Los Alamos Peace Vigils Scheduled At Ashley Pond

National peace and justice activist and former Jesuit priest John Dear


Thursday Aug. 6 and Sunday Aug. 9, hundreds of protesters are scheduled to converge on Los Alamos for the 70th Anniversary Peace and Disarmament Vigils commemorating the atomic bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki.

National peace and justice activists expected to attend include John Dear, Rev. James Lawson, Medea Benjamin, Kathy Kelly, Roshi Joan Halifax, Ken Butigan and Rev. Lennox Yearwood and individuals from the 250 Campaign Nonviolence National Conference Participants, Upaya Zen Center, Buddhist Peace Fellowship and others.

The events kick off Thursday, Aug. 6 and Sunday, Aug. 9 after processions through downtown and sitting in symbolic sackcloth and ashes along Trinity Drive, the activists will address rallies at Ashley Pond Park. All events will be broadcast live online to an expected audience of some 25,000 people, including viewers in Japan.

The events are sponsored by the national peace group and Campaign Nonviolence.

Events are scheduled to begin at 2 p.m. Thursday, Aug. 6 at Ashley Pond Park. The agenda calls for “hundreds to walk up Trinity Drive toward the entrance to Los Alamos National Laboratory carrying peace signs, then sit in symbolic sackcloth and ashes, “the oldest form of political protest,” then return to Ashley Pond Park for a rally calling for nuclear disarmament. Nobel Peace Prize nominee, author and Santa Fe resident John Dear is scheduled to speak along with Roshi Joan Halifax of Upaya Zen Monastery and Rev. Jim Lawson, Civil Rights leader and friend of Martin Luther King, Jr.

Sunday morning, Aug. 9, the Nagasaki Day peace vigil will begin at 11 a.m. at Ashley Pond Park. After the procession through town and symbolic sackcloth and ashes action, an expected 300 plus people will gather at the stage at Ashley Pond for a rally featuring activist speakers.

The annual award from the U.S. Peace Memorial also will be presented. Girls from the Santa Clara Pueblo will do a hoop dance for peace, and teenage boys from Espanola will perform a break dance for peace. More than 70,000 peace cranes, made from all over the U.S. will be presented to Los Alamos.

All events will be broadcast free and live on line at www.campaignnonviolence.org and elsewhere. The events are sponsored by Campaign Nonviolence, which last September organized more than 250 demonstrations across the U.S. in all 50 states against war, poverty, nuclear weapons and environmental destruction, and for a new culture of peace and nonviolence. 

Direct questions to Rivera Sun rivera@riverasun.com or call 575.776.3973.


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