26th November 2009
15th Anniversary-FAST FOR FREEDOM!
Today marks the 15th year that myself and other activists around the country FAST FOR FREEDOM. Whether in the public arena or in the privacy of our own homes we fast for cleansing, for sacrifice and freedom.
FAST FOR FREEDOM began 1995. Myself and four Irish Activists spent four days on the steps of the temporary County Building in San Francisco, California fasting and sleeping. The fast began on THANKS-FOR-TAKING Day morning and concluded 72 hours later on Sunday morning. The reason? To bring attention to the freedom struggle of the H-Block 4; Four Irish Political Prisoners awaiting trial in the United States or extradition to Northern Ireland. Within three years the H-Block 4-Pol Brennan, Terry Kirby, Jimmy Smythe and Kevin Barry Artt were released from U.S. custody, unfortunately it did not end their struggle for safety, security and asylum.
In 1998 the FAST FOR FREEDOM was moved to San Diego. The Presidio in Old Town San Diego became the focal point of our sacrifice. Old Town San Diego is credited with being the first fort and settlement of the Spanish for the Catholic Church; ground zero of the occupation of our California indigenous ancestors. It was fitting to channel our energies to one of our Indigenous leaders.
Concentrating on the unjust justice system that permeates the United States government and enforcement agencies our work was now dedicated to the FREEDOM OF LEONARD PELTIER. The three years we spent in San Francisco were supported by the Free Peltier campaign including Mr. Dennis Banks; it was a no brainer that we officially join Peltier's Freedom Campaign. From a four-day fast to a one-day fast we concentrated on the historical ramifications of THANKS-FOR-TAKING Day acknowledging the displacement, rape and slaughter of millions of Indigenous people. Leonard Peltier sits in prison for a crime he didn't commit and our one-day a year sacrifice was and continues to be the very least we can do for the most famous political prisoner in the world.
Times have changed. Activism has changed. Mass demonstrations are replaced by mass emailings, Twitter and Facebook. Challenging oppression, occupation, racism, sexism, homophobia, classism, environmental destruction and animal abuse can be challenging in economic depression; but where there is hope there is the possibility of progress.
Many of you will be sitting down to a meal where an animal has suffered to fill your body; where a worker was underpaid or overworked to offer fruits and vegetables on your table; where genetically engineering companies play "God" with nature; and where the celebration of a day has been historically distorted for the sake of corporate profit-making.
So today I fast for the Freedom of Leonard Peltier, for the Freedom of my Palestinian sisters and brothers and for the lives of my animal relations. Pick an issue, there are so many. It is easy to do and costs nothing. As most of my time is now thwarting the euthanasia process of dogs, cats, rabbits and farm animals, FREEDOM for anyone or anything should not be a competition between struggles. It is what it is. FREEDOM is to live in a world without violence of any kind.
Think before you act; act as if you will be alive in seven generations and live today in peace.
Peace & Resist in Health,
Peace & Freedom Party
Ms. Jordan was the Peace & Freedom Party Candidate for Vice-President in 2004; Leonard Peltier was the Presidential Candidate. Ms. Jordan currently works with Ferdinand's Familia, an all volunteer non-profit all species animal rescue and sanctuary serving Southern California.