I was saddened to hear of the passing of Sister Megan Rice of the Society of the Holy Child Jesus. She died last week at the age of 91. Rice was imprisoned for two years in federal prison when she was in her 80s after she broke into a government complex to protest nuclear weapons. This was not the first time Rice was arrested. In the 90s she protested torture at the infamous US Army School of the Americas.
Her activism was influenced by her parents who worked with Dorothy Day for economic justice during the Great Depression and by her uncle who had spent four months in Nagasaki, Japan, following the criminal nuclear bombing of civilians by US forces. After living and working in West Africa for 23 years as a teacher and pastoral guide she returned to the US and became a major activist in the peace movement.
Sister Megan Rice will not get the attention of a dead general in the mainstream press or by politicians of either ruling party. Those who expose war crimes or who advocate peace are generally marginalized, imprisoned or silenced in militaristic societies. But she deserves far more accolades than any one of the war mongers.
May she rest in peace.
Kenn Orphan October 2021
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