulty? [more]
Gerald Ford hero or zero? -- Did I miss something? What the hell is all the "president Ford was a great blah blah" rhetoric? Watching all those republicans prancing around the body of a man who probably did this country more harm then Bush (whether knowingly or not) has is just so *insert wicked phrase here* disgusting. Ah yes, how far the conspiring right has come... They have even gone as far as to try and blame the democrats for wanting to "divide" the nation at a time when the nation needed "healing". [more]
Bury him, already! We can still count -- We are still counting the coffins returning from Iraq, and yes, HERE, we even count those who are not Amerikan. We count the innocents, the babies, the mothers, the aged, and all of those that we are so cruelly murdering in Iraq. We are also very aware of our duplicity in the deaths of so many in Darfur. So, go ahead with your dog and dead president show, just like dead Ron, this slight of media will not cover the sins of this cabal. [more]
This is my attempt to honor Brad's life. Everyone dies, but not everyone truly lives, with every last drop of passion, like Brad did. His love, laughter and joy are as much a part of his legacy as the courage and dedication he showed in his work. He has left this earthly plane, as we all will someday, but he has not left our hearts.
Please click on link to see videos and read poem. Select Format as Quicktime, and then click on Full Screen. Set your volume to high.
[Cindy Sheehan writes:] Today is the 21st birthday of my youngest child, Janey. Christmas 2006 will be the third Christmas that our family has endured since the death of Casey. The holiday season is hard for so many people as evidenced by the skyrocketing number of suicides and suicide attempts.
2006 was a year of ups and downs for our family and for the nation. Despite the facts; the criminal and corrupt occupation of Iraq continues unabated and in fact worsens on an hourly basis. Body bags are coming home from the Middle East in the dark of night at a steady clip and our troops are being grievously wounded for no reason other than to reward the CEOs of the war profiteers phenomenal holiday bonuses. Our children are being sacrificed like Christmas turkeys so the turkeys in the White House can strut around and posture like dictators of banana republics.
With the transfer of power in the legislative branch in Congress, our nation has a unique opportunity for true change in 2007. But with the Democratic leadership cozying up to the killers who have led our country down a path of destruction, in the name of "bi-partisanship" which in this case can only be truthfully called: criminal collusion; we have little hope of the change that we the people voted overwhelmingly for this past November. We have to be the ones to give our leaders the courage to do the right thing. Impeach them NOW! Lets stop the war NOW
As a veteran myself, I approach this topic with mixed emotions. As a person who has been living in this country through five major wars, and untold skirmishes in foreign lands, and observing the return of the fallen ones, the mangled ones, the forever damaged ones, my first instinct is to offer to them all of the comfort and respect that this country can muster. Of course, the politicians who pound the podium to remember our vets are the first ones to forget their debt to these people who's lives they have squandered and ruined.
All jingoism just serves to perpetuate the crime that is perpetrated upon our youth in every generation since the birth of this nation: War to serve the needs of the corporations that rape the planet, and direct our politicians. I am sick of it, and it must stop somewhere, somehow.
A murder has occurred in the municipality of Calicate, in Oaxaca City, Mexico today, leaving New York City Indymedia journalist Bradley Will dead after being shot in the chest. He died before reaching the hospital, according to La Jornada. A photographer from the newspaper millenio diario, who was at Wills side, was shot in the foot and reported injured, his status unknown.
more updates: previous pdx imc feature | follow updates at nyc-imc | follow updates at indymedia.org (multi language) | oaxaca imc page (es) | centro medios libres (es) | live updates Radio APPO (es) | some english translation of Radio APPO updates
Solidarity: This is where solidarity matters. One of our imcista comrades is dead. The people of Oaxaca are under seige. They are pleading for reinforcements to help them. We cannot sit up here in the North and just watch blankly as they are slaughtered. Please at least call the Mexican Consulate and all of your representatives to demand an end to the violence. The people of Oaxaca are fighting a very important battle, and we must stand with them now. They have set an inspiring example of courage and strength and ingenuity. Now, we must be brave and creative too, and not let them be sacrificed to global indifference. read the full call for solidarity...
Some Personal Reflections of Brad WillI Knew Brad: I knew Brad, but not well, I met him over at the Walker street studio where Lenny Charles sheltered the NYC Indymedia Video collective when the growing pains at NYC Indymedia created factional fighting. Brad wasn't in it for the politics as we have discovered so many to be. Brad was in it for the sense of liberation that exposing truth brings to a story. read more...
Memories of B: I met B in 1998 at the treesit at Fall Creek. A bunch of us had decided to make a stand defending a rare stand of low-elevation old-growth forest just southeast of Eugene. The first treesit was named Happy, and my friend Free was the first treesitter there. (Free is now serving a 23-year sentence at Oregon State Penitentiary). The second treesit to go up was Comfrey, a helicopter cargo net dangling 200 feet up in the canopy of the giant Doug firs and hemlocks in Unit 26. B was the next semi-permanent resident, nestled into that big hammock in the sky. read more...
