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This 85-year old Nun Just Spent Two Years in Prison for Protesting Nuclear Weapons

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posted on May, 23 2015 @ 01:03 PM
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This article:

thinkprogress.org...


Before dawn on July 28, 2012, Rice and Christian activists and army veterans Michael Walli and Gregory Boertje-Obed broke into the Y-12 nuclear complex in Oak Ridge, Tennessee — the so-called ‘Fort Knox of Uranium’ that holds hundreds of thousands of pounds of radioactive fuel for the country’s aging nuclear weapons stockpile.

Once inside, armed with only paint, candles, bolt cutters, hammers and a Bible, the three wrote passages from Scripture on the side of the uranium-storage facility and chipped at its concrete walls with their hammers. When security guards finally discovered them, they were loudly singing “This Little Light of Mine,” and proceeded to offer the baffled officers communion bread.


This presents us with several serious topics for concern with US justice and prioties:

1) The overreaction to citizens exercising their Consitutional Rights. The government prosecuters deliberately misrepresented what this protestors did and the plausible effects.


Then, on May 8, 2015, a federal appeals court in Cincinnati not only threw out that conviction, they blasted the government for branding Rice, Wallis and Boertje-Obed as saboteurs.

“Vague platitudes about a facility’s ‘crucial role in the national defense’ are not enough to convict a defendant of sabotage,” wrote Judge Raymond Kethledge of the 6th Circuit. “First Amendment issues aside, it takes more than bad publicity to injure the national defense.”

Kethledge also scoffed at the government’s argument that the protesters harmed national security by distracting the security guards for a few hours.

“Responding to intrusions is what guards do, and thus not a ‘diversion’ at all,” he wrote. “To say that these guards were diverted from their duties is like saying a pilot is diverted from his duties when he flies a plane.”


2) The horrific mistreatment of US citizens by, argueably, the overly militiaried 'guards' at Oak Ridge and the 'justice' system in general.


n return, they were handcuffed and left sitting on the ground for hours as the sun came up, questioned by security guards wearing body armor and brandishing assault rifles.

When they had their first day in court, they were brought in wearing shackles. Federal prosecutors pushed for the harshest charges possible: sabatoge, with “intent to injure, interfere with, or obstruct the national defense of the United States.”


3) There is the whole endless nuclear weapon thing:


When Rice moved back to the U.S. in 2003 after teaching in West Africa for nearly 40 years, she decided the most pressing “want” of the current age is the threat of nuclear weapons.



It’s a danger she understands both spiritually and scientifically, having done a Masters’ thesis on auto-radiography and worked firsthand with nuclear isotopes. She also was deeply impacted growing up by stories from her uncle, a World War II Marine who saw the devastation in Nagasaki six weeks after the US dropped a nuclear bomb.
“He for the rest of his life educated us about what he experienced,” Rice said. “So it fell to me naturally. I couldn’t see anything as serious in the whole wide world.”


4) There is also the issue of women in prision that Ms Rice discovered during the course of her incarceration:


It was another education for me,” she said. “The people [in prison] are far better that we ever imagined. So many are innocent, really innocent. Women are so often the handmaids of the criminals, and their stories would just put you in awe. I was called a ‘saboteur’ for two years. But some people are labeled ‘murderer’ for 22 years, when the real murderer is walking free.”


I think the item that outrages me the most about this incident is that the original court knew full well that these protestors were now saboteurs. At worst these were vandals - there was nothing covert about their actions nor was their intent to harm anyone or anything. There actions were clearly symbolic.

This is a single example of the twisted definition that the government is using more and more often to try their cases and truly shows great fear of We The People's voice being heard.

Protestor as saboteur. Whisleblower as traitor. Environmentalist as terrorist.

WTF?

When our collective leadership organs twist language in such a foul and dishonest manner it is small wonder that society is stagnating.




edit on 5.23.2015 by Kandinsky because: fixed typo in title




posted on May, 23 2015 @ 01:06 PM
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Ummm...

