FacebookTwitterRedditEmail

Getting Arrested with Cindy Sheehan

On Monday, 9/26, Cindy Sheehan and I were arrested together; along with more than 350 other good citizens. We had committed the crime of going to the White House to deliver a list of the names of those who have been murdered in Iraq in the latest version of US Government empire building. I hadn’t planned to be arrested, not for fear, I have had the experience on a few occasions before, but more for convenience, not wishing to miss my early Tuesday AM flight. But, as I marched with friends to the White House, my thoughts changed. The logic of, “If not now, then when?…If not I, then who?”, took over.

We became a boisterous and confident group. After being refused entry to speak with our tenant in our White House. We refused to leave. We sat and sang and chatted with the arresting team, and decorated the fence with signs, ribbons, and the names of the dead. We were yellow-crime-scene-taped into our little section of sidewalk and refused to leave. We ignored three warnings to leave. The police were mostly kind and brought us water and cookies provided by supporters on the othe side of the tape.

Cindy was arrested first. Appropriate, and probably involved some strategic police-think. And, though her recent rise to iconic status made her the most notorious, there were others of celebrity with us. She refused to stand voluntarily, was carried a few yards, handcuffed, photographed and placed in a “paddy wagon”. A procedure similar to that which we all were to endure for several hours on this fall afternoon.

One very agile young man decided to scale the 8 foot fence surrounding the White House. He was very quick and sumbling a bit at the top, fell hard to the grass inside the compound. He was immediately and violently smothered, bound, and dragged away by eight or more uniformed men and women.

My turn came about an hour into the mass arrest. I offered no resistence. My hands were plastic-cuffed behind my back. This seemed like a silly thing then, but five hours later it had turned to a moderately painful indignity. My possessions, except money and driver’s license, but including shoelaces (suicide prevention I guess?!) were taken and placed in a bag. One by one we were processed, and, after a very warm wait inside the wagon, were driven far to the southeast part of the DC area to Anacostia.

Our paddy wagon group of 14 men passed the next several hours,…5?,6?,… in a large garage/cage called a “sally port”??, with three other similar groupings of fellow men and women arrestees. We all remained cuffed, except a few small-handed ones who could remove them at will. At one point we all stood in a circle a shared a bit of biographical information. We were all unrepentant.

Toward the end shoulders began to hurt. Then, we made it to the final preocessing…paperwork, finger prints, mug shot, more paperwork, possessions returned (including those lethal shoelaces), and “freed” into the drizzly evening. Five busses full of my partners-in-crime were still waiting to begin the process, which meant that they would not get out until the early AM hours of Tuesday.

I was ordered to leave quickly, take a left and another left and that would get me to public transit. This turned out to be a bit disingenuous, since had I found it necessary to walk, I would still be looking for the Metro, or worse, as a city police officer would suggest to me later, experience the thrill of being mugged…maybe he was exaggerating. However, I was soon “rescued” by supporters and driven to “real” freedom, reunited with friends, and, soon, about 10:30, back in another friend’s apartment drinking a beer and rubbing my shoulders.

In coming days, I will be asked the standard questions; ‘Was it worth it? What was accomplished?’,…etc. I will answer “yes,… maybe, …time will tell, and …it depends what happens next…”

I will never again see most of my fellow co-conspirators, some I will. But I will be gratefull for the honor of sharing a good day with a few hundred dedicated folks, and standing up against this criminal war.

So…thank you Cindy, Medea, Meredith, John, Ann, William, Jodie, Carolyn, Cornell, and all of you whose names I do not know, or will not remember. It was a very good day. Let’s do it again, soon.

GARY HANDSCHUMACHER is a farmer, foster parent and educator. He has been engaged in peace and justice work since 1968 and co-produces Speaking Freely on KVNF radio in Paonia, CO. He can be reached at: garyannac@msn.com

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

CLARIFICATION

ALEXANDER COCKBURN, JEFFREY ST CLAIR, BECKY GRANT AND THE INSTITUTE FOR THE ADVANCEMENT OF JOURNALISTIC CLARITY, COUNTERPUNCH

We published an article entitled “A Saudiless Arabia” by Wayne Madsen dated October 22, 2002 (the “Article”), on the website of the Institute for the Advancement of Journalistic Clarity, CounterPunch, www.counterpunch.org (the “Website”).

