Dear Friends, Thanksgiving 2019
Quite a few of you, our supporters, have asked about Susan and my trial for non-violently protesting nuclear weapons at Lockheed Corp. in Sunnyvale, California. Lockheed is the largest military contractor in the world and builds nuclear missiles for the Trident Submarines. Eleven of us were arrested there for trespassing.
Happily, I can report to you that all charges against us were “dropped in the interest of justice.” We can now continue to feed, clothe, shelter and educate the very poor in the name of Christ; and we will certainly find ways to condemn nuclear weapons and war. My hunch is that when we asked “Who owns the road?” upon which we were arrested for trespassing that Lockheed wanted to “drop the charges in the interest of Lockheed!” Why, you might ask.
The answer might be to follow the money. In the 1970’s Lockheed owned all of that land (including the road leading into Lockheed) and sold it to the Navy (at great profit for their shareholders). Shortly thereafter (we believe) Lockheed turned around and leased the same land back from the Navy for perhaps $1 a year to avoid property taxes. This information is what we were requesting so we could verify our suspicions. If the people and schools of Sunnyvale are being robbed of property tax money because of such an arrangement, then Lockheed should be on trial not only for manufacturing inhuman weapons of mass destruction, but also for theft and conspiracy with the Navy.
Our dear friend, Father Steve Kelly S.J., has not been so fortunate. He and 7 other protestors entered a Trident Nuclear Submarine Naval base in Georgia; he’s been in jail for the past 18 months. He goes to trial in about a week and is facing decades in prison. Steve recently wrote:
“I am among the wilderness of the incarcerated – two and a quarter million folks comprising the human warehouses in the empire. It is resistance jailed, a price extracted by the empire. And I echo the words of Martin Luther King Jr: ‘An empire in its death throes as it clings to and mouths obscene threats with its lethal arsenal, a fire that is a direct theft of trillions from the poor….’”
Recently Jeremy Scahill challenged all of us by saying: “The greatest danger that we’re facing in this society right now is not Donald Trump’s corruption. It’s not something involving Ukraine or servers or the DNC. We have one of the most unstable individuals in this country with his finger on the nuclear button….That is the crisis in the country right now.”
Dorothy Day’s first arrest as a young woman was to promote a woman’s right to vote. After she got the right to vote, Dorothy didn’t vote because she didn’t like her choices. It is not unusual for Catholic Workers to NOT vote. I agree with Dorothy that neither the Republicans nor the Democrats represent fundamental Christian values of love, non-violence, and peace. But we can surely do better than what we’ve got. In today’s world, all of us need to vote since our very lives depend on it. After voting, we cannot trust the politicians. Therefore, before, during, and after voting, we need to live lives dedicated to the ending of nuclear weapons and global warming.
It is time that the words, “BLESSED ARE THE PEACEMAKERS” described each of us.
Love and gratitude,
Larry for all of us.
P.S. Remember! If our Earth is shattered by nuclear weapons or climate change it will all be “legal.”
- Food in any amount.
- Showers for the homeless: wash cloths, detergent, deodorant, tents, sleeping bags, tarps, underwear, T shirts, warm clothing, bikes, etc. Call Susan (650) 366-4415.
- Addition: There was an excellent article about the Catholic Worker House in Climate magazine recently. It omitted that Aida Figueroa has lived and worked with us at the main house for over 20 years and that all of our programs rely on dozens and dozens of other volunteers.
- Workers: If you need men or women to do work (painting, gardening, skilled labor, house cleaning, etc.) call Cesar at (650) 339-2794. We love to get tools for the Day Laborers.
- Our Catholic Worker House on Cassia St. has solar panels. They are excellent and save us a lot of money. If you want a great company, try the non-profit “SUNWORK RENEWABLE SOLAR PROJECT”– excellent. firstname.lastname@example.org
- Christmas gifts and Thanksgiving baskets. We try to give out Safeway and Target gift cards at both holidays.
- We need vehicles (cars, trucks and RV’s) for the working poor.
- A house or money to buy a house. Call Larry for free coffee (650) 366-4415. We need your ongoing love and support.
- Our English Language School continues to empower many, many sisters and brothers. To learn more, call Pam (650) 365-6019.
- A person who can help at our shower program by doing foot care. Call Susan for more information. 650-649-8690 or 650-366-4415.