I'm not killing nobody no more
January 8, 2009 9:41 PM   Subscribe

I don't suppose there are transcripts?
posted by lupus_yonderboy at 9:52 PM on January 8, 2009

I haven't stumbled on transcripts. You could skip Casteel in the first video and start around 1:18 with Conrad Moore. The shministim piece could be skimmed. Utah Phillips is a storyteller, so listen to the beginning and decide if you want to hear all five minutes. The WWI piece is home video, but the subject interested me--you could look at the tombstone and skip the rest. The long video about Casteel fascinated me, but when it was on MeFi before, the reactions were mixed, so try it and see what you think...its Christian aspects don't get strong until toward the end.
posted by shetterly at 10:14 PM on January 8, 2009

I heard an interview with Joshua Casteel on the CBC. It was moving. I always like listening to genuine Christians speak. I'm glad his faith survived that ordeal. It reminds me of what good people they can be. Despite all the bullshit they believe in they have a tremendous capacity for friendship and community that is often overlooked. I'm not saying that friendship and community can't happen without worshiping a meglomaniacal demon in the sky with a hard on for plagues and floods but the existence of God in their lives gives them some signifigant common ground.
posted by Pseudology at 11:49 PM on January 8, 2009

I heard Utah Philips for the first time on this Ani DiFranco album (or maybe it was Ani DiFranco on a Utah Philips album?) and I definitely liked his style. I especially liked this one bit:
I was invited to the State Young Writers' Conference out at Cheney, which was a
Eastern Washington university. And I didn't want to embarrass my son, you
know, and I was gonna behave myself cause I had to live there then - it was a
chore. But I got on the stage - it was an enormous auditorium; there were
twenty-seven hundred young faces out there, none of them with any prospects
anybody could detect - and off to the side of the stage was the suit-and-tie
crowd of people from the school district and the principals, and the, the main
speaker following me was from the Chamber of Commerce.

Well something inside of me snapped.

And I got to the microphone, and I looked out over that multitude of faces and
I said something to the effect of:

"You're about to be told one more time that you're America's most valuable
natural resource. Have you seen what they do to valuable natural resources?
Have you seen them strip mine? Have you seen a clear-cut in a forest? Have
you seen a polluted river? Don't ever let them call you a valuable natural
resource! They're gonna strip mine your soul! They're gonna clear-cut your
best thoughts for the sake of profit, unless you learn to resist, cause the
profit system follows the path of least resistance, and following the path of
least resistance is what makes the river crooked! Hmph!"

Well there was great gnashing of teeth and rending of garments - mine. I was
borne to the door, screaming epithets over my shoulder, something to the effect
of: "Make a break for it, kids!" "Flee to the wilderness!" The one within, if
you can find it.

Well, I wrote them a nice letter though, as I oozed out of the state, headed
for Nevada City. I sent it to their little literary magazine. I respect kids.
I love especially little kids. Little kids are assholes. But they're their
own assholes, see, it's when they, when you grow up and become somebody else's
asshole we're all in trouble, you know, like bankers or B-52 pilots and such.
posted by Marisa Stole the Precious Thing at 1:39 AM on January 9, 2009 [7 favorites]

Kathy Kelly interview: Voices for Creative Nonviolence. Sorry I didn't wait longer to make my post; this should be included. The interview is about half an hour. Kelly's spirit is amazing. Pseudology, I suspect you'd like her; she's a genuine Christian.
posted by shetterly at 7:27 AM on January 9, 2009 [1 favorite]

A couple of years back, I spent a few days at a commune near Motueka, NZ, that had been founded by Christians early enough to harbor COs (or at least people avoiding from the draft) during WWI. Their site says "Christian Pacifists", but I'm pretty sure I remember from a pamphlet that they were self-identified Marxists. If I'd been less preoccupied with the drama of my own life at the time, maybe I would have been smart enough to bug the remaining older members of the community with all sorts of questions about that history...

Also relevant: Ammon Hennacy.
posted by brennen at 8:07 AM on January 9, 2009

("avoiding from the draft". Criminy. Insert standard no-coffee-yet excuse here.)
posted by brennen at 8:08 AM on January 9, 2009

Don't forget about Thomas Bennett, the only conscientious objector to win the Medal of Honor. You can serve your country (or maybe, you used to be able to) without going whole hog for that killing other human beings thing.
posted by taumeson at 10:33 AM on January 9, 2009

taumeson, Desmond Doss was first, but adding Bennett to the list is great.
posted by shetterly at 1:00 PM on January 9, 2009

brennen, you pointed me toward another youtube find: Dorothy Day Documentary: Don't Call Me a Saint. 2:47 min.
posted by shetterly at 1:06 PM on January 9, 2009 [1 favorite]

The Catholic Church recently beatified Franz Jaegerstatter, who was martyred as a conscientious objector of the Nazi regime. For more on Catholic conscientious objection, learn about the Catholic Worker movement, Pax Christi USA and friend of mine Camilo Mejia.

Wonderful post.
posted by l33tpolicywonk at 7:06 PM on January 9, 2009 [1 favorite]

For anyone interested in listening to the CBC documentary that profiles conscientious objector Joshua Casteel you can hear it via this link - scroll down to part three. It won a Gabriel Award - Gabriels honour work that uplifts and nourishes the human spirit, and are given out by the Catholic Academy.


I was the producer on the item and travelled to Iowa City to interview him. He is a profoundly thoughtful and committed individual to the ideals of peace, and loving one's neighbour.
posted by tinapittaway at 7:20 PM on January 13, 2009

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