PJC co-founder, Robin Lloyd, along with St. Michael’s professors Laurie Gagne and John Reuwer, attended the World Beyond War conference in Washington DC last weekend. The event brought together non-violence advocates and anti-war activists and organizations in an intense sharing experience that included 21 arrests for civil disobedience at the Pentagon.

They will give a report back on this conference to the Burlington community on Thursday, Sept 29 at 4:30 at the PJC. All are invited. Future steps are solicited.  Please spread the word.

Here are some of Robin’s initial reflections:

Some of us realized, even as activists, that we have been affected by the widespread apathy and cynicism that pervades our country. But speakers gave us reason for hope. John Dear, former director of the Fellowship of Reconciliation said that “We are not powerless. A public action campaign of nonviolence is essential. A new world is coming. We must recover from the blindness that comes from killing.”

Former Representative Dennis Kucinich, rebuffed from trying to limit military spending in Congress, stated, “War is a racket. We have to stop this racket. We have to reclaim our country.” And Ira Helfand, co-president of the International Physicians for the Prevention of Nuclear War pleaded that we face a stark choice: begin steps to ban nuclear weapons, or face the risk of accelerated conflict due to climate change leading to a ‘nuclear exchange’ that could permanently damage the human race and the earth.

We were inspired and unsettled by the world view presented by our speakers and confirmed during the energetic question and answer session that followed each presentation. We hope to see you on Thursday.