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Soledad
04-01-2003, 09:23 PM
Nun says missile silo protest worthwhile


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By Colleen Slevin



April 1, 2003 | DENVER (AP) -- A Roman Catholic nun representing herself against charges she and two other sisters allegedly defaced a missile silo tearfully told jurors on Tuesday that the peace protest was worthwhile, even if the nuns are jailed.

Sisters Ardeth Platte, 66, Jackie Hudson, 68 and Carol Gilbert, 55, are accused of breaking into a Minuteman III missile silo site on Colorado's northeastern plains Oct. 6, swinging hammers at it and painting a cross in their own blood on the structure.


All three have been charged with interfering with the nation's defense _ a crime could put them behind bars for 30 years if they are convicted. Platte said serving a sentence would be worth it if people think more about the weapons.

"If we have to spend the rest of our lives in prison we will," she said, fighting tears. "We have friends who are in the war zone. We must do more for peace." She left the lectern and embraced her legal adviser Anabel Dwyer, a law professor from Michigan.

Hudson's attorney, Walker Gerash, said the nuns may be guilty of trespassing, but never jeopardized national security.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Robert Brown said the sisters refused to leave the missile site when officers ordered them to do so through a bullhorn. He said the Minuteman and other nuclear missiles have been vital to the nation's defense and have deterred other nations from using their nuclear weapons.

"It would have been nice if they never were invented. But they were," Brown said.

The sisters entered the N-8 site as part of a symbolic disarmament, reading Bible verses about pounding swords into plowshares and singing hymns, Gerash said.

The sisters, who also pounded on the 110-ton concrete lid with hammers, said they were compelled to act as war with Iraq moved closer and because the United States has never promised not to use nuclear weapons.

Gilbert and Platte both lived at Jonah House, a communal residence for pacifists founded by Philip Berrigan in Baltimore. Hudson belongs to a similar group in Poulsbo, Wash. All joined the Dominican order in Grand Rapids, Mich.

mugsy
04-01-2003, 09:35 PM
Well, the Catholic Church has spoken outwardly against the war, so I guess the nuns did what they thought they needed to do. I will guess, however, that the Church does NOT condone trespassing.

My response to them would be that if they have people over there why are they not spending their time putting things together for them and not wasting their time messing with nuclear reactors.

RICHARD
04-01-2003, 09:53 PM
Originally posted by mugsy
Well, the Catholic Church has spoken outwardly against the war, so I guess the nuns did what they thought they needed to do. I will guess, however, that the Church does NOT condone trespassing.

My response to them would be that if they have people over there why are they not spending their time putting things together for them and not wasting their time messing with nuclear reactors.

hoho!!!
now the vatican wants some of our badselves???

what about the roman cath regime?

look at all of the crimes against children they have committed,
no not those......i'm talking about the busted knuckles, detention,
zeroes on tests, bad report cards......

let's see the vatican is a little to the north of iraq...........

Soledad
04-01-2003, 09:57 PM
I'm not a religious person, but I thought it was interesting that nuns were willing to go that far.

mugsy
04-01-2003, 09:59 PM
Some nuns at least....I don't know much about that particular order.

Soledad
04-01-2003, 10:05 PM
I know it doesn't mean ALL nuns feel this way and would do this, just that it was interesting that some did.

Your skepticism knows no bounds, Mugsy, unless of course it comes from Bill O'Reilly. :p ;)

sammi
04-01-2003, 10:17 PM
I think the nuns acted very foolishly. They have committed to serve god. I would hate to see them be jailed. But if it was two young gals or guys they would be shipped off to jail (and I don't think a lawyer could help them). Just my opinion.

mugsy
04-01-2003, 10:19 PM
Nah....I listen to Bill O'Reilly, but I don't make my decisions on what he says!! :p

I guess I did make it sound like all nuns felt that way....sorry! hehe

Gee, you know that's the first time I've ever been called a skeptic! I have a new title!!;)

Soledad
04-01-2003, 10:22 PM
Glad to be of some use. :)

Karen
04-01-2003, 10:32 PM
It wasn't a reactor, it was a missle silo, big difference.

Young people would have probably been treated the same way, the military justice system is not known for its flexibility or leniency.

Soledad
04-01-2003, 10:48 PM
I'd also like to say: who knows what else they've done for their cause? Just because they were arrested for this, it doesn't mean they haven't sent things to their friends and others. It's kind of hard to make an assumption like that.

And yes, they are there to serve God, but everyone has different ways of expressing that. I would think sacrificing your comfort to make a statement against killing human beings would be pretty consistent with Christian/Catholic doctorine.:rolleyes:

Paul
04-02-2003, 12:47 AM
   They are not protesting the war. Their protest occurred on Oct. 6, 2002. From the Dominican Life website:

   "In this disarmament action we hope to enflesh the Scriptures and spirit of our religious and intentional communities: to praise God, to bless all of God's people and creation, to preach truth with love," says Ardeth Platte, O.P. In other words, they hope to enflesh the spirit of Dominican life "to give to others the fruits of their contemplation," and "to speak truth to power," adds Carol Gilbert, O.P.

   The form of the protest is bizarre. I would find a story that said these sixty-year-old nuns have spent the past forty years on their knees praying for peace more believable.

   From Dominican Life, Dominican sisters Speak Truth at Missile Site (http://www.domlife.org/missiles.html). The Dominican Life (http://www.domlife.org/index.html) home page has a lot more info.

      Paul

Soledad
04-02-2003, 01:47 AM
Yes, it is a bizarre form of protest. But they are Catholics, and they're not known for their boringness. ;)

KYS
04-02-2003, 06:53 AM
posted by Paul:
They are not protesting the war. Their protest occurred on Oct. 6, 2002. From the Dominican Life website:>>>>.

Thank you Paul for pointing this out and clarifing.
When I read (By Colleen Slevin April 1, 2003)
No other dates mentioned, I thought the article was referring,
soley to the Iraq war.