We Are All Part of One Another

In 1967, Barbara Deming received the annual Peace Award of the War Resisters League

Here is an excerpt that is particularly apt at a time when so many among us are in jails and prisons for our nonviolent dissent. Standing together is sometimes hard. But we must.

“I feel very strongly that in the days ahead of us, unless a very great many of us move from words to acts–from words of dissent to acts of disobedience–we are going to have no effect at all upon our government’s policy,no effect in halting the terrible momentum of this war.  If we do become more bold, and therefore more effective, I think it is fair to predict that our government will, in turn, move more boldily to discourage us.  And then if we do not all stand together, helping always whomever is singled out for punishment, our effectiveness will end.

To stand together is going to be hard. Our movement is composed of all kinds of groups and all kinds of individuals. It is certain that many of us will make all kinds of mistakes. It will become very tempting to wish that this group or that group, this individual or that individual, were simply not among us.  My particular plea is that we not surrender to this temptation. We must certainly be frank with each other when we disagree, but my plea is that we not begin to be afraid of any of us and, in a panic, try to wish any of us out of the picture.  We will need every one of us. We are all part of one another…” 

Barbara Deming, Published in Liberation, May-June 1967.

Coming Soon- Year in Review!



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