Hello, they broke into a nuclear storage facility. What do you think should have happened to them?



posted on May, 23 2015 @ 01:12 PM
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originally posted by: seagull
Ummm...

Hello, they broke into a nuclear storage facility. What do you think should have happened to them?


A pat on the back for highlighting the appalling security at the facility. What if they were terrorists who decide to steal the tech ?



posted on May, 23 2015 @ 01:12 PM
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I am confident there was no weapons grade uranium there and there hasn't been for a while. They were there for hours unnoticed. There can only be one reason- no security because none is really needed. It's all been moved. So in that respect, there was nothing to sabotage.

I have studied this for quite a while now. I am confident the missing nuclear reactors from Phipps Bend are involved. The Cumberland Gap Tunnel was/is a key part of the puzzle as well.

Thanks for posting this.



posted on May, 23 2015 @ 01:19 PM
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a reply to: yorkshirelad

there are ways to do that that do not involve breaking in , and painting graffiti on the walls.

This sort of story is meat and potatoes to reporters. A story like this would have made a career.

Two years in prison may be a tad excessive, but a pat on the back? No.



posted on May, 23 2015 @ 01:38 PM
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originally posted by: seagull
Ummm...

Hello, they broke into a nuclear storage facility. What do you think should have happened to them?



That's precisely the type of thinking that I'm speaking about.

I've no objection to criminal prosocution for tresspass and vandalism - which were the criminal acts they committed. I do object to charges of sabotage which was clearly not their intent but a gross and deliberate overreach by authorities.



posted on May, 23 2015 @ 01:38 PM
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Cincinnati must be not that tough on nuns! About the same time, there was an 83 year old nun being prosecuted for voter fraud and was put on probation for 5 years because of her age.
edit on 23-5-2015 by buddah6 because: lobotomized through superior pain meds.



posted on May, 23 2015 @ 01:44 PM
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originally posted by: FyreByrd

originally posted by: seagull
Ummm...

Hello, they broke into a nuclear storage facility. What do you think should have happened to them?



That's precisely the type of thinking that I'm speaking about.

I've no objection to criminal prosocution for tresspass and vandalism - which were the criminal acts they committed. I do object to charges of sabotage which was clearly not their intent but a gross and deliberate overreach by authorities.

I think she was intentionally overcharged knowing that she wouldn't be found guilty of the most serious charges.



posted on May, 23 2015 @ 01:45 PM
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a reply to: FyreByrd

I have a hunch that this Nun new ahead of time that she may do time in prison...counted the cost... and decided to protest the way she did anyway. She certainly has a good attitude about being in prison...she used that time as a learning experience in the school of life.



posted on May, 23 2015 @ 01:49 PM
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originally posted by: seagull
a reply to: yorkshirelad

there are ways to do that that do not involve breaking in , and painting graffiti on the walls.

This sort of story is meat and potatoes to reporters. A story like this would have made a career.

Two years in prison may be a tad excessive, but a pat on the back? No.


Precisely - the only way to get pubicity for your 'cause' is through media involvement and it is a long tradition in activist circles to break minor laws to get that publicity - We The People - don't have the 'capital' to buy Media.

You really don't see the injustice - to all of us - by this overreaction do you? The appeals court did - and released these people.

I don't know whether any work is continuing at Oak Ridge. If not, it's even more offensive, that they were charged with sabotage.

Since when, (well since the Patriotic Act at least) is speaking your mind a crime. Vandalism & Trespass are misdemeanors whereas sabotage is a capital crime - one local and one federal.

Think on that.



posted on May, 23 2015 @ 01:53 PM
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a reply to: FyreByrd

Punishment is always a risk in any civil disobedience/direct action/law breaking.
I've broken various laws over the years while fighting various issues, and have taken the risk with full knowledge of the possible consequences.
If you can't take the consequences then just do the protest with a sign thing, but chipping away at the walls of a nuclear establishment is always going to piss the authorities off much more than a sign.

