Skip to comments.Eight arrested during protest at Y-12 plant
Posted on 08/05/2006 9:27:04 PM PDT by SmithL
OAK RIDGE - Eight peace activists were arrested Saturday after they refused to leave the entrance to the Y-12 nuclear weapons plant.
They were demonstrating in remembrance of the civilians killed in the atomic bombing of Hiroshima, Japan, during World War II and protesting the continued production of nuclear bombs.
Y-12 enriched the uranium used in the A-bomb dropped on Hiroshima, and the Oak Ridge plant now manufactures replacement parts for the U.S. arsenal of nuclear weapons.
About 275 people participated in a Saturday rally at Oak Ridge's Bissell Park and a march to Y-12, where protesters chanted, pinned paper peace cranes to the barricades and fences, and sang songs while the eight sat down on the hot asphalt as an act of civil disobedience.
"Y-12 needs to be closed, its buildings and land decontaminated and used for human causes," Erik Johnson, 62, one of those arrested, said in a written statement.
"Today I witness to my trust not in death-making bombs but in the God of life," Johnson, a Presbyterian minister from Maryville, said. "I am outraged at the evil and indifference of those who reap fabulous, obscene profits from the planning, designing, manufacturing, maintenance of these weapons of mass destruction."
Others arrested on misdemeanor charges for obstructing a roadway were: Tom Shelton, 58, of Knoxville; Pam Beziat, 60, of Nashville; Bill Nickle, 66, of Washburn; Tom Mahedy, 43, of Wall, N.J.; Gerald Chojnacki, 67, of Shelby Township, Mich.; Dorothy Ritter, 51, of Fraser, Mich.; and Tom Lumpkin, of Detroit.
Today is the 61st anniversary of the A-bomb dropped on Hiroshima, and a ceremony will be held at dawn with the reading of names of those who died from the nuclear blast. Additional events are being planned for Wednesday, the anniversary of the bomb dropped on Nagasaki, Japan.
A handful of counter-protesters were on hand Saturday at Y-12. Stacy Griffin of the Citizen Soldiers for the Atomic Bomb, based in Rhea County, was one of the organizers.
"Our event coincides with the communist, tax-exempt, leftover hippies of the '60s who have protested and long mocked the sacrifices of our veterans and good laws," Griffin said in a statement.
Capt. Alan Massengill of the Oak Ridge Police Department said there were no major surprises or problems during Saturday's protest events. He said those arrested likely would be issued citations and then released unless they had prior convictions. Johnson has been arrested multiple times at protests in Oak Ridge and other sites.
Some people traveled hundreds of miles to participate in this weekend's Hiroshima-linked events in Oak Ridge, and they arrived in different ways.
There was a peace walk from Atlanta featuring Buddhist monks, bicyclists from Asheville, N.C., and runners from Portsmouth, Ohio.
The runners were part of Footprints for Peace, a Cincinnati-based group whose motto is, "Every step a prayer, every mile a ceremony." About 18 runners participated in the 348-mile relay from Portsmouth to Oak Ridge.
Y'all have a nice day now, hear!
Be Seeing You,
They would be much better off protesting in Tehran or Pyongyang-maybe Soros could pay the airfare?;)
Idiots. Japan refused to surrender. If we had gone in *millions* of Japanese civilians would have died defending their country.
You missed their point. We weren't supposed to go in, either. We were supposed to stop fighting (which is not the same as surrendering, since America is always the aggressor), and immediate peace would have broken out all over the globe.
Same old crowd from the 60's I discovered that all people don't get smarter as they get older, the ones that were dumb while young just get dumber.
Give them a unescorted tour of the reactor's core so they can see how good it is.
All I got to say is...LOL!
Sigh. I hope we don't see a re-run of the 60s.
I think Michael Savage refers to these types as Red Diaper Doper Babies. You know, the offspring Communist sympathizers who are also pot-smoking hippies from the 60s.
Funny how "peace" activists never have a problem with the prospect of North Korea or Iran having nukes.
I read an article in the local paper that said that trendy leftist churches are holding memorial services for the victims of Hiroshima. I'm sure the peace activists also have had memorials for the victims of the Bataan Death March and the people massacred in Nanjing. /sarcasm. Its funny how you always hear about Hiroshima but most peace activists have never even heard about what happened in Nanjing.
The excuse they always give for not criticizing hostile foreign powers with nukes is, "well, we can't do anything about disarming North Korea, so we work to disarm America first, then the others will follow our example".
And as for the sixties, that entire antiwar counterculture was summed up in a sentence when somebody observed,
"You know, a lot of guys joined the revolution just to get laid!"
That Peace flag is queer looking