Send Op-Eds to Local Papers – Four Templates Available

These templates are for modifying, personalizing, or submitting as is. Please add your organization or group, if it applies, date it and sign your name & town. Thanks for spreading the word on plowshares and abolishing nuclear weapons!

Template 1:  US Nuclear Weapons, War, and the Climate Crisis;                Template 2: Exclusion of Expert Witnesses at Anti-Nuclear Protest Trial; Template 3:  Trident Nuclear Weapons, Economic, and Racial Justice; Template 4: Defending Faith-Based Protest of Nuclear Weapons with RFRA

 

1st TemplateUS Nuclear Weapons, War, and the Climate Crisis

( Note: 391 words below]

Dear Editor:

Last month seven anti-nuclear activists, the Kings Bay Plowshares 7 were convicted and will be sentenced in Brunswick, GA, for entering a Trident submarine base to protest the nuclear weapons based there.

At the trial, the judge prohibited key evidence, barred respected expert witnesses, and ruled out testimony of what motivated their protest. The jury had no expert factual context in arriving at their guilty verdict. It was, honestly, a legal travesty.

As a person who has deep concerns about climate disaster [mention your organizational affiliation], I can’t be silent about what nuclear weapons and nuclear winter will do to our planet and its atmosphere if detonated. I can’t be silent because US nuclear weapons are used as the biggest bully stick, enforcing US interventionist oil wars which literally fuel the largest military and creating the largest carbon footprint on the planet. The U.S. military consumes more hydrocarbons than most countries, a massive hidden impact on climate. June 20, 2019, Lancaster University research shows the US military is one of the largest climate polluters in history, consuming more liquid fuels and emitting more CO2e (carbon-dioxide equivalent) than most countries. I can’t separate the Georgia protest and my fears about the global climate crisis. Both are lethal; they will incinerate us at different rates and doom life our planet.

The defendants sought to put these Trident nuclear weapons on trial rather than merely be tried for trespass and property infractions. Though barred from doing so, they sought to invoke morality and international laws to justify their actions.

Readers who care about the global environment must awaken. First, view the KBP7 trial verdict as a starting point kingsbayplowshares7.org to be informed about our nuclear weapons arsenal and their connection to the global climate crisis. Second, look at local ways we can endorse ICAN’s Treaty for the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons or divest city and state pension funds from nuclear weapons companies. Third, reach out to our community through social or traditional media.  Speaking for myself, I’m going to organize (fill in blank, e.g., evening events with films and discussions, e.g., three good films come to mind: “Dr.Strangelove,” “The Day After,” and “The Nuns, The Priests and the Bomb.”) The Kings Bay Plowshares 7 defendants didn’t act in vain.  We can abolish nuclear weapons together and save our mother earth.

(name)

(town)

_________________________________________

2nd Template: Exclusion of Expert Witnesses at Anti-Nuclear Weapons Protest Trial,

(This is a template; please modify, personalize, or submit as is with your name and address signed.)

Dear Editor:

Not enough national coverage has been given to an important trial verdict late last month near the Kings Bay Naval base on the coast of Georgia. Seven anti-nuclear activists were convicted in a Federal Court in Brunswick, GA for entering and, nonviolently and  symbolically disarming the base. This act of civil disobedience was to send a message that the Trident submarines stationed at the base carry nuclear weapons that are a doomsday machine for all of us.

At the trial, defendants were prohibited from using key evidence, expert witnesses and sharing their motivations. Had this been otherwise, the verdict could very well have been in their favor. The public should know this.

https://kingsbayplowshares7.org/2019/10/order-overruling-objections-and-denying-motion-to-reconsider-oct-18-2019/). As a person who is involved in (organization or movement…fill in blank and modify what follows accordingly), it concerns me the that four expert witnesses were not allowed to testify. This includes former National Security Council member, Daniel Ellsberg, who was prepared to speak on why it’s imperative that nuclear protesters be allowed to appeal – as the defendants wished to explain their motivation to prevent the destruction of creation.

Among the points Ellsberg makes in his recent book, The Doomsday Machine, Confessions of a Nuclear War Planner (https://www.nytimes.com/2017/12/28/books/review/daniel-ellsberg-the-doomsday-machine.html) is that as few as 10 nuclear missiles, out of a US arsenal with 2000 warheads, could destroy life as we know it on earth. Trident submarines are major platforms for these missiles. The defendants sought to put these Trident nuclear weapons on trial rather than merely be tried for trespass and property damage.

