I was arrested for criminal trespass along with my husband and seven other people at the gates of Bath Iron Works in a snowstorm on April 1. We were not allowed in to the ceremony “christening” an Aegis class warship and were arrested for refusing to leave the gate area. Our senators were inside giving speeches to their big campaign donor General Dynamics, which owns the BIW shipyard. I was outside dressed as Sen. Susan Collins, with her many corporate sponsorships displayed on my jacket like a NASCAR driver: Goldman Sachs, Boeing, and Lockheed, among others.
The proposed federal budget for fiscal year 2018 calls for cuts to education, health care, and environmental protection while moving $54 billion to the military. The Pentagon already gets well over half of each year’s funding from Congress. The super wealthy CEOs of corporations like General Dynamics get richer at our expense while almost everyone you know gets poorer. Is this democracy? Who does our government really represent at this point?
History shows that all empires end, usually when they have exhausted themselves fighting wars in too many distant lands. So I joined with others to hammer out danger and a warning about where we’re headed.
People at BIW need jobs building sustainable energy solutions that will see us through the 21st century. One more expensive, polluting battleship not a product we need. If BIW would invest in building trains or windmills they would actually generate more jobs and work toward a more likely future for our grandchildren.