May 25, 2012
written by Kim Kennedy
Grannies For Peace Vigil
Saturday, May 12th, 2012
Washington Park, Albany New York
12:00 to 1:00 PM
Is profiting from war patriotic?
This year the Grannies for Peace are calling out the war profiteers who are making a killing by selling and using weapons of war. We’re calling them “The Merchants of Death.”
We’ve chosen to highlight the five most profitable US defense corporations, Lockheed Martin, Boeing, Northrop Grumman, General Dynamics and Raytheon. We’re also spotlighting Kellogg Brown and Root, formerly part of Halliburton. KBR is one of the companies that has benefited from billions of dollars in profitable single source/ no bid contracts for services previously provided by the US military itself…
Twenty-Five Grannies for Peace, dressed in black, carried a coffin through the Tulip Festival in a solemn, silent Peace Procession on Saturday, leaving the Moses Statue at noon. We marched with the aid of Mickie Lynn as drummer at the head of the procession. The “Merchants Of Death” banner followed with the coffin (displaying Iraq, Afghanistan, Libya, and Syria). The signs naming the six “War Profiteers” were held by 6 of the Grannies For Peace in the march.
The procession ended in the southeast corner of Albany’s Washington Park (east of the Moses Statue) where the grannies held a silent vigil from 12:30 to 1 PM. The coffin was placed on the ground with three of the named corporations on either side as the Grannies For Peace formed a semi-circle around the props.
Maud Easter handed out 200 flyers as we marched and held our vigil. It seems there were a variety of reactions to our procession and vigil. Some people were curious; some seemed offended, some people showed support, and some called us names.
We sang a closing song to the tune of “Down By The River Side” replaced with “Profit War No More”
Here are the verses to “Profit War No More”
(Tune: “Down By The Riverside” Words by Mickie Lynn)
We’re gonna lay down our bombs and guns, down by the riverside, down by the riverside, down by the riverside. We’re gonna lay down our bombs and guns, down by the riverside and profit war no more.
We ain’t gonna profit war no more, we ain’t gonna profit war no more we ain’t gonna profit war no more (2 times).
We’re gonna lay down our bombs and guns …
We’re gonna give up our killer drones…
We’re gonna outlaw all cluster bombs…
We’re gonna bring our war dollars home…
We’re gonna join hands around the world…
We had a good turn out and would like to thank all of the Grannies and Non-Grannies For Peace who participated in this year’s Mothers Day/Tulip Festival activities and to everyone who helped make it possible.
At the prop making meeting several Grannies completed the signs and armbands for the vigil, all designed and stenciled by Kim Kennedy. Kim also organized the sequence of the march and the placement of props during the vigil.
For more photos, please see our blog: Profit war no more! (A Memorial weekend photo essay) pictures by Mabel Leon.