Peace Lovers Celebrate 20 Years on the Peace Bridge

Story and Video by Bill Sorem

Peace Lovers Celebrate 20 Years on the Peace Bridge from The UpTake on Vimeo.

For 20 years peace advocates have gathered on the Peace Bridge, the Lake Street Marshall Avenue bridge over the Mississippi River connecting the two cities. Every Wednesday for 20 years, rain snow or shine, they have gathered on this bridge. On June 25, 1991, the Twin Cities designated this site as the, “Sri Chinmoy Peace Bridge.” April 1999 saw a small group of peace advocates starting the Wednesday tradition with flags and banners and 20 years of quiet pleas for peace continued. April 24, 2019 about 200 activists, many of them aging, took to the bridge to continue the quest for peace. Groups included WAMM (Women Against Military Madness), Veterans for Peace and others. Marie Braun, one of the very early organizers, again unpacked her car of the new signs and sent the protestors on their way. She has been the continuing inspiration for the demonstration. Mother Theresa was quoted as saying she would need attend an anti-war demonstration but that she’d never miss a peace demonstration. This was clearly the feeling of this group even though many signs highlighted the current threat to Venezuela. Braun said there have been 200 or so many times, but in the dead of winter it’s often 10 or 15 loyalists. Bridget McDonald, on the four famous McDonald sisters, said, “We’ve been coming here protesting war for 20 years, and i said it’s the most unsuccessful thing I’ve ever done, but it’s the most important ting I’ve ever done. I believe we are doing the right thing, I can’t not do it. A first-time young women with a “U.S. Out of Yemen” banner said she’d be there for the next 20 years if necessary. Meredith Aby recalled her first visit, the day after the 9/11 disaster, “It was a comforting and a very spiritual experience.” The cars continued honking as they loyalists packed up the signs, to return next week.

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