My protest today is dedicated to the memory of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. The great American civil rights leader, social justice activist and pacifist. A few years ago, I committed to do something public to keep his memory and message alive. In 1967, Dr. King gave an incredibly profound and prescient speech “Beyond Vietnam: A Time to Break the Silence” and said,
“A nation that continues year after year to spend more money on military defense than on programs of social uplift is approaching spiritual death.
There is nothing except a tragic death wish to prevent us from reordering our priorities, so that the pursuit of peace will take precedence over the pursuit of war.”
Warships are for the pursuit of war. I want Canada to pursue peace in the world. I want the federal government to re-order its priorities and invest in a national strategy for green jobs, affordable housing, First Nations, municipal infrastructure, and early learning not new warships.
One navy person who was driving out of the base rolled down his car window and asked me if I drank coffee. What a nice gesture I thought. I told him “No thank you I don’t drink coffee, but I do love café mochas. Don’t worry though because I’m going to have one at Julien’s Café afterward.” I love Julien’s Hedgehog mocha. It is delicious with espresso, chocolate, hazelnut and foamed milk.
At 12:20, Robert showed up to help me hold my signs. It was nice to chat with him and get to know him better. In his retirement, he is trying to get more involved in the community and social justice issues. We talked about Dr. King and the civil rights struggle in the U.S. Robert suggested that I watch this new documentary about a tragic story of racism in the south in the 1960s called “Booker’s Place: A Mississippi Story” I was reminded of Dr. King’s challenge,
“We must rapidly begin the shift from a “thing-oriented” society to a “person-oriented” society. When machines and computers, profit motives and property rights are considered more important than people, the giant triplets of racism, materialism, and militarism are incapable of being conquered.”
It wasn’t easy for him to hold up the sign with one hand, because he had to keep the other in his pocket. The poor guy forgot his gloves!
We got about 7 honks and 1 finger.