H e a r t S o n s & H e a r t D a u g h t e r s of A l l e n G i n s b e r g
N a p a l m H e a l t h S p a : R e p o r t 2 0 1 4 : A r c h i v e s E d i t i o n
Why I Did Civil Disobedience at Wall Street
with the War Resisters League
With over a half million Iraqi civilians killed as result this catastrophic war &
occupation, four million others forced to flee their homes, it doesn't seem right
America whoops or wails daily about consumer overconfidence second-home
sales bull-markets business-as-usual.
When I got to Wall Street holding my aching back from previous day's march, I wasn't
sure whether I was well enough to join in, but an electric impulse at base of
spine seemed to surge me forward & urge me to sit.
A recent poll showed most Americans believe under 10,000 Iraqis have been killed–
which home planet's TV reality shows are those purple patriots watching?
I was holding an anti-Halliburton sign and thinking of new chants, "the people are
hollerin', no more deaths, no more dollars"–maybe it was the off-rhyme giving me
extra spinal energy?
While America's soldiers come back homeless & wounded, Halliburton execs make
millions & move their castles to Dubai–will someone please introduce a bill
outlawing private contractors making more money than the troops?
In his essay on civil disobedience, Thoreau said "Let your life be a counter-friction
to stop the machine!"
Everyone knows the Democrats were elected to Congress to stop the war, but it seems
like most of them are still wandering lost in the basement halls.
I love MoveOn.org, but their calls for peace vigils only mentioned honoring
dead American troops & not Iraqis buried under depleted uranium-covered
earth, and I felt a stronger nonviolent statement ought to be made.
Continued U.S. occupation serves as recruitment tool for extremists and as blood-boiling
pot for hundreds of thousands families that've lost loved ones since 3/19/03–
and all suspect rightfully Bush wants oil rights & permanent military bases!
In the police van heading to the holding cells, there was a great spirit of comraderie
among activists meeting for first time in plastic handcuffs, coming from a
dozen different traditions to the same stock-exchange street-corner sit-down
In near-secret nooks and crannies of the Internet, one reads reports of Iraqi children
born with leukemia birth defects from uranium weapons U.S. won't admit is a
problem. What will it take to bring this emergency health & war crimes issue
into mainstream light?
Under current levels of chaos & destruction, seven hours in police vans and holding cells
seemed like a small form of existential penance an American could pay on the
4th anniversary of the war.
[Originally published in NHS 2007, http://www.poetspath.com/napalm/nhs07/Eliot_Katz.htm.]