Vashon Island, Washington
March 16, 2003
Photo: Brent L. Magstadt
VASHON ISLAND WOMEN BARE THEIR BODIES TO PROTEST WAR
On March 16, 2003, on a surprisingly rainless spring morning in the Northwest, 46 Vashon Island women shed their clothes and joined hands in front of one of Vashon's most scenic landmarks, Point Robinson Lighthouse, to expose the human body's vulnerability to war, and to protest for peace. We women of Vashon Island - grandmothers, students, mothers, and working women - are not exhibitionists by nature, and precious few have ever seen us in swimsuits, let alone in the buff. But we came into this life without clothes, created life without them, and will take them off to protect life, if we must. Going naked counters the audacity of War. The notion of naked and exposed scarcely scratches the surface of momentarily stepping outside your comfort zone when you start to imagine the absolute horrors of war. How truly vulnerable one must feel having bombs, our bombs, dropping on you in the middle of the night when you are in your bed with your family asleep. And what unspeakable pain to lose a child to this insanity. We, as Americans, will bear the responsibility of this on our souls if we allow War to happen. So let us join together in whatever ways we create to express our feelings. Without fear of judgment.
The connectedness we felt as we held hands and sent our hopes and our prayers out there, to be captured in a photograph with this sign to the heavens, was intense. In that moment all of our energies were focused on Peace. And besides, you can't say we were totally naked. We had our gardening boots on.
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