FacebookTwitterGoogle+RedditEmail

Peace on Earth

by MISSY COMLEY BEATTIE

One week after CAMP OUT NOW was erected in the cold, pouring rain, the tent was dismantled during a cold, pouring rain. This was the day after a deformed healthcare bill was passed, one that further enriches Big Insurance in its backward slide for many Americans, especially poor women who will be denied access to abortion.

On Saturday, March 20th, I distributed World Can’t Wait information as Debra Sweet, the group’s national coordinator, delivered an antiwar/anti-torture message to the crowd. Then, I stood behind Cindy Sheehan on a stage at Lafayette Park as she gave an impassioned speech in opposition to what are now Barack Obama’s wars of aggression, surges, and occupation. Had my son, arriving for Sunday’s Immigration Rally, not needed me to meet him, I’d have been in front of the White House where Sheehan, Elaine Brower, Matthis Chiroux, Jon Gold, and a few others were arrested. Most were held over the weekend for arraignment on Monday.

Interlude: I went with my son, who’s an anti-eviction attorney at a community based organization in Brooklyn, to the Immigration Rally on Sunday. I marched, alongside the many undocumented workers who held signs that said, “WE ARE THE AMERICAN DREAM” and “DON’T SEPARATE OUR FAMILIES”. Can it get more poignant that this? The answer is a big NO, but, then, it’s not a contest. One only had to see the memorial markers, on the grounds of the Washington Monument, commemorating troop deaths and civilian deaths, including babies, to understand the overwhelming agony of the times in which we live.

I arrived at the courthouse early for the arraignment and saw two men who’d just married. They were dressed alike and wore cowboy boots. Someone held a bouquet of flowers. The newlyweds stood together as a photographer snapped pictures. I approached, congratulated the couple, and wished them happiness. We hugged.

Subsequently, I went inside, and after a couple of hours, our antiwar stalwarts were processed.

Then, I dashed to Convention Center to protest AIPAC’s meeting and dinner where Israel’s Prime Minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, was keynote speaker. CODEPINK had arranged a press conference and demonstration. We held signs that called for an end to the occupation of Gaza, and speakers condemned US military aid to Israel and Israel’s colonization of Palestinian land.

Zionists were adorned in their finest threads for this event but, obviously, their high style doesn’t translate to comportment. One woman, on the arm of her man, looked our way, was angered by our action, and gave me the finger.

I shouted, “Shame on you.” Over and over.

Several conference attendees approached for dialogue but the majority smirked and ridiculed us. Apparently, we don’t understand “their suffering” and the holy message sanctioned by The Old Testament that Israel is the province of the Jewish People. Without question. Without any examination of morality and immorality.

Some of the most obnoxious who entered the building were young, today’s adolescents, tomorrow’s future. Our signs with “Free Gaza” were met with: “Where do I get my free Gaza?” Disgustingly self-righteous, they were enamored by their wit.

An elderly attendee shook his head at us and said, “I have a great lunatic asylum I can recommend for you.”

These people, with an ancestry of suffering that is beyond beyond, believe they have the pain market cornered. Thus, their compassion extends only to each other.

Perhaps, the most profound example of truth came from Neturei Karta International, an anti-Zionist, orthodox Jewish organization, standing with us in support of Palestinians. These men, robed in black, carried signs, saying: “JUDAISM REJECTS ZIONISM.” In their brochure is this statement: “The Palestinian people have a right to their homeland.” The presence of these men was in stark contrast to the men and women who entered the Convention Center to hear Netanyahu claim Jerusalem and justify more settlements.

I walked to the apartment where I was staying, buoyed by the perseverance of people I’ve met in D. C.

Suddenly, the next morning, I was ready to go home. I threw things together and went to the train station. The train was crowded. A couple walked the aisle and sat down, facing me. The wife was blistering the husband for leaving his wallet in a taxi. “I would never forget my purse,” she said. Resignation registered on his face. He said nothing. Yet, she continued, berating, as if he had deliberately lost his wallet. My attention didn’t dissuade her from demeaning him.

The ticket taker came and said, “Have a nice day.”

She said, “It couldn’t be any worse.”

I’m not going to tell you exactly what I said to her about valuing the brief time we have with our spouse, but when I told my children, one said, “Mom, you didn’t use your favorite expletive.”

The couple looked at me without expression. Within minutes, the wife launched more verbal turds his way.

Peace on Earth.

Rodney King: “You know, can we all get along?”

Peace of the Action was shut down by law enforcement last Monday. It will reopen in June.