I haven't been arrested for 'direct action' for quite a long time now, last was for sabotaging sporting fox hunts before they were banned in the UK. Next I assume will be in the coming year or so when we discover if the new government here is to allow commercial planting and sale of GMO crops for the first time ever.
You won't hear me bitching if I'm punished though, I take the risks in full knowledge of the consequences.



posted on May, 23 2015 @ 01:57 PM
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originally posted by: seagull
Ummm...

Hello, they broke into a nuclear storage facility. What do you think should have happened to them?



they deserved a round of applause.



posted on May, 23 2015 @ 02:47 PM
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Ah , the old 70s hippie martyr gambit. Do something high profile like this knowing they will be put in prison. Then appeal to the populace as martyrs . Know it well



posted on May, 23 2015 @ 02:56 PM
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a reply to: Gothmog

I'm not so sure in this case though, as the OP says the sentence could easily have been influenced by the court being told they were saboteurs. It is a bit dramatic when they were just chipping away at concrete walls with hammers.
Things like this do need keeping an eye on. My own country will lamely use 'terrorism' laws when it can get away with it, even when 'terrorism' is clearly not the case.



posted on May, 23 2015 @ 03:13 PM
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a reply to: FyreByrd

This video is proof that God was so furious with Megan Rice s/he created a terrible snowstorm to shut the courthouse and prolong her agony. (Sarcasm)
I suspect the delay was arranged to assess the support Megan received from all over the world.


If your nuclear facilities are as up to date and well guarded as ours there's nothing a casual protestor could damage. www.theecologist.org...
edit on 23 5 2015 by Kester because: spacing



posted on May, 23 2015 @ 03:19 PM
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I think breaking into a nuclear facility deserves more than two years. I don't support nuclear weapons and have a disdain for nuclear power because I think it is dangerous, but I still don't want random people breaking in to the facilities and a stiff sentence is proper.



posted on May, 23 2015 @ 03:28 PM
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originally posted by: Kester
If your nuclear facilities are as up to date and well guarded as ours there's nothing a casual protestor could damage.
You are joking aren't you?
There is a handful of armed Civil Nuclear Police at any time on site guarding our nuclear establishments. That's fine for dealing with any protesters but if it came to a serious attack by psycho jihadists or whatever carrying firearms, I'm not so sure.

...even worse for our water reservoirs and treatment plants, not a scrap of security and mostly rural.
I haven't forgotten the Camelford water poisoning in 1988. It is disconcerting how vulnerable our supplies actually are with just bolt-cutters and a truck load of chemicals.



posted on May, 23 2015 @ 03:29 PM
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Considering the way they act with many different nefarious laws. I wouldn't even show up in court, would tell them the judge is rogue, criminal and I would be forced to perform a citizens arrest if I see them, and that I do not stand under anyone, nor the bad decisions of such.

If they actually succeeded in hauling me off to jail and kidnapping against my will, the law suits, and PI's hired to dig every pile of dirt up on them, and continual in their face, nonstop day and night until they meet their MAKER and eons of retraining and counseling as they would be given a HUGE F, would ensue.

I hope she's going to take the whole system by its tail and shake it hard over and over and not stop until there is massive retribution and justice and all lovers and abusers of power are gone.

Because that is the right thing to do.



posted on May, 23 2015 @ 03:34 PM
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originally posted by: Unity_99
If they actually succeeded in hauling me off to jail and kidnapping against my will, the law suits, and PI's hired to dig every pile of dirt up on them, and continual in their face, nonstop day and night until they meet their MAKER and eons of retraining and counseling as they would be given a HUGE F, would ensue.
Hahaha! You are surely joking as well?!
"Kidnapping against my will", you mean getting arrested yeah? WTF could you do to stop 'authorities' doing that?
Perhaps you have never embarked on direct protest action which risks arrest. Maybe you have a rose tinted view of the power you as an individual actually has.
Thanks for the chuckle though, right on comrade



posted on May, 23 2015 @ 03:35 PM
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a reply to: FyreByrd

Speaking your mind, and what they did here, are two differing things. Kinda surprised you don't see it.

I fear we are going to agree to disagree here.



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