What can we do? First, look at the KBP7 trial verdict as a starting point (kingsbayplowshares7.org). Second, look at local ways we can endorse ICAN’s Treaty for the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons or divest city and state pension funds from nuclear weapons companies. Third, reach out to our community through social or traditional media.  Speaking for myself, I’m going to organize (fill in blank, e.g., evening events with films and discussions, e.g., three good films come to mind: “Dr.Strangelove,” “The Day After,” and “The Nuns, The Priests and the Bomb.”) The Kings Bay Plowshares 7 defendants didn’t act in vain.  We can abolish nuclear weapons together.

(name)

(town)

___________________________________________

This is a template; please modify, personalize, or submit as is, signed with your address, & dated. (letter below is 347 words)

3rd Template: Trident Nuclear Weapons, Economic, and Racial Justice  

Dear Editor:

On Oct. 24th, 2019, seven anti-nuclear activists, the Kings Bay Plowshares 7 were convicted and will be sentenced in Georgia for entering a Trident submarine base and protesting the nuclear weapons stored at the base and on six submarines.

At that trial, the judge prohibited key evidence, barred respected expert witnesses, and ruled out testimony about motivations for the protest.  So, the jury had no factual context to understand their motives in arriving at their verdict. 

As a person who is involved in economic and racial justice issues [mention your organizational affiliation?], I must underscore that indigenous people and people of color bear the brunt of nuclear mining, testing fallout, and waste storage and will be collateral damage in the planned nuclear strikes on cities. What an outrage!  As for economic justice, the Congressional Budget Office estimated the future 30-year cost of the U.S.’s nuclear forces at $1.2 trillion in 2017. The Cost of War trade-off meter from the National Priorities Project shows how our tax dollars are being wasted on weapons instead of providing essential services in our community. Providing tuition for the 13.5 million U.S. students in public colleges and universities for the next four years would cost one-fourth of this sum. It could retrain the labor force, roll back the opioid crisis, or go a long way to clean up the nation’s 1,400 Superfund sites, e.g., Oak Ridge Tennessee where our Energy Department produced enriched uranium for nuclear weapons and left mercury contamination that made water undrinkable and unusable.

Readers who care about economic and racial justice should act. First, view the Georgia trial and verdict as a starting point (kingsbayplowshares7.org/). Second, look at ways locally we can endorse ICAN’s Treaty for the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons or divestment campaigns from nuclear weapons investments with city or state pension funds and to reinvest in communities that need the money. Third, reach out to our community through social or traditional media.  The Kings Bay Plowshares 7 defendants didn’t act in vain.  We can abolish nuclear weapons together.

(name)

(town)

________________________________________________

This is a template; please modify, personalize, or send as is with signing your name, town, and date. Note: 354 words below, Not including Title)

 4th Template   Defending Faith-Based Protest of Nuclear Weapons with RFRA

Dear Editor:

Last month seven anti-nuclear activists, the Kings Bay Plowshares 7 were convicted and will be sentenced in Brunswick, GA, for entering a Trident submarine base and protesting the nuclear weapons carried on them. The seven committed this act of civil disobedience in order to send a message that the Trident submarines stationed at the base carry nuclear weapons, weapons that Daniel Ellsberg calls a “doomsday machine.”

At that trial, the judge prohibited key evidence, barred their respected expert witnesses, and ruled out testimony about motivations for the protest. Therefore, the jury had no factual context in arriving at their guilty verdict.

The defendants sought to put these Tridents nuclear missiles on trial rather than be tried for trespass and petty property infractions. As a person who is involved in (organization or movement…fill in blank and modify what follows accordingly), I am particularly concerned that the seven defendants were not permitted to use the Religious Freedom Restoration Act (RFRA) in their defense. Despite the judge calling their action “a sacramental denuclearization,” they couldn’t use the church’s social teaching, specifically, their belief in the sanctity of all life and the care for all creation. Without their international law expert, a former nuclear war planner expert, and Catholic theologian experts, they couldn’t justify the necessity to disarm, nonviolently and symbolically, the sinful and omnicidal nuclear weapons that could end all life on earth. Oddly, the bakers in Colorado were permitted to justify their refusal to bake a cake for the celebration of the marriage of a same-sex couple on the grounds of their conscientious objection, using the RFRA.

I ask readers who care about religious and social teachings to act. First, view the Georgia trial verdict as a starting point (kingsbayplowshares7.org). Second, look at ways our local churches and community can endorse ICAN’s Treaty for the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons or work to divest churches, city, and state pension funds from nuclear weapons companies.  Third, reach out through social or traditional media to share the story. The Kings Bay Plowshares 7 defendants didn’t act in vain. We can abolish nuclear weapons together.

(name)

(town)

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