Missy Beattie lives in New York City. She’s written for National Public Radio and Nashville Life Magazine. An outspoken critic of the Bush Administration and the war in Iraq, she’s a member of Gold Star Families for Peace. She completed a novel last year, but since the death of her nephew, Marine Lance Cpl. Chase J. Comley, in Iraq on August 6,’05, she has been writing political articles. She can be reached at: Missybeat@aol.com

WORDS THAT STICK

Missy Beattie has written for National Public Radio and Nashville Life Magazine. She was an instructor of memoirs writing at Johns Hopkins’ Osher Lifelong Learning Institute in BaltimoreEmail: missybeat@gmail.com

More articles by:

CounterPunch Magazine

minimag-edit

bernie-the-sandernistas-cover-344x550

zen economics

Weekend Edition
December 09, 2016
Friday - Sunday
Jeffrey St. Clair
Roaming Charges: Nasty As They Wanna Be
Henry Giroux
Trump’s Second Gilded Age: Overcoming the Rule of Billionaires and Militarists
Andrew Levine
Trump’s Chumps: Victims of the Old Bait and Switch
Chris Welzenbach
The Forgotten Sneak Attack
Lewis Lapham
Hostile Takeover
Joshua Frank
This Week at CounterPunch: More Hollow Smears and Baseless Accusations
Paul Street
The Democrats Do Their Job, Again
Vijay Prashad
The Cuban Revolution: Defying Imperialism From Its Backyard
Michael Hudson - Sharmini Peries
Orwellian Economics
Mark Ames
The Anonymous Blacklist Promoted by the Washington Post Has Apparent Ties to Ukrainian Fascism and CIA Spying
Erin McCarley
American Nazis and the Fight for US History
Yoav Litvin
Resist or Conform: Lessons in Fortitude and Weakness From the Israeli Left
Conn Hallinan
India & Pakistan: the Unthinkable
Andrew Smolski
Third Coast Pillory: Nativism on the Left – A Realer Smith
Joshua Sperber
Trump in the Age of Identity Politics
Brandy Baker
Jill Stein Sees Russia From Her House
Katheryne Schulz
Report from Santiago de Cuba: Celebrating Fidel’s Rebellious Life
Nelson Valdes
Fidel and the Good People
Norman Solomon
McCarthy’s Smiling Ghost: Democrats Point the Finger at Russia
Renee Parsons
The Snowflake Nation and Trump on Immigration
Margaret Kimberley
Black Fear of Trump
Michael J. Sainato
A Pruitt Running Through It: Trump Kills Nearly Useless EPA With Nomination of Oil Industry Hack
Ron Jacobs
Surviving Hate and Death—The AIDS Crisis in 1980s USA
David Swanson
Virginia’s Constitution Needs Improving
Louis Proyect
Narcos and the Story of Colombia’s Unhappiness
Paul Atwood
War Has Been, is, and Will be the American Way of Life…Unless?
John Wight
Syria and the Bodyguard of Lies
Richard Hardigan
Anti-Semitism Awareness Act: Senate Bill Criminalizes Criticism of Israel
Kathy Kelly
See How We Live
David Macaray
Trump Picks his Secretary of Labor. Ho-Hum.
Howard Lisnoff
Interview with a Political Organizer
Yves Engler
BDS and Anti-Semitism
Adam Parsons
Home Truths About the Climate Emergency
Brian Cloughley
The Decline and Fall of Britain
Eamonn Fingleton
U.S. China Policy: Is Obama Schizoid?
Graham Peebles
Worldwide Air Pollution is Making us Ill
Joseph Natoli
Fake News is Subjective?
Andre Vltchek
Tough-Talking Philippine President Duterte
Binoy Kampmark
Total Surveillance: Snooping in the United Kingdom
Guillermo R. Gil
Vivirse la película: Willful Opposition to the Fiscal Control Board in Puerto Rico
Patrick Bond
South Africa’s Junk Credit Rating was Avoided, But at the Cost of Junk Analysis
Clancy Sigal
Investigate the Protesters! A Trial Balloon Filled With Poison Gas
Pierre Labossiere – Margaret Prescod
Human Rights and Alternative Media Delegation Report on Haiti’s Elections
Charles R. Larson
Review:  Helon Habila’s The Chibok Girls: the Boko Haram Kidnappings and Islamist Militancy in Nigeria
David Yearsley
Brahms and the Tears of Britain’s Oppressed
FacebookTwitterGoogle+RedditEmail