Although it was not our intention, counsel for Mohammed Hussein Al Amoudi has advised us the Article suggests, or could be read as suggesting, that Mr Al Amoudi has funded, supported, or is in some way associated with, the terrorist activities of Osama bin Laden and the Al Qaeda terrorist network.

We do not have any evidence connecting Mr Al Amoudi with terrorism.

As a result of an exchange of communications with Mr Al Amoudi’s lawyers, we have removed the Article from the Website.

We are pleased to clarify the position.

August 17, 2005

 

More articles by:
bernie-the-sandernistas-cover-344x550
Weekend Edition
February 21, 2020
Friday - Sunday
Anthony DiMaggio
Election Con 2020: Exposing Trump’s Deception on the Opioid Epidemic
Joshua Frank
Bloomberg is a Climate Change Con Man
Jeffrey St. Clair
Roaming Charges: Billion Dollar Babies
Paul Street
More Real-Time Reflections from Your Friendly South Loop Marxist
Jonathan Latham
Extensive Chemical Safety Fraud Uncovered at German Testing Laboratory
Ramzy Baroud
‘The Donald Trump I know’: Abbas’ UN Speech and the Breakdown of Palestinian Politics
Martha Rosenberg
A Trump Sentence Commutation Attorneys Generals Liked
Ted Rall
Bernie Should Own the Socialist Label
Louis Proyect
Encountering Malcolm X
Kathleen Wallace
The Debate Question That Really Mattered
Jonathan Cook
UN List of Firms Aiding Israel’s Settlements was Dead on Arrival
George Wuerthner
‘Extremists,’ Not Collaborators, Have Kept Wilderness Whole
Colin Todhunter
Apocalypse Now! Insects, Pesticide and a Public Health Crisis  
Stephen Reyna
A Paradoxical Colonel: He Doesn’t Know What He is Talking About, Because He Knows What He is Talking About.
Evaggelos Vallianatos
A New Solar Power Deal From California
Richard Moser
One Winning Way to Build the Peace Movement and One Losing Way
Laiken Jordahl
Trump’s Wall is Destroying the Environment We Worked to Protect
Walden Bello
Duterte Does the Right Thing for a Change
Jefferson Morley
On JFK, Tulsi Gabbard Keeps Very Respectable Company
Vijay Prashad
Standing Up for Left Literature: In India, It Can Cost You Your Life
Gary Leupp
Bloomberg Versus Bernie: The Upcoming Battle?
Ron Jacobs
The Young Lords: Luchadores Para La Gente
Richard Klin
Loss Leaders
Gaither Stewart
Roma: How Romans Differ From Europeans
Kerron Ó Luain
The Soviet Century
Mike Garrity
We Can Fireproof Homes But Not Forests
Fred Baumgarten
Gaslighting Bernie and His Supporters
Joseph Essertier
Our First Amendment or Our Empire, But Not Both
Peter Linebaugh
A Story for the Anthropocene
Danny Sjursen
Where Have You Gone Smedley Butler?
Jill Richardson
A Broken Promise to Teachers and Nonprofit Workers
Binoy Kampmark
“Leave Our Bloke Alone”: A Little Mission for Julian Assange
Wade Sikorski
Oil or Food? Notes From a Farmer Who Doesn’t Think Pipelines are Worth It
Christopher Brauchli
The Politics of Vengeance
Hilary Moore – James Tracy
No Fascist USA! Lessons From a History of Anti-Klan Organizing
Linn Washington Jr.
Ridiculing MLK’s Historic Garden State ‘Firsts’
L. Michael Hager
Evaluating the Democratic Candidates: the Importance of Integrity
Jim Goodman
Bloomberg Won’t, as They Say, Play Well in Peoria, But Then Neither Should Trump
Olivia Alperstein
We Need to Treat Nuclear War Like the Emergency It Is
Jesse Jackson
Kerner Report Set Standard for What a Serious Presidential Candidate Should Champion
ADRIAN KUZMINSKI
Home Sweet Home: District Campaign Financing
Kollibri terre Sonnenblume
The Latest BLM Hoodwinkery: “Fuel Breaks” in the Great Basin
Wendell Griffen
Grace and Gullibility
Nicky Reid
Hillary, Donald & Bernie: Three Who Would Make a Catastrophe
David Yearsley
Dresden 75
FacebookTwitterRedditEmail