Activism is happening all of the time. In everything one does, there is a way to add to awareness, faith, sensitivity, integrity. Though the law practice aspect of my life is largely about covering my (limited) overhead, I do my best to treat my clients and the folks in the system honestly and caringly.
Like all of the components in our declining socio-political-economic framework, the legal system is ridden with glaring defects borne of bad habit and vested interest. At the same time as I am obliged to seek the best result for my client, I regularly engage in truth-telling, in my communications with client, in negotiations with adversaries, and sometimes even in the courtroom.
Thankfully, my practice of law is strictly part-time. This permits me to do what matters most to me. I now write a weekly column in the local Frederick, Maryland newspaper (circulation 50,000) which I believe attracts the attention of folks in my community of all persuasions. I have always done my best to study and to understand what is happening, locally, regionally, nationally, internationally. The column demands that I focus on expressing truth, stark truth, in a way my readers can hear, with choice examples that resonate and illuminate. My most recent columns can be accessed at
I am also a regular commentator on programs broadcast by the only local talk-show radio station.
I continue to work hard on contending with the behemoth in my community's backyard; namely the Army's Fort Detrick. Detrick is the perennial headquarters for American biowarfare projects, which are in the process of being greatly expanded. Besides organizing opposition to and oversight of the new biolabs, I am also an official community member of the Restoration Advisory Board (RAB) which is entrusted with overseeing the clean-up of contaminated areas on post that continue to threaten the community’s environment, especially water supplies.
The dynamics in the relationship between the community and the Fort are, in many ways, classic military-industrial complex dynamics. After many years of organizing, activists in the community have liberated what had been widespread, yet latent concerns in the community related to public health and safety. The trend toward demanding accountability on the part of the Fort nevertheless remains inhibited by the importance of the Fort to the local economy. The Army invokes both economics as well as patriotic loyalty in its non-stop public relations efforts clearly designed to both obfuscate and ingratiate.
As noted in the announcements of the Truth Gathering, I am an expert with respect to the case of the anthrax attacks of Sept.-Oct., 2001. My analysis entitled “The Truth about the Anthrax Attacks and its Cover-up” has achieved widespread circulation through the internet, and can be accessed at http://www.fredericknewspost.com/media/pdfs/FortAnthraxRushHolt.pdf
Though the Congressman from my district is a right-wing Republican, namely Roscoe Bartlett, he and I have collaborated in exposing the fraud that is the FBI’s case against the deceased Detrick scientist Bruce Ivins.
I also serve a role in assisting other progressive movements in the community with legal advice and other kinds of support. One example is a sustainability movement currently involved in opposing a proposed Waste-to-Energy facility that would incinerate solid waste and thus undermine recycling. There is a local peace movement populated by Quakers, Women in Black, latter-day hippies and a youthful wave of anarchists. There is also a local Green Party.
What do I propose to speak about at the Truth Gathering? Certainly, I can hold forth on the subject of the anthrax attacks, which very naturally segues into the realm of 9-11 Truth. Whenever I speak on the subject, I do my best to treat analysis of the attacks as a way of understanding the entire socio-political economic system. When I recently taught a course at the local community college on the subject of the Kennedy assassination, I did the same. The point is not to engage in titillating whodunit – the point is to illuminate a system mired in layer upon layer of encrusted deception, greed, exploitation, murder, destructiveness, confusion.
I am most interested in engaging in discussion with fellow activists at the Truth Gathering about future direction. I do not believe we need to take up too much time educating each other about the bankruptcy of the system. I would like to assume that most of us are familiar with Richard Gage’s analysis of 9-11, for example. Certainly, it is important to hear from Richard about his experiences in how to spread the word. But I am hoping that the Gathering is an opportunity to take stock of what we know from so many vantage points, and to realistically face our options.
I am at the point that I do not believe the American system can be mitigated, much less repaired. The system will remain in control until its collapse. I view collapse as imminent – though I don’t know if that means months or years. The financial system is on the brink. We have not begun to feel the magnitude of the disaster in the Gulf of Mexico. An attack upon Iran would surely push us over the edge.
Despite the cruelty and wastefulness of “the system,” I have never been one to yearn for its collapse. There will be unimaginable suffering. So what are truth gatherers to do at this stage? For modest starters, I suppose we dedicate ourselves to illuminating truth. I am thinking that truth is a goal in of itself. The truth operates regardless of conscious awareness. Expanding awareness liberates the life force.
We must maximize the influence of the truth upon all of the decisions that will be made as the collapse unfolds. We will be up against tremendous momentum behind the worst aspects of the current system – fear, confusion, alienation, violence, prejudice, propaganda, militarization, scarcity, stratification, centralization.
Clearly, part of our direction must be toward decentralization, toward community-scale cooperation. In the process we must tap our most human aptitudes – I am thinking about the extra-sensory, spiritual power that emanates from our oneness. One possibility is that in the midst of breakdown, as the day-to-day routines that so occupy us become less tenacious, we will discover a broader space in which to realize our potentials.
I wish to add that a great source of solace for me lies in making music with others. I play jazz saxophones, but adore all kinds of music. Music is capable of putting us in touch with our higher selves. Hopefully, we will make music during the Truth Gathering. (I will bring bongos in addition to saxophone).
This is no time to engage in grandiosity. I often feel my own efforts to be completely futile in the face of inexorable decay. But I love the truth, and I revere life.
RSVP on Facebook.