political leaders fight about the federal budget and the debt ceiling, some
religious leaders are certain that the poor are in peril from funding cuts.
They've signed petitions, held vigils and sought audiences with legislators.
One group took the next step yesterday to get attention--a sit-down protest in
the Capitol rotunda.
Getting arrested, as advocates for gays and lesbians did at the United Methodist General Conference in Cleveland this month, has become a banal form of protest. Incidents of civil disobedience are now jointly orchestrated by participants and police so they can be carried out with minimum fuss.
In a series of nationwide protests, a number of religious leaders have risked arrest by partaking in acts of civil disobedience in an effort to inspire a mass mobilization of people of faith against the Iraq war. Among those arrested in September protests in front of the White House was James Winkler, general secretary of the United Methodists’ General Board of Church and Society.
Before going behind bars, Sister Lelia (“Lil”) Mattingly said she expected jail would be cold and dreary compared to life in a convent. But the nun sentenced in connection with a protest in Georgia said her imprisonment follows Jesus’ way—“to speak the truth to power and pay the consequences.”
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