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Home About Us Prisoners of Conscience 2006 - SOA 16 Whitney Ray
Whitney Ray PDF Print E-mail


After living blissfully as a social-justice-loving kid in Indianapolis, Whitney now attends Cornell College in Mt. Vernon, Iowa. She enjoys dancing, poetry, pie, and "The Godfather." She decided to cross the line during her second SOA protest in honor of the thousands of women and men massacred by U.S. imperialism.

Whitney Ray's Statement:

Your honor, many people have stood in my place. Many people have spoken more eloquently to you, and many people have had more years to live their lives. So, in this position, I can only speak for myself and how I feel, talk about what I believe.

The SOA/WHINSEC is an organization that needs to be shut down. I believed that when I crossed onto Fort Benning in protest of the SOA?s existence, and I believe that now. Crossing the line was not merely a spur-of-the-moment decision. It was a planned act of love.

The one commonality I can find in all the events around me is love. Love is the reason I am in this courtroom speaking to you. It is the reason that my family is here to support me, the reason some of them were so fiercely against me crossing onto Fort Benning, and it is the reason people continue to cross the line even though they know the consequences could be severe.

There is a driving force that we feel towards every other human on this planet, even if sometimes we can?t see it. We feel it for the family we were born into, the family we create when we get older, and the friends we make. But we also feel it for the people we never meet.

I love my family, and I love my friends. But I also love the people in Latin American persecuted by SOA graduates. I love the individuals who have lost their livelihoods or their lives to U.S. imperialism. I wanted to do everything in my power to stand with those individuals. I take responsibility for my actions because I know that they came from my heart.


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