dangerous compassions

I call you / from the comet's cradle

Friday, April 06, 2012


Today was the last day of the Peace Walk. We went to the Nevada Test Site where more than 900 nuclear detonations have taken place. A Native American spiritual person led us as we walked to the line, which is the boundary to the test site. Ten of us crossed the line in an act of civil disobedience. A new friend explained how getting arrested there is very easy. This is how it happened.

Someone told me not to have my cellphone with me when I got arrested, so I put it in my bag and handed my bag and sign to M, who was not crossing the line. I listened to some small speeches given by the Native American spiritual person as well as a minister. Several of my friends had already crossed the line. I weighed my options. I knew the arrest would be easy, and I was not too scared. The cops seemed nice, and there's no handcuffing involved.

So I crossed the line, and I wasn't even taken by the arm like a friend said I would be. I was directed to a large pen, where a cop let me in, where two friends already were. There's a pen for women and a pen for men. The pens are huge with three rows of barbed wire on top. My two friends were sitting on the ground while I remained standing. We sang songs about peace, and we were in good spirits. It was fun.

Oh, I forgot to say that when I crossed, my friends cheered for me. It felt really good. I felt supported.

Then everyone that hadn't crossed left except for M. The women's pen was done first, and I was the first to be let out. A cop told me where to stand, asked if I had ID, and I gave my driver's license to him. He took down information and gave me a ticket. "Am I free?" I asked. He said yes. On my way out I nodded to another cop. Then I recrossed the line, this time exiting the site. I was greeted by M and got my stuff back.

Why did I do it? I knew there would be no real consequences and it was a nice starter arrest. Also a new friend described it so glowingly while he drove me somewhere in his car, carefully telling me the details. I wanted to make a statement against nuclear weapons.

And that's the story of my arrest. I slept for three hours last night and three the night before, so I'm half-delirious, and please excuse my poor storytelling, but I hope it's clear.


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