Re ongoing coverage of the Peace March: Hats off once again to Kathleen Hendrix! As I walked across America with the Great Peace March I discovered I did not have to maintain a journal. Although with us for brief periods of time, she did reporting that spelled out the deepest feelings and most insightful observations that had taken me months of marching to delineate--the pain, the sorrow of losing marchers, the ecstasy of climbing Loveland Pass, the honesty and thoroughness, and above all the sensitivity of her reporting.
As I sit here reminiscing on my experiences with the march (an emergency situation called me home at Grand Island, Neb., the halfway point between the Pacific and Atlantic), I remember America as I wish to remember: the district attorney from Grand Junction, Colo., who took us into his home, the Catholic nuns and the Franciscan friars who made sure we had a place to stay when private campsites were canceled on us the night after a grueling 23-mile walk, the Buddhist priest who gave us succor.
Unfortunately, it is with breaking heart I say that mass America is comatose, insensitive to the nuclear threat, or maybe just scared stiff to admit there is one. I sensed a real death wish as I trudged through the sands of the Mojave, the hills of Colorado, the farms of Nebraska. Or a "just leave me alone" attitude. "Don't make waves." "Don't stick your neck out, for Pete's sake." Praying a lot and nurturing from other marchers kept me going as long as I did.