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Published: September 14th 2003
A couple of years ago I found myself standing on a smoggy street corner during a peace vigil & discussing transportation options to Ft. Benning for the annual School of the Americas vigil with a likeminded friend. We lamented the fact that our witness for peace in Columbus, Georgia was somewhat negated by our use of petroleum & automobiles to travel the 500+ miles. While we stood in opposition to violence in the service of capitalism throughout Latin America, we did so by transporting ourselves on tens of gallons of gasoline extracted with methods that were all too often in opposition to the very values we espoused. Today we need look no farther than Iraq to see that our country's leaders willingly exchange the blood of both Americans and non-Americans alike for a "secure" source of oil.
In short, our witness for peace was in part negated by our addiction to oil. One of us remarked, "Wouldn't it be great if we could bicycle to Ft. Benning? How long do you think that would take?" And so a seed was planted in my head: I had made long-distance bike rides before, and such a trip from Norfolk to Columbus, Georgia by bicycle wouldn't be much different.
Next month my dream will become a reality as I embark upon a 2,000 mile bicycle ride from Washington DC to Columbus, Georgia, the home of Fort Benning and the School of the Americas. Along my ride I will speak to Quaker Meetings about the School of the Americas (SOA), and explain the Christian and Quaker principles upon which I base my opposition to the SOA. My itinerary has been set, and I have contacted Quakers along my route, but I'm looking to get the word out to more people along the way. And that's where you come in: If you know of a group that would be interested in hearing my message, please contact me and/or forward this email to someone. I want to publicize my trip as much as possible, and I need your help to do so. My trip will begin 10/12/03 in Washington, DC, and will end on 11/21/03 in Columbus, Georgia. Along the way I will be stopping for the night and speaking in the following locations:
Fredericksburg, Charlottesville, Trevilians, Richmond, Williamsburg, VA Beach & Suffolk
Woodland, Battleboro, Greenville, Goldsboro, Clinton, Wilmington, Whiteville, Fayetteville, Raleigh, Durham, Chapel Hill, Snow Camp, Greensboro, Davidson, Charlotte, Hickory, Black Mountain, Asheville & Brevard
Augusta, Washington, Athens, Decatur, Newnan, La Grange & Columbus
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