Indymedia: Brad Will, Bravery and Our Common StruggleI think we should all take a look at what is so important about indymedia work and why it is so important and what it means to each one of us. I hope that we draw courage of conviction from Brad's example and that we stand together throughout the indymedia network and as individuals to redouble our efforts. I think you all know that it could have been any one of us. But, it is so much easier for them to take us one at a time. We stand much more strongly together in what we can all be proud of. Our brave common struggle. Indymedia.
According to reports from Radio APPO, La Jornada and Centro de Medios Libre, the Mexican federal police (PFP) and trucks loaded with paramilitaries have begun an assault on the city which has been held by the Popular Assembly of the People of Oaxaca (APPO) for over 5 months. It has been confirmed that New York City Indymedia reporter Brad Will has been shot in the chest and killed, while Oswaldo Ram?rez, photographer for Milenio Diario, has also been shot and is injured.
According to a post at CML at 23:06 local time the murderer of Brad Will has been identified as Pedro Carmona, a paramilitary who was the mayor of neighboorhood of Felipe Carrillo Puerto de Santa Luc?a del Camino.
Update: The APPO has confirmed that schoolteacher Emilio Alfonso Fabi?n has died from three bullet wounds after an attack by shooters for Governor Ulises Ruiz Ortiz.
Al Giordano, a friend of Brad Will, wrote on Narco News: Tonight, from the Oaxaca City Morgue, Brad Will shouts "Ya Basta!" - Enough Already! - to the death and suffering imposed by an economic system, the capitalist system. His death will be avenged when that system is destroyed. And Brad Will's ultimate sacrifice exposes the Mexican regime for the brutal authoritarian violence that the Commercial Media hides from the world, and thus speeds the day that justice will come from below and sweep out the regimes of pain and repression that system requires. Brad gave his life tonight so that you and I could know the truth. We owe him to act upon it, and to share the risks that he took.
There will be a community memorial for Steven Lindenmeyer next Sunday, Sept. 10th at 6pm at Liberty Hall, 311 N. Ivy. Liberty Hall is the new home of the IWW, which Steve was a dedicated member of. This will be a time for Steve's community of activists, friends, and family to come together to remember him and his work. Music will start at 6pm, and a brief program will start at 6:30pm. If you are able, please bring some food or drinks. In addition, we will be collecting money to help the family with expenses, or you can send a check to JwJ, or drop one off at the Albina Community Bank for the "Steve Lindenmeyer Memorial". Please mail it to Jobs with Justice, 6025 E. Burnside, Portland OR 97215.
I am sitting in my rented Chevy Equinox outside of the Polunsky Unit, in Livingston, Texas. The middle of farm country, there are stables right next door to the prison, within pissing distance of the electrified fence and concertina wire. I wonder if they belong to the prison. How much of this farmland is the prisons? The inmates wear all white here. It is ghostly figures I see pushing wheelbarrows, carrying rakes through a manicured lawn with flower boxes shaped like the star of Texas.
The processing is the fastest I've ever been through going to a prison. I have had to wait hours before to be cleared. I do not know if it is this prison, or the fact that I'm visiting at off times, or the fact that I am visiting someone who has an execution date set. Set for Thursday. Days are bleeding away, the 29th is just a breath away from the 31st.
Hasan Shakur, aka Derrick Frazier, aka #999284, is dressed all in white as well. Visiting is only through glass, and Hasan sits in a cage, the telephone pressed to his ear. He is as big as I figured he would be. He stands up to go to the bathroom, sticking his hands through the slot so they can put the handcuffs on him and he towers over the three guards around him.
Hasan Shakur's Last Words Were of the Struggle | Hasan Shakur's Last Poem | Poem for Hasan | Philly IMC audio interview | Austin IMC Overview | NCADP Overiview | "Death Row Speaks" profile | Welfare Poets
It was about a week before I left the United States forever that I watched Robert F. Kennedy, Jr. tell Charlie Rose something all of us already know in our hearts. "Today," he said, "the United States is hated around the world far worse than it was at the height of the Vietnam War." I remember the Vietnam War. I will never forget it.
I opposed that war, and I still remember riots on the UCLA campus in May,1970 when four students were shot dead by National Guard troops at Kent State University in Ohio. I was a college student then, and I was 2S-deferred for the draft. A year later I would be re-classified 1A as the nation shifted to a lottery system. At least someone in my country was willing to risk his life in the face of injustice. It gave me hope. That kind of risk-taking was commonplace then, from the civil rights movement to the anti-war movement, to the American Indian Movement. American blood was shed regularly on American soil to resist American tyranny; from Watts, to Detroit, to Selma, to San Francisco to Memphis to Wounded Knee. It fertilized our lives and souls as it touched the ground. The willingness to endure physical suffering, material sacrifice, and jail for the sake of justice was a singular mark of the American character that earned respect as it infected the world.
What is the United States infecting the world with today?