Standing at Bath Iron Works
It was really cold today when 14 of us stood during our weekly Lenten Peace Vigil at the gates of Bath Iron Works (owned by General Dynamics) as the Saturday shipyard shift change happened at noon.
Several of us got positive feedback today from workers about our signs that call for conversion of the shipyard to build rail, solar, wind turbines and hospital rescue ships. A worker told one of our folks, "I'd like to build those." Our message of a different vision - especially at this crucial time where we face the coming harsh reality of climate change - is steadily being endorsed by the community.
Think of the changes that could be made - BIW could build commuter transit rail systems that would run throughout Maine getting us out of our gas guzzling cars that are major contributers to global warming. Here is one very real and practical measure the public can demand rather than staying in a state of frozen resignation - call for the conversion of the military industrial complex so we can build a sustainable future for the coming generations. But we've got to speak up now!
At our vigil closing circle I briefed the group on the proposed 'mass gathering' ordinance now before the Bath City Council. It will be holding the final public hearing on April 6 at 6:00 pm. People agreed that on some level it is a sign of our growing effectiveness when the city (and likely BIW) want to make it harder for us to assemble and speak out.
We are not going to accept restrictions on our fundamental constitutional rights and plan to fight these proposed restrictions all the way into the courts where past cases show we will ultimately prevail. If the City of Bath wants to waste a bunch of scarce local tax dollars in legal fees than I guess we'll see them in court.