From a speech by American anti-war activist Cindy Sheehan at Convocation Hall on May 3.
In the United States, we have one party: the War party, because that's what it's all about in the U.S. And I am here to tell you that since I was a little girl during Vietnam, we looked to Canada as a beacon of hope, as a beacon of peace, as a beacon of refuge.
But now it seems like greedy people in your country want to emulate everything that's wrong with the U.S. They want to increase defence spending. They want to create what is being created in the U.S. - a militaristic society where our children's only hope of going to school, their only hope of getting out of the ghetto, their only hope of improving their life is to join the military.
Let me tell you about this military system. My son Casey was promised five things when he enlisted. He was promised a $20,000 signing bonus. When he finished boot camp he received $4,000. They said the rest he could use for his education. He was promised a laptop computer so that he could finish college. He never got that. They told him he could go to college while he was in the military. Anybody who has been in the U.S. military knows that's impossible. He was promised he could be a chaplain's assistant. When he got to boot camp, he was told that position was filled, and he would have to be a Humvee mechanic or a cook.
But the most insidious, evil thing his recruiter promised him was that he would never see combat, even if there was a war. He was killed five days after he got to Iraq [when his unit came under RPG fire].
They're bringing back men who are 65 years old, who didn't finish their enlistment in Vietnam, to fight in the reserves. George Bush didn't finish his enlistment. Why aren't they calling him back?
Dick Cheney got all his deferments. Don't they think that Casey and others had other priorities besides dying? These people are cowards. They're brave with other people's children.
I may be seeking refuge here soon. I know sedition charges may not be far behind. But I'm wondering how you guys (other U.S. war resisters in the audience) got across, because I got grilled coming in here.
The customs agent was like, "So, what do you do?"
"Well, I'm a peace activist."
"You're not going to start a riot or anything, are you?"
I never start riots. Keep your pigs off me and there won't be any trouble.
We need this haven of peace. And your government has been taken over by a neo-con, carbon copy of Bush. Harper does not have a majority. George Bush does not have a mandate.
All the people in Congress I speak to won't call for impeachment. Well, people of America, we're going to start an eviction process.
We the people need to march by the millions and say, "You're evicted, get out of our house! Take the rest with you." And once we get them out, we're going to handcuff them, we're going to try them for war crimes and crimes against humanity.
I have two possible punishments: We could just drop them in Iraq like our soldiers - without body armour, without water, without ammunition (most of our kids there get rationed ammunition) - and tell them to "find your own way out."
Or we could put them on a chain gang in the ninth ward of New Orleans and make them clean up that mess for the rest of their lives.
They can call me a traitor. They can say I'm un-American. They can paint me as a left-wing radical, but I'm mainstream America.