Saturday, January 16, 2010

Sick of War

Yesterday, I participated in a "Sick of War" demonstration outside the East Gates of Ft. Hood in Killeen, Texas. The vigil, which was planned for morning and afternoon, rain or shine, by staff, supporters and soldiers at the Under The Hood coffee house, was joined by about 25 others throughout the day. The demonstration was called to emphasize the shortcomings of mental health care given to soldiers returning from deployments, and the tendency of military medical staff to prescribe pills rather than comprehensive treatment.

We carried on with the event despite rain and cool, windy conditions, and a number of journalists came by to document the proceedings. Here is a report published today in the Killeen Daily Herald.

With IVAW member from Austin, Bobby, leading us with his megaphone, we chanted: "Money for Haiti, Not for War!", "Money for families, Not for War!", "Money for soldiers, Not for War!," "Money for schools, Not for War!" ...

We stood on the lot of an abandoned gas station right at the corner of "Tank Destroyer Blvd." and the entrance to Ft. Hood. We could see directly across the fence the building where soldiers we know have been court-martialed for refusing orders to deploy to war. I witnessed the court-martial of GI resister, Mark Wilkerson, in that building in 2007. I felt sad having to be there still, in 2010, protesting the wars that continue.

As drivers passed by our corner, many looked on curiously. Some opened their windows to hear the chants. A few gave us the thumbs up. Some gave us the single finger. Bobby called out, "Thanks for half a peace sign!"

Above are some photos I took of folks who took part. People came to the event from as far away as Denton, San Marcos, Ft. Worth, San Antonio and Austin.

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