PACIFIC LIFE COMMUNITY RESISTANCE RETREAT 2015
From February 28 to March 2, 2015, over 80 people from various western states gathered in Menlo Park, south of San Francisco, for the annual Pacific Life Community (PLC) resistance retreat and direct action at a facility that produces, stores, or tests nuclear weapons, and other weapons of war. This year we protested at Lockheed Martin, in nearby Sunnyvale.
After sharing poetry, litany, dancing, songs, and prayer, 12 people were arrested for blocking traffic. They carried a letter with them that read:
"To All of Us Who Pay Taxes or Work at Lockheed Martin,
Lockheed Martin is the world’s largest weapons producer. The nuclear missiles that Lockheed Martin designs and builds are a threat to all life on earth. We ask you to evaluate the morality of profit from world-wide death and suffering.
This is the time to transform Lockheed Martin’s reliance on weapons production into new technologies that help the earth and benefit the common good."
Those arrested included: Peggy Coleman, Betsy Lamb, Ann Havill, Fr. Jerry Zawada, OFM, John Yevtich, Katie Kelso, Susan Crane, Fr. Steve Kelly, SJ, Larry Purcell, Elizabeth Murray, Ed Ehmke and Mary Jane Parrine. Four of the protesters were released that afternoon by signing out, as was one later that evening. The seven who refused to sign papers for their release were held in jail until they were seen by a judge. They were released, all charges dropped, on Wednesday night, March 4. The individuals who signed out will have a future court date.
During the retreat, on February 28, news came of the passing of longtime Tacoma Catholic Worker, peace activist, and PLC member, Jesuit Fr. William "Bix" Bichsel, 86, who now resides with the Heavenly Cloud of Witnesses. He was loved by many and will be deeply missed. The retreat and direct action were dedicated to him with many wearing a photo of Bix in remembrance. Bix was a member of the Disarm Now Plowshares and recently traveled to Jeju Island, South Korea, to protest the U.S.-sponsored naval base being built there. Fr. Bix PRESENTE!
Below are photos from this weekend experience.