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Grandmothers protest Iraq war

Posted: March 2, 2009 12:23 a.m.
Updated: March 2, 2009 4:55 a.m.

The Santa Clarita chapter of Grandmothers for Peace holds an anti-war demonstration the first Sunday of every month from 3 p.m. to 4 p.m. at the corner of McBean Parkway and Valencia Boulevard.

 

Wearing a black T-shirt that read, "No War!" Patty Carmody, 77, stands on a Valencia street corner thinking about her granddaughter.

She is in training in the U.S. Army and Carmody hopes she will never have to see a war.

"The reason I come out is to help people take it seriously," said Carmody, leader of the Santa Clarita chapter of Grandmothers for Peace.

The small group of grandmothers, grandfathers, parents and concerned citizens holds an anti-war demonstration the first Sunday of every month from 3 p.m. to 4 p.m. at the corner of McBean Parkway and Valencia Boulevard.

Carmody shows up every month, even when she's the only one, and even when the public doesn't like what she has to say.

"We get the finger, I've been shot with paint pellets," she said. "Luckily I was wearing a raincoat that day."

At least 4,253 members of the U.S. military have died in the Iraq war since it began in March 2003, according to an Associated Press count on Sunday.

"One of the biggest problems is apathy," Carmody said.

Lately the grandmothers have seen a more positive response from those driving by.

"We used to have more one-finger salutes than two," said Joan Kaldhusdal of Canyon Country. "Now we have more two-finger than one."

She protested the war because she believes in protecting, not invading, she said.

"I have grandkids that age. I don't want them to have to run off (to fight) somewhere," she said.

Kaldhusdal held a sign showing the cost of the war in Iraq since it began.

"I think people are beginning to think about it, especially since they're out of work," she said. "Let's get our country back to where it was."

Several members of the Unitarian Universalist church joined the grandmothers in protest Sunday.

"I just want to keep the war visible," said Rev. Ricky Hoyt. "I just want to make sure people don't forget about it."

The group also plans to meet at the same intersection on March 21 from 3 p.m. to 4 p.m. to mark the six-year anniversary of the start of the Iraq war.

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