During the hottest part of July, I went to the
The charge against me was “violation of a lawful order.” It is a class B misdemeanor. The court in which the case was to be heard was the U.S. District Court in
I arrived in
During the few days that I was in
Also, at the
On Friday, July 21, I was in court. I found out that the judge assigned to the case was Theresa Buchanan, who was well-known for sending protesters to jail. I was horrified. I had not anticipated the possibility of being sent to jail, even though I was aware that the maximum sentence for this charge was six months in prison plus a big fine. I had intended to plead “no contest” and to ask the judge to sentence me to “community service” and “probation” (the prosecutor said that “probation” had to go along with “community service” so that there would be someone to “supervise” me).
As it turned out, Judge Buchanan would not accept a no-contest plea. So I chose, along with 13 co-defendants who were in court that day, to plead not guilty. We were proceeding “pro se” (defending ourselves). Some of my co-defendants did a fine job in giving an opening speech and in cross-examining the chief prosecution witness, Major William Stout of the Pentagon Police. He insisted that he had designed a “free speech zone” for us so that we could enjoy our protest in a nice, secluded spot. Under cross-examination, he acknowledged that the spot was so secluded that no one in the Pentagon could either see us or hear us. After the prosecution rested, the judge shocked everyone in the courtroom by abruptly dismissing the charges.
That abrupt dismissal ended the trial of the century, which most certainly did not live up to that title.
That is the new title of the Erie County Fair. I entered two pastel paintings, two crocheted doilies, and one small crocheted blanket into the contests at the
MY MIDWESTERN ADVENTURE
In September, I spent ten days in the
One of the unexpected highlights of my Midwestern trip was a train ride between
After getting off the train in LaCrosse, I was greeted by my friend Mary Cary, whom I hadn’t seen in more than twenty years. The two of us had been students in the University of Missouri-Columbia, when we last saw one another. We were so happy to see one another! Mary introduced me to her friend, Perry-O Sliwa. The two of them had arranged for me to spend the next several days at Perry-O and David Sliwa’s farm outside of
My time at the organic farm was delightful. I spoke about WHINSEC at
After spending several days in
The Sliwas, the Franciscan Sisters of Perpetual Adoration, and Voices for Creative Nonviolence were kind and gracious hosts. It was a fantastic opportunity for me.
I enjoyed my time in
The time is rapidly approaching. I’m going back to
I am hoping that many people decide to cross that fence this year. It is the 60th anniversary of the founding of the School of the
I am asking you to consider crossing the fence this year. Having 20,000 people walk onto the grounds of
I’ll see you there!
(For more detail about my adventures, take a look at my blog at alicesgrandadventures.blogspot.com.)