Organizing Notes

Bruce Gagnon is coordinator of the Global Network Against Weapons & Nuclear Power in Space. He offers his own reflections on organizing and the state of America's declining empire....

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Location: Bath, Maine, United States

I grew up in a military family and joined the Air Force in 1971 during the Vietnam War. It was there that I became a peace activist.

Monday, April 17, 2017

America is in Big Trouble


I spent 90-minutes standing by this mailbox in Brunswick today, along with six other members of our local group called PeaceWorks, handing out tax day flyers to the public.  The others stood by the doors to the Post Office while I took my usual spot at the drive-up mail box.  I helped people put their tax returns in the box and tried to hand them our flyer.  At most 40% took one from me.

One older woman drove by and gave me the finger.  A former Brunswick town councilor (Joanne King), a Republican, rudely stepped on the gas before I could even make my kind offer of the flyer.

An old timer - retired Navy man - walked up and asked me if I 'had served' expecting me to say no which would then allow him to lecture me on patriotism.  But when I told him yes I had been in the Air Force during the Vietnam War he had to catch his breath.  Soon enough though he told me that the country was cutting the military budget and "Our troops don't have guns and our planes won't fly" because of these cuts.  I told him that was not true and then he told me "You should be proud".  I told him I was ashamed of our country - all the lies Washington told to sell the Vietnam War, the Iraq War, and now the Syria take down.

He walked into the post office and by that time the local newspaper had sent a reporter to take our photos and interview some of us.  As the old timer was leaving in his car he noticed the reporter and called him over to his car.  I heard him tell the reporter, "These people are lying."

I told the reporter that I've been standing at post office mail boxes for the past 30 years on tax day trying to get the public to understand how much of their $$$$ is wasted on endless war.


It's hard work because the vast majority of Americans don't really want to know.  If they know, and internalize the information, then they might have to do something about it.  If they think of all the innocent people their tax dollars have killed around the world then they might be compelled to stand up and speak out.  But that would be unpopular and most folks want to go along to get along.

Thank goodness there were some driving and walking by who gave us a positive sign.  It shows that at least a few people are still thinking for themselves.

Needless to say America is in big trouble.

Bruce

2 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yes, america is in big trouble. It is guilty of every crime. These serious crimes warrant their punishments. Time is running out.

4/17/17, 6:32 PM  
Blogger Janet Weil said...

Thanks for your decency and determination, Bruce!

4/18/17, 11:03 